Basically everything there is to want out of life…all piled up into one colorful, healthy, beautiful bowl – Shawarma Hummus Bowls. These bowls have so much freaking flavor! And color! And texture! Needless to say, I’m pretty obsessed.
These shawarma hummus bowls are inspired by the hummus bowls at a fast-casual lunch spot in downtown Minneapolis that my team frequented back when I worked in the corporate world. It was one of my favorite lunches because life seriously doesn’t get better than a bowl of creamy, dreamy hummus piled high with all kinds of toppings (along with the warmest & freshest puffy pita – DROOL.).
I originally published this hummus bowl recipe back in 2018. It continues to be a PWWB fave up to this day, which isn’t surprising to me whatsoever. These hummus bowls are colorful, flavorful, & fresh feel-good food, & they’re so easy to throw together on even the busiest weeknights. I’ve streamlined the recipe a bit & have added a plant-based option for our vegetarian, vegan, & veggie-loving readers, but it still delivers the same colorful, texture-filled, flavor-bomb meal that you already know & love. (I promise!)
Easy Shawarma Hummus Bowls – Recipe Highlights
These shawarma hummus bowls are…
- MEGA-FLAVORFUL! – With the toasty warm shawarma spices, tangy brightness of quick pickled onions, & crisp freshness of any fresh veggies you love, these bowls are filled with flavor. (& they’re a texture-lover’s dream!)
- SERIOUSLY EASY – Aside from prepping a quick shawarma marinade & whatever toppings you’re craving, these hummus bowls are mostly an assembly job. Plus, they’re super meal prep friendly – check the Recipe Notes for meal prep tips!
- TOTALLY VERSATILE – You can switch these hummus bowls up by changing the toppings, using different kinds of hummus, or even swapping the chicken for roasted shawarma veggies. Basically whatever your happy little heart desires!
There’s seriously nothing not to love about ’em. ♡ Read on to learn more about these Shawarma Hummus Bowls, or jump straight to the recipe & get cookin’!
Shawarma Hummus Bowls start with an Easy Shawarma Marinade.
At the heart of these hummus bowls – aside from hummus, of course – is a simple shawarma marinade. Made with some pantry staples & flavorful spices that are probably already on your spice rack, this shawarma marinade adds a big punch of flavor to chicken, veggies & more.
You will need…
- Shawarma spices – Namely ground cumin, smoked paprika, cinnamon, ginger, oregano, turmeric & a little bit of cayenne pepper for heat.
- Garlic – Of course!
- Honey – Adds a really nice kiss of sweetness, plus it helps create crispy & caramelized edges on the veggie or chicken shawarma. If you’d like to make sure your hummus bowls are vegan, feel free to use agave or pure maple syrup in its place.
- Lemon juice – Its brightness balances out the warm spices beautifully.
- Olive oil – Just a little bit, to bring everything together.
Suggested marinating time ⇢ The longer the protein or veggies can sit in the shawarma marinade, the better! Marinate chicken for at least 8 hours or up to 3 days. Veggies will last even longer – you can marinate them for up to 5 days.
At-Home Chicken Shawarma
Traditionally shawarma is slowly roasted on a vertical spit, resulting in succulent shawarma meat with addictively crispy & caramelized edges. Since most home chefs, myself included, don’t have a vertical spit set-up, I wanted to figure out a way to replicate the flavors & textures of traditional shawarma. The answer ended up being pretty simple – the broiler!
Here’s how it happens…
- Transfer the chicken to a sheet pan: Transfer the marinated shawarma chicken to a quarter baking sheet. Be sure to drain & discard any excess marinade so the chicken roasts evenly.
- Bake: Pop the pan in the oven & bake until the chicken is just nearly cooked through.
- Thinly slice the chicken, mimicking the way traditional spit-roasted shawarma is sliced off a vertical spit.
- Broil for smoky, crispy edges: Place the sliced chicken back on the sheet pan & pop it under the broiler for a few minutes, until the edges are browned & crispy. So easy, so good!
Alternative cooking option ⇢ If you do not have a broiler in your oven (or if you don’t feel like turning on your oven for dinner), you can also create a similar smoky, crispy, caramelized effect using a grill or grill pan. Grill the chicken shawarma for 5-6 minutes per side, until cooked through. Easy!
Hummus Bowl Assembly
With your shawarma prepped & ready to go, all that’s left is the fun part…Hummus Bowl assembly!
Here’s what you’ll do…
- Hummus – First, place a big swoop of your favorite hummus down on a plate or shallow bowl. Use the back of a large spoon to help spread it across the surface. You can absolutely make a batch of homemade hummus, though these bowls are also just as good with store-bought hummus! My favorite right now is Ithaca Lemon Garlic Hummus.
