Take a quick trip round the world as we look to see who eats shawarma where, how it’s served and what it’s served with:
Shawarma in Australia
In Australia, Greek, Armenian, Turkish and Lebanese migrant populations have introduced shawarma. Commonly it is known simply as in Armenian kebab or in Turkish Doner kebab or, where Greek immigrants have settled, as a souvlaki, or less commonly, gyros or yiros. Shawarma costs A$6.00 upwards and is wrapped in a large pita bread or more commonly khubz, known locally as “Lebanese bread”, coming with beef, chicken or lamb, salad of lettuce, tomato and onion and cheese. Sauces include “garlic sauce” (Tzatziki), chilli sauce, hummus, tomato, and barbecue. Sometimes it is toasted after being wrapped in the bread.
Shawarma in Armenia
In Armenia Garsi khorovats, šaurma or in the Armenian diaspora, “Tarna” (literally, “it turns”); it is usually lamb, pork or chicken on a vertical rotisserie, sliced and wrapped in Armenian flatbread called Lavash, served with tahini, yogurt or garlic sauce and enjoyed with a savory side of Armenian pickled vegetables called “Tourshi.”
Shawarma in Azerbaijan
In Azerbaijan shawarma is called Shaurma (Aze:Saurma) or Doner . Shaurma is made with chicken and always include garlic sauce. While doner can be made with either chicken or beef, and doesn’t include garlic sauce. Both can be served in bread, lavash or in plate. Doner also can be served in tandoor bread.
Shawarma in Bangladesh
In Bangladesh shawarma along with Doner Kebab is getting popular mainly as fast food item in Dhaka and to a lesser extent in Chittagong. Initially, fast food shops like Shawarma House and Arabian Fast Food added shawarma in their menu. These days, however, they are becoming common in many fast food shops and restaurants.
Shawarma in Belgium
In Belgium a very large, filling shawarma is available. It is made with a combination of lamb and beef, although pork is not uncommon, and placed in a freshly baked pita, garnished with salad and zesty white garlic sauce or a spicy red sauce.
Shawarma in Brazil
In Brazil, mainly in São Paulo, shawarma is a street food, served with bread and a cup of juice. There it is called Churrasquinho Grego (Greek Steak) or much less frequently Churrasco Turco (Turkish Steak). It is not associated with the kebab/gyro in fashion districts. It is served in Porto Alegre, Foz do Iguaçu where it is sold as Arabic fast-food.
Shawarma in Bulgaria
In Bulgaria, shawarma is known as “Duner”.
Shawarma in Canada
In Canada, shawarma is typically available in any population centre that accommodates a sizeable Arabic demographic, but is particularly associated with Ottawa, which contains a large Lebanese population. The local version consists of a generous portion of shaved beef or chicken and vegetables wrapped in pita with garlic or sesame sauce. Garlic potatoes or rice are side dishes, it is common for shawarma to be served wrapped alone — fast-food style.
In some regions of Canada, the term “shawarma” is interchangeable with donairs. In the Montreal region, chicken “shawarma” is often confused with chicken kebabs, known as “Shish taouk”.
Shawarma in Beijing
In Beijing, shawarma is known as “Turkish Sandwiches”. It is widely available from street vendors with zucchini and spices.
Shawarma in Denmark
Shawarma was introduced in 1981 in Denmark by Turkish migrant workers, and has become a staple. Shawarma is served with julienned salad, (onion, tomatoes, cucumber), lettuce, sour cream dressing and chilli oil in either a pita bread, rolled in a flat bread (dürüm) or served on pizza.
Shawarma in Ecudor
In Ecuador, shawarma is a popular snack or light meal with vendors found all over the main metropolitan areas specially Urdesa, Guayaquil and La Mariscal, Quito. They were introduced by the Middle Eastern immigrant population.
