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Shish Tawook Recipe (Middle Eastern Grilled Chicken Skewers)

This Shish Tawook Recipe features tender, juicy chicken that’s marinated in a spiced yogurt, lemon, and garlic mixture and then grilled to perfection.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Middle Eastern
Prep Time 12 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Time for the Chicken to Marinate 1 hour
Servings 6 servings
Calories 221kcal


  • 5 tablespoons plain yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 5 large cloves garlic crushed
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 3/4 to 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces

Optional Additions:

  • Chopped or sliced tomato
  • Sliced cucumber
  • Sliced onion
  • Fresh parsley
  • Flatbread
  • Toum Lebanese Garlic Sauce


  • Whisk together the yogurt, lemon juice, oil, tomato paste, garlic, paprika, salt, allspice, cayenne pepper, and black pepper in a large bowl. Add the chicken and toss to coat. Cover the bowl and refrigerate at least 1 hour (or up to 24 hours).
  • Thread the chicken onto skewers. I like to divide the chicken onto 6 skewers so each serving gets 1 skewer.
  • Preheat a grill to medium-high. Grill the chicken until fully cooked, flipping occasionally, about 12 minutes. Chicken is done cooking when it reaches an internal temperature of 165F in the thickest part, and the juices run clear.
  • Remove the chicken from the grill. Serve.



  • Nutrition information for this recipe was calculated for the marinated chicken only (not the optional additions).
  • If you’re using wooden skewers to grill the chicken, soak them in water for 20 minutes before skewering the chicken.
  • If you don’t have an outdoor grill, you can use a grill pan inside. Alternatively, you can roast the chicken pieces at 400F for about 20 minutes.
  • Recipe adapted slightly from the recipe in my cookbook An Edible Mosaic, published by Tuttle Publishing.


Serving: 1skewer | Calories: 221kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 128mg | Sodium: 556mg | Potassium: 441mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 494IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 42mg | Iron: 1mg