Chicken Gyros

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Chicken Gyros start with soft, warmed pita bread that’s been loaded up with grilled chicken, packed with fresh chopped veggies, and coated in the best tzatziki sauce I’ve ever had. The chicken is marinated with light and fresh lemon, oregano and garlic flavors.

There are so many amazing flavors in these gyros and the prep time is spread out, so actual assembly goes pretty quick. We love setting everything out for these gyros and having guests pile up whatever they’d like in a pita.

These Greek Chicken Gyros can really pass as a complete meal, but if you want even more veggies, try this Greek salad on the side or this Orzo pasta salad would also be great.

Overhead image of Chicken Gyros in a pita with the tzatziki sauce spilling out, ready to be eaten.

Chicken Gyros

Truly, Chicken Gyros is one of my absolute favorite recipes on this site! I can never get enough Greek food and when it’s all loaded together in warmed pita bread, there aren’t too many things better. While there’s a lot going on, every component is relatively simple to assemble and together, nothing tastes overwhelming. The pita, veggies, chicken, and sauce all complement each other perfectly. They combine to deliver a flavor-packed, but fresh and light meal.

The marinade infuses the chicken with a fresh and light flavor, thanks to the herbs, lemon juice, olive oil, and Greek yogurt. The oregano and garlic also add in flavor and really enhance the aroma.

Overhead image of the chicken marinade; images of the chicken in the marinade; image of the grilled chicken fresh off the grill.

How to make Chicken Gyros

One of my favorite things about this recipe is how broken apart the prep time is. I love getting half of the dinner prep done in the morning, because come dinner time, the actual assembly is very easy. The chicken is marinated and the sauce is made beforehand, leaving you with just cooking the meal and putting it all together.

  • Marinate the chicken: This marinade is as simple as whisking all the ingredients together and adding the chicken in to coat.
  • Make the tzatziki sauce: While you’ve already the ingredients out for the marinade, whip up the sauce  as well, since many ingredients overlap. This also gives a chance for the sauce to marinate. It becomes more flavorful as it sits in the fridge.
  • Grill the chicken: Once the chicken is marinated, grill the chicken on an indoor or outdoor grill.
  • Veggies: While the chicken is cooking, whip together the veggie salad that goes on the pita. It’s easy– only tomatoes, cucumber, and red onion. You could make this in the morning as well.
  • Assemble: Grill or warm pita breads and load them up with the veggies, grilled and sliced chicken, and plenty of sauce.

Process shots-- images of the tzatziki sauce being made and then poured over the dish.

Tzatziki sauce

The sauce on these chicken gyros is the best! It’s also very quick and easy to whip together, and uses many of the same ingredients used in the marinade. I like making it in advance because it becomes more flavorful as it sits in the fridge.

  • Make sure to use good full-fat, plain Greek yogurt.  If it’s vanilla flavored, the sauce won’t taste too good. We want a full-fat yogurt to avoid a watery sauce.
  • Squeeze liquid out of cucumber. Cucumber has a very high water content, and will water down the sauce or make it bland. Wring out excess liquid a few times with paper towels or cheesecloth before adding to the sauce.
  • Real lemon: Bottled lemon juice won’t quite cut it here, because the sauce relies on the zest of the lemon. When zesting the lemon, avoid the white pith of the lemon — this is very bitter. Using a microplane (like this one), zest only the very outside yellow part of the lemon.
Up-close overhead image of Chicken Gyros stuffed with all the ingredients and ready to be eaten.

Chicken Gyro tips

  • A gallon-sized, zip-top freezer bag is the best way to marinate the chicken. It not only makes clean-up easy, but it also helps to ensure all of the chicken is coated in the marinade. To save dishes, you can dump all your marinade ingredients in the bag, shake them up and knead to mix, and then add in the chicken.
  • Make sure to slice the chicken breasts in half, or pound them into an even thickness before marinating. This allows the chicken to soak up more flavor from the marinade (which improves the taste), and the even thickness will allow them to grill evenly.
  • Rest the grilled chicken: Right after the chicken is pulled off the grill, place it on a plate and cover it with foil. This allows the juices to redistribute (more of the science behind it here). Once it’s rested, thinly slice it and add it to the serving platter.
  • Grill pita bread: Since you’ve already got the grill on for the chicken, add the pita bread on for the last 30 seconds or so. Giving the bread a quick grill makes it much more flavorful and helps it fold without breaking.
  • Serve chicken gyros assembly style: When making gyros for guests or my family, I like serving everything in an assembly line: grilled and sliced chicken, grilled pita bread, veggies, sauce, and lemon wedges. Everyone can load up their pita exactly how they’d like.

