I love lemons. I love chicken. I love sandwiches. So I made a sandwich out of lemony chicken. On my hummus post I mentioned that it would pair really well with a roast chicken, so I roasted one! Roast chicken is probably my favorite protein, I just love how succulent and rustic it is. It’s like secret Thanksgiving every time I make one!
Since it is summer (almost), I think sandwich form is an appropriate way to enjoy chicken. Because I knew I was pairing it with hummus, I thought I would serve it with other Mediterranean inspired ingredients. I say “inspired” because none of these things are authentic, but they are authentically delicious. I thought some fresh veggies with lemon pepper roasted chicken and feta all tucked into some pita bread would make for an outstanding sandwich. In fact, I knew it would, because my husband and I have this meal all the time with sliced deli chicken. Usually I use some store bought tzatziki instead of hummus, and my husband adds Kalamata olives to his.
Our deli carries a really delicious lemon pepper chicken, but it’s pretty pricey. It was actually cheaper to buy a whole chicken than it was to buy enough deli meat for two sandwiches, and I personally don’t think it’s any trouble to roast one up! Especially the way I cooked it for these sandwiches, and it’s way yummier! And now we will have plenty of leftovers to throw into a salad this week.
These sandwiches turned out really amazing with a roast chicken, and would be even easier to make if you bought an already made rotisserie chicken from the grocery store. I’ll have to remember that for healthy work lunches. Anyway these were lemony, fresh, flavorful, and very filling. You can fit enough spinach in the pita pockets to count as a salad, and it feels special because its not normal sandwich lettuce. Using hummus instead of mayonnaise or mustard also adds a little something special. Changing a few ingredients, even to something just as simple, can really liven up the lunch plate!
Roast Chicken Pita Sandwich
- 1 whole Chicken (any size)
- ~1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 lemon
- 1 head of garlic split into cloves
- Thyme (dry or fresh)
- Pita pocket bread
- 1-2 cups washed and dried baby spinach
- 1 cucumber
- 1 small red onion
- ~2 tablespoons hummus
- ~2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Rinse and thoroughly pat dry the chicken and place in a baking dish/sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and spread evenly over the entire surface of the chicken.
- Salt and pepper the chicken generously, including the cavity. Grate the yellow part of the lemon over the outside of the chicken (the white part underneath the outer peel is too bitter). Sprinkle thyme leaves over the chicken.
- Toss the remaining lemon into the cavity of the chicken along with some thyme springs and garlic cloves (no need to peel the garlic).
- Tuck the wings under the bottom of the chicken and tie the drumsticks together.
- The chicken is done when it has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, about 1 hour, but this time varies depending on the size of the chicken. Let the chicken rest while you assemble the sandwiches.
- Cut the pitas in half and carefully open up the pockets. Smear hummus on one side of the inside of the pita. Slice cucumber and onions and place inside the pita with olives, spinach, feta, or any other desired veggies.
- Slice the chicken and add it to the sandwich.