Vegan Souvlaki (Tofu Skewers)
This vegan souvlaki recipe uses juicy marinated tofu pieces on a skewer with creamy tzatziki finished with fresh tomato, red onion, and herbs on easy flatbread.
All this can be made from scratch and impress your family and friends. There’s so much flavour nestled in a bread parcel. Even the pickiest of eaters will love it.
This veggie souvlaki recipe makes the best barbeque addition or a delicious weeknight dinner option. My version is so satisfying using everyday ingredients; you’ll be adding it to your meal rotation in no time!
All the components can be made ahead of time and finished off just before serving. In fact, the flavours will just intensify and improve if left to marinade and develop over 1-2 days.
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What kind of food is souvlaki?
A typical Greek fast food option, souvlaki is normally made using pork, chicken, or sometimes lamb or beef and even veggies marinated and grilled on a skewer.
Souvlaki is typically served hot straight off the skewer in pita bread or flatbread with tzatziki and different fresh veggies and herbs, and you can understand why it’s so popular! This much-loved traditional dish is a better alternative to so many other fast food options available.
I love Greek food, and anything inside pita bread has my attention. I was contemplating what to replace the meat with. I thought maybe eggplant or mushrooms, but that doesn’t really add any protein to the meal and doesn’t quite feel satisfying enough.
Tofu is a very versatile plant-based protein that soaks up flavour and grills well. It’s also available everywhere these days. So tofu it is!
I’ve got a few tips and tricks up my sleeve to transform that sometimes dull soy product into a delicious and juicy meat alternative.
This souvlaki marinade can be applied to other ingredients, so if you’re soy-free, you can try it with other things. Alternatively, you can swap them out altogether for my falafels for more of a Middle Eastern take.
What is souvlaki marinade made of?
This will vary from recipe to recipe, but I’ve used a blend of traditional ingredients with some vegan flavour enhancers to get the most out of tofu. You’ll need the following:
- Dried oregano
- Garlic powder
- Cumin powder
- Smoked paprika
- Lemon juice
- Olive oil
- Tomato paste
Tips for making vegan souvlaki
- The tofu skewers are best done on the barbecue, but if you don’t have one you can grill them on a stove grill, skillet, or in the oven (on the grill setting). I haven’t tried these methods, so please let me know in the comments how it went if you do try any of them. The key is to get some char on it so that the texture on the outside is transformed.
- You can use bamboo or metal skewers. If you’re using bamboo (wooden) ones, make sure you soak them beforehand. I normally find that running them under the tap for a minute is enough. But please check the packet instructions.
- If you want to get fancy for plating and add another flavour dimension, you can create skewers out of rosemary branches. Just strip most of it (leaving some rosemary at the top) and cut the bottom of the branch at an angle to create a sharp enough skewer for the tofu to slide on easier. Give it a run under the tap before use. It’s the perfect way to use rosemary bushes if you have them in your garden.
- The tofu should be marinated at least overnight. I find that the longer I leave it, the better the outcome.
- The tofu and tzatziki should be prepared the day before. So when you’re ready to go, you just need to grill the skewers, chop up the veggies and warm up the pita bread (if using store-bought). Or if you’re gluten-free, some rice.
- You can mix up the veggies that you add. Other options are lettuce, cucumber, fresh dill, red peppers (chargrilled are even better), or olives.
- Place the flatbread (unless made freshly) over the skewers about a minute before you remove them so that the bread soaks up some of the flavours and softens.
What else can you serve with tofu souvlaki?
Since souvlaki is simply the marinated tofu on a skewer, you can serve it in so many other ways! Here’s some inspiration to get your creative juices following:
- On a bed of fragrant rice (as pictured) or couscous
- Caprese salad
- Using it as a dipping device for tzatziki, hummus,
- Served as an appetiser
- In place of the shredded tofu in this Turkish-inspired wrap
- With a potato salad
- In place of falafels in this rainbow salad with a tahini dressing
How to make quick homemade vegan yoghurt flatbread
Making homemade flatbread is actually easier than you might think. It’s ready in under 15 minutes and takes only four ingredients to put together.
