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This Chicken Gyro Quinoa Bowl with tzatziki sauce turns your favorite traditional Greek sandwich into a quick, healthy dinner.
I am so excited that Spring is finally here! The winters in the Pacific NW are brutal, not because it’s cold, but it’s more that the constant gloomy, rainy days can get to you… Winter is when hibernation mode sets in for me – it’s dark before I even get home from work and I have absolutely NO motivation to go out and do things when it’s pouring, cold and dark outside – I’d rather stay inside, stand in front of the hot stove and drink lots of Pinot. Winter is also when the onslaught of comfort food makes its way into the kitchen – dishes like risotto, osso buco and braised short ribs…
But now it’s Spring! I’m ready to create more dishes that taste light and fresh, and feature lots of color. Enter this Chicken Gyro Quinoa Bowl. Just look at this beauty…
Gyros are traditionally made with either lamb or chicken and served on pita bread with lots of tzatziki (a cucumber-yogurt sauce), a bit of lettuce and a sprinkling of tomatoes. For this recipe, I’m retaining all of those traditional ingredients, but I’m swapping out the heavy pita bread for quinoa which is filled with protein, fiber and iron. Perfect for when you’re looking to eat in a more healthful, mindful way.
Before you take a look at the recipe below, let me forewarn you: The list of ingredients can look intimidating – But really, the ingredients in each step are repeated over again – i.e. there is garlic, lemon juice, white wine vinegar, and Greek yogurt used in both the chicken marinade and tzatziki sauce. And honestly, you can make these from start to finish in just about 30 minutes – Just be sure to marinate the chicken the night before.
My new favorite way to make quinoa is in the Instant Pot. If you have one at home, I’d definitely suggest cooking it up in there. It takes just a minute (plus time for pressure to build and release) and it comes out so flavorful and fluffy using these tips.
If you want to get really simple with this recipe, go ahead and buy premade tzatziki from the store, substitute thin-sliced red onion instead of pickling it, and allow the chicken to marinate for just 30-minutes – This Chicken Gyro Quinoa Bowl will still be delicious even with some shortcuts. Also, these bowls are great for meal prep. Since it’s just the two of us at home, I’ll normally have a couple extra servings to pack for lunches during the week. Love that!
Now that it’s officially Spring, I’m breaking open a couple of my favorite wines that I associate with sunshine – Sauvignon Blanc and Rosé. To pair with this Chicken Gyro Quinoa Bowl, I chose a couple bottles from Decoy Wines. Crafted from one of the finest American wine producers, these wines definitely elevate an average weekday to a special occasion. I loved the way the dry Rosé with its notes of minerality, pink grapefruit and spice paired with the marinated chicken in these gyro bowls. But I also kept reaching for the Sauvignon Blanc. It’s hints of lemongrass and bright acidity was perfect with the tzatziki sauce and pickled onions.
Which wine would you gravitate towards with this Chicken Gyro Quinoa Bowl? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.
Chicken Gyro Quinoa Bowls
- 2 lbs. chicken breasts
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 3 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 3 teaspoons white wine vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 Tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
- 1½ Tablespoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon ground mustard
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ¼ cups plain Greek yogurt
- 1 medium cucumber
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ cup water
- ¼ cup white wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1/2 red onion thinly sliced
- 3 cups cooked quinoa
- 1 cup grape tomatoes halved
- 1 cucumber sliced
- 4 ounces feta crumbled
- ¼ cup chopped flat leaf parsley
- ¼ cup chopped mint
Add the marinade ingredients to a large Ziploc bag, add the chicken and massage the marinade into the meat. Allow to marinate for at least 1 hour, or preferably overnight.
Combine 1/4 cup water, vinegar, and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil. Stir in onion. Remove from heat; let stand 20 minutes at room temperature. Drain.
Cut the cucumber in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Coarsely grate the cucumber using a box grater or food processor. Then wrap in paper towels or a tea towel and squeeze to remove excess liquid.
Place cucumber in a bowl. Add remaining ingredients then mix to combine. Set aside for at least 20 minutes for the flavors combine.
Remove chicken from marinade and cook in a large skillet or grill pan over medium heat 5-6 minutes on each side until cooked through. Cut into strips.
Divide quinoa between bowls. Top with chicken strips, pickled onion, tomato, cucumber and feta. Drizzle with tzatziki sauce and garnish with parsley and mint.
If you loved this Chicken Gyro Quinoa Bowl I would appreciate it so much if you would give this recipe a star review! Also, be sure to snap a picture of your finished bowl and share it with me on Instagram using the hashtag #platingsandpairings and tagging me @platingsandpairings.
Wine Pairings for Chicken Gyro Quinoa Bowls:
- Sauvignon Blanc or Vinho Verde will nicely compliment the fresh herbs and citrus in this recipe.
- A light fruity red wine, such as Beaujolais, won’t overpower the fresh flavors in this dish
- A dry Rosé will also pair well with these quinoa bowls.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.