Shawarma in Egypt
In Egypt, Shawarma -pronounced “Shawerma”- is one of the most popular street foods. There are many famous Egyptian restaurants and street stands alike offering different combinations of Shawarma. Shawarma is often served in small buns as an affordable small meal, with much less vegetable portions (mostly heavily grilled tomatoes and onions) and much more beef. Egyptian hummus -known as Tahina- is a lot thinner, and used almost exclusively for the beef variety, whereas “chicken shawarma” is often served with Garlic sauce. Shawarma could also be served as a topping for seasoned rice and grilled veggies, to be known as “Shawarma Fettah”. Shawarma Fettah is often served with a much thicker, creamy garlic sauce topping. Shawarma has also been offered as stuffing for Egyptian Pies, also known as “Feteer”.
Shawarma in France
In France, shawarma (or chawarma) is served in Arab and Israeli restaurants, although they are not considered to be the real shawarma by the North African and Middle Eastern population. The same item can be bought from ubiquitous fast food vendors under the name sandwich grec, sandwich Turc, or kebab. In some suburban quarters of Paris, the “Remi” special shawarma has a religious like following because of its original pomegranate (grenade) sauce. Although the name may imply a Greek origin, the shawarma is not a Greek gyros. As a fast food item, it is frequently served with french fries (in the wrap, not on the side) and garnished with a yogurt sauce (sauce blanche) and/or harissa, or a number of other sauces. Doner kebab or sandwich kebab is also ubiquitous at Algerian (or North African) and Turkish owned fast food places. The specifically Tunisian touch is the optional harissa.
Shawarma in Georgia
In Georgia, shawarma, known as shaurma has become a very popular street food.
Shawarma in Germany
In Germany, doner kebab, a dish similar to what is sold as “Shawarma” elsewhere, is a very popular take-away food. It is served either in a pita bread, rolled in a flat bread (dürüm) or on a plate with side dishes. “Shawarma” is rather seen sparsely. In Germany, it is often referred to as “Schawarma”.
Shawarma in Greece
In Greece, owing to its similarities with Middle Eastern cuisine, shawarma (under the name gyros) is one of the country’s most popular sandwiches.
Shawarma in India
Shawarma found its way to India in the 1980s with non-resident Indians working in Persian Gulf countries. Sometimes Paratha, an Indian flatbread originating in northern India but now eaten everywhere, is used instead of pita.
Shawarma in Israel
In Israel, shawarma is a very popular street food and offered in meat restaurants. Introduced by Mizrachi Jews and Arab citizens of Israel, the dish has become ubiquitous. It was most commonly made of lamb in the 1970s and 1980s. In the 1990s, a switch was made in favor of turkey or chicken. After 2000, lamb/veal mix began to appear, though turkey shawarma remains the most common by far. Often the rotating skewer is placed at the front of the fast-food stand, exposed to the street. Shawarma is served in a pita or a lafa and is usually eaten with salad, hummus or french fries. In Jerusalem, the lafa is called ‘esh tanur’. One of the condiments in demand is Amba.
Shawarma in Lebanon
In Lebanon, along with Falafel, shawarma is the most popular street food.
Shawarma in Libya
In Libya, shawarma (meat and chicken) is the most popular street food, with a price range from 1.25 US$ to 2 US$
Shawarma in Mexico
In Puebla, Mexico, shawarma was introduced by the numerous Middle-Eastern immigrants, mostly from Lebanon and Syria, but also Turkey and Iraq, in the early 1920s. Since then, it has become a traditional dish of the city, locally known as taco árabe, “Arabian taco”, sold in taquerías orientales, “[Middle-]Eastern taco stands”. Nonetheless, it is now usually made with pork and served either in pitas –locally called pan árabe, “Arabian bread”–, leavened bread –locally called torta árabe, “Arabian baguette”, also called cemita–, or simply in flour tortillas. It is usually accompanied tahini and labneh –locally called jocoque– even though the skhug (or kharif) has been replaced with a thick chipotle-garlic sauce. In other parts of the country, most notably in Mexico City, the dish has adapted to the Mexican cuisine by replacing the pita with corn tortillas, in what is now called a taco al pastor, “Shepherd taco”. Unlike a taco árabe, the taco al pastor is served with pineapple, cilantro, chopped onions and green or red salsa, and marinated with annatto sauce. Regardless of local adaptations, authentic middle eastern shawarma is available in the many middle eastern restaurants and kosher taquerias that cater to the large Mexican Lebanese and Mexican Sephardim communities.