Here’s how it’s done. In a bowl, add the Greek-style yoghurt and olive oil and mix. I like using the Coyo Greek-style coconut yoghurt as I use it for the tzatziki as well.
Follow with the flour, baking powder, and salt and mix until you start to form a dough. At this point, I get my hands in there and combine into a rough ball.
Bring it over to a lightly floured surface and knead it for a couple of minutes until the dough is a cohesive ball and springs back a little when you poke it. If it’s too wet and sticky, add more flour gradually until it comes together.
The amount of flour will vary slightly depending on the yoghurt you use. Please make sure that it’s a Greek-style yoghurt because it’s thicker and has less liquid in it.
If you don’t have access to Greek-style yoghurt, place the yoghurt in a muslin cloth that’s sitting in a sieve over a bowl. Leave it overnight to drain. This is the same method as the vegan tzatziki which makes it thick and creamy.
Cut the dough into four equal portions and roll them into balls. Sprinkle some flour on your working bench again. Roll out each ball with a rolling pin into a round or oval shape into a relatively thin flatbread.
Heat a skillet or frypan on medium-high heat and brush one side with water to create a non-stick surface (just like in my naan recipe) and place that side facing down on the skillet. Cover it with a lid to trap the heat and cook for 1-2 minutes until the bread has created bubbles and is cooked on one side. Flip with a spatula and cook for another 30 seconds to a minute on the other side.
Like crepes and pancakes, the first one may not turn out that great.
Place it in a tea towel-lined plate and wrap it up to keep it warm while you make the others. Repeat the process for the rest of the flatbreads.
If you want to save on time or don’t have the ingredients, you can always use store-bought flatbread and vegan tzatziki. I would, however, highly recommend you make your own if you can, as it will take this dish to another level. The effort is worth it!
These vegan souvlakis are such a great alternative to a sandwich or a burger. Using wholesome ingredients, I hope you love this recipe as much as I do.
Other wonderful recipes you’ll love:
- Vegan Gado Gado (Indonesian Salad with Peanut Sauce)
- Vegan Pesto Pasta Salad with Sun-Dried Tomatoes
- Panzanella Salad (Italian Tomato & Bread Salad)
- Vegan Falafel Wrap
- Vegan Moussaka
- Vegan Falafel Bowl
If you try these recipes, let me know! We’d love for you to leave a comment and rating below. If you want to go that extra mile, tag us on Instagram or share your photo of the recipe/s on Pinterest.Print
Vegan Souvlaki (Tofu Skewers)
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 35 minutes*
- Yield: 4
This vegan souvlaki recipe is packed with flavour and is the perfect Greek dish to take along to a barbecue or gathering when you want to impress your family and friends. Juicy pieces of marinated tofu on a skewer with creamy tzatziki finished with fresh tomato, onion, and herbs on homemade flatbread or rice.
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon cumin powder
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ⅓ cup lemon juice
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 3 tablespoons tamari (or soy sauce)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- 400g / 14.10 ounces extra firm tofu*
- Use this recipe or store-bought
Flatbread: (or use store-bought)
- 1 cup / 235g Greek-style vegan yoghurt* (I love Coyo)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons / 280g all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 tomato, sliced into thin wedges
- ½ a small red onion, thinly sliced into half moons
- Mint leaves, thinly sliced
- Vegan feta, crumbled (optional)
- For the marinade: Add all the ingredients to a large container and give it a really good mix. Slice up the tofu into rectangular pieces making sure that they are all the same size and shape. This will help them to grill evenly. Depending on the size of your tofu block, your shape might be slightly different. It just needs to be thick enough for the skewer to pierce through without it splitting in half.
- Add the tofu to the marinade laying the pieces down side by side, so you can cover as much of the tofu as possible. Tilt the container from side to side to cover the pieces with more of the marinade and place it in the refrigerator overnight or up to 3 days.
- If you’re making your own tzatziki, make it the day before as well. It will give the flavours to develop overnight.
