– vegan – gluten free – oil free –
Gyro is a Greek dish, traditionally made from pork or chicken cooked on a vertical rotisserie. This healthy vegan alternative is made from lentils, mushrooms and a blend of Greek-inspired spices. Serve with fresh romaine lettuce, sauteed vegetables and homemade vegan tzatziki sauce. Enjoy as a salad or in a naan wrap*.
*Most naan bread is not vegan. If you can’t find vegan naan, you can use pita bread, which is almost always vegan.
More Greek-inspired recipes:
A blender or food processor
A baking sheet
A large saucepan
Parchment paper (optional)
A large fry pan or cast iron skillet
A mixing bowl or jar
See below for a breakdown of nutritional information and substitutions.
To make this recipe, you will need:
For the tzatziki sauce:
- Unsweetened plain coconut yogurt: a good source of calcium. Just 1 cup of So Coconut Milk Yogurt has almost 40% of your recommended calcium and is also fortified with vitamin D and vitamin B12. Substitutions: I haven’t tried any other yogurt, but I think any plain yogurt will work.
- White vinegar: vinegar has no health benefits, but adds a nice refreshing kick to this sauce.
- Fresh dill: besides fruit, herbs are the most healing foods of them all. They are loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents that help fight off disease. Fresh herbs are best, but dried also have health benefits and work better for certain recipes. Substitutions: you can substitute 1 tbsp of fresh dill with 1 tsp of dried dill.
- Pure maple syrup: although high in sugar, is loaded with 24 antioxidants that help protect against free radical damage. It also contains anti-inflammatory properties that help to protect against chronic diseases, brain inflammation, intestinal inflammation, and nerve inflammation. Therefore, pure maple syrup is a great natural sweetener when used in moderation. Fake maple syrup is made with high fructose corn syrup and provides zero health benefits. Substitutions: agave nectar.
- Garlic powder: like other vegetables in the allium family, garlic contains sulfur compounds (sulfites) that assist with protein synthesis and the building of cell structures. Substitutions: you can replace 1 garlic clove with 2 tsp minced garlic or 1/2 tsp garlic powder.
- Onion powder: contains only trace amounts of vitamins and minerals.
- Sea salt: a natural alternative to table salt, which is more heavily processed and contains additives.
For the gyro patties:
- Baby bella mushrooms: a low-carb, low-calorie source of vitamins and minerals. Just one cup of cooked mushrooms has 3.5 grams of protein, 3.5 grams of fiber, 87% DV of copper, 67% DV of vitamin B5, 50% DV of vitamin B3, 43% DV of vitamin B2, 34% DV of selenium, 21% DV of potassium, 19% DV of phosphorus, 17% DV of zinc and 15% DV of iron. Mushrooms are a great way to get vitamins and minerals on a plant-based diet, especially if trying to lose weight. Substitutions: I have never used any other type of mushrooms, but I think any kind will work.
- Lentils: an incredible source of plant-based protein. Just one cup of cooked lentils has 18 grams of protein and 12 grams of fiber, as well as 90% of your daily recommended folate, 55% of your copper, 54% of your manganese, 51% of your phosphorus, 37% of your iron, 31% of your zinc, 28% of your potassium, 23% of your magnesium, 30% of your vitamin B1, 27% of your vitamin B6 and 25% of your vitamin B5.
- Gluten-free oats: a good source of protein and vitamins and minerals. Half a cup of rolled oats has 5 grams of protein, 82% of your daily manganese, 24% of your phosphorus, 21% of your selenium, 18% of your zinc, 18% of your copper and 17% of your vitamin B1. If you’re interested, I have a lot more information about rolled oats and other types of oats here. Substitutions: instant/quick-cooking oats will work for this recipe, however, they are more processed so I do not recommend. Rolled oats that aren’t gluten-free will also work.
- White onion: aids the body in removing toxins and detoxifying the liver. Like other members of the allium family, white onions lower the risk of disease. Substitutions: any type of onion can be used.
- Coconut aminos: a healthy alternative to soy sauce, which has artificial colors and cancer-causing ingredients like 4-methylimidazole and 3-MCPD. Coconut aminos are non-gmo, gluten-free, vegan and contain 17 out of 21 amino acids. It also has about 300% less sodium than soy sauce. Look for coconut aminos that contain only 2 ingredients: the sap from a coconut tree and sea salt. Substitutions: tamari or low-sodium soy sauce.
- Dried oregano: loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents that help fight off disease. Fresh herbs are best, but dried also have health benefits and work better for certain recipes. Oregano is a great source of vitamin K. Substitutions: you can substitute 1 tbsp of fresh oregano with 1 tsp of dried oregano.
- Black pepper: a good source of antioxidants. One tablespoon of black pepper has 49% of your daily recommended manganese.
- Cumin: with an array of health benefits, cumin is most widely used for indigestion by increasing the activity of digestive enzymes. Studies have shown that cumin is effective for weight loss, improving blood cholesterol and preventing food-borne illnesses.
- Allspice + cinnamon: has great anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants. Adding spices to your meals is a simple way to prevent the risk of heart disease and lower blood sugar levels.
For the remainder of the gyro:
- Naan or pita bread: Not all naan bread is vegan. If you can’t find vegan naan bread, almost all pita bread is vegan. Omit if you are limiting your consumption of refined food.
- Romaine lettuce: with huge, crunchy leaves, romaine lettuce is perfect for these wraps. One cup of romaine lettuce has 175% of your daily recommended vitamin A, 54% of your vitamin K and 16% of your folate – with only 8 calories per cup! Substitutions: you can use any lettuce of your choice for these wraps.
- Cherry tomatoes: tomatoes have a high water content of 94%, making them a good food for hydration and regular bowel movements, but not the most nutritionally-dense. However, one medium red tomato still has 65% of your daily vitamin A, 33% of your daily vitamin C as well as a good source of a few other vitamins and minerals. Substitutions: you can use any type of small tomato.
- Cucumber: composed of 96% water, cucumbers lack many vitamins and minerals. However, they make a refreshing addition to salads, sandwiches and side dishes without the extra calories. Their high water content also promotes hydration and regular bowel movements.
- Red or white onion
- Black pepper
- Sea salt
- Dried oregano