September 25, 2023



Shawarma vs. Gyro: Taste, Ingredients, and Nourishment

Shawarma vs. Gyro: Taste, Ingredients, and Nourishment

Gyros and shawarmas are two related — but distinct — dishes that have come to be common street meals all over the environment.

They’re both of those impressed by the cooking strategy of the Turkish doner kebab made in the course of the Ottoman Empire.

The method consists of stacking meat on a vertical skewer or rotisserie to kind a cone, which slowly and gradually rotates upcoming to a warmth supply to allow the meat to cook dinner.

As such, gyros and shawarmas are very similar in that they are cooked on a vertical rotisserie, frequently well prepared with the very same meat, and served on pita bread.

Nonetheless, these two dishes are staples of two unique Mediterranean cuisines, and hence, they are diverse from 1 a different.

This report will take a nearer look at the similarities and differences among gyros and shawarmas.

A gyro and a shawarma against a two-tone pink background.Share on Pinterest
Images from still left to right: pamela_d_mcadams/Getty Photographs, hamza ishqaidif/Getty Illustrations or photos

Just one major big difference amongst a gyro and a shawarma is the dishes’ origins.

History of gyro

A gyro is a dish of Greek origin. In reality, the word gyro is in fact the Greek term for “round,” which refers to the vertical rotisserie in which the meat is cooked.

On top of that, gyros are ready and topped making use of new components usually utilised in Greek cuisine.

Gyros are ordinarily produced with lamb, beef, pork, or chicken, and the meat is seasoned with thyme, oregano, and rosemary.

After the outer levels of the meat are cooked, they are shaved into slender slices and served on pita bread unfold with hummus.

A gyro is then topped with tomato, red onion, lettuce, french fries, and tzatziki — a traditional Greek dip or sauce made with yogurt, cucumber, olive oil, garlic, and herbs like dill, mint, or thyme.

Historical past of shawarma

Shawarma is a dish of Center Japanese origin, and a large amount can be acquired as a result of its name and ingredients.

The title shawarma derives from the phrase çevirme, which is Turkish for “turning” — which also refers to the meat’s cooking system.

While shawarmas are also served on pita bread or wrapped in a flatbread unfold with hummus, they are typically manufactured with lamb, rooster, veal, or turkey, and from time to time a mixture of meats.

Having said that, the meat is seasoned with spices like turmeric, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, and garlic.

It is topped with tabbouleh (a traditional bulgur-primarily based salad), pickled veggies, and tahini — a Center Eastern condiment produced of ground sesame seeds.


Gyros and shawarmas are each produced in a vertical rotisserie and served on pita bread with hummus. Nonetheless, gyros have a Greek origin, and shawarmas are Center Jap. Just about every is designed working with common substances.

Down below is a comparison of gyros and shawarmas’ most important differences and similarities:

Whilst gyros and shawarmas share several components and glance very much alike, they each and every have unique taste profiles, which are predominantly determined by the way the meat is well prepared just before remaining cooked.

Typical components in gyro vs. shawarma

Gyros and shawarmas are sandwich-like dishes that share quite a few components, which include:

  • Pita bread: No matter if it is slice into a pocket and stuffed with the components or utilised as a flatbread, pita provides equally dishes their characteristic construction. It is also their key source of carbs (1).
  • Meat: Lamb and rooster are generally made use of in each gyros and shawarmas. Whilst lamb is a form of pink meat and chicken is a white meat, they are both of those high high-quality protein resources that present all vital amino acids — the kinds you ought to get from meals since your overall body can not make them (2, 3).
  • Hummus: Hummus is a Center Eastern distribute built from cooked, mashed chickpeas blended with tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, and spices. It is a nutrient-dense ingredient wealthy in fiber, healthier fats, vitamins E and C, folate, magnesium, potassium, and iron. As this kind of, it has been joined to a number of overall health advantages (4, 5).

Flavor profiles of gyro vs. shawarma

Even with sharing most of their primary substances, gyros and shawarmas taste really distinctive.

