Mar 2, 2016

Asian-Inspired Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
Butter lettuce is my favorite to use as the wrapper because the leaves are sweet and tender and have a nice crunch and texture.

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This is one of those recipes where I have to be careful not to eat the whole thing while I am taste testing because I have zero self-restraint. Lettuce wraps are a refreshing, healthy and fresh alternative to tortillas.

Butter lettuce is my favorite to use as the wrapper because the leaves are sweet and tender and have a nice crunch and texture. If you can’t find butter lettuce then iceberg lettuce can take its place. The water chestnuts give that perfect extra crunch; even if you eat them as leftovers they keep that crunch unlike a lot of reheated things.

Asian-Inspired Chicken Lettuce Wraps

chicken lettuce wraps spread

Key Ingredients in This Recipe

  • Chicken – While I use chicken breasts for this recipe, boneless, skinless chicken thighs can also be used. While some recipes use a food processor to grind the chicken I prefer to finely chop it for a more textured recipe.
  • Fish sauce – Fish sauce can be found in the international section of most grocery stores or at Asian markets. While it might have a potent smell, the sauce made of anchovies and salt is a flavorful addition to recipes.
  • Water chestnuts – Water chestnuts aren’t actually nuts, they are a vegetable grown underwater. They get their name because of the resemblance to chestnuts. I add them to these lettuce wraps for their crunchy texture.
  • Shiitake mushrooms – Shiitakes add an earthy, buttery flavor to these lettuce wraps.
chicken-lettuce-wraps-4.jpg

How to Make Asian-Inspired Chicken Lettuce Wraps

  1. Make the sauce. In a medium bowl combine soy sauce, fish sauce, brown sugar, rice wine vinegar, and sesame oil. Set aside.
  2. Sauté onions. Heat a wok or large sauté pan over medium-high heat, add the vegetable oil and heat through. Next, add the onion and garlic and sauté until the onions are soft and translucent, about 4 minutes.
  3. Add green onion, water chestnuts and mushrooms. Add the whites of the green onion, water chestnuts and mushrooms. Continue to sauté, stirring occasionally until tender, about 4 minutes.
  4. Cook the chicken. Add the chicken to the skillet and pour the sauce over the mixture. Stir to combine and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the chicken has cooked through and the sauce has thickened (it should be the consistency of syrup), about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the remaining green onion.
  5. Assemble and serve. To serve: scoop the hot chicken mixture into lettuce cups with jasmine rice. Garnish with Fresno peppers and micro cilantro (optional).
chicken-lettuce-wraps.jpg

Tips and Tricks for This Recipe

  • Use a food processor to quickly chop the ingredients.
  • Top with a drizzle of sriracha or sambal for some added spice.

Other Recipes to Try

If you enjoy this recipe, I recommend checking out some of these:

Asian-Inspired Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Print Pin
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • ¼ packed cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • ½ cup finely chopped yellow onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 green onion, thinly sliced, whites and greens separated
  • 1 (8-ounce) can of water chestnuts, drained and chopped
  • ½ cup finely chopped shiitake mushrooms
  • ¾ pound boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs, finely chopped into ¼” cubes
  • 1 large head butter lettuce separated into leaves, for serving
  • 2 cups cooked jasmine rice for serving
  • 1 Fresno chili (optional) thinly sliced, for garnish
  • Micro cilantro (optional) for garnish

Instructions:

  • In a medium bowl combine soy sauce, fish sauce, brown sugar, rice wine vinegar, and sesame oil. Set aside.
  • Heat a wok or large sauté pan over medium-high heat, add the vegetable oil and heat through. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until the onions are soft and translucent, about 4 minutes.
  • Add the whites of the green onion, water chestnuts and mushrooms. Continue to sauté, stirring occasionally until tender, about 4 minutes.
  • Add the chicken to the skillet and pour the sauce over the mixture. Stir to combine and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the chicken has cooked through and the sauce has thickened (it should be the consistency of syrup), about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the remaining green onion.
  • To serve: scoop the hot chicken mixture into lettuce cups with jasmine rice. Garnish with Fresno peppers and micro cilantro (optional).

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