More easy chicken recipes

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Chicken Gyros

5 from 6 votes
Chicken Gyros start with warmed and soft pita bread that's been loaded up with grilled chicken, packed with fresh chopped veggies, and coated in the best tzatziki sauce I've ever had. The chicken has been marinated with light and fresh lemon, oregano and garlic flavors.
Print Recipe

Chicken Gyros

5 from 6 votes
Chicken Gyros start with warmed and soft pita bread that's been loaded up with grilled chicken, packed with fresh chopped veggies, and coated in the best tzatziki sauce I've ever had. The chicken has been marinated with light and fresh lemon, oregano and garlic flavors.
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Greek
Keyword chicken gyro, chicken gyros, chicken gyros recipe
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Marinating Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 45 minutes
Servings 4 -6 servings
Calories 427kcal
Cost $11.89

Ingredients

Chicken Marinade

  • 1.8 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup full fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon EACH: red wine vinegar, honey, minced garlic
  • Salt and pepper

Tzatziki Sauce

  • 1/4th of 1 large English cucumber (1/2 cup measured after grating)
  • 1/2 cup full fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 large lemon (1/2 teaspoon zest and 1 tablespoon juice)
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

Assembly

  • 4-6 pitas breads
  • 1/2 of 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups diced English or Persian cucumbers
  • 2 cups diced cherry tomatoes
  • freshly Parsley

Instructions

  • MARINATE CHICKEN: Prepare the chicken breasts by halving large breasts horizontally. Cover chicken breasts with plastic wrap (to avoid splatter). Using a meat mallet or the bottom of your frying pan, pound breasts to even thickness (you don't want to flatten the meat, just even it in thickness throughout). Pat dry with a paper towel. Place in a large zipper bag. In a bowl, whisk together the 3 tablespoons lemon juice, 1/4 cup Greek yogurt, 2 teaspoons dried oregano, 1/4 cup olive oil, 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon honey, and 1 tablespoon minced garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Once combined, pour over prepared chicken breasts. Turn to coat and massage into the breasts and then place in the fridge for 2-3 hours and up to 8 hours. I like to make the tzatziki sauce when marinating chicken because it becomes more flavorful as it sits.
  • TZATZIKI: While chicken marinates, prepare the sauce so it can have a chance to chill before serving. Grate a cucumber with the large holes of a cheese grater. Line a small bowl with a few paper towels (or clean kitchen towel) and place the grated cucumber on top. Squeeze out as much extra moisture as you can from the cucumber (to keep the sauce from being watery). Once it's drained add to a medium-sized bowl. Add in the 1/2 cup Greek yogurt, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, 1 and 1/2 teaspoon red wine vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 and 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Cover the bowl and place in the fridge until ready to serve.
  • GRILL: Preheat grill to medium heat (400 degrees F). Remove the chicken from the marinade and discard any remaining marinade. Prepare the preheated grill by cleaning and then generously oil the grill (I drench a rolled-up paper towel in vegetable oil and, holding it with tongs, rub it over the grill grates). Return heat to 400 degrees.
  • GRILL CONT.: Add the chicken to the grill. Cook the chicken for 4-5 minutes per side or until it registers 160 degrees F (carryover heat will take it to the safe temperature of 165 degrees F). Remove grilled chicken to a plate and cover with foil. Once everything is removed, give the grates a quick clean with the brush. Now add the pita bread. Grill the pita bread for 15-30 seconds per side or until toasted and warmed through.
  • VEGGIES: In a large bowl, toss the thinly sliced red onion, 2 cups diced cucumber, and 2 cups diced tomato. Season with salt and pepper (just a pinch) and toss to combine.
  • ASSEMBLY: While the chicken is resting under the foil (5 minutes), set everything out: grilled/warmed pita, sauce, and veggies. Slice chicken breasts and assemble. Set out pita bread and top with veggies and fresh parsley, add chicken on top, and drizzle tzatziki sauce on top. Enjoy immediately.

Nutrition Facts

Calories: 427kcal

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Nutrition facts in chicken gyros

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10 Comments

  1. great dish, I like making this at home with chicken since gyro meat is a little harder to make at home, so thank you

  2. 5 stars
    Chelsea – I made these for dinner last night and they were so delish!!! That sauce is to die for, I was dipping everything in it! ????

    But more than that, I just wanted to thank you for all your hard work on this site. I can’t even count how many of your dishes I’ve made over the past two years or so (from all different categories) and EVERY single one has exceeded my expectations. There’s something magical about them, I swear haha! Your site is my first go-to if I’m looking for a specific dish and is the home of many of our family favorites. Your instructions are so clear and the ingredients are spot on every time. I’ve learned so much by cooking through your website! So thank you for helping me become a better home cook and for helping me serve delicious food to my family and friends. I’ll be back for more. ????

    – Jessica

    1. Wow!! Your comment seriously made my day!! Thank you so so much!! I’m so beyond happy to hear you’ve loved so many of my recipes! It means the world to me! Thanks again! 🙂

      1. 5 stars
        Ditto on Jessica’s comment! We use your site every week to make our favorite recipes or to find new ones and seriously, every dish is straight-up delightful. Thank you for the hard work, effort, creativity, and clear instructions! You have two super fans on the east coast!

        1. I can’t tell you how much this means to me! Thank you so much for your kind comment! I’m so glad you’ve been enjoying my site! 🙂

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