Gyros with Marinated Chicken and Homemade Tzatziki Sauce


Greek food is amazing. I pig out every time I'm fortunate enough to be near a Greek fest. I'm experienced in making some Greek foods, like Tiropitas, Spanakopitas, and Galactoboureko, but haven't ventured much out of the phyllo department. I chose a pretty simple recipe for my first time making gyros, and opted to buy the pitas rather than doing homemade this time (oh, but soon....).

I stumbled on this recipe for chicken gyros while searching and decided to follow it. There is also pita recipe in the same post.

I started marinating the chicken first to allow plenty of time for the flavor to soak in. This is my first marinade meal! I used olive oil instead of the vegetable oil in the original recipe and placed the chicken and marinade in a large zipper sealed plastic bag.  I then put the sealed bag in a plastic container to prevent condensation or leakage issues and placed it in the fridge.


When making the tzatziki sauce, I realized that I do not currently have a grater for the cucumber, so I ended up using my food processor (Magic Bullet) to chop a cucumber as small as possible. I ended up using 1 whole cucumber to get 1/4 cup after squeezing out all the juices I could.


I then mixed the tzatziki sauce using fat free yogurt, though next time I think I'll try either Greek yogurt or regular plain yogurt.  I added some lemon juice to the tzatziki for extra flavor.


After a few hours of marinating, I removed the chicken from the marinade and cooked the chicken breasts in a cast iron skilled on the induction cooker.  The original recipe calls for grilling, but as I do not have a grill I chose the next best thing.


After cooking, I let the chicken cool then I sliced it into thin strips.  It smelled so amazing I had to take a taste and it was so good!


Then I made the gyro by layering tzatziki sauce, tomato, onion, and grilled chicken on a warm pita.


The verdict? Best meal I've made yet. the chicken alone was so tender and flavorful and then the tzatziki sauce...holy amazing! I think I'm about to enter a Greek phase on my cooking obsession.  I found another recipe for next time that has some additional seasoning that I'd like to try. I'd love to find out how adding crushed red pepper (I love it with everything), orange juice, rosemary, and thyme affect the flavor of the chicken.  I also need to make some Greek fries to stuff in the gyros as well next time!

Chicken Gyros with Homemade Tzatziki Sauce Recipe

Ingredients:


For the tzatziki sauce:
1 1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup cucumber finely grated (squeeze off juice)
2 teaspoons garlic
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoon vinegar

Mix yogurt, cucumber, garlic, salt, olive oil, vinegar, and lemon juice together in a medium bowl and refrigerate.

For the chicken:
3 thawed chicken breasts
3-4 tablespoons lemon juice
2-3 tablespoons minced garlic
1/2 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons oregano
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

You will also need pitas, one tomato and 1/2 of an onion for toppings.

Mix garlic, olive oil, oregano, salt, an black pepper in a large plastic zipper bag and seal well, then shake ingredients together. Add chicken, coating all sides, and marinate in fridge for 2-4 hours, flipping a few times during the process. Cook chicken in a cast iron skillet on the stove with 2-3 tablespoons olive oil.  Allow chicken to cool after cooking then slice into thin strips.  Slice the tomato and onion for toppings.  For store bought pitas, microwave for 10-15 seconds to soften.

To make the gyro, spread tzatziki sauce one side of pita. Add sliced onion and sliced tomato, then add chicken and fold both sides in to close.

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