On the a person hand, gyros have a classical Mediterranean taste due to the use of clean raw greens, such as crimson onions and tomatoes, and the yogurt, cucumber, and dill from the tzatziki.

In addition, the meat is seasoned proper prior to staying stacked into the skewer, and the selection of spices provides it a aromatic, gentle, and marginally minty flavor.

On the opposite, shawarma’s elements and seasonings give it a spicier, warmer, and much more intricate flavor profile, which is highlighted by the assortment of flavors delivered by its usual toppings.

For instance, the pickled veggies, which frequently involve carrots, cabbage, and onions, add a little bit of tanginess to the dish. Meanwhile, the tahini and tabbouleh — made from chopped tomatoes, onions, parsley, mint, bulgur wheat, lemon juice, olive oil, and salt — produce an earthy however new taste.

And unlike gyro meat, shawarma meat is marinated at size — frequently right away — to allow for a richer taste profile.


Gyros and shawarmas share some of their main substances, these kinds of as the form of bread, meat, and hummus. Nevertheless, gyros have a refreshing flavor profile, while shawarmas are spicier, warmer, and much more intricate.

Gyros and shawarmas are both full meals that give all three macronutrients: carbs, proteins, and fat.

Down below is the comparison involving a 390-gram serving of beef gyro and shawarma (6, 7):

Commonly speaking, gyros have a tendency to have a increased carb count because of to the addition of french fries. In distinction, shawarmas’ improved fat content material may possibly be because of to the tahini, which is composed primarily of heart-healthier fats (8).

On top of that, just one opportunity explanation for shawarmas’ increased protein articles could possibly be that there is room for extra meat without the need of the french fries.

Nonetheless, keep in brain that the nutritional profile of both equally gyros and shawarmas will count on size and what meat and toppings you find.


Gyros and shawarmas give all 3 macronutrients. Having said that, their dietary profiles may fluctuate depending on the choice of meat and toppings.

Gyros and shawarmas have turn out to be ever more well-known street food items and, therefore, are typically consumed by them selves on the go or with a facet of french fries.

However, if you are organizing on serving a Greek- or Middle Japanese-encouraged food, you can pair gyros or shawarmas with several scrumptious side dishes.

Given that both of those of them currently deliver their reasonable share of proteins, carbs, and fats, you could want to focus on serving them with veggie-prosperous sides.

For instance, gyros pair nicely with:

  • roasted greens like bell peppers
  • a typical Greek salad made with tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, onions, kalamata olives, and feta cheese
  • a hearty moussaka (a Mediterranean eggplant lasagna)

As for shawarma, it can be served with:

  • a mezze platter: an assortment of regular Middle Eastern appetizers, dips, and spreads that usually include things like hummus and baba ganoush — an eggplant dip — feta or mozzarella cheese, olives, artichoke hearts, raw and roasted veggies, dried fruits like dates and figs, and fresh fruits like grapes
  • excess pickled veggies
  • tabbouleh

When it arrives to drinks, each gyros and shawarmas pair well with beer and purple wine.

But consider trying to keep that alcohol intake light. The most recent Dietary Pointers for Americans propose 2 drinks or much less in a working day for men and 1 drink or less in a day for ladies to stop damage to your wellness (9).

Alternatively, mint tea is a classic non-alcoholic Mediterranean beverage that you can get pleasure from possibly incredibly hot or cold with your food.


Gyros and shawarmas can be savored by on their own on the go, or you can incorporate to the meal by serving them with conventional veggie-abundant aspect dishes.

Gyros and shawarmas have a number of similarities, like most of their ingredients and their key cooking method.

The major variances come down to their origins and flavor profiles. Gyros are Greek and have a fresh new flavor, even though shawarmas are Middle Eastern with a spicier and far more complex taste.

Equally gyros and shawarmas offer all three macronutrients and are generally consumed by them selves on the go. On the other hand, you can make the most out of both equally by pairing them with veg-large aspect dishes.