Greek Lamb Gyros with Tzatziki Sauce

Greek Lamb Gyros with Tzatziki Sauce by @browneyedbaker :: www.browneyedbaker.com

Yesterday, I told you all about the amazing gyros that my Chief Culinary Consultant and I used to get when he was living outside of D.C. Since he moved back two years ago, we have been in a serious gyro drought. Thank the gyro gods that the house we bought is located only about five minutes from a fabulous gyro joint here in Pittsburgh. In the meantime, however, I’ve been dreaming about making gyros at home. Gyros are one of those things that just seem… impossible to make at home, right? Sort of like pop-tarts. As I’ve come to learn, however, nothing is impossible in the kitchen. These gyros are proof in the pudding… they were not very difficult to make, and are every bit as good (better, even) than our favorites from Greek and Middle Eastern take out joints.

Greek Lamb Gyros with Tzatziki Sauce by @browneyedbaker :: www.browneyedbaker.com

While traditional gyro meat is cooked on a vertical spit and then shaved off, that’s not exactly practical in a home kitchen. In order to get those thin strips of meat cooked to the correct consistency, it’s actually baked twice. A combination of ground lamb, seasonings, onion, garlic and slab bacon are processed together to form a cohesive mass. The mixture is shaped into a meatloaf, for lack of a better word, and baked at a low temperature. Once given time to sit, very thin strips of meat are sliced off, then laid in a pan and broiled for a couple of minutes.

Greek Lamb Gyros with Tzatziki Sauce by @browneyedbaker :: www.browneyedbaker.com

I was seriously stunned at how similar this meat tasted to the gyro meat that I have been accustomed to. It has so much flavor and the texture is just perfect.

When serving gyros, you want to look for pocketless pita bread, which can also be referred to as “hand-pulled”. Naan or flatbread can also work in a pinch. Then, pile on the meat, tzatziki sauce, chopped tomatoes and thinly sliced onion. Wrap it all up and then dig in. Don’t forget some extra tzatziki sauce on the side; you can never have enough of that awesomeness.

Greek Lamb Gyros with Tzatziki Sauce by @browneyedbaker :: www.browneyedbaker.com

I love being proven wrong when I think a certain type of food is beyond being made at home. Who am I kidding? Everything can be made at home, and it’s usually better than you can get elsewhere. These gyros are no exception.

Greek Lamb Gyros with Tzatziki Sauce by @browneyedbaker :: www.browneyedbaker.com

Two years ago: Salted Caramel Cashew Bark
Five years ago: Chicken Pot Pie
Six years ago: Chili-Rice Dinner

Lamb Gyros Recipe

Servings 4 to 6 servings
Prep 1 hour 15 minutes
Cook 35 minutes
Resting time 15 minutes
Total 2 hours 5 minutes
Course:Main Course
Cuisine:American, Turkish
Author: Michelle
A recipe for making lamb gyro meat at home. It's easy and tastes like some of my favorite take-out places!

Ingredients:

For the Gyro Meat:

  • 1
    pound
    ground lamb
  • 2
    teaspoons
    kosher salt
  • ½
    teaspoon
    freshly ground black pepper
  • 2
    tablespoons
    fresh oregano leaves
  • ½
    yellow onion
    (cut into 1-inch chunks)
  • 1
    clove
    garlic
    (sliced)
  • 3
    ounces
    slab bacon
    (or 5 slices sliced bacon, cut into ½-inch pieces)

To Serve:

  • Pocketless pita bread
  • Tomato
    (coarsely chopped)
  • Yellow onion
    (thinly sliced)

Directions:

  1. Make the Gyro Meat: In a medium bowl, combine the ground lamb, salt, pepper and oregano leaves with your hands, mixing until all of the seasonings have been evenly distributed. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or overnight.
  2. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Place the lamb mixture in the bowl of a food processor and add the onion, garlic and bacon. Process until a smooth puree is formed, 30 seconds to 1 minute, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
  3. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. With moistened hands, shape the lamb mixture into a rectangle about 8 inches long and 5 inches wide. Bake until the center of the loaf reaches 155 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer, 30 to 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 15 minutes.
  4. Adjust the oven rack to the highest position (1½ to 2 inches below broiler element) and preheat broiler. Slice the loaf of lamb meat crosswise into very thin pieces (they should be about ⅛-inch thick; no more than ¼-inch thick). Lay the strips on a rimmed baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and broil until edges are browned and crispy, 2 to 4 minutes. (I did this in two batches, as I couldn't fit all of the sliced meat on one baking sheet.) Be sure to keep an eye on it, as the broiler works quickly!
  5. Serve the Gyros: Warm up the bread either in the microwave (30 seconds), on the stovetop or in the oven. Top each with ¼ cup of tzatziki sauce, chopped tomatoes, sliced onions and gyro meat. Wrap with foil and serve.

Recipe Notes:

Nutritional values are based on one serving

Nutrition:

Calories: 607kcal
Fat: 36g
Saturated fat: 14g
Cholesterol: 97mg
Sodium: 1507mg
Potassium: 598mg
Carbohydrates: 40g
Fiber: 3g
Sugar: 3g
Protein: 28g
Vitamin A: 11.5%
Vitamin C: 14.2%
Calcium: 13%
Iron: 21%

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!