- Add your favorite grain – If you want to, add a spoonful of your favorite cooked grains. I like quinoa best, but these bowls are also great with brown rice, jasmine rice, cauliflower rice, & so on. Or, skip the grains altogether!
- Shawarma Chicken (or Veggies!) – Next, pile on your roasty, toasty shawarma.
- Toppings – Finish with any & all toppings you love most. I love topping my hummus bowls off with really finely sliced cabbage, thinly sliced cucumber, crumbled feta, & tangy-delicious pickled red onions.
Another fun thing about hummus bowls is that you can easily switch them up by using different kinds of hummus, swapping for a different protein, changing out toppings, & so on. You can go wherever your creativity (& cravings) lead you to!
A couple of easy hummus bowl variations to get you started:
- Make ’em vegetarian or vegan! Swap the chicken with roasted veggies & chickpeas (like you find in this popular PWWB recipe). Check out the Recipe Notes for full vegetarian/vegan directions!
- Switch up the hummus: I like these bowls best with classic hummus, but you can easily change up the flavors by using different types of hummus – roasted red pepper hummus, roasted garlic hummus, spicy hummus, etc. Butternut squash hummus or pumpkin hummus are also amazing during the fall & winter months!
- Make it a salad – Swap out grains for your favorite greens, or make a simple cabbage slaw by tossing finely shredded cabbage with a little bit of olive oil, lemon juice, & a pinch of ground cumin for warmth.
- Change up the toppings – Go wherever your creativity leads you to build a hummus bowl that speaks to your cravings.
(…But no matter what you do, don’t forget a piece of warm pita bread or naan…you will NOT regret it!)
I can’t wait for you to try these Shawarma Hummus Bowls! They’re a serious fave here at PWWB, & I know you’ll love them too. If you do give them a try, be sure to let me know! Leave a comment with a star rating below. You can also snap a photo & tag @playswellwithbutter on Instagram. I LOVE hearing about & seeing your PWWB creations!
Love quick & easy weeknight meals? Us too! Try this Sheet Pan Pollo Verde, these Sheet Pan Crispy Chicken Carnitas, or these Island-Style Seared Scallops next. Happy cooking! ♡Print
The BEST Hummus Bowls with Easy Chicken Shawarma (or Roasted Veggie Shawarma!)
- Prep Time: 20 Minutes (+ inactive marinating time)
- Cook Time: 25 Minutes
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: Serves 4
- Category: Entree Salads & Bowls, Main Dishes
- Method: Sheet Pan, Baked
- Cuisine: Middle Eastern
- Diet: Gluten Free
Healthy, satisfying, & mega-flavorful Hummus Bowls! A grain bowl centered around creamy, dreamy hummus, piled high with homemade chicken shawarma (see Recipe Notes for a vegan roasted veggie shawarma option!), & finished with whatever toppings you love most – quinoa, cabbage, feta, pickled red onions, & more. The perfect easy weeknight dinner & great for meal prep. Easily vegetarian, vegan, & dairy-free.
for the hummus bowls:
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless thighs (see Recipe Notes for plant-based substitute)
- 1 cup hummus (see Recipe Notes)
- 1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa (1/2 cup dry cooked according to package directions)
- 1/4 cup feta, crumbled
- for serving, as desired: thinly sliced cucumbers, shredded cabbage, extra virgin olive oil, lemon wedges, thinly sliced basil, pickled red onions, warm pita or naan, etc.
for the shawarma marinade:
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon honey (or pure maple syrup or agave)
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
- 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 3/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
- optional: 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, as desired
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Marinate the chicken: Place the chicken in a large Ziplock bag or baking dish. Add the olive oil, honey (or maple), lemon juice, garlic, cumin, smoked paprika, cinnamon, ginger, oregano, turmeric, cayenne, kosher salt, & ground black pepper. Toss to combine, coating the chicken evenly in the shawarma marinade. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, or up to 3 days.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F, arranging the oven racks such that one is in the center of the oven & one is 4-6 inches under the broiler. Line a baking sheet with foil for easy clean up & set aside.
- Roast the chicken shawarma: Transfer the chicken to the prepared baking sheet, shaking off any excess marinade. Bake on the center rack for 15-18 minutes, depending on the thickness of your chicken thighs. The chicken should be nearly cooked through. Remove the chicken from the oven, meanwhile preheat the broiler. As the broiler preheats, thinly slice the chicken. Transfer the sliced chicken back onto the baking sheet. Place the baking sheet under the broiler. Broil 4-5 minutes, turning the pan halfway through, until the chicken shawarma is browned & caramelized.
