Easy Chicken Shawarma Tower Baked in the Oven

Easy Chicken Shawarma Tower Baked in the Oven

Indulge in the deliciousness of this homemade Chicken Shawarma, and savor the authentic taste of a Middle Eastern classic right at your own dining table.

Baking it in the form of a tower is one of the best cooking methods to achieve that perfect, tender, and flavorful shawarma-style chicken. I prefer using boneless skinless chicken thighs for this recipe instead of chicken breasts because of their higher fat content, which ensures the juiciest and most succulent bites.

This Chicken Shawarma recipe combines Greek yogurt, lemon juice, and a blend of spices for a flavorful shawarma marinade. The chicken marinates for 30 minutes, but you can extend the marinating time for even better flavor. This is my go-to for a favorite family lunch, as it's an easy way to satisfy every member's craving for something delicious.

Chicken Shawarma, a beloved choice in the world of street food classics, is now so simple to prepare at home with this easy recipe.


  • 10 chicken thighs (skinless, boneless)
  • 1 onion (large, for chicken tower base)
  • 3 tablespoons Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
  • 3 cloves garlic (finely grated)
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ground cinnamon (a pinch)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • ■■■■ TOPPING: ■■■■■
  • 1/2 onion (red, thinly sliced)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
  • 1 tablespoon ground sumac
  • salt (to taste)
Prep time:
40 minutes
Cook time:
1 hour
Total time:
1 hour, 40 minutes
Yield: 5 servings | Prep time: 40 minutes | Cook time: 1 hour | Total time: 1 hour, 40 minutes


For a complete and easy meal, enjoy this oven-roasted chicken shawarma in warm pita bread or pita pockets. You can add a mix of fresh veggies like crisp lettuce and sliced fresh tomatoes for extra flavor and crunch. Also, you may include lemon wedges for a refreshing kick. And don't forget the classic sauces – tzatziki sauce, white sauce or yogurt garlic sauce – for creaminess and a touch of garlic.


1. You need 2 oven racks for this recipe. Place the first oven rack on the bottom shelf of the oven. Remove the second rack from the oven, we will need it later to secure the chicken tower in a standing position. Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).
2. In a large bowl, combine chicken thighs and the marinade ingredients: Greek yogurt, lemon juice, finely grated fresh garlic, paprika, cumin, oregano, red pepper flakes, cinnamon, and salt. Mix well. Marinate for at least 30 minutes.
Chicken thighs in a glass dish with shawarma marinade ingredients on top.
Shawarma marinade coated chicken thighs in a glass dish.
3. Cut onion in half. Place the onion halves next to each other cut side down on a large baking sheet. Insert a skewer into each onion half (I use 9.75-inch skewers). This will serve as the base for your chicken tower (you can use a vertical spit instead, if you have one).
Self-made vertical spit for chicken stack made of skewers inserted into onion halves.
4. Create the chicken tower by threading the marinated chicken pieces onto the skewers that are inserted into the onion halves, to form a vertical stack of chicken pieces.
Chicken thighs stacked through skewers making chicken tower.
5. Transfer the baking sheet with chicken tower to the preheated oven. To ensure the chicken tower doesn't fall during cooking, place another oven rack on the top shelf of your oven. Position the skewers between bars of the top rack to stabilize the tower.
Shawarma chicken tower baking in the oven.
6. Bake chicken shawarma in the hot oven for about 60 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165°F (74°C). Cooking time may vary depending on your oven.
7. While the chicken cooks, prepare pickled onions by combining sliced red onion with lemon juice, sumac, and some salt. Allow the onions to marinate for about 10 minutes, stirring a couple times.
Red onion slices marinated in the mixture of lemon juice and sumac.
8. Once the chicken stack is cooked, remove it from the oven. To transfer the chicken tower to a cutting board, gently slide a spatula under the bottom of the tower while holding the skewers with your hands for support. Carefully lift the chicken tower and place it on the cutting board.
9. To cut meat from the chicken tower, hold the skewers and use a sharp knife to make thin slices while gently moving it along the length of the skewers slicing off the edges. Serve shawarma chicken with marinated red onions and other toppings of your choice, store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
Juicy oven roasted chicken shawarma tower with marinated red onions on the sides.

Recipe Video

Shop products and ingredients I recommend for this recipe:

Organic Chicken Thighs

Organic Chicken Thighs
Greek Yogurt

Greek Yogurt





Crushed Red Pepper

Crushed Red Pepper


Ground Sumac

Ground Sumac

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About Alena

Welcome to my website!

I’m Alena, the blogger at MyDeliciousMeals since 2010. My goal with MyDeliciousMeals is for you to discover the joy of cooking and to find lots of new favorite recipes that your family will enjoy. I’m so happy you stopped by!


Add Comment

Rae Laidley
This Shawarma was the best!!! I placed pounded chicken thighs placed in a ziplock bag with marinade and left for a few hours. Put marinated chicken on skewers and Baked at 400 degrees for 1 hour. It was absolutely delicious! 5 star recipe for sure!

Thank you Rae, I'm so glad to hear you enjoyed this chicken shawarma recipe! Thank you for taking time to leave your comment! - Alena

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