Homemade Chicken Doner Kebab!!! Carve it up, just like it’s done at the neon-lit kebab shops, then use it to roll up your very own Doner Kebabs or make kebab plates. A fabulous DIY dinner – and great food to make in vast quantities for feeding a crowd!
It’s practically an Aussie right of passage to do the post-pub midnight kebab run at some point in your life. Usually at the tender age of 18 when we hit the legal drinking limit (*cough, cough, no mum, I never drank a drop before then*). Late night outs with uni friends, being booted out of pubs at closing, drawn like moths to the brightly lit kebab stores.
You’d be hard pressed to find a suburb in Australia without a local kebab shop. Well, at least in the metropolitan areas. Though if there were 2 takeaway shops in a remote town in the Outback of Australia, I’m betting the first would be a fish and chip shop, and the second would be a kebab shop. 🙂
You can’t miss the giant rotisserie of meat that greets you when you walk into a Kebab store. Sometimes, it’s concerning to think about how long it’s been there, lazily rotating around, waiting for the next customer to wander in before being carved.
In kebab shops, they are giant – like the size of a punching bag.
For this homemade Chicken Doner Kebab, we are going a little smaller. Like – 2% of the size. 😂
OK, so it’s smaller, and while some people have a hang up about size, claiming bigger is always better (we can argue about that theory another time), let me state the obvious advantage that this teeny little Homemade Chicken Doner Kebab has over the gigantic hunks at the kebab shop:
You know what’s in this.
Fellow Aussies, be honest. Have you ever looked at the rotisserie and wondered what it was actually made of?? Is it all meat? Really, truly?? I think the chicken one is (she says, dubiously). But the beef / lamb one really looks like it’s been padded out with fillers.
As for seasonings / preservatives etc etc – who knows?? (She says, with an exaggerated shrug of her shoulders)
So. This teeny homemade version scores big points in this field – you know what’s in it. Basically spices, yoghurt, garlic, tomato paste (secret ingredient!).
Marinate, thread onto skewers, prop on edges of baking pan and bake.
Then carve up that meat, just like at the kebab shop!
Well, a teeny version of it.(Remember, for today, the rule is that size doesn’t matter!)
Then use it to make your very own homemade Chicken Doner Kebabs. Good thing I’m blurred in this photo, cause otherwise that ear-splitting grin and too-rosy cheeks would be all you’d see. And the unbrushed hair shoved back into an untidy bun.
Or, make your very own kebab plate! Sometimes I get this instead of Doner Kebabs, just for a change. I love the variety you get on the plates. I’ve served it here with Hummus, Tabbouleh (recipe in notes), tomato, lettuce, Mejadra (Middle Eastern Spiced Lentil Rice that’s so tasty, you can eat it plain) and Lebanese Bread (aka pita bread). This is pretty much the standard selection that comes on Kebab plates.
I have big plans to make a gigantic version of this on a rotisserie on my BBQ this summer. Lamb, beef and chicken. Imagine that!! This really is perfect for making vast quantities of, and laying it all out for people to help themselves.
The great Aussie Doner Kebab. HOMEMADE!! – Nagi x
PS Look, I even begged for one kebab sleeve from my local Kebab shop, just so I could take a truly authentic looking photo of Homemade Chicken Doner Kebab!!!
PPS You know how people say “This homemade version is so good, you’ll never get takeout again!”. I’m guilty of it myself. Well, I haven’t said it for this recipe. Because it would be a total lie. This homemade kebab rocks. But I will be doing a kebab run again. Just being honest!
- 1 kg / 2 lb chicken thighs , skinless and boneless (Note 1)
- Olive oil , for drizzling
- 1 cup plain yoghurt , unsweetened (I use Greek)
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1 1/2 tsp coriander powder
- 2 tsp cumin powder
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper , optional
- 1 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 2 1/2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Lebanese bread / flatbreads / pita bread , warmed
- Finely sliced iceberg lettuce
- Tomato slices
- Hummus (or Note 2 for simple Yoghurt Sauce)
- Tabbouleh (optional, Note 3)
- Red onion slices
- Grated cheese
- Chilli Sauce (I use Sriracha, it's perfect)
- Mejadra (Middle Eastern Rice with Lentils), for Kebab Plate
Mix Marinade in a large bowl. Add chicken and mix to coat well.
Cover and marinate in the fridge for a minimum of 3 hours, 24 hours is ideal. If only 3 hours, add an extra 1/2 tsp salt.
Preheat oven to 220C / 430F (standard) or 200C / 390F (fan / convection).
Choose a pan of a size such that the skewers will stay propped up on the pan walls (see photos in post or video) and the chicken will be elevated off the base. Line with foil.
Remove chicken from fridge. Divide the chicken into 2 piles.
Take one piece of chicken, fold in half then thread onto two skewers (see video). Repeat and push the chicken snugly up against each other. Repeat with other skewer.
Prop the 2 skewers on the edges of the baking pan. Drizzle surface with oil.
Bake for 35 minutes or until the surface is golden with some charred bits (char is good!).
Spoon the pan juices over the chicken. Then turn, drizzle with oil and bake for 20 minutes (or 25 - 30 minutes if you had large thighs). If you need / want more colour, switch to grill/broil for a few minutes on high - I don't do this.
Baste again with pan juices and stand for 5 minutes.
Carving: Stand the skewers upright or on an angle, and slice meat fairly thinly. Use to make Doner Kebabs or Kebab Plates.
Place a lebanese bread (or pita bread or other flatbread) on a piece of foil. Spread with a generous dollop of Hummus (or yoghurt - Note 2). Top with shredded lettuce, slices of tomato, Tabbouleh (for a truly authentic experience! Note 3), cheese (I usually go this) and Chicken. Drizzle with chilli sauce if desired (I use Sriracha, it's perfect).
Roll up tightly and wrap in foil. Consume and be happy!
Serve chicken with Mejadra (Middle Eastern Spiced Rice with Lentils), shredded lettuce, tomatoes, slices of red onion, tabbouleh, dollop of hummus. Optional to serve flatbread / lebanese bread on the side.
1. CHICKEN: For this recipe, thigh is the only cut that is suitable because it can withstand the long cook time without drying out.
2. Yoghurt Sauce: Easy quick alternative to hummus. Just mix 1 cup yoghurt with 1 tbsp olive oil, lemon juice to taste, 1/2 garlic clove minced, salt and pepper. Mix, set aside 20 minutes+ for flavours to develop. Sprinkle of cumin also lovely.
3. Tabbouleh: 4 tbsp burghul (bulgur or cracked wheat) soaked in 1/2 cup hot boiled water until softened. Mix with 1 cup finely chopped flatleaf parsley, 1/4 cup finely chopped mint, 3 spring onions finely diced (or 1/2 red onion), 1 car ripe tomato deseeded and diced. Dress with fresh lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. It should be quite tart.
4. MAKE AHEAD/STORAGE: Carve up the chicken, then drizzle over half the pan juices. Cover and refrigerate until required, reheat in microwave for minimum time required just to warm through. Use the rest of the pan juices as required to moisten / add extra flavour onto the chicken.
5. SOURCES: Seasoning is something I created, copying the flavour of the chicken at my local kebab shop! I got the idea to do a "rotisserie" in the oven by propping the skewers up on the pan from this recipe, and I watched a bunch of videos on You Tube like this one, and this one and this one. Yes, this is truly how I "come up" with homemade version of my favourite foods!
6. Nutrition per serving, assuming 5 servings, chicken only.
WATCH HOW TO MAKE IT
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At the local markets – no dogs allow inside so Dozer gets ditched in the Dog Parking Area!!