Chicken Pita Pockets with Lentils, Tahini Sauce

Chicken Pita Pockets with Lentils, Tahini Sauce are chock-full of Middle Eastern ingredients such as lentils, bulgur, and tahini sauce in addition to shredded chicken, shredded lettuce and chopped tomatoes. If you like spicy food, Tabasco sauce may be added to the lentils for some extra heat!

In a recent post, Chicken Feta Tostadas, I explained that I had “menu fatigue” concerning lunch. Chicken Pita Pockets with Lentils, Tahini Sauce is one of the new recipes that I’ve tried this summer to get out of the “sandwich” rut. I was pleased with the various flavors and ingredients that make up this dish as   “flavor fatigue” can result from eating the same types of meals all the time.

A Quick Look at a Few Ingredients

Just in case you’re not familiar with all the ingredients in Chicken Pita Pockets with Lentils, Tahini Sauce, let’s take a moment to look at a few of them.

Tahini


What is tahini? If you’ve ever eaten hummus before, then you’ve eaten tahini because it’s one of the ingredients in hummus! Tahini is a paste or sauce made from ground sesame seeds and is used in many ethnic cuisines such as Middle Eastern, Turkey, Greece, and North African. A small amount of oil is usually added to the ground sesame seeds to make it smooth and creamy.

Tahini may usually be found on the “international” aisle of many grocery stores or it may be found at natural food stores and Asian markets. When a jar or can of tahini is first opened, it will need to be stirred quite a bit since the oil will be on top.

Bulgur

Bulgur is a whole wheat grain that has been cracked and partially precooked. It is high in fiber and low in fat. Bulgur can be used to make pilaf instead of rice. It’s commonly found in tabouli salad. Two other Silver Foodie recipes that contain bulgur are Zucchini Pilaf Casserole and Bulgur Veggie Burgers with Lime Mayonnaise, both of which I’d highly recommend! I like the slightly nutty flavor of bulgur.

Lentils

Lentils are part of the legume family and have been part of the human diet for thousands of years. Lentils have a wide range of colors from yellow to red-orange to green, brown and black! Lentils are rich in fiber, protein, phosphorus, iron and zinc. Unlike dried beans, lentils do not require soaking in water prior to cooking. Lentils are grown and eaten around the world!

The Recipe for Chicken Pita Pockets with Lentils, Tahini Sauce

Chicken Pita Pockets with Lentils, Tahini Sauce
Serves 4
Pita pockets filled with chicken, lentils, bulgur, lettuce and tomatoes and served with tahini sauce.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup dried lentils
  2. 1/2 onion, cut in half
  3. 2 3/4 cups + 6 tablespoons water
  4. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  5. 2 1/2 teaspoons slat
  6. 1 bay leaf
  7. 1/2 cup coarse bulgur
  8. 1 1/2 teaspoons Tabasco Sauce (optional)
  9. 1/2 cup tahini
  10. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  11. 5 teaspoons lemon juice
  12. 1 cup plain yogurt
  13. 8 pitas
  14. 4 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
  15. 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  16. 1 head romaine lettuce, shredded
Instructions
  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine the lentils, onion, 2 3/4 cups water, oil, 1 teaspoon salt and the bay leaf. Bring to a boil; turn down heat to simmer, partially covered, for 15 minutes.
  3. Stir in the bulgur and continue cooking, partially covered, stirring occasionally, until the lentils and bulgur are just done, about 12 more minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat, stir in Tabasco Sauce if using, and let sit, partially covered, for 5 minutes. Remove the onion and bay leaf.
  5. In a medium bowl, whisk together the tahini, the remaining 6 tablespoons of water, the garlic, the lemon juice, the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and the yogurt.
  6. Wrap the pitas in aluminum foil and warm them in the oven, about 10 minutes.
  7. Cut the top third off each pita. Spoon 1/4 cup of the lentil mixture into each pita.
  8. Divide the chicken and tomatoes among the pitas and drizzle each with 1 tablespoon of tahini sauce. Top with lettuce. Serve with the remaining tahini sauce.
Notes
  1. Tabasco Sauce is optional depending on your personal preference for heat!
Adapted from Food & Wine
Adapted from Food & Wine
SILVER FOODIE http://www.silverfoodie.com/

  Closing Comments

Chicken Pita Pockets with Lentils, Tahini Sauce is definitely a dish that fits right into the Mediterranean Diet which is characterized by eating poultry at least twice a week and eating plant-based foods such as whole grains, legumes and vegetables. Chicken Pita Pockets with Lentils, Tahini Sauce is a heart-healthy meal!

I encourage you to try this dish soon! It’s great for lunch or any time! Get out of your lunchtime rut!

Remember to Savor the Flavor!

Janet

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Comments

Chicken Pita Pockets with Lentils, Tahini Sauce — 44 Comments

  1. Love this deliciously filled Pita Pocket – the yogurt topping makes it always extra special, doesn’t it? Pinning and stumbling!

