Greek Chicken Souvlaki Pitas

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Greek chicken souvlaki pitas - Greek kebab wraps - best chicken kebab with tzatziki - greek souvlaki

Family Dinners

Greek Chicken Souvlaki Pitas

Greek chicken souvlaki pitas are one of the most popular Greek meals both inside and outside Greece!

Cubes of succulent chicken breast are marinated in aromatic herbs and cooked on a stick, placed in a warm toasted pita breads and garnished with a fresh herb yogurt sauce (tzatziki), sliced tomatoes, onions and sometimes even fries!

It can be enjoyed as a family dinner, packed lunch or as a grab and go meal.

For anyone that has been to the Greek islands you may have enjoyed a souvlaki (or two) on warm summer evenings while wandering around the island town’s backstreets. This recipe will take you right back there!

Summary

Prep: 10 minutes
Cooking: 20 minutes
Ages: Toddlers to Teens
Difficulty: Intermediate
Makes: 8 chicken kebabs

Greek souvlaki - enjoy the best chicken souvlaki ever with this delicious recipeWhat Does Brining do to Chicken?

Brine is water which has had a lot of salt diluted into it. Placing chicken fillets in this salted water and leaving it in the fridge for 2 hours or overnight is the secret to a juicy chicken dish.

The brine reacts with the proteins in the chicken to improve the water-holding capacity of the cells. This means that the meat can then absorb the water from the brine.

As a result the chicken is much more able to withstand the moisture loss that it goes through during cooking. So instead of ending up with slightly dried out pieces of chicken, you can have succulent cooked chicken bites that taste amazing.

How do I Brine Chicken?

If you have time it’s worth putting the chicken fillets in an 8% brine before cooking.

8% simply refers to the ratio of salt to water so here it would be 8 grams of salt per 100 ml of water. Or a more practical quantity for this recipe would be 80 grams of salt per litre of water.

  • Add the litre of water to a saucepan or large bowl. Pour in the salt and stir it well to ensure that it dissolves.
  • Submerge the chicken fillets in the brine, cover the bowl or saucepan with cling film and leave in the fridge overnight or for 2 hours before cooking. (Make sure it’s kept away from raw fruit and vegetables and that the water does not leak in the fridge.)

If you don’t have time to brine, don’t worry. This recipe will still be full of flavour without it!

Chicken Souvlaki Pitas

Ingredients

Brine solution (optional)

  • 80 grams sea salt
  • 1 litre water

Chicken Souvlaki Pitas:

  • 4 large chicken breasts
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • Salt and pepper seasoning
  • 8 Pita breads (if you can, get large soft Greek pitas)

Sides

  • Tomato slices
  • Onion slices
  • Feta cheese
  • Cucumber
  • Tzatziki (see our easy tzatziki recipe here below)

Easy Tzatziki

  • ½ cup yoghurt (120 grams)
  • 1½ tablespoons chopped chives
  • 1½ tablespoons lemon juice
  • ½ large garlic clove, minced

Instructions

  1. Brine the chicken fillets (optional). Place the chicken fillets in a bowl with an 8% brine solution – 80 grams salt dissolved in 1 litre of water. Cover with cling film and put it in the fridge for 2 hours or overnight.
  2. Before beginning you can also submerge the wooden skewers in cold water for 20 minutes to prevent them from burning.
  3. Remove the chicken fillets from the brine (if using). Pat them dry and chop them into cubes about 2×2 cm (1 inch) in size. Place the pieces in a mixing bowl.
  4. Add the crushed garlic cloves, juice of 1 lemon, oil, honey, paprika and fresh thyme leaves along with some salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly with your hands so that all the ingredients are evenly distributed over the chicken pieces.
  5. Start threading the chicken pieces onto the wooden skewers, about 5-7 pieces per skewer.
  6. You can then cook the chicken kebabs in one of two ways: either in the oven or in a frying pan.
  7. To oven cook: place the kebabs in an oven dish and cook for 20 minutes at 180°C (350°F) fan setting. You can turn them over halfway through the cooking time.
  8. To cook in the frying pan: place the kebabs in a shallow pan and cook for 5 minutes on each side until brown and cooked through. It’s important for all the pieces to touch the pan or to be laid flat on the pan if possible – so that they’re all cooked evenly. Check that the chicken pieces are cooked through before serving.
  9. Prepare your sides by slicing the tomatoes, cucumbers and onions. For the pita breads you can brush them with oil, thyme leaves, season with salt and pepper and pan fry them for a minute on each side until golden.
  10. When you’re ready to serve, place your chicken kebab inside the toasted pita. Fold the pita in half and hold it tightly while you remove the wooden skewer from the chicken pieces. Add your favourite toppings, drizzle with tzatziki. Enjoy while warm.

Chicken Souvlaki Pitas

Step by Step Guide:

1

Greek chicken souvlaki pitas - Greek kebab wraps - best chicken kebab with tzatziki - greek souvlaki
1

Soak the wooden skewers (optional)

About 20 minutes before cooking, place your wooden skewers in a cold water bath.

This stops them from burning later on.

2

Greek chicken souvlaki pitas - Greek kebab wraps - best chicken kebab with tzatziki - greek souvlaki
2

Chop the Chicken Fillets into Cubes

If you’ve brined the chicken (optional) then remove it from the water and pat the fillets dry.

Cut the chicken fillets into 2×2 cm (1 inch) cubes and place them in a medium sized mixing bowl.

