What’s better than a dinner that’s full of comforting, warm, exotic flavors? One that is easy to put together. And even better than that – an easy meal that everyone loves. Like this Sheet Pan Chicken Shawarma that is ready in 30 minutes (except for marinade time).
With a handful of everyday spices, this recipe is everything you love about Chicken Shawarma all in one sheet-pan. And the scent coming from the kitchen while it cooks is mouth-watering!
Sheet Pan Chicken Shawarma
Back in Michigan, where I’m from, there’s a little Mediterranean restaurant in town that we LOVE. And the chicken shawarma dinner was the meal that I always ordered. There it was served with a side of hummus, rice and pita bread… and that’s exactly how I like to serve it up as well in my home.
You guys, it’s so good.
This Sheet Pan Chicken Shawarma recipe gets the main dish cooked up EASILY in one pan, and while it’s cooking, I get a little help from Rice-A-Roni, which helps bring it all together and to the table in about 30 minutes.
Rice-A-Roni was something my mama always had in the pantry… and now it’s a staple in my own. I get to put more time and energy into the things that matter most and less time into getting dinner on the table –while always having a side dish the family loves (though I think Aria could just LIVE off of rice, ha!).
What is Chicken Shawarma?
If you haven’t had a bite of this classic Middle East dish, I’m telling you, you’ll be doing yourself a favor if you make it.
True traditional Shawarma, which refers to the meat, is cooked with a thin-sliced vertical stack of marinated lamb, mutton, and chicken (though we use chicken) on a slow-turning rotisserie or spit. Thin slices are then shaved off the meat as it cooks, landing on a warm pita and topped with all the goods, making it the most popular street food in many Middle Eastern countries.
While we aren’t cooking with a magical rotating spit, we can still get that spice marinade to deliver tons of flavor and all those Mediterranean feels we crave.
To recreate the texture and taste of authentic shawarma, it is best to choose fattier and more flavorful meat like chicken legs as opposed to chicken breast. When meal planning, I’ll add boneless, skinless chicken thighs, along with Rice-A-Roni, to my grocery order – but as always, use what you have!
All About Those Sheet-Pan Meals
I’m a fan of simple. Simple dinners are my jam. From sheet pan recipes, to slow cooker meals… one pan to get your main meal on the table is where it’s at. While the warm, rich flavors of Chicken Shawarma aren’t typically cooked together with the convenience of a sheet pan, this is a way to get those delicious bites with less work, and less time, in the kitchen.
Since we’re already cleaning up after our large family (pretty much constantly), the fact that this Sheet Pan Chicken Shawarma recipe means less dishes is a win for me!
An optional tip: line the baking sheet with parchment paper to make clean up ridiculously easy.
How to Serve Sheet Pan Chicken Shawarma with Rice
There are so many ways to dish up Sheet Pan Chicken Shawarma! And really, all of them are SO good.
Personally, I love a good side of rice and Rice-a-Roni is a great side dish option that you can easily prepare while your chicken is cooking and you don’t need to sacrifice flavor! You could use it with any of these serving options below:
- Sheet Pan Chicken Shawarma Bowls – Think burrito bowl, but with the deliciously warming flavors of the Mediterranean. Start with a bed of chopped lettuce, add in Sheet Pan Chicken Shawarma, veggies, and cooked Rice-A-Roni, then top with fresh cucumber, cherry tomatoes, cilantro, and serve with lemon wedges.
- Chicken Shawarma Family-Style – Set it all out like a taco bar, but with pita bread, hummus, fresh vegetables, lemon wedges, a yogurt dipping sauce, and a side of Rice-a-Roni. The family will have fun making their own plates or bowls to their taste.
- Chicken Shawarma Gyro – The classic and custom way to serve up this dish, wrapped up in a pita with veggies and a simple yogurt sauce.
- Chicken Shawarma Taco – Don’t have pita bread or naan? Try all the fixings in a tortilla… it’s like a cross between taco X fajita, but with Mediterranean spices.
- 1½ lbs. boneless, skinless raw chicken thighs
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tsp. ground cumin
- 1 tsp. ground coriander
- 1½ tsp. paprika
- ½ tsp. turmeric
- ¼ tsp. cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. ground cloves
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- Juice of ½ lemon
- ½ medium red onion, thinly sliced lengthwise
- 2 bell peppers, any color
- 1 small cucumber, diced
- Handful of chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
- 1 box Rice-A-Roni Rice Pilaf
- Place the raw chicken in a bowl, preferably one with a lid. Combine garlic and spices in a small bowl. Add 2 Tbsp. oil and juice of ½ lemon and stir to combine.
- Pour marinade over chicken and coat well. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 48 hours.
- When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 375℉. Line a
large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Place chicken in a single layer on one end of the baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove pan from the oven, add peppers and onions to the baking sheet and sprinkle veggies with a pinch of salt.
- Return the pan to the oven to bake an additional 15-20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and veggies are tender.
- While chicken is cooking in the oven, cook Rice-A-Roni according to package directions.
- Once cooked, serve chicken and peppers over rice along with diced cucumbers, hummus, and pita bread. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and serve with lemon wedges.
Have you ever made sheet pan chicken Shawarma? Let me know in a comment below!