We have a lot of recipes on this site. Some of them we know are obvious reader favorites, and others are sort of hidden gems. This recipe I felt was one of those hidden ones, which is why I didn’t even notice when somehow it didn’t make it over to our new site when we re-designed. But apparently a lot of you noticed! We got tons of facebook comments and emails from panicked readers asking where the recipe was because it was a family favorite. (I wish I had known that- it might have not gotten axed in the cook book cuts!) Thanks to some helpful facebook fans, I was able to track down the recipe so I could get it back on the site. It’s been a long time since I made these, and seriously I forgot how good they were. No joke- I couldn’t stop eating them!
So today’s post is short and sweet. I wanted to get this recipe back up and in our index. I did make some minor changes, mostly to make measuring and prepping easier (and not as time consuming), and also to improve the sauce. This recipe was originally created for a healthy food month so it’s incredibly lean and filled with good-for-you ingredients (unlike those famed restaurant lettuce wraps which are calorie-packed and fattening). These are lean chicken and vegetables which get tons of flavors from fresh ingredients like garlic, lemon, ginger, and onion.
The easiest way to eat lettuce wraps is to roll them up sort of like a burrito. You can dip the roll into the sauce, but since the chicken mixture is crumbly and the sauce is thin I find it easier to just drizzle some on top before rolling it up.
You could serve these as an appetizer, or pair them with some fried rice for a great dinner!
Asian Lettuce Wraps
Recipe by Our Best Bites
2 tsp canola oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 lb ground chicken*
3 ounces mushrooms, finely chopped (about 8 small mushrooms)
1/2 tsp kosher salt
4 C bagged coleslaw mix or thinly shredded cabbage
1 8oz can sliced water chestnuts, drained, rinsed, and finely minced
1/2 C thinly sliced green onions
4 Tbs soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 lemon, zested and juiced (about 3-4 Tbs juice)
1/2-1 tsp sriracha or other hot sauce (1 tsp of Sriracha is fairly spicy in my opinion, so if you want less or no kick, just give it a little, or you can leave it out completely)
1/3 C roughly chopped cilantro
1-2 heads iceberg lettuce
*To prepare your own ground chicken, cut boneless skinless chicken breasts into large chunks and pulse in a food processor until ground.
4 Tbs soy sauce
4 Tbs rice vinegar
3 Tbs water
2 tsp honey
1-2 tsp finely minced fresh ginger
Heat a very large skillet to medium-high heat on the stove top. When hot, add vegetable oil and then garlic and ginger. Saute for about 30 seconds, until fragrant, and then add ground chicken, chopped mushrooms, and kosher salt. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring often, until chicken is cooked through. (*At this point, sometimes I have some extra liquid in the pan from the chicken. If it’s quite a bit, I tilt the pan and spoon it out so the chicken can cook and not boil.) Add cabbage/coleslaw, water chestnuts, and green onions. Cook for about 2 minutes, until cabbage starts to wilt. Add soy sauce, sesame oil, the zest from the lemon and the lemon juice, and hot sauce to taste. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro.
To prepare dipping sauce, combine all ingredients and whisk to combine.
To serve, carefully remove the individual leaves from the head of lettuce. (The closer you get to the center, the easier it becomes!) Place chicken mixture in the leaves and serve with sauce.
Yield: about 5 C chicken mixture. Makes 14-16 lettuce wraps.
And hey- if you already love this recipe, or another recipe that you’ve never commented on, make sure to leave a comment today! That’s one of our best indicators of the kinds of things you all like (and therefore the kinds of recipes we create for you). Plus it just makes us super happy to hear from you guys 🙂 Thanks to everyone who asked about these lettuce wraps- it’s going to be appearing a lot in my own menu this month!