3

Greek chicken souvlaki pitas - Greek kebab wraps - best chicken kebab with tzatziki - greek souvlaki
3

Add the Seasoning to the Chicken Fillets

Add in the crushed garlic cloves, the juice of 1 lemon, olive oil, honey, paprika and fresh thyme leaves along with some salt and pepper.

Mix everything together well with your hands so that the chicken pieces are evenly seasoned.

4

Greek chicken souvlaki pitas - Greek kebab wraps - best chicken kebab with tzatziki - greek souvlaki
4

Thread the chicken cubes onto the chicken skewers.

Thread the chicken pieces onto your wooden skewers, between 5-7 pieces per skewer.

We recommend putting fewer pieces (5) on the skewers if you’re pan frying them so that all the pieces can touch the bottom of the pan.

If you’re cooking them in the oven then line the skewers up in a lightly oiled oven dish and cook for 20 minutes at 180°C or 350°F until golden and cooked through.

5

Greek chicken souvlaki pitas - Greek kebab wraps - best chicken kebab with tzatziki - greek souvlaki
5

If pan frying cook the skewers for 5 minutes on each side

If you’re pan frying, cook the chicken skewers in the frying pan on a medium heat, for 5 minutes on each side.

Take care that all the chicken pieces can touch the pan or that the whole skewer can be laid flat on the pan.

Check that the chicken is cooked through before serving.

 

6

Greek chicken souvlaki pitas - Greek kebab wraps - best chicken kebab with tzatziki - greek souvlaki
6

Prepare your sides

Brush the pita breads with some olive oil mixed with fresh thyme leaves, salt and pepper.

Pan fry for a few minutes on each side until golden.

Chop your remaining sides:

  • thinly slice the tomotoes, onions and cucumber.
  • dice or crumble the feta cheese.
  • mix your tzatziki dip.

7

Greek chicken souvlaki pitas - Greek kebab wraps - best chicken kebab with tzatziki - greek souvlaki
7

Put together your chicken souvlaki pita

Take your toasted pita and place the cooked chicken kebab down the middle. Fold it in half and hold it tightly while you remove the skewer.

Add your favourite fillings on top, drizzle with tzatziki and enjoy while warm.

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Greek Chicken Souvlaki Pitas

 

Greek chicken souvlaki pita wraps - best chicken kebab with tzatziki - greek souvlaki

 

Greek chicken souvlaki pitas - Greek kebab wraps - best chicken kebab with tzatziki - greek souvlaki

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5 from 4 votes

Greek Chicken Souvlaki Pitas

Greek chicken souvlaki pitas make tasty family dinners, packed lunches or grab and go meals. Cubes of succulent chicken breast are marinated in aromatic herbs and cooked on a stick, placed in a warm toasted pitta bread and garnished with a fresh herb yoghurt sauce (tzatiki), tomatoes, onions and sometimes even fries!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Brining 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings 8 chicken kebabs
Author Mas & Pas

Ingredients

Brine Solution (optional)

  • 80 grams sea salt
  • 1 litre water

Chicken Souvlaki Pitas

  • 4 large chicken breasts (500 grams or 1 pound)
  • 2 garlic cloves crushed
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 lemon’s juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons mild paprika
  • salt and pepper seasoning
  • 8 pitta breads (if you can, get large soft Greek pitas)

Sides

  • 3 tomatoes sliced
  • 1 onion sliced
  • ½ cucumber diced
  • 100 grams Feta cheese crumbled

Simple Tzatziki

  • ½ cup Greek yogurt (120 grams)
  • tablespoons chopped chives
  • tablespoons lemon juice
  • ½  large garlic clove minced

Instructions

  • Brine the chicken fillets (optional). Place the chicken fillets in a bowl with an 8% brine solution – 80 grams salt dissolved in 1 litre of water. Cover with cling film and put it in the fridge for 2 hours or overnight.
  • Before beginning you can also submerge the wooden skewers in cold water for 20 minutes to prevent them from burning.
  • Remove the chicken fillets from the brine (if using). Pat them dry and chop them into cubes about 2 x 2 cm (1 inch) in size. Place the pieces in a mixing bowl.
  • Add the crushed garlic cloves, juice of 1 lemon, oil, honey, paprika and fresh thyme leaves along with some salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly with your hands so that all the ingredients are evenly distributed over the chicken pieces.
  • Start threading the chicken pieces onto the wooden skewers, about 5-7 pieces per skewer.
  • You can then cook the chicken kebabs in one of two ways: either in the oven or in a frying pan.
  • To oven cook: place the kebabs in an oven dish and cook for 20 minutes at 180°C (350°F) fan setting. You can turn them over halfway through the cooking time.
  • To cook in the frying pan: place the kebabs in a shallow pan and cook for 5 minutes on each side until brown and cooked through. It’s important for all the pieces to touch the pan or to be laid flat on the pan if possible – so that they’re all cooked evenly. Check that the chicken pieces are cooked through before serving.
  • Prepare your sides by slicing the tomatoes, cucumbers and onions. For the pita breads you can brush them with oil, thyme leaves, salt and pepper and pan fry them for a minute on each side until golden.
  • When you’re ready to serve, place your chicken kebab inside the toasted pita. Fold the pita in half and hold it tightly while you remove the wooden skewer from the chicken pieces. Add your favourite toppings, drizzle with tzatziki and enjoy while warm.

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