Mediterranean Chicken Souvlaki recipe

I really think this is the most flavorful, tender and juicy chicken souvlaki recipe you will ever taste, for several reasons.

First this recipe combines all the very best ideas taken from popular chicken souvlaki recipes found in cookbooks and across the internet.

The marinade especially uses just the right ingredients to give the chicken that unmistakable Mediterranean flavor of lemons and oregano - adding a little yogurt to the marinade also helps tenderize the meat.

souvlaki skewers

Speaking of the meat, another reason this chicken souvlaki is so tender and juicy is because we're using thigh meat instead of breast meat which has a tendancy to dry out.

Boneless skinless chicken thighs are very forgiving on the grill, are full of flavor and won't dry out.

Many souvlaki recipes call for a Tzatziki sauce, which is great but I think this Creamy Garlic Cucumber sauce is an even better idea since the cucumber is just such a more natural Greek ingredient.

greek chicken souvlaki recipe

And finally, many of the recipes I've found call for pita bread, which is ok but I just find it a little too "bulky" if you know what I mean - a little too much bread. 

Try a thinner soft tortilla shell instead.  Still holds all the chicken souvlaki, vegetables and sauce without so much bread.

› Chicken Souvlaki recipe

Serves: 6

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10 - 12 minutes (or internal temperature 160F)

Direct Heat: 500F

Note: for best results marinate the chicken overnight

What you'll need:

  • 12 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 red onion chopped
  • 1 green pepper chopped
  • 2 large tomatoes chopped
  • 1 cucumber chopped 
  • 1 3/4 cups creamy garlic cucumber sauce
  • 6 soft tortilla shells (or pocketless pita's)
  • 6 long bamboo skewers

For the marinade:

  •  4 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice and zest
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano chopped (or 1 tablespoon dried)
  • 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper

cutting chicken thighs

Step 1:
Combine the marinade ingredients in a medium glass bowl and mix well.

Cut each boneless skinless chicken thigh in half.

marinating chicken thighs

Place the chicken thighs in a resealable plastic bag, pour in the marinade and seal well.

Refrigerate overnight.

green peppers and greek chicken thighs

Step 2:
Remove the marinated chicken thighs from the bag and discard the marinade.

Insert a skewer into a piece of green pepper and then thread a chicken thigh onto the skewer like a ribbon, alternating an over-under pattern. 

Put another piece of green pepper on the skewer next to the meat and then thread a second piece of chicken thigh onto the skewer also like a ribbon.

Finish off with another piece of green pepper at the end of the skewer.

Preheat the grill to 500F.

Chop the red onion, tomato, cucumber into 1/2" chunks and set aside.

Make a batch of this creamy garlic cucumber sauce and refrigerate until needed.

grilling chicken souvlaki

Step 3:
When the grill has reached cooking temperature oil the grates of the grill very well so the food doesn't stick.

Place the skewers of chicken on the grill and close the lid.

how to grill chicken souvlaki

After several minutes lift the lid and give each skewer a little wiggle to loosen it from the grates.

If they're browning up and showing nice grill marks flip them over and close the lid.

Continue to grill and when the internal temperature of the meat reaches 160F remove the skewers from the grill and keep covered.

Remove the chicken from the skewers to the middle of a soft tortilla shell or pita.

Add some chopped red onion, tomato and cucumber and pour some of the creamy garlic cucumber sauce over top.

Fold in half and enjoy!

best chicken souvlaki

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