Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Chicken lettuce wraps are a wonderful appetizer for any gathering. They are made in less than 30 minutes and are packed with flavor. Make these to impress your friends. These wraps are inspired by PF Chang’s chicken lettuce wraps. 

This is one of my favorite appetizers that can easily be turned into a meal. It is light and easy to make and best of all you are done is less than 30 minutes. These are perfect for game day since you can double or triple the recipe easily for larger groups. While I was grocery shopping I saw the sauce for chicken lettuce wraps and decided I wanted to make my own that tasted amazing especially with a little bit of heat. 

In this recipe

There are only a few parts to this recipe, the chicken, bell pepper, green onion, water chestnuts and of course the sauce. It comes together in minutes which is perfect when you don’t want to spend a lot of time cooking. 

Ground chicken: this is the basis for the dish. You want it ground as opposed to diced. Ground turkey will work in the recipe as well. 

Water chestnuts: these will add a nice crisp to the dish and provide a nice texture. They pick up flavors very well. 

Lettuce: you want to use a nice tender lettuce like butter lettuce. This