Chicken Lettuce Wraps

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5 from 69 votes
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These chicken lettuce wraps are loaded with seasoned chicken cooked in a blend of Asian flavors and then wrapped in fresh, crunchy lettuce. It makes the perfect appetizer or light entree.

chicken lettuce wraps.

We love our homemade Asian recipes around here.

On regular rotation are chicken chow mein and Szechuan chicken. However, when we want to keep things lighter that don’t skimp on the flavor, we always turn to Asian chicken lettuce wraps

Table of Contents
  1. Why this recipe works
  2. Ingredients needed
  3. How to make chicken lettuce wraps
  4. Tips to make the best recipe
  5. Recipe variations
  6. Storage instructions
  7. More Asian recipes to try
  8. Frequently asked questions
  9. Chicken Lettuce Wraps (Recipe Card)

Why this recipe works

The popular appetizer from PF Changs inspired this recipe for Asian lettuce wraps. Like black pepper steak and sesame chicken, many of my favorite takeout dishes transform into homemade recipes! 

  • It’s healthy. Protein-rich chicken and lettuce make for a great healthy, low-carb dish loaded with vitamins and minerals.
  • It’s a breeze to make. Just cook the chicken in your sauce, sauté the veggies, then scoop everything into your lettuce cups. It all comes together in 10 minutes.
  • It’s fun to make. Like summer rolls, kids and adults alike will get a kick out of scooping their own lettuce wraps.
  • They make for great meal prep. Believe it or not, so long as you keep the filling separate from the lettuce, this makes for a great lunch the next day (similar to our honey walnut shrimp).
  • It’s easy to customize. If you want to keep the veggies and the chicken separate, everyone can pick and choose what goes in their wraps. You could swap the chicken for tofu and have an entirely vegan recipe. It’s that easy!
Asian chicken lettuce wraps.

Ingredients needed

These lettuce wraps are so easy, and besides the chicken and some seasonings, there isn’t much else needed to make. Here is what you’ll need:

  • Ground chicken. Either lean ground chicken breast or standard ground chicken can be used. I prefer using the leaner varieties, making this dish a little more wholesome.
  • Oil. Any neutral cooking oil will do.
  • Water chestnuts. One can, diced. You can find this at any mainstream grocery store where the other canned veggies are.
  • Bell pepper. Chopped. Adds some color and some crunch.
  • Garlic and ginger. Preferably fresh, peeled, and minced. 
  • Onion. Finely chopped.
  • Salt and pepper. Added to taste.
  • Lettuce leaves. Look for a fresh head of romaine or butter lettuce with no bruising. If you notice any browned or wilting leaves, discard them. 

Sauce:

  • Hoisin sauce. I often refer to this as an Asian BBQ sauce. A little goes a very long way and tastes incredible.
  • Soy sauce. For added savory flavor. I like using low-sodium soy sauce but use whichever you have.

Dietary swap

To keep this recipe gluten-free, use coconut aminos or tamari. 

  • Rice vinegar. For acidity and subtle sweetness. It’s sometimes referred to as rice wine vinegar. 
  • Sesame oil. My secret ingredient for any Asian recipe. It completely transforms the flavor! Be careful, though- a little goes a very long way so don’t use this oil for cooking the chicken mix.
  • Cornstarch. To thicken the sauce.

How to make chicken lettuce wraps

Make the sauce: Grab a small bowl and whisk together the sauce ingredients until fully combined. 

lettuce wraps sauce.

Cook the chicken: Heat the oil in a large skillet and place it over medium heat. Once the skillet is hot, add the chicken and break it apart. Cook the chicken for 2-3 minutes until it’s fully cooked and no longer pink.

how to make chicken lettuce wraps.

Stir fry the vegetables: Push the cooked chicken to one side of the pan and add the chestnuts, bell pepper, garlic, and onion. Stir fry the veggies for several minutes until the onions become slightly translucent. 

chicken lettuce wrap filling.

Assemble the wraps: Once the veggies are done cooking, add the sauce and let everything simmer together for 1-2 minutes. Mix the chicken with a spatula to coat it evenly in the sauce. Place the filling in the lettuce cups and serve immediately. 

Tips to make the best recipe

  • Don’t fill the lettuce wraps until right before you’re ready to eat. Otherwise, the filling will make the lettuce soggy. 
  • Serve with extra sauce for dipping the wraps into.
  • Make it spicy by adding red chili oil or red pepper flakes to the sauce for an added spicy flavor. You can also drizzle some sriracha on top. 
  • Avoiding using iceberg lettuce or bibb lettuce, as they are a little too fragile and have a higher water content. 

