These chicken lettuce wraps are loaded with seasoned chicken cooked in a blend of Asian flavors, then wrapped in fresh and crunchy lettuce. Each bite is loaded with flavor, making it the perfect appetizer or light entree!
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 doesn’t skimp on the flavor, we always turn to Asian chicken lettuce wraps.
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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! Here are some reasons why you’ll love this recipe.
- 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. 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.
- 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!
How to make chicken lettuce wraps
Ready to roll? Or, I guess, ready to wrap? Making these chicken lettuce wraps is as easy as it gets!
Here are the ingredients you’ll need for the chicken:
- Ground chicken. Either lean ground chicken breast or standard ground chicken can be used.
- Oil. Any neutral cooking oil will do.
- Water chestnuts. One can, diced.
- Bell pepper. Chopped.
- 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.
- Hoisin sauce. This can be swapped for gluten-free hoisin if needed.
- Soy sauce. For added savory flavor. I like to use low sodium soy sauce.
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. For added Asian flavor.
- Cornstarch. To thicken the sauce.
Step 1- Make the sauce
Grab a small bowl and whisk together the sauce ingredients until fully combined.
Step 2- 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.
While the chicken is cooking, separate the romaine leaves and wash them if needed. Discard any brown or wilting leaves.
Step 3- 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.
Step 4- 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.
- 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.
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 unique Asian twist.
- Make it more filling. Toss some white rice or rice noodles to the filling to give them more staying power.
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.
Recommended tools to make this recipe
- Non-stick skillet. My tried and tested skillet that doesn’t leave any marks and cooks everything beautifully.
- Spatula. Always the non-stick kind to prevent any scratching.
- Wooden spoon. Nothing breaks ground meat apart better than a wooden spoon.
Frequently asked questions
Pair these wraps with potstickers, fried tofu, or a serving of sautéed eggplant or asparagus stir fry. You can also serve the chicken mixture over some fried rice.
Any type of large leafy green will be good as a wrap, but I often find that romaine or bib lettuce works best.
Absolutely! Lettuce wraps are a great low-carb swap for when you’d otherwise use tortillas or bread. This makes them a fantastic addition to a healthy, low-fat diet.
It depends on the ingredients used. If using gluten-free soy sauce, then the recipe can be made gluten-free.
Yes, you can use pre-made stir-fry or teriyaki sauce for the chicken filling.
It depends on the size of the lettuce leaves, but generally, 3-4 large lettuce leaves per serving is a good amount.
You can use other greens like kale or collard greens as a wrapper.
More Asian recipes to try
Chicken Lettuce Wraps (Restaurant style!)
- 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
- 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
- 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
- 1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
- 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.
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This was absolutely delicious! The flavor was wonderful. I like all the ingredients, so I figured this had to be good, and it was. I wasn’t able to find romaine or bib lettuce, so I used regular lettuce, which got soggy pretty quickly. But I managed!
This is definitely being added to my list of favorite recipes. I’m pre-diabetic, so I’m trying to limit my carbs, so this recipe was very welcome!