The first time I had a gyro was in the summer of 2008 when I was studying abroad in Greece. First, I learned that they’re pronounced in a way that is virtually indistinguishable from the pronunciation of the currency, the Euro. Second, I learned that gyros frequently have French fries inside of them. See?
It’s glorious. For some reason, though, nearly all the gyros I’ve had in the US come with them on the side (or not at all). The Greek Lady restaurant in Philadelphia is an exception, however, and has the most authentic gyros that I’ve found outside of Greece —if you ever find yourself in the area, I highly recommend it! This recipe is designed to get gyros on your plate and in your belly as quickly as possible—the chicken is simply pan-fried instead of being roasted and carved on a spit (since I’m thinking you probbbbably don’t have one of those in your kitchen, right?), and the naan and fries can be purchased ready-made from the store. If you want to speed up the process even more, you can skip making your own tzatziki and get that from the store as well.
Now turn on some bouzouki music, turn off the AC, pour some ouzo, and imagine you’re in Greece!
- 6 boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 4 pieces naan (or pita bread)
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 1/2 cups iceberg lettuce, shredded
- 1 package garlic fries (I use fries from Trader Joe’s, which come in a 20-ounce package. This is more than you’ll need, but people usually don’t complain about having extra fries!)
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 16 ounces plain Greek yogurt
- 1 cucumber, diced finely
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- 1 teaspoon dried dill weed
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
- salt and pepper
- Mix together all tzatziki ingredients in a medium bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate until ready to eat.
- Bake fries according to directions on package.
- Heat vegetable oil in a large nonstick skillet or cast iron pan over medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Place chicken thighs in skillet and cook until meat is no longer pink, about 5-7 minutes on each side. Once chicken is cool enough to touch, cut into strips about 1/2 inch in width.
- While chicken and fries are cooking, shred lettuce and cut tomatoes in half.
- Once fries are done, cook naan according to directions on package. If you are using pita bread, I suggest heating the bread in the microwave for a few seconds until soft.
- Assemble gyros, placing chicken, tzatziki, fries, lettuce, and tomatoes inside naan or pita bread.