- Assemble the hummus bowls: Add a large spoonful of hummus to the bottom of a large, shallow bowl. Use the back of a spoon to swoop the hummus across the bottom of the bowl. Add in the quinoa & chicken shawarma or veggie shawarma. Finish with pickled red onions, thinly sliced cucumbers, shredded cabbage, crumbled feta, and a sprinkling of fresh basil, & other toppings as desired. Serve immediately with a spritz of lemon and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil as desired. Enjoy!
- Can I use boneless, skinless chicken breasts instead? Yes. I prefer thighs since they’re flavorful & stay really nice & juicy through roasting + broiling, but you can swap them out with breasts if you prefer. Either pound the breasts out flat or cut them in half lengthwise (butterflied) to ensure they roast up evenly. Skip broiling (Step 3), as the breast meat will dry out.
- Vegan hummus bowls: These shawarma hummus bowls are easily made vegetarian & vegan by replacing the chicken shawarma with roasted veggie shawarma. Swap the chicken thighs with 1/2 small head cauliflower (cut into bite-sized florets), 1 large sweet potato (diced into 1/2-inch cubes), & 1 14-ounce can chickpeas (drained, rinsed & patted dry). Prepare the shawarma marinade as described (be sure to use pure maple syrup or agave in place of the honey for a vegan marinade). Divide the mixture on to two baking sheets. Roast at 450 degrees F for 20-25 minutes, shaking the pans halfway through, until the cauliflower & sweet potato are tender with crispy, browned edges. Assemble the hummus bowls as described in Step 4.
- Hummus: You can use whatever hummus you like best. If there’s a hummus recipe you absolutely love, feel free to make homemade hummus. These bowls are also just as good with store-bought hummus! My favorite right now is Ithaca Lemon Garlic Hummus – yum!
- 10-Minute Meal Prep: Nearly all of the active prep work for these hummus bowls come from prepping the shawarma marinade. Whisk it up at the beginning of the week according to Step 1 of Recipe Directions, above. Pour over the chicken (or veggies) & marinate in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. At dinnertime, simply pop the chicken in the oven & get the rest of your toppings prepped while it roasts. Easy!
- Note: This recipe has been updated since its original publish in April 2018. If you are looking for the original recipe, which included grill preparation & a quick lemony cabbage slaw, click here to download a printable version!
Keywords: hummus bowls, chicken shawarma, chicken sheet pan dinner, sheet pan chicken, veggie shawarma, weeknight, easy, vegan, plant-based, vegetarian
Recipe & Food Styling by Jess Larson, Plays Well With Butter | Photography by Rachel Cook, Half Acre House.
Follow along with Plays Well With Butter on Instagram, Facebook, & Pinterest for more easy, modern recipes & fun!
Oh my gosh this was so good! I followed the marinade instructions exactly and the chicken was so flavorful. I love the texture that came from using the broiler too. 5 stars!
Thanks so much for dropping a comment, Danielle! We are thrilled to hear that you loved these bowls just as much as we do!
Hi there — what do you do with the garlic? I’m assuming it goes in the marinade?
Hi Jamie! Yes, that is exactly right – you’ll add the 3 cloves of finely chopped or grated garlic to the shawarma marinade in Step 1. Apologies for any confusion, I’ve made sure that ingredient is added in the step as it looks like it had accidentally dropped out!
Would the marinaded chicken be freezer friendly? I’d love to stock a few away in the freezer for faster meals but uncertain how the lemon juice might affect the texture.
Hi Dani! While we’ve never tested this – it should work just fine. Though you may want to consider leaving the lemon juice out of the portion you plan to freeze then adding fresh once you are ready to use and the meat has thawed. That way, you can prevent any potential adverse texture from developing. Hope that helps & please let us know how it goes!
This was SO GOOD! I was out of cinnamon (how is that possible?!), but otherwise followed recipe. Made my own hummus, pickled the red onions, and made the cabbage slaw. Definitely going into rotation.
Hi Kristin! Thank you so much for sharing, we are so glad to hear that you loved these hummus bowls. Pickled red onions are a game changer – if you haven’t tried them yet be sure to check out our quick pickled version HERE!
This is probably my favorite meal from PWWB! I love the marinade and the simplicity. My picky eater son can make it his own while I pile all of the veggies on mine. Its perfect for taking leftovers to work or making what looks like a fancy meal for a friend.
Hi Doreen! We love how customizable these are too (perfect for picky eaters!!). Thanks so much for your comment & for being a part of the PWWB community!