  2. Hi Ilka, This recipe is unusual & my husband & I enjoyed it very much! Hope you like it too! Thanks for hosting Sunday’s Fitness Food Link-Up! Blessings, Janet

  3. I hate it when I get into a food rut!!! This pita looks delicious and chock full of good stuff! Thanks for sharing the recipe and information about the ingredients! #overthemoon

  4. Janet I saw your recipe on Mix It Up Monday and caught my eye! My husband is a huge fan of pita pockets this looks so light for summer!
    Thanks!
    Michelle

  5. Hi Michelle, Glad you found this recipe – I hope you both enjoy it! Thanks for your kind comments and for stopping by! Blessings, Janet

  6. Hi Cathy, Thanks for your kind comments and visit! I hope you have a chance to make this recipe soon! Thanks for hosting #overthemoon! Blessings, Janet

  7. I love Mediterranean food and this looks delicious! Pinning this to try soon. ?

  8. Hi Wendy, Thanks for your comments and for stopping by! I hope you enjoy the Chicken Pita Pockets! Blessings, Janet

  9. A delicious healthy lunch thank you for sharing the recipe with us at vVer the Moon.

  10. Yum! This recipe looks just delicious. I love Middle Eastern food and can’t wait to try these. Thank you for linking up at Family Joy Blog Link-Up Party this week!

  11. These are definitely a good way to liven up lunch time! I love Mediterranean flavors and love a pita pocket – such a fun departure from a usual sandwich, salad or wrap. Can’t wait to try this!

  12. Hi Kathryn, Thanks for your wonderful comments and for stopping by! I hope you enjoy the Chicken Pita Pockets! Blessings, Janet

  13. Hi Cristina, I love Middle Eastern food, too! I hope you enjoy this recipe! Thanks for hosting at Family Joy Blog Link-UP! Blessings, Janet

  14. Wow this looks delicious! Now that it’s summer I am definitely feeling the lunch rut. Thanks for the idea!

  15. This looks so good. I wish I could eat it. Lentils and tahini sauce are allergy triggers for me. Another great recipe.

  16. Hi Kelsey, Hope you enjoy the Chicken Pita Pockets! Thanks for your nice comments and your visit! Blessings, Janet

  17. I love the filling for your Pita Pocket,it looks awesome! Have a great weekend and thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

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  19. Mmmh! I love pita pockets full of yummy stuff and these sound like a great summer lunch or dinner! Fresh and light!I’m glad you shared it at Sweet Inspiration!! Happy Weekend!

  20. Hi Jenny, Thanks for your kind comments and visit! I hope you get to try this recipe soon! Blessings, Janet

  21. Hi Katrin, Thanks for your kind comments and visit! Thanks for hosting Sweet Inspiration! Happy Weekend to you, too! Blessings, Janet

  22. I’m liking these pita pockets, and what a great idea to use lentils! ?

  23. Hi CJ, Thanks for your comments and your visit! Hope you like the chicken pita pockets! Blessings, Janet

  24. thank you for sharing this fantastic recipe at the Thursday Favorite Things link party. I love pita pockets and your made me drool ( wink) Pinned xo

  25. Hi Katherine, Thanks for your visit, your comments and for pinning this recipe! Everything’s better on a pita! Blessings, Janet

  26. I understand you menu fatigue problems. Right there with you. I have six chicken breast I grilled over the weekend and might use them to make these pita’s. Thanks for sharing with us at Fiesta Friday. Happy FF!

  27. Hi Quinn, Thanks for your comments – I was just thinking about the menu fatigue – how as kids we ate the same things over and over each week! It seems like we have more choices now with the availability of buying so many different food items and the influence of the Asian, Mexican and other cultures on our US cuisine! I hope you try the Chicken Pita Pockets! Thanks for hosting FF and TT! Blessings, Janet

  28. I’ll have to try lentils the next time I make chicken souvlaki. Thanks for linking up with Funtastic Friday.

  29. Hi Victoria, Thanks for your comments and for stopping by! Thanks for hosting Funtastic Friday – a great line party! Blessings, Janet

  30. This looks and sounds absolutely amazing! I’m pinning for sure. Thanks so much for sharing on the Healthy Living Link Party! We hope to see you back tonight ?

  31. Thanks for pinning this recipe. Thanks for hosting the Healthy Living Link Party, too! I will see you at the next party! Blessings, Janet

  32. It was great seeing you at Peace, Love, Linkup #013! The next party goes live tomorrow at 6. Hope to see you there!

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  34. Janet your delicious Chicken has been featured over at Sweet Inspiration. Congratulations!

  35. Hi Mary, I’m honored to have the Chicken Pita Pockets recipe featured on Sweet Inspiration this week! Thanks so much and thanks for hosting! Blessings, Janet

  36. Hi Ashleigh, Thanks for your comments and visit! I’ll see you next time at Peace, Love Link Up! Blessings, Janet

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