Chicken Gyros a delicious way to enjoy this Greek classic at home!
Gyros come in many flavors, a lamb-beef combo or falafel being the most notable. We decided to focus on bringing the flavors of the classics, but with using the more home cook friendly meat of chicken. The profile of these traditional flavors varies quite a bit. Some would argue it is the combo of Olive Oil and Oregano that makes it a Gyro meat. Others say it is the combo of Rosemary and Olive Oil with some Lemon Juice. Regardless, it all came down to some source of oil paired with flavorful herbs and a touch of acid from a lemon for the marinade.
For our marinade, we decided to pull back on the heavy amounts of Olive Oil and instead pair a smaller amount of oil with some Greek Yogurt to provide moisture to our chicken. Most left the Greek Yogurt only to the Tzatziki sauce versus including this flavor in the marinade. As a result, we found the chicken to be moister and have a deeper breadth of flavor to echo the flavors of the Tzatziki. We then paired this with a combination of Oregano, Smoked Paprika, and Onion Powder as our flavor profile. The marinade is finished off with 2 other sources of acid to round out the flavors: Lemon Juice and Red Wine Vinegar.
Another important aspect of a Gyro is the Tzatziki sauce; it can make or break the deliciousness of a Gyro. The basis of Tzatziki is usually Cucumber, Dill and Greek Yogurt. It is the variance in the amount of each of these ingredients that can affect the taste substantially. On average there was 1 to 1.5 tablespoons of Fresh Dill per cup of Greek Yogurt. That’s a lot of Dill! Instead, we wanted the Dill to compliment the Cucumber and Greek Yogurt instead of being the star of the show. We added just ½ teaspoon of Dried Dill to a full cup of Greek Yogurt and only half of Cucumber grated. A little more Red Wine Vinegar, Dried Oregano, Lemon Juice, and Olive Oil fully rounded out the sauce. It also worth nothing that we added a teaspoon of Salt to further enhance all the flavors; we only found one recipe that included some Salt in their Tzatziki sauce!
We hope you enjoy this wonderful Greek dish and let us know how it turned out in the comments below!