Recipe variations

You can easily customize these wraps to suit your dietary preferences or save yourself a trip to the store! Here are some suggestions:

Add toppings: Top the finished lettuce wraps with toasted sesame seeds, crushed peanuts, or fresh cilantro.

Swap the protein: Swap the chicken for ground turkey, ground beef, pork, or crumbled tofu, depending on what you have on hand. 

Add veggies: Thinly sliced carrots, cabbage, or bean sprouts make fabulous additions to this recipe. 

Swap the sauce: Homemade katsu, bulgogi, or tempura sauce gives it a different Asian twist.

Make it more filling: Toss some white rice or rice noodles into the filling to give them more staying power. 

Storage instructions

To store: Keep the filling and the lettuce separate and store both in airtight containers in the refrigerator. The filling should keep for 3-4 days, and the lettuce should keep for 2-3 days. 

To freeze: You can freeze the chicken filling if desired. Just allow it to cool completely before transferring it to an airtight container or freezer-safe bag. Freeze the chicken for up to 3 months. 

To reheat: Heat a skillet or wok to medium heat and add oil. When the pan is hot, add the filling and cook until fully reheated. 

chicken lettuce wrap.

More Asian recipes to try

Frequently asked questions

What goes well with chicken lettuce wraps?

Pair these wraps with potstickersfried tofu, or a serving of your favorite stir fry. You can also serve the chicken mixture over some fried rice. 

What kind of lettuce is best for a wrap?

Any type of large leafy green will be good as a wrap, but I often find that romaine or bib lettuce works best. 

Can I use pre-made sauce for the chicken filling?

You can use pre-made stir-fry or teriyaki sauce for the chicken filling.

How many lettuce leaves do I need for one serving?

It depends on the size of the lettuce leaves, but generally, 3-4 large lettuce leaves per serving is a good amount.

Can I use other types of greens in place of lettuce leaves?

You can use other greens like kale or collard greens as a wrapper.

chicken lettuce wraps recipe.

Chicken Lettuce Wraps

5 from 69 votes
Learn how to make healthy and delicious restaurant-style chicken lettuce wraps, inspired by PF Chang's. It's easy, fast, and low in carbs!
Servings: 8 servings
Prep: 1 minute
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 11 minutes

Ingredients  

  • 1 lb ground chicken
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 8 ounces water chesnuts diced
  • 1 small bell pepper diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 inch ginger chopped
  • 1 small onion finely diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 head romaine 8 large leaves

Lettuce wrap sauce

Instructions 

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the sauce until combined.
  • Heat the oil in a non-stick skillet and place over medium heat. Once hot, add the chicken, break it apart, and stir fry for 2-3 minutes until no longer pink.
  • Push the chicken to one side of the pan, add the chestnuts, bell pepper, garlic and onion and stir fry for several minutes.
  • Add the sauce and cook everything together for 1-2 minutes, until everything is evenly coated.
  • Place the filling in the lettuce cups and serve immediately. 

Notes

TO STORE: Keep the filling and the lettuce separate and store both in airtight containers in the refrigerator. The filling should keep for 3-4 days, and the lettuce should keep for 2-3 days. 
TO FREEZE: You can freeze the chicken filling if desired. Just allow it to cool completely before transferring it to an airtight container or freezer-safe bag. Freeze the chicken for up to 3 months. 
TO REHEAT: Heat a skillet or wok to medium heat and add oil. When the pan is hot, add the filling and cook until fully reheated. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1lettuce wrapCalories: 170kcalCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 12gFat: 8gSodium: 518mgPotassium: 598mgFiber: 3gVitamin A: 7106IUVitamin C: 17mgCalcium: 40mgIron: 2mgNET CARBS: 11g
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Chinese
Author: Arman Liew
Tried this recipe?Give us a shout at @thebigmansworld or tag #thebigmansworld!

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Arman Liew

I’m a two time cookbook author, photographer, and writer, and passionate about creating easy and healthier recipes. I believe you don’t need to be experienced in the kitchen to make good food using simple ingredients that most importantly, taste delicious.

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Comments

  1. I am an 88 yr old widow lady who started cooking at age 9. I normally don’t try out recipes put out by men, but decided to see how this matched up to the “larb” my sons ate in Thailand. So okay, I’ll admit some guys can cook. I have a daughter almost 70 and she can still burn a pot of water. I’ll be trying out a few more of your recipes.

  2. 5 stars
    Soooooooooooo delcious! The sauce is amazing and the crunch from the water chestnuts really elevates the dish, Will be on a regular rotation from now on!!!!

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