Recipe: Chicken Shawarma Meal Prep Bowl

Every night, when Mo and I sit down for dinner, I get the, “Thanks! This is great!” or “Very good!” approval from my appreciative, hungry husband. Sometimes, I hear the same sentiment again, after a few bites in – that’s when I know we’ve got a repEAT recipe on our plates (or in our bowls). And sometimes, when the dish has been literally licked clean, I get a final five-star stamp of approval. This time, it came in the form of, “Damn. Not gonna lie. That chicken was bangin’!” in response to an original take on one of my favorite dishes: shawarma platter.

For the unfamiliar, shawarma is a Middle Eastern meat preparation where thin slices of protein (traditionally beef or lamb) are marinaded and cooked on a vertical rotisserie in such a way that the meat is perfectly crisped on the outside, and tender and juicy on the inside.

If you have a vertical rotisserie in your kitchen appliance arsenal, I am incredibly jealous of you. If you don’t, I’ve got your back with this super simple, supremely flavorful, mouth-watering dish. My spice blend might bend from tradition just a bit, but I promise you, your taste buds will thank you.

This Chicken Shawarma recipe is:

  • high protein
  • low carb
  • keto friendly
  • meal prep friendly

For the Chicken Shawarma

Ingredients
yields 3-4 servings

  • 1 lb chicken boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts cut into thin strips (I personally recommend thighs, but tested with both!)
  • 1 tbsp Primal Palate Super Gyro (or a blend of oregano, marjoram, thyme, and garlic)
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 3 tbsp avocado oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock or bone broth* (InstantPot only)

Method

  • Marinade
    • In a large bowl, combine the spice mixture with 2 tbsp avocado oil and mix thoroughly to form a paste
    • Add chicken and toss to coat. Really work the marinade all around each piece of chicken
    • Cover and allow to marinade in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, if not overnight (I highly recommend overnight!)
  • InstantPot
    • Set your InstantPot to sautรฉ and add 1 tbsp avocado oil. When the oil is warm, add chicken and sear for about 3 minutes on each side – flipping often with tongs.
    • Select cancel and add 1/2 cup chicken stock.
    • Secure the lid on your InstantPot, set the valve to seal, and pressure cook on high for 10 minutes.
    • When the 10 minutes is up, quick release your pressure and transfer chicken slices to an oven-safe tray lined with foil – keep the juice and stock aside!
    • Set your broiler to high and broil on the top rack for about 5 minutes to crisp the outside – check often to make sure it doesn’t burn or overcook.
    • Serve immediately or store in a tightly sealed container with stock for up to 5 days in the fridge!
  • Oven
    • Preheat your oven to 400 degrees
    • Meanwhile, line a baking sheet with tinfoil and brush with 1 tbsp avocado oil
    • Arrange chicken strips on the tray and roast for about 20 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and edges are brown
    • Set your broiler to set and broil on the top rack for about 5 minutes to crisp the outside – check often to make sure it doesn’t burn or overcook.
    • Serve immediately or store in a tightly sealed container with stock for up to 5 days in the fridge!

For the Sides

Lemon Tahini Cauliflower

Ingredients
yields 2

  • 1 large head cauliflower, leaves removed and cut into florets
  • 1/2 large red onion, quartered
  • 1 tsp avocado oil
  • 2 tbsp tahini (I love Soom!)
  • 1/2 large lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbsp warm water (to thin the sauce)
  • salt, pepper, garlic powder
  • fresh parsley for garnish

Method

  • Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Meanwhile, line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  • In a large bowl, toss cauliflower florets and sliced red onion with 1 tsp avocado oil, garlic powder, and salt and pepper to taste.
  • Spread evenly on the baking tray (try to eliminate overlap) and roast for about 35 minutes, or until cauliflower edges are golden brown.
  • While the veggies roast, combine tahini, lemon juice, and warm water (option to add more to thin) in a small bowl and set aside.
  • When the cauliflower has finished roasting, allow it to settle until it’s cool enough to handle, but still warm. Toss with lemon tahini sauce to coat. Pro tip: your sauce will go a long way mixing with the warm veggies as opposed to drizzling on later.
  • Garnish with fresh parsley
  • Serve immediately or store in a glass container in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Yogurt Cucumber Salad

Ingredients
yields 2

  • 1 cucumber, diced
  • 3 tbsp non-fat, plain greek yogurt
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp dried mint
  • 1 tsp dried dill
  • garlic powder, salt, and pepper to taste

Method

  • In a large bowl, add diced cucumber with remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly to combine. That’s it!

Pro tip: the cucumbers will release water, so I recommend allowing the diced pieces to set on a paper towel for a few hours if time allows, or making this component of the dish as close to serving as possible!

Pickled Red Onion

Ingredients
yields 4

  • 1 large red onion, cut into thin rings
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp aminos
  • Distilled water

Method

  • Pack sliced onion into a glass container (wide-mouth mason jars work great!)
  • Add apple cider vinegar and aminos, and then fill the remaining space with water until the onions are fully covered
  • Allow to marinate for at least 24 hours before serving

Other serving and topping ideas:

  • Feta cheese
  • Kalamata olives
  • Cauliflower rice
  • Cauliflower flatbreads
  • Whole grain pita
  • Bed of mixed greens
  • Quinoa or brown rice
  • Chickpeas

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