Gyros are a traditional Greek dish made of lamb, pork or chicken. The meat is cooked on a vertical skewer which is shaved off and eaten on a pita flatbread and garnished with tomatoes and tzatziki sauce. This recipe is easy thanks to the invention known as the slow cooker.
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What is a Gyro?
Gyro in Greek means ‘turn’ and is therefore the name adopted for the Greek-inspired sandwich where the meat is ‘turned’ on a rotisserie. I have always made it with a leg of lamb roasted in the oven but original Greek recipes usually use pork or chicken. It is adapted from the ‘Doner Kebab’, which is the Turkish name for Gyro. Gyros are typically served with tomatoes and a yogurt sauce on a flatbread such as pita or naan. The yogurt sauce is called Tzatziki and is very similar to the Indian yogurt sauce known as Raita. The Doner Kebab also shows up in the Middle East as a ‘Shawarma’ and in Mexico as ‘Tacos al Pator’, influenced by the Lebanese immigrants to Mexico. As in the U.S., Tacos al Pastor caught on quick, can’t keep a good recipe down.
I used to make this in the oven but have since found the slow cooker version superior. The meat tenderizes mush more in the slow cooker and the meat retains its moisture. I use either oregano or rosemary for my Gyro seasoning along with garlic, salt and pepper. I use a lot so whichever herb I have the most of is what I usually use. Simply put all of the gyro ingredients in a slow cooker, shred and serve with flatbread, tomatoes and tzatziki sauce. If you want even more layers of flavor, add feta cheese and sliced red onions.
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