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What to Serve with Chicken Shawarma? 10 BEST Side Dishes

Shawarma is a popular Middle Eastern dish that originated in the Ottoman Empire.

It initially consisted of lamb and mutton, but chicken, turkey, and beef became popular.

Today, it’s a favorite street food in the Middle East and various parts of the world.

Chicken shawarma is one of the varieties, and it’s a dish wrapped in flat bread like pita with veggie chunks, chicken, herbs, and condiments.

Like most street foods, shawarma is a dish that shines on its own, but it’s also versatile.

So, the thought of what to serve with chicken shawarma comes to mind.

There are many things like pita bread, grilled veggie skewers, dolmeh felfel, grilled corn on the cob, and rice pilaf, among others.

Why Consider Serving Side Dishes with Chicken Shawarma?

If you have shawarma as a snack, you’ll be satisfied with it for a while.

But if you want to stay full for extended periods, you will require some side dishes.

Chicken shawarma is a popular food served at outdoor events.

If you plan to serve it at one of your parties, side dishes will come in handy.

Side dishes also make meals more exciting and fun because you get to experience multiple items and flavors.

What to Serve with Chicken Shawarma? 10 BEST Side Dishes

There are many items to serve with chicken shawarma, but it’s impossible to name them here.

So, we are listing only the ten best dishes here.

1 – Rice Pilaf

Do you like rice pilaf? If yes, then you have the perfect combo with chicken shawarma.

You get meat, veggies, grain, and herbs in two lovely dishes, so you have a complete meal.

Neither pilaf nor shawarma is fatty, so you won’t feel bored or overloaded but experience different textures and flavors in two plates.

Pilaf is also a popular dish, so your guests will have a great time too.

Besides rice, veggie or chicken broth is also the main ingredient, and you can use it.

Add vegetables, herbs, and spices for taste, texture, and aroma.

White rice is the common variety used in pilaf, but if you want something different and healthier, brown rice, a whole grain, is a suitable substitute.

2 – Middle Eastern Chickpea Salad

It’s always fun to try new dishes, and if you have yet to try chickpea salad, you should.

It’s one of the tastiest items and complements shawarma nicely.

Chickpeas are naturally delicious, but the salad also owes its taste to several other items, including spices, tangy lemon dressing, herbs, and veggies.

When you toss all the ingredients, you have a filling dish and make a full meal with the shawarma.

There are two types of chickpeas you can use.

You may use canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained but still moist.

Or you can also use dry chickpeas.

The first one is more convenient, especially when you only have a little time.

But you can control the texture and taste of the second one.

You may use a variety that’s convenient at the moment.

3 – Grilled Corn on the Cob

Since chicken shawarma is a street food, you should include more items from the same group.

Corn on the cob grilled to perfection, yummy.

And it makes a nice pairing with shawarma too.

Plain grilled corn is crunchy and juicy with a slightly smoky aroma.

Grill it with salt, pepper, butter, and smoked paprika, and you will not wish to eat anything else.

Fresh corn offers the best flavors.

So, avoid corn with any dry or moldy spots on the husks, those lighter than their appearance, and those with brown, black, and dry tassels.

4 – Pita Bread

The list will be incomplete without adding pita bread.

Why? Because pita bread is the traditional item used to serve shawarma.

The combo is fantastic and also popular across continents.

Pita bread also originated in the Middle East, and it’s a flatbread made with flour, yeast, water, and salt.

It’s one of the region’s most widely eaten bread varieties and is now available in many other places.

If shawarma is an item you want to serve at your party, you can make fresh pita bread from scratch.

The bread is also available at bakeries and stores, so you can buy fresh, readymade bread if you don’t have enough time to make it home.

5 – Grilled Vegetable Skewers

How about bright and colorful veggies to go with shawarma? Grilled vegetable skewers pair with everything, and everyone loves them.

You can use a variety of veggies for the dish, and all of them will taste incredible.

You can find a lot of vegetables all year round, so there are many options.

Adding one or two fruits to the mix can add more flavor and freshness.