Shawarma in The Netherlands
In the Netherlands, shawarma (shoarma) is a popular meal. Here it is served as pork, spiced lamb, chicken or rarely beef combined with salad and garlic sauce. It is generally served inside a small circular pitã bread, which is cut open upon which the meat and salad is placed inside. It can be bought from many places. Shoarma in the Netherlands is generally first spit roasted and after carving off s then grilled or fried, or a combination of both.
Shawarma in Palestine
In Palestine, shawarma is seen as one of the most popular street foods. It is available in nearly every restaurant and is eaten in various hours of the day. Particularly in Jerusalem, or Al-Quds in Arabic, in which various Arab cuisine such as falafel, hummus, and shawarma are extremely popular all year round. In Palestine, shawarma is made with lean lamb, beef, or boneless, skinless chicken, sliced very thinly. The meat is typically shaved off a large rotating cone of layered meat. The meat on the cone is roasted with radiant gas or electric heat. Pieces of meat are sliced off and served in a folded pita with garnishes and condiments. The meat placed in bread with minced garlic, salt, pepper, allspice, cardamom, nutmeg, yogurt and lemon juice. Shawarma is commonly served with tahini (taratour) sauce, yogurt sauce or garlic mayonnaise. Other garnishes include chopped tomatoes, sliced cucumbers, shredded lettuce, sliced red onion, pickles, mango pickle, hummus or even French fries.
Shawarma in Pakistan
In Pakistan, Shawarma has become a favourite snack of the locals, available as a road-side snack for many years, due to it being brought back by non-resident Pakistanis who worked in the Persian Gulf states. Locals usually prefer to eat Shawarma with fizzy drinks. It is available in all small and major cities like Karachi, Hyderabad, Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar, Multan and Quetta.
Shawarma in Paraguay
Shawarma is known in Paraguay as a popular fast-food and it’s called lomito árabe (Arabian steak), there are more than two chains fast-food restaurants that sells them as the main product with other typical middle-east food.
Shawarma in the Philippines
In the Philippines, shawarma is a popular food found at both street side and indoor shopping mall stalls, mostly in Metro Manila and other major cities, such as Cebu City and Bacolod City. Shawarma is often cooked using beef in a large pita bread, and served with vegetables such as onion and tomatoes. The shawarma wrap can usually be topped with locally made Cheddar cheese for a few Philippine pesos. Its popularity began during the 1980s, but has long passed being a fad. At present, “Shawarma Rice” is gaining popularity with younger diners. It consists of the same ingredients as regular shawarma, with the exception of the bread, which is replaced with fried or seasoned rice.
Shawarma in Romania
In Romania, shawarma (saorma or shaorma) is made with lamb, beef or chicken and served in a lavash or pita bread stuffed with french fries, pickles, fried or fresh onion, tomatoes, cabbage and sometimes gherkins. The most common dressings are a combination of spicy garlic sauces, spicy red sauces (containing hot peppers, tomatoes and aromatic herbs), mayonnaise and ketchup (or, possibly, other sweet red sauces containing tomatoes and/or vinegar and sugar). Shawarma shops also sell Döner Kebabs, falafels, lemonade, ayran and kefir.
Shawarma in Russia
In Western Russia, shawarma is called “shaurma”, while in St. Petersburg it is “shaverma”. It is eaten with a variety of julienned vegetables (usually tomatoes, cucumbers and onions), tomato sauce, and garlic sauce, and wrapped in lavash. Russian-style shawarma is similar to doner kebab made of chicken, beef or pork.
Shawarma in Senegal
In Senegal, shawarma is typical first date food among Senegalese youth.
Shawarma in South Africa
In South Africa, Anat and Mivami chains of shawarma restaurants are found all over the region. Here shawarma is made with beef, chicken, turkey, or often a combination in a soft pita. Most shawarmas come with hummus, tahina sauce, tzatziki (garlic sauce), chili flavoring, vegetables, barbecue and other sauces.
