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Oven Baked Lemon Chicken Shawarma

10 November 2023

I’ve been a bit under the weather these past few days so haven’t really been in the mood to fuss too much over dinner. The solution: One Pot oven dishes!

This one is inspired by @NYTcooking. Chicken thighs are marinated for an hour (longer is event better) in loads of spices, lemon juice and olive oil. Then vegetables are added, coated in the marinade and all poured into a baking dish. Baked in the oven at 220°C for 40 minutes until the chicken is done and the veggies nice and charred. Served with a simple yoghurt-cucumber dip, a tomato salsa and some steamed rice. Healthy, tasty, easy and quick. Perfect!

Tip: You can also use shawarma spice mix if you don’t have all the spices at home, it’s a very forgiving recipe!

Oven Baked Lemon Chicken Shawarma

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Dinner Middle-Eastern
By Saffron & NYT Cooking Serves: 2
Prep Time: 5 minutes + 1 hour marinading (or longer) Cooking Time: 40 minutes Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes


  • Chicken
  • 300 - 400 g chicken thighs, left whole
  • 1 tsp curcuma powder
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp cumin powder
  • 2 tsp koriander powder
  • 2 tsp smoked or regular paprika powder
  • Pepper & Salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • 3 cm piece ginger, grated
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 4-5 lemon zest peels (sliced off with a vegetable peeler, keep whole, you'll remove them after baking)
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Vegetables
  • 1 red pepper, deseeded thinly sliced
  • 2 red onions, peeled & quartered
  • 100 g mushrooms, halved
  • Yoghurt Cucumber dip
  • Half a cucumber, thinly sliced and roughly copped
  • 1 cup yoghurt
  • Pepper & Salt
  • Olive oil
  • Tomato salsa
  • 3-4 tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • Small bunch koriander, roughly chopped
  • Pepper & Salt
  • 1-2 tsp honey (to taste)
  • 1-2 tbsp of your favourite hot sauce (to taste)
  • To serve
  • Steamed white rice, flatbread or pitas
  • Fresh koriander leaves, roughly chopped



Mix all the chicken ingredients together and massage the marinade into the chicken. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour, overnight is fine too.


Preheat the oven to 220°C.


Take the chicken out of the fridge and add the chopped vegetables, toss to coat and pour it into a baking dish, make sure the chicken is placed on top of the vegetables. Bake in the oven for 40 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and everything is just starting to char.


In the meantime make your yogurt dip, tomato salsa and cook your rice or steam, flatbreads or pitas. Yoghurt dip: mix everything together, taste and season with pepper & salt. Tomato salsa: same story!


When the chicken is done remove from the oven and let cook slightly. Discard the cooked lemon peels, they'll be a bit bitter. Using 2 forks shred the chicken into bitesize pieces and mix with all the veggies and the juices.


Serve with fresh koriander together with the yoghurt dip, tomato salsa and rice or flatbreads.


You can also use shawarma spice mix if you don't have all the spices at home, it's a very forgiving recipe!

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