Chicken shawarma

This Nigella Lawson recipe is one I’ve made so many times that the page in the cookbook is now all splattered and sticks together – I even took all of the spices over to France once in order to make an epic batch of it for a company retreat with my colleagues (yes I know I could have bought spices in France, but I like to plan ahead ok?). It’s easy to scale up or down so can be made to feed a multitude of people, and takes surprisingly little effort. Although why you’d want to scale it down I do not know. Why wouldn’t you want leftovers? This is wonderful in a wrap, within a salad, with rice, chips or fries, basically any which way.


12 skinless boneless chicken thighs

100ml olive oil

2 lemons – zest + juice

4 cloves garlic

2 tsp paprika

2 tsp cumin

2 tsp sea salt flakes

1 tsp ground coriander

1 pinch (or more) chilli flakes

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp grated nutmeg


  1. Place all of the ingredients bar the chicken into a sealable bag, seal it, and combine well.
  2. Trim the chicken to remove any large fatty bits, but leave whole, then add to the bag, reseal and squish all around to ensure the chicken is well coated in the marinade.
  3. Lay the bag flat in the fridge for several hours minimum. Basically for as long as possible.
  4. Heat oven to 200C.
  5. Tip the entire contents of the bag into a roasting tin/dish that allows the chicken to lie flat in a single layer.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes, by which time the chicken should be cooked (but check of course).
  7. Serve pieces whole or sliced – a dollop of natural yoghurt wouldn’t go amiss with these.

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