Looks delicious. Definitely going to try this. There seems to be some sort of flat bread in the picture. What is that please? X
Hi Kathryn! Happy to help – we love serving this with a side of store-bought naan bread or pita (pictured!). Most grocery stores will carry these in the bread aisle or near the deli or bakery sections. If you want to make some yourself, this is my go-to recipe for homemade pita. Hope you give it a try soon – let us know what you think!
This was amazing!! I used cauliflower rice for myself and it was just as delicious! Thank you for a simple clean recipe
Thank you Sarah, we’re so glad you enjoyed!💜
This recipe was so delicious- we loved it! Thank you for sharing!
Hi Allison! We’re so glad you loved it! It’s a PWWB team fave 🙂 Hope you’ll try another one of our Entrée Salads & Bowls recipes next!
I made the chicken version of the recipe, but I didn’t like the combination of flavours – especially the chicken marinade. I felt like it was missing something. My husband chose not to have the meal with feta and hummus, and enjoyed it much more (but then, he also liked the chicken!)
Hey there! Sorry to hear this recipe wasn’t your favorite but glad to hear that your husband enjoyed! You can always try our veggie shawarma next time if interested!
This is a favorite in our house. I don’t cook chicken often so I use salmon instead and it turns out amazing! Thank you for posting this recipe
I bet salmon is amazing with the shawarma spices! So glad you & your family love this recipe, thanks so much for dropping a comment, Dana!
Whole family loved this!! Great recipe!
Thank so much, we’re so glad it was loved by all!
I used halibut instead of chicken and it was a hit. The family loved the flavors of all of it. Soooo good!
So glad it was tasty with the halibut! Thank you for sharing Dana!
I really love this recipe but I’m super disappointed because it has changed. There used to be instructions for the cabbage. It was lemony, cumin cabbage that was perfect with this and an active link to pickled red onions. Please bring back those good thing!
Hi Gen – You’re absolutely right, we did update this recipe earlier this year. If you have a peek at the Recipe Notes, there is a note linking to a downloadable recipe card of the original recipe from 2017 – I’ll link it HERE for your convenience. As for the pickled onions, there is an active link above for the recipe I now use – linking it again HERE for your convenience. I believe the original post recipe linked to these, though I prefer the recipe that’s currently linked as it is simpler in terms of prep. Hope this helps!
This is SO amazing (and easy, too)! My husband raved about it. It’s going on regular rotation in our house. Many thanks! 🙂
Hi Christine! Thank you so much for sharing this comment, we are SO glad you enjoyed. This recipe makes the best leftovers too, thanks again!
Delicious and so easy, plus we had everything in our pantry! Only difference we made was using chicken breasts and lime juice since that is what we had at home. Definitely adding this to our normal rotation of meal prep.
Hi Angelica! So so glad to hear that you enjoyed & had everything you needed on hand. Isn’t that the best when dinner can come together so easily?!
These shawarma bowls are the rare meal with this spice profile that my husband and I can agree is delicious enough to be in the regular rotation. So easy and so good!
10/10. Super simple but super satisfying. I’ll be adding this to my regular rotation.
So glad it was a hit, Sandra! Thanks for leaving a comment!
The marinade gives the chicken such good flavor! These are so easy to throw together so they’re perfect for a week night. Will be adding this to our rotation too.
So glad to hear you enjoyed your bowls, Ashley! xx
Seriously one of the best recipes I’ve had in a while – it’s so flavorful and EASY! Adding this to my regular weeknight dinner rotation for sure!
Such a joy to hear, Megan!!! So glad you enjoyed your hummus bowls. Thank you for sharing!!! xx
Made these for the first time for weeknight dinner and will ABSOLUTELY add them into the regular rotation. Paired with some warm pita bread, these taste as good or better than what I could find in a restaurant!
Love to hear it, Katie!!! xx
Super flavorful. I marinated just under 24 hours. Perfect for lunches.
Glad you enjoyed, Rachel!! xx
This recipe is SO flavorful and so easy to make! I’ve made both the chicken and veggie versions, and both turned out great!
Hey Natasha! I’m so, so glad you loved your hummus bowls, & so glad you were able to try both versions! I think they’re both great, too, just depends what you’re in the mood for! xx
This is so good! It was super quick to put together and has sooooo much flavor. I used plain hummus, chicken, cucumbers, quinoa, quick AF pickled onions, feta, lemon, and grilled cauliflower. My store was out of naan so we went without, but I can only imagine how great that would have been!
So glad you enjoyed, Megan! xx
The chicken marinade is seriously ah-ma-zing. Perfect meal for meal prep – throw together the marinade on a Sunday and the rest is super easy to prepare from there during the week.
