Asian Chicken Lettuce Cups
Updated: May 8
I've always enjoyed ordering chicken lettuce wraps while dining out. They usually appear as an appetizer on the menu, but I find them a healthy alternative to some of the fried and carb-loaded entree options at some Asian restaurants. They are a tasty and satisfying alternative that is easy enough to make at home.
The healthy combination of ginger, garlic and cilantro marries several flavors for a tasty, gluten free meal. Serving the filling in a bowl with a side of Boston lettuce leaves is a fun lingering treat for the family. A light Pino Grigio, fruit bowl or sweet dessert is the perfect compliment for this flavorful yet light meal.
Tip: I keep a jar of minced ginger on hand to save time. You can also purchase minced garlic to keep on hand.
1 TBSP olive oil
1 lb organic free range ground chicken
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 TBSP grated ginger, minced
3 green onions, thinly sliced
1/2 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1/4" dice
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh Cilantro
1/4 cup slow-roasted cashews* coarsely chopped
2 TBSP lime juice
2 tsp fish sauce
8 Boston lettuce leaves
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until very hot. Add the chicken, ginger, garlic, and green onions and cook, breaking the chicken into smaller pieces with a wooden spoon, until it is starting to brown and cooked through, 7-8 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the remaining ingredients except lettuce. Divide filling between lettuce leaves and serve.
*To Slow-Roast Cashews: Place 1 cup cashews and 1/2 teaspoon sea salt in a medium bowl, add enough water to cover by three inches. Soak overnight at room temperature, then drain the nuts. Spread them on a rimmed baking sheet and bake at 140F for 8 hours. Let cool completely before making lettuce cups.
Note: my oven does not operate at 140F, so I baked at 175F for 6 hours.
This recipe is adapted from The Virgin Diet Cookbook.