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Grilled Chicken Shawarma Drumsticks

Grilled Chicken Shawarma Drumsticks

Who doesn’t love shawarma? It is a complete package with juicy, tender, grilled meat that is perfectly seasoned with subtle spices yet bursting with flavors. Mostly it is served as a wrap and sometimes as a platter with all elements in a deconstructed form. Just before Ramadan we moved to a new place …. new city, new house, new environment and with lock down scenario I am trying to keep things limited and follow minimalistic cooking pattern which helps me focus on Ramadan routine and settling down.

Simple doesn’t have to boring. Getting maximum out of minimum shouldn’t be that big a deal. A light bulb moment, an unexpected twist of ingredients, swapping a new cooking technique for a conventional one or incorporating another cuisine to regular/ desi cooking can do wonders. Why complicate life in the kitchen? Chicken drumsticks are one of the those versatile meat cuts that can be dressed up in several ways to become a snack or a meal. Chicken Tikka is one of my go to recipes when I need no fuss no mess quick food but this time I switched to Arabic inspired spices and it did the trick.

These lovelies can confidently walk Victoria Secret run way with applause and may be a partial standing ovation if I am not trying to oversell them 🙂 A different combo of basic spices is all that is required. Combine dry spices that includes salt, paprika, tumeric, black pepper, red chilli powder, coriander and white cumin in a large bowl with ginger and garlic paste.

Pour in some lemon juice and olive oil and voila! Shawarma marinade is ready.

Add in washed and dried chicken drumsticks to the bowl and toss them well. I poke the meat with a fork so the meat can be as flavorful as possible.

A couple of hours of marination works fine but I usually prefer 4-5 hours in the refrigerator. Cook them in a grill pan or a charcoal grill or in pan. Any method would do.

About 10-15 minutes on each side should be enough and there you have it….

Serve with tahini, pickles, cilantro, lemon slices.

Grilled Chicken Shawarma Drumsticks

Grill chicken drumsticks with universal favorite elements of shawarma. You won't miss fried chicken with these delicious and flavorful chicken drumsticks.

Course Main Course, Snack
Cuisine Arabic, Lebanese, Middle Eastern
Keyword chicken shawarma, chicken shawarma drumsticks, Gluten free, grilled chicken, shawarma
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Author Heenie


  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • ¾ tsp red chilli powder
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • ¾ tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp tumeric powder
  • ¾ tsp white cumin, slightly crushed
  • tsp garlic paste
  • 1 tsp ginger paste
  • 4 tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 kg skinless chicken drumsticks, washed, dried poke them with fork
  • lemon slices, fresh cilantro/coriander for garnish, optional


  1. In a large mixing bowl combine salt, paprika, red chilli powder, tumeric, black pepper, coriander, cumin, ginger paste and garlic paste.

  2. Add in lemon juice and olive oil. Stir to mix well.

  3. Add in chicken drumsticks to the bowl.

  4. Toss chicken drumsticks in the marinade to coat well.

  5. Cover the bowl and let it marinate for about 4-5 hours in the refrigerator.

  6. To cook, heat a grill pan or any wide stove top pan and arrange chicken drumsticks in a single layer with all the remaining marinade. Cook over medium flame.

  7. Let cook for about 12-15 minutes and then turn the other side down using tongs. If you feel moisture from the marinade is drying out too quickly, cover the pan loosely with aluminum foil.

  8. Cooking time may vary according to the size of the drumsticks.

  9. Serve hot with lemon slices, fresh coriander/cilantro and tahini.

Recipe Notes

You can use white vinegar instead of lemon juice but lemon juice is preferred.

Spices can be adjusted.

I had 8 chicken drumsticks in a kg.

You can charcoal grill chicken drumsticks too.

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