Doners and Gyros are top choices when it comes to enjoying Mediterranean food. Both of them are incredibly delicious and different from your everyday sandwiches. Doners and Gyros come from different cuisines. Yet they look somehow similar.
This apparent similarity does not mean you will have the same experience. Each dish comes with a unique taste and filling.
If you want to know more about the distinctions between Doners and gyros, keep reading this post. We are making an extensive doner vs. gyro comparison. So stay tuned to easily and quickly tell these two dishes apart.
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What is a Doner?
Doner, or more accurately, döner kebab, belongs to Turkish cuisine. It primarily consists of minced lamb meat that is wrapped in a type of leavened Turkish flatbread. This bread is similar to the Greek pita loaf.
The thing that makes this sandwich different is the unique cooking method. Spit-roasting is used for cooking doner kebab. This means placing the meat on a rotisserie.
The history of this Turkish dish dates back to the 19th century. Then, Turkish immigrants brought this type of street food to Germany and the rest of Europe.
The main ingredient in making Doner is lamb, which is not the only meat used anymore. Doner is a type of cooked poultry or veal that is cooked. Still, pork is not included in the doner recipe.
In addition to the meat, this sandwich has delectable toppings and dressings that add flavor and juiciness. The standard topping is salad components such as chopped onions and lettuce. Also, a cold white sauce consisting of garlic and mayo mix is often added to doner sandwiches.
What is a Gyro?
Gyros are one of the most famous Greek dishes. Gyros is a Greek word that can be translated as “round.” It is cooked like Turkish Doner, as the meat is placed vertically on a rotisserie.
The meat on the rotisserie keeps spinning all the time. Then it gets stuffed into pita loaves. Before being placed on the rotisserie, the meat gets chopped into medium-sized slices.
The primary type of meat used in making gyros is pork, but it can also consist of turkey or chicken. Aside from the meat, a gyro loaf contains potato chips, onions, tomatoes, and a unique creamy Greek sauce known as tzatziki. This sauce is made by mixing Greek yogurt with salt, cucumber, garlic, olive oil, and some lemon juice.
One of the secrets behind the deliciousness of gyros is the different seasonings. Aside from the classic salt and pepper, gyro makers use oregano, marjoram, and rosemary.
What are the Differences between a Doner and a Gyro?
At first glance, a Doner and a Gyro look identical. They both consist of meat slices, chopped veggies, and sauces. Also, Doners and Gyros are cooked the same way and wrapped in the same pita bread.
Still, the difference lies in the sandwich details like meat type, spices, and sauces.
Here is an overview of the significant distinctions between Doner and Gyro.
Despite coming from the Mediterranean region, Doner and Gyro come from different countries. Doner kebabs originated in Turkey. It appeared during the 19th century. Gyros, on the other hand, came from Greece.
Gyros are undeniably more popular and widely available in the United States than Doner. Doner kebab, on the other hand, is an extremely popular street food in Europe, especially in Germany.
The doner kebab recipe appeared during the rule of the Ottoman Empire. Cooking lamb on a rotisserie became more popular during the late 1800s. But after World War II, this cooking method found its way to Greece. Then, the Greeks adopted this cooking method with their pork and special seasonings.
4. Meat type
The type of meat is a defining point in this comparison. Lamb is the primary type of meat used in making Doner. Other meats, such as beef, veal, or poultry, are less common. Gyros, on the other hand, are primarily made of pork.
5. Meat texture
You might be unable to identify this difference while enjoying your delicious Gyro or Doner. However, the meat texture is different in both dishes. Doner is made from minced lamb meat, which gives it a finer texture. Gyros are made of whole meat sliced up while on the rotisserie.
6. Serving sauce
The meat in both Doner and Gyro has a juicy nature, but they must contain an extra sauce. Both wraps have a sauce that is similar but not identical. For instance, gyros go with the authentic tzatziki sauce. It is primarily made of salted Greek salad with small cucumber pieces and lemon juice.
On the other hand, Doner goes well with a cold sauce made of mayo and garlic.
Generally, the meat of both Doner and Gyro is seasoned with salt and black pepper. However, the other spices come from the local cuisines. For instance, the meat in Doner is seasoned with coriander, paprika, and cumin.
Gyro meat is seasoned with rosemary and thyme. The difference in spices adds an evident impact on the meat flavor.
8. Serving options
When it comes to serving, Doner offers more variety. The sauces are added to the meat then it gets wrapped in flatbread. Aside from this standard serving, you can get meat, sauce, and rice.
This allows you to enjoy them differently if you are bored with the sandwich. Gyro, on the other hand, is only served as a sandwich. You can never come across any different version of Gyro.
Doner vs. Gyro: are they the same?
Doner and a Gyro are not the same dishes. They have many similarities that give the wrong impression. However, they differ in flavor, with the Doner being slightly spicy due to the extensive use of garlic.
Also, you can enjoy lamb doner and pork gyros depending on your taste preferences. The difference in spices and sauces enriches your food experience every time you go for either sandwich.
Furthermore, you can enjoy Doner in other ways than as a sandwich. You can have it with rice, which is not an option with gyros. No need to mention that you can find gyros more often in the U.S., while in Europe, it is more common to find Doner.
All these differences will add to your food experience and give you something to look forward to. So, whether it is Doner or Gyro, you will always get something mouth-watering when you go for Mediterranean street food.