What to do with leftover Grilled Butterflied Leg of Lamb? Our family favorite is to make leftover lamb gyros! They come together in a flash and are full of bright, fresh flavors. Two things I love in a dinner.
Gyros have been one of my favorite meals since I was teenager. I used to go down to the Greek pizza place and buy them regularly, and I still can’t resist picking one up when I get the chance.
However, even better than preformed meat slices and premade tzatziki sauce, is this fresh and homemade version of the gyro! No having to order and go pick up your food! No waiting. And you get to enjoy your leftovers in a new way.
You do need some leftover roast lamb on hand (though roast beef or pork are also quite wonderful), but then the rest is simple. And tasty.
And the tzatziki sauce?
I make that all the time! We have that as a sauce or a dip on a regular basis. It’s wonderful with grilled meats, paired with falafel, or as part of meze platter when I’m having people over or just feel in the mood for appetizers for dinner. (I know I’m not the only who does that.)
If I’m having tzatziki for an appetizer, I simply cook up the pitas a little longer until they get all brown and spotty and just a bit crispy. Then slice them up and sprinkle them with kosher salt and dried oregano. Yum!
How to Make Leftover Lamb Gyros
To make lamb gyros, saute leftover lamb and warm up some pitas, then layer the lamb with lettuce, cucumbers, onion, and tomatoes. Top with tzatziki sauce.
- Make tzatziki sauce.
- Prep the veggies.
- Slice lamb very thin.
- Saute the lamb and warm the pitas.
- Assemble the gyros.
Since the tzatziki sauce is even better if it has some time to rest, I make that first. Sometimes even the day before or that morning when I have a minute. If you don’t have a minute, don’t worry though! It is yummy right after mixing too.
Then I put two saute pans on the stove and get the pitas going until they are just soft and warm while I’m also warming up the lamb. Neither of these take too long.
As I like to multitask and chop veggies while I am sauteing, I do that now and prep the sliced cukes, tomatoes, onions, and lettuce. This gives me something to do while the saute pans do their thing and gets dinner on the table faster.
Once I have everything all ready, I set it out for everyone to pick and choose what they want. And then it’s time to eat the gyros! My favorite bit. 🙂 They are oh so good, and we will be eating these again right after Easter.
Looking for some more leftover inspiration?
I have a few ideas! After you make the gyros, if you have some more leftover lamb (whether you made a grilled leg or my slow cooked leg of lamb), you can make leftover lamb moussaka! Minced up lamb, eggplant, and a creamy bechamel sauce. Total comfort food.
All great ways to have your roast and eat it too.
If you try my recipe for Leftover Lamb Gyros, I would love to hear from you in the comments with your experience and rating! And I’m happy to answer any questions you might have.
– Happy Eating, Annemarie
- 2 cups plain greek yogurt preferably 2%
- 1/2 cup shredded cucumber squeezed dry, peeled and seeded if necessary
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 clove garlic finely minced
- chopped fresh parsley optional
- 8 oz thinly sliced roast lamb
- 4 pitas
- olive oil
- 1/2 med red onion thinly sliced
- 1 medium tomato cut into thick slices
- 8 leaves lettuce
- Optional additional toppings: feta; chopped herbs such as oregano, mint, or parsley; black olives; hummus
- For the tzatziki sauce, add all ingredients to a medium bowl. Stir to combine. Taste and adjust the seasonings if necessary. Set aside while you make the gyros. The sauce can be made the day before and is best if it sits for a few hours, though it can be eaten immediately.
- For the gyros: Pull out two skillets, one large for the lamb and one medium to warm the pitas. Add the lamb to the large skillet and saute the lamb over medium heat until warmed through, 5 minutes.
- While the lamb is warming, heat the medium skillet over medium heat. Add a little olive oil to the skillet (enough to coat the bottom). Add the pita to the skillet and warm it for 30 seconds, then turn it over and warm it for another 30 seconds. Repeat for the other three pitas, adding more olive oil as needed.
- Set out the tzatziki sauce, onion, lettuce, tomato, lamb, warmed pitas, and any optional additional toppings so everyone can assemble their own gryo.
I usually buy baby cucumbers which have thin skins and small seeds. This means I can shred them whole without needing to peel or seed them. To squeeze the cucumber dry, wrap the shredded cucumber in a cloth or paper towel and squeeze it over the sink or a bowl.
If you find the flavor of raw garlic too harsh, blanch the garlic by cooking it in boiling water for 30 seconds and then transferring it to a cold cup of water. Then mince the garlic as directed.
To keep things moving quickly, do all the chopping and slicing directed in the ingredients list while the lamb and pita are warming.