Easy chicken souvlaki – a little Greece at home
If there is anything that screams Greece to me it must be a delicious chicken souvlaki. Super simple to make at home and so good!
I can still remember that very first time I went to Greece. It was the island of Samos and we had picked a beautiful little appartment not too close from the sea. We were staying in the town of Phytagorion and if you’ve been to Samos you might know that it is the most touristic village on the island. That said; we’re talking 25 years ago (1997) and at that time it wasn’t all that bad.
In fact it was pretty good and we loved watching life go by in that little harbour. Our favorite little restaurant served the best chicken souvlaki. Souvlaki – if wrongly prepared – can also be really dry and unappealing but here it was juicy and delicious. Served of course with tzatziki.
It must be one of the first things I do, every time I visit Greece. I order first a Greek salad and second a chicken souvlaki.
It’s all about the spices
For making the tzatziki to go with this chicken souvlaki I’ve used coconut yogurt. That might sound a bit strange but if you are intolerant of dairy this might be a great solution. I love the taste of this so try it before you say no.
If you do not like coconut yogurt, of course you can go ahead and substitute for regular yogurt. If neither of those appeal to you you can also use mayonaise instead.
For making the souvlaki I like to marinate the chicken overnight. That way all the flavors have had sufficient time to be transferred to the chicken. If you have less time, at least make sure you let the chicken stand for a minimum of 30 minutes.
Serve with Greek salad
I love serving the souvlaki with a big Greek salad and a good olive oil over the top. It instantly brings me back to good times and Greek vibes.
Now if you want your chicken souvlaki to taste like Greece you need to use the right spices. For me that is the following:
- cinnamon (just a hint)
- paprika powder
There are many variations to the theme but for me this is what Greece smells and tastes like. I love using chicken thighs here and not chicken fillet. The fillet dries out quicker and I love the fattier taste of the thighs.
They can also withstand the heat better so that is a plus if you’re grilling. You could easily serve this chicken souvlaki on a hot summer day while barbecuing in the garden. You’ll definitely love it.
There are as many variations of tzatziki as there are Greek islands (and probably non of those actually use coconut yogurt) I use garlic, cucumber, dill and pepper and salt. You can add a sqeeuze of lime or lemon in it too if you like.
- 400 gr chicken thigh in cubes
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried mint
- 1 tsp paprika powder
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- 2 cloves garlic crushed
- ½ clove garlic crushed
- ½ cucumber grated and liquid squeezed out
- 250 gr coconut yoghurt about 1-2 cups
- fresh dille to taste
- pepper and salt
- serve with a greek salad
- First start by making the marinade. Mix all the ingredients well. Add the chicken cubes and stir so all chicken is covered in some of the marinade. Leave to marinade for at least 30 minutes.
- Make a skewer by placing the chicken cubes on wooden skewers and grill them in a frying pan or on the barbecue untill cooked through and golden.
- In the meantime make the tzatziki by mixing the garlic and the cucumber through the coconut yogurt. Add salt, pepper and fresh dill to taste.
- Serve the souvlaki with the tzatziki and a big Greek salad
The nutritional values above are calculated per portion. The details are based on standard nutritional tables and do not constitute a professional nutritional advice.