Jon Bradburn's Korean-Style Chicken Shawarma

Jon Bradburn's Korean-Style Chicken Shawarma

This Korean-inspired Chicken Shawarma recipe saw Jon Bradburn take the prize for Team Temperature's Big BBQ Challenge, Kebab Week. Served with homemade pickles, chilli sauce and garlic mayo, this recipe brings together powerful Korean BBQ flavours with the much-loved chicken shawarma.


Serves 4-6 depending on how hungry you are!
For the chicken
  • 1kg chicken thighs (boneless)
  • 100g gochujang paste
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1.5 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp ginger paste
  • 1 tbsp garlic paste
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 2 tbsp honey
For the chilli sauce
  • 350g cherry tomatoes (approximately 20)
  • 3 chillis
  • Seasoning
For the garlic mayo
  • 1 bulb of garlic
  • Olive oil
  • Mayonnaise
  • Salt
For the quick pickles
Quantities depend on the size of the jar you're filling
  • 2 clean empty jars
  • Sliced chillis
  • Sliced red onion
  • 100ml white distilled vinegar
  • 100ml white wine or cider vinegar
  • 100ml water
  • Salt
  • Peppercorns
  • Pinch of chilli flakes
  • 1 fresh bay leaf
  • I loaded up the Weber Rotisserie for this, but it works equally well on skewers. If you don't have access to a BBQ, skewers work well cooked in the oven and then finished under a hot grill to get some gnarly crispy edges.
  • Debone the chicken thighs and set them to one side.
  • Combine all of the marinade ingredients in a bowl, then add the chicken thighs. Marinate the chicken for at least 30 mins.
  • To make the quick pickles, add the liquids to a pan with a pinch of salt and the seasonings. Bring to a boil and turn off the heat to cool slightly.
  • Add the sliced chillis to one jar and onions to the other. Carefully pour over the liquid and close the lid. These will be ready to eat in about 30 minutes and keep in the fridge for a couple of weeks, so don't be afraid to make a batch.
  • Fire up the BBQ for direct grilling. Whilst it's heating up, thread the chicken onto your rotisserie. If using skewers, you can use a double-pronged skewer or two single skewers and secure the ends with half a lemon to keep them parallel.
  • Keep the leftover marinade and baste the chicken throughout the cook, building up layers of flavour. Remember, the marinade contains raw chicken juice, so make sure there's plenty of time between the last baste and serving so it cooks through.
  • Whilst the chicken cooks, roast your tomatoes and chillis (go dirty on the chillis for extra flavour). Cut the top off the garlic and drizzle with oil and salt. Wrap in tinfoil and place next to the embers to roast.
  • Once the tomatoes and chillis have roasted, add to a blender and season (I used Sea Crack Mexican Chipotle Salt for added heat). Pulse until desired texture.
  • The garlic is ready to come off the heat once it's soft. Squeeze out the pulp and add to the mayonnaise. (I added Sea Crack Black Truffle Salt for extra flavour).
  • Use your Thermapen to check the chicken. Once it has reached 74 °C it is ready to come off the heat. Don't worry about crispy edges - these add flavour and texture!
  • Slice the chicken and serve with flatbreads and salad. Add your chilli sauce, pickles and garlic mayo. Enjoy!
Products to help you achieve perfection
"One of the first BBQ skills I learned was to cook to temperature, ensuring the food is always at its best. Cooking on the BBQ is a great way for me to relax, so reliable tools like the Thermapen are a must-have to help cook up good food every time!"
Jon Bradburn
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