Couldn’t agree more, Jaclyn! So glad you enjoyed your hummus bowls as much as we do! xx Jess
This bowl is SO good. The marinade really makes it and it was so easy for a weeknight dinner.
So glad you enjoyed, Anna!! xx
Looooooved this recipe! I’ve made chicken shawarma bowls in the past but this marinade on the chicken is a game changer. Also loved the addition of cabbage (I used Napa) – added such a nice crunchy bite.
So glad you enjoyed, Christine! Napa cabbage is a great idea!
This was sooo good! I followed the marinade recipe as written and it came out perfect! I will definitely make this again!
So glad you enjoyed, JV!!!
LOVE this marinade and recipe! I had previously made the marinade for grilled chicken but the sheet pan version may have even topped it! The warm spices really worked well with the other toppings. We did quinoa, cucumbers, feta, and hummus but there are so many things you could add to this! Loved it!
This has been a staple for a few years. Love the tahini sauce from the veggie bowls. we do a mix of both recipes in our home. I LOVE this meal.
Oh my gosh, this is one of my new go-to recipes. It’s SO delicious, and I love that I can prep it all ahead of time and just assemble when ready. My parents flew into town, and we didn’t get home until almost 8pm, but I was able to prepare everything in advance, so that when we got home, I just needed to broil the meat and assemble the plates. Geez, it’s so tasty.
Glad you enjoyed, Tanner!!! xx
Love these so much! Plays Well With Butter has the BEST marinades HANDS DOWN and these shawarma bowls do not disappoint!
Yessss, thank you for the kind words Julie! I’m so glad you enjoyed your hummus bowls!
So easy to make and so flavorful!
Wonderful, I’m so glad you enjoyed, Anna! xx
I loved these bowls! They’re great for meal prep as well!
So many textures and flavors! One of my most favorite dinner recipes when I need something flavorful and low key!
Hi Erin! We are SO glad you enjoyed these hummus bowls! & we agree there’s so many flavors in this recipe & they are so customizable too!
This marinade is the absolute best. I’ve made it for countless guests and everyone always recaches out for the recipe. I love serving this with grilled red peppers and onions. Everyone needs to add this recipe to their summer grilling list!
Marissa – we completely agree, this recipe is a definite summer must-have! We are so glad to hear that you loved it!
A new household favorite!!! For everyone, ages 3+. I doubled the recipe and what few leftovers there were last night were in demand and inhaled for lunch today. Delicious. Such great flavor! Highly recommend.
Laura, yay!!! So glad to hear that the entire family loved it!!
This is probably our favorite meal in my house. I make it at least once a month. It is sooooo good. I always add tzatziki.
Ahhhh, Danielle! This brought the biggest smile to my face. It is 100% one of our favorites too. I’m so glad you love it as much as we do!
I could eat this on repeat (which I do) and never get tired of it! So good!
Cassie! Thank you for sharing, this means so much!! We love how simple these bowls are to throw together & versatile too – so many possibilites!
Could this meat be made in the oven or crockpot as well?
Hi Kim! We actually just updated this recipe & it now includes an oven method for cooking (the older version only had directions for the grill)! You can check out the full recipe here: Easy Hummus Bowls with Chicken Shawarma (or Veggie Shawarma!), let us know if you have any additional questions!
My husband and I gobbled this up so quickly because it was THAT good. I even texted the recipe to abut 15 family and friends as I ate telling them they needed to try it. lol. It was so filling yet light and full of flavor. This is definitely gonna be a go to meal. Thank you.
This was sooooo good! I forgot to add the cabbage, feta and basil. I had it all ready to go but forgot to actually put it in (it’s been a very long day). And it was still delicious! I can’t wait to eat the leftovers tomorrow with all the toppings, of course 😅
Ah, this is one of my favorites, too. I’m so glad you enjoyed, Vi! xx
A favorite in our house!
Same here, Jacqueline! xx
This recipe has become a staple. The marinade for the chicken is so flavorful! I love that I can put this together on a weeknight and have a quick and delicious meal in almost no time
Couldn’t agree more, Ronni! I’m so glad you love these hummus bowls as much as we do!!!
This recipe is so so easy & so delicious! I’ve made it for meal prep for lunches and dinners and it’s always so good!
Hey, there is also a Naf Naf in Maple Grove! Thanks for this yummy recipe!
you’re so welcome, stacy!!! hope you try it – i think it’s just as good as the real deal. =)
Just made this for dinner tonight and it was a hit! My hubby absolutely loved it , he compared it to our favorite Mediterranean restaurant we frequent ! ??
ahhh, i LOVE to hear that, Tracie! hope you make it again soon!