Chicken Shawarma image

Quick Chicken Shawarma

It isn’t a soup, and it isn’t a stew, but it is pure comfort food from the first spoonful to the bottom of the bowl. The rich, savoury tastes of mushrooms and parmesan are in perfect harmony with the warmth of chives, garlic, and black pepper. It’s ideal for a satisfying dinner, especially on a cold or damp evening, and the leftovers reheat perfectly for lunch the next day.

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 35 to 40 minutes

Chef’s Tips:

  • Stems removed from shiitake mushrooms can be added to the broth to add more flavour, but remove when adding broth to the rice as they are too tough to eat.
  • Lemon or lime juice can be used instead of the apple cider vinegar
  • Use any mushroom variety or a mix of different mushrooms for variation.
  • Add up to an additional ½ cup (125 ml) of chicken broth for a looser risotto.
  • Sargent Farms Boneless Chicken Breasts or Tenders can be used in place of the thighs if desired.


  • 6½ cups (1625 ml) chicken broth (low sodium), divided
  • 4 tbsp (60 ml) extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 3 tbsp (43 g) butter, divided
  • 1 lb (454 g) mixed mushrooms, thickly sliced (we used: oyster, shiitake, cremini)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced; divided
  • 4 tsp (5 g) fresh thyme leaves, roughly chopped; divided
  • 6 pcs (410 g) Sargent Farms Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs; ½-inch cubes
  • 1 tsp (6 g) salt
  • 1 tsp (2 g) ground black pepper, preferably freshly ground
  • 1 medium onion (220g), finely diced
  • 1½ cups (292 g) arborio rice
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup (34 g) parmesan, finely grated
  • ⅓ cup (14 g) chives, finely chopped


  1. In a large pot, bring chicken broth to a boil. Cover pot and reduce heat to the lowest setting to keep broth at a gentle simmer.
  2. In a large, wide skillet or Dutch oven, heat two tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil and one tablespoon (14 g) butter over medium heat until butter is foamy.
  3. Add sliced mushrooms and sauté for 2 minutes. Add half of the minced garlic and 2 teaspoons of the chopped thyme leaves. Sautee for another 2 minutes or until mushrooms are browned. Add in the cubed chicken. Sprinkle mixture with the salt and pepper. Cook chicken for 3 to 4 minutes or just until thighs are cooked through. Transfer chicken mixture into a separate dish. Set aside until needed.
  4. In the same skillet, heat the remaining olive oil and one tablespoon (14 g) butter over medium heat. Once the butter is foamy, add the diced onions. Sautee until onions are translucent; about 5 minutes.  Add in the remaining minced garlic, thyme, and the arborio rice. Stir until rice is coated with oil and edges begin to turn translucent; about 2 minutes.
  5. Add in half a cup of the hot chicken broth and the apple cider vinegar. Stir until liquid is fully absorbed into the rice. Lower heat if rice begins to stick to the surface of the skillet or Dutch oven. Continue to stir in the chicken broth, about ½ cup (125 ml) at a time, ensuring the liquid is absorbed into the rice before adding more. This should take about 20 to 25 minutes. Rice should be creamy, tender, yet still firm.   
  6. Stir in the chicken and mushroom mixture and heat through.
  7. Remove from heat and stir in the remaining tablespoon of butter, parmesan, and chopped chives. Serve immediately.
  8. Garnish with additional parmesan and fresh thyme, if desired.
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