Nothing says summer quite like these Lemon Chicken Skewers with Harissa Yogurt Sauce. Dip the lemon-dressed and marinated chicken thigh skewers in the refreshing yogurt sauce for a burst of irresistible Greek and Mediterranean flavors. Perfect for barbecues and parties!
Fresh lemon juice has a powerful ability to transform simple meals into something flavorful and bright! Lemon Tarts, Cherry Tomato Salad With Roasted Lemons, and creamy Lemon Pasta are a few of my lemony favorites, along with these delicious Lemon Chicken Skewers with Harissa Yogurt Sauce.
To put this easy recipe together, I first marinated pieces of juicy boneless chicken thighs in a mix of Greek and Mediterranean flavors. Red wine vinegar, honey, garlic, and Italian seasonings soak into the meat and bring freshness to every bite. With a hit of fresh lemon juice at the end, every bite of chicken becomes extra vibrant.
I love that this recipe can easily be prepared hours ahead of time and is an exciting choice at the family barbecue, but my favorite feature has to be the harissa yogurt sauce. So cooling and refreshing with a hint of spice, harissa paste stirred into a mix of Greek yogurt and lemon juice is seriously addicting. You can use it for this Greek chicken skewers recipe or keep a batch in the fridge to always enjoy with lamb chops, potato salad, curry chicken skewers, or gyro bowls.
How to make easy lemon chicken skewers with yogurt sauce
To begin, marinate the chicken in a mixture of olive oil, vinegar, honey, garlic, Italian seasoning, cumin, salt, and pepper. Make sure your chicken is completely submerged in the marinade before leaving it covered in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or up to 12 hours.
Skewer the chunks of marinated chicken onto soaked bamboo or metal skewers. Grill the chicken alongside a few lemon halves over high heat until the internal temperature of your chicken reads 165°F.
While the lemons and chicken are grilling, make the harissa yogurt sauce. Combine yogurt, harissa paste, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in a small bowl and set it aside until it’s time to eat.
To serve, squeeze some of the grilled lemon juice over the chicken kabobs and have a bowl of harissa yogurt sauce on the side for dipping. Serve with your favorite Mediterranean or Greek side dishes and enjoy!
Can I make chicken kabobs in the oven?
You can easily make these grilled kabobs year-round in the oven if you don’t have a grill or it’s too cold outside.
Marinate the chicken according to the recipe instructions. While you wait for the oven to preheat at 450ºF, gently skewer the chunks of marinated chicken onto the soaked skewers. Place them on a lightly greased baking sheet.
Bake for 12-15 minutes (flipping every 5 minutes) or until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of your chicken reads 165°F. While your chicken is baking, make the harissa yogurt sauce and char some lemon halves in a pan on the stovetop.
Once your chicken skewers are finished baking, remove them from the oven and drizzle each one with the charred lemon juice. Serve the harissa yogurt sauce on the side and enjoy!
What to serve with chicken kabobs:
These chicken skewers are a lighter main dish that pair well with a wide variety of savory sides. Any of these options would complement the bright and tangy flavors of the Greek-flavored kabobs:
- Easy Sauteed Spinach
- Instant Pot Risotto
- Greek Stuffed Zucchini Boats
- Harissa Hummus
- Mashed Potatoes with Sour Cream
Wine pairings with lemon chicken:
- I find the fresh, fruity, and citrusy notes of a good Sauvignon Blanc pair well with these juicy and fragrant marinated chicken skewers.
- If red wine is your thing, I recommend picking something with a light body and minimal tannins. A Grenache or Beaujolais Nouveau would both be excellent!
- A dry Rosé or Riesling would also make a great match for this dish.
If you loved these Lemon Chicken Skewers 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 dish and share it with me on Instagram using the hashtag #platingsandpairings and tagging me @platingsandpairings.
More grilling recipes:
Lemon Chicken Skewers with Harissa Yogurt Sauce
Harissa Yogurt Sauce
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons harissa paste
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- Salt and pepper (to taste)
- Whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, honey, garlic, Italian seasoning, cumin and salt and pepper and pour it over the chicken. Marinate for at least 30 minutes, or overnight. Meanwhile, soak wooden skewers in water.
- Preheat grill to high heat.
- Skewer the chicken on wooden or metal skewers.
- Place the halved lemons and chicken skewers on the grill and cook for 3-4 minutes per side, until the chicken juices run clear and the chicken and lemons are charred. Chicken should register 165-degrees on a thermometer.
Harissa Yogurt Sauce:
- In a small bowl combine the yogurt, harissa and lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Squeeze the charred lemons over the chicken skewers and serve with harissa yogurt sauce on the side.
This recipe was originally published in 2016. It was updated in 2021 to add new photographs. The original recipe remains the same. Enjoy!