Shawarma in Spain
In Spain is a fast food offering particularly popular with lunchtime and late-night crowds.
Shawarma in Suriname
In Suriname,a local fast food chain called ‘Wolly’s’ has a signature dish called ‘patat shoarma’ which consists of french fries, shoarma chicken covered with Indonesian peanut sauce, ketchup and garlic sauce.
Shawarma in Switzerland
In Switzerland, similar to Germany, shawarma is surpassed in popularity by doner kebab. Döner stands are very common around areas with large Turkish immigrant populations in most major cities, such as Basel and Zurich.
Shawarma in Syria
In Syria it is a very popular, filling snack that is widespread in all of the country. Along with Falafel, Shawarma is the most popular street food. Damascus, which contains some of the oldest Shawarma eateries in the region is particularly renowned for its Shawarma and is widely considered the point from which this specialty spread to other parts of the Middle East and the world. The shawarma sandwich is often toasted and in some few cases then cut into small pieces which can then be served on a plate and dipped in garlic sauce. The addition of Pomegranate sauce to the sandwich is one of the distinguishing qualities of Syrian shawarma.
Shawarma in Taiwan
In Taiwan, shawarma is usually made from chicken and is served on a leavened, white flour bun with julienned cabbage, a slice of tomato, sliced onions, ketchup, and mayonnaise. It is often sold in night markets in Taiwan. Additionally, a chain called JS Donair Kebab has begun operating as a fast food chain in several department store food courts. This is a more traditional kebab served with lettuce, tomatoes and other vegetables. In addition, served on a dish with rice.”
Shawarma in Tunisia
In Tunisia, shawarma is a very popular imported dish. There are different fast foods which propose to serve the Tunisian maqloub which is a local version of the shawarma. In that one, the Tunisians add the different species and sauces. The only difference is in the spices and techniques used, which are jealously held secret by every chef. The meat (chicken, lamb, turkey or beef) is served inside the typical Tunisian bread (called “tabuna”) or inside the more middle-eastern pita-like bread, together with a wide variety of flavors and some vegetables: garlic sauce, chick-pea sauce, local meshuya (a salad made out of grilled capsicum, tomatoes and garlic), cheese, tomatoes, onions, lettuce and fried chips. Each customer chooses his own flavors when ordering his shawarma. The shawarma or maqloub must be garnished with the Tunisian pepper puree called harissa or mayonnaise.
Shawarma in Ukraine
In Ukraine shawarma became a popular street food in most large cities in just a few years since the beginning of the 21st century, while was almost completely unknown until then. In Ukraine this food is called “shaurma.”
Shawarma in UAE
In the United Arab Emirates, shawarma is quite popular. This is due to the relatively low price, the ease in which a shawarma is prepared, as well as its taste being appealing to many of the UAE’s residents. Most local cafeteria offer shawarma (mostly chicken) for a price range between AED 3 (apprx US$ 1) and AED 4 and can go up to AED8. Some restaurants offer a larger size shawarma which usually serves as a lunch meal along with some drink. Arabic bread is mostly used.
Shawarma in the UK
In the United Kingdom, shawarma consists of slices of skewered meat which are served in a pita with salad, pickles and tahina. The original shawarma take-aways first appeared in Piccadilly Circus in the early 1970s, catering mainly to tourists and Arab expatriates, but quickly spread to other parts of the U.K. However, the doner kebab is more widespread in the UK.
Shawarma in the USA
In the United States, shawarma is usually found in regions and localities that host a concentration of Arab or Jewish population.
Shawarma in Venezuela
In Venezuela, shawarma is commonly seen on the streets of major cities at food business stands. Shawarma carts have become as popular in Venezuela at food business stands as the common empanada. The same stands that sell shawarmas sell the vegetarian falafel as well.
Shawarma in West Africa
In West Africa, shawarma was introduced by Middle Eastern migrants (spelled chawarma in Francophone countries) and is a popular street food. In Nigeria, shawarma is usually served in Lebanese restaurants, and they are a popular delicacy among Arabs, Nigerians and Indians
Thank you to wikipedia