- Once you’re ready to grill the tofu, run your skewers underwater* and start putting the tofu pieces onto the skewer by piercing each piece in the middle. Leave a couple of inches at both the top and bottom. If you’ve cut them evenly, they should line up relatively well and create a flat surface for the grill to touch the tofu evenly.
- Grill the tofu pieces on a hot flame until they’ve charred well on both sides. For best results, use a barbeque. Rotate them every couple of minutes and reapply some of the marinate by brushing it on to give it a flavour boost. You want as much char on the outside as possible. This is key for flavour and texture. Once they’re done, set them aside in the oven on a low heat setting to keep them warm while you make the flatbread. If you’re using store-bought flatbread, you’re ready to start assembling.*
- For the flatbread: In a bowl, add the yoghurt and olive oil and mix. Follow in with the flour, baking powder and salt and mix until you start to form a dough. Mix well until it comes together, I like to use my hands for this part.
- Bring the dough over to a lightly floured surface and knead it for a couple of minutes until the dough is a cohesive ball and springs back a little when you poke it. If it’s too wet and sticky, add more flour gradually until it comes together. The amount of flour will vary slightly depending on the yoghurt you use. Please make sure that it’s a Greek-style yoghurt because it’s thicker and has less liquid in it.
- Cut the dough into four equal portions and sprinkle some flour on your working bench again. Roll out the dough with a rolling pin into an oval shape to a relatively thin flatbread (see images earlier in the post for reference).
- Heat your skillet or frypan on medium-high heat and brush one side with water to create a non-stick surface and place that side facing down on the skillet. Cover with a lid to trap the heat and cook for 1-2 minutes until the bread has created bubbles and is cooked on one side. Flip with a spatula and cook for another 30 seconds to a minute on the other side. The first one may not be that great, just like when you make crepes or pancakes.
- Place it in a tea towel-lined plate and wrap it up to keep it warm while you make the others. Repeat the process for the rest of the flatbreads.
- Once done, it’s time to plate up. Top the flatbread with a tofu souvlaki skewer, followed by a generous amount of tzatiki, tomato wedges, onion and herbs. If you’re prefer to keep this gluten-free, you can serve it with rice instead. If you have any of the marinade left over, you can pour some over the top for added flavour. I would highly recommend it!
- Any leftover tofu skewers, you can keep in the fridge for up to 3 days and warm up again before eating.
Tofu: How firm the tofu is will vary from brand to brand. You want firm tofu that will keep together well. The one I use is firm tofu, but I’ve tried others that state are firm but would be too soft if I put a skewer through it and wanted to grill it.
Skewers: I use bamboo ones that just need to be run under water before use. With metal ones, they’re ready to go. If you want to get fancy, you can use rosemary branches (see instructions earlier in the post for this option).
Greek-style yoghurt: If you don’t have access to Greek-style yoghurt, place the yoghurt in a muslin cloth that’s sitting in a sieve over a bowl. Leave it overnight to drain. This is the same method as the vegan tzatziki, which makes it thick and creamy.
Store-bought flatbread: Place the flatbread over the skewers about a minute before you remove them from the grill so that the bread soaks up some of the flavours and softens.
Total time: This does not include marinating time as it will vary for every person. It can be up to 3 days. The total time is for making the souvlaki only. If you’re making the flatbread, it will take an additional 15 minutes. See linked recipe for the tzatziki.
See more tips and tricks earlier in the post.
- Diet: Vegan
Maša, This looks do delicious! I have been in the kitchen for the past several hours cooking for the first part of the week (lentils, potatoes, tofu-cashew ricotta) and there mini plum pies with whole wheat crust, spiced oat topping with cinnamon sugared almonds. When this food is gone, I want to try this recipe! Thanks for posting and sharing variations along the way. ❤
Oh, you’re so organised. I wish I was like that! 😂 It all sounds delicious, now I’m hungry. I hope you love these, and they’re great for meal prep. I find the longer they marinate in the fridge, the better. Have a wonderful week! x