Along with mushrooms, bell pepper, onion, tomatoes, and yellow squash, include a few pineapple chunks.

Coat the veggies with a dressing with salt, pepper, olive oil, dried oregano, and basil.

6 – Dolmeh Felfel

Also called Persian stuffed peppers, dolmeh felfel are yummy and make a perfect side dish with chicken shawarma.

You can serve them warm or cold, depending on the course.

Dolmeh felfel is made of peppers stuffed with a delicious filling consisting of ground meat, rice, tomatoes, salt, pepper, herbs, and cumin.

Bell peppers come in multiple colors, and a dish can look quite appealing when you use all varieties.

Hence, try to make the dish with green, yellow, red, and orange shades.

While the veggie’s seeds are perfectly harmless, they’re slightly bitter, so make sure to remove them before you stuff the peppers.

7 – Creamy Potato Salad

You see potato salad in many side dish lists, and it may feel a little boring.

But the spuds salad is one of the tastiest and most versatile dishes, so it seems unfair to leave it out.

Of course, the salad makes a lovely pairing with shawarma.

Moreover, potato salad only uses readily available ingredients, so you don’t have to search for them here and there.

But it’s necessary to use the right spuds for making the salad.

Yukon Gold or red potatoes are suitable for making salads as they hold their shape very well.

Use a mayo-based dressing to obtain a creamy texture and extra flavors.

8 – Mujaddara

The word in Arabic means “pockmarked,” and it refers to the lentils in rice that look like pockmarks.

But mujaddara is a delicious dish that looks delicious, so the name mustn’t put you off.

It also pairs nicely with shawarma.

Traditionally, mujaddara is made of rice, lentils, onions, and sometimes meat.

Green or brown lentils are suitable for making mujaddara, so you can use either for the dish.

If you wish to make the most flavorful mujaddara, it’s also necessary to use flavorful rice.

Basmati is one of the delicious varieties and is also ideal for the dish.

But you can also use other long-grain rice.

9 – Pickled Red Cabbage

Make your menu more exciting by adding a different dish, like pickled red cabbage.

You’ll have variety and multiple flavors added to your meal.

Its slightly tangy taste complements the chicken shawarma nicely, giving you a perfect combo with a well-balanced meal.

Making pickled cabbage is easy as you don’t need too many ingredients.

You can eat pickled cabbage as soon as you make it but if you want more flavors, refrigerate it at least two hours before serving.

10 – Tahini Sauce

We have one spot left, and though there are still many items, we can’t add all, so we’ll go with tahini sauce.

It’s one of the most delicious items for dipping, and it suits chicken shawarma well.

Tahini sauce also has multiple flavors with a smooth texture.

You’ll experience a tangy, nutty, rich, and creamy taste when you pour it over your shawarma.

To make the sauce, you’ll need tahini, garlic, cumin, lemon juice, salt, and ice water.


Whenever you serve shawarma, the ten side dishes will come in handy.

You may have a lot of guests sometimes and a few other times.

So, you can choose the dishes according to preference, convenience, and requirements.

All are suitable pairings with shawarma, so your menu will be perfect.

You can enjoy the flavors of your side dishes and fill up your belly simultaneously.

What to Serve with Chicken Shawarma? 10 BEST Side Dishes

Take your chicken shawarma experience to the next level with our top 10 side dishes. From refreshing salads to flavorful dips, these accompaniments are perfectly suited to enhance the exotic spices and tender textures of chicken shawarma.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Side Dishes
Servings 4 Servings


  • Rice Pilaf
  • Middle Eastern Chickpea Salad
  • Grilled Corn on the Cob
  • Pita Bread
  • Grilled Vegetable Skewers
  • Dolmeh Felfel
  • Creamy Potato Salad
  • Mujaddara
  • Pickled Red Cabbage
  • Tahini Sauce


  • Pick your favorite recipe from the article.
  • Organize your ingredients and utensils.
  • Follow the detailed instructions in the recipe to make your side dish.
  • Prepare and serve for delicious meal!
Keyword What to Serve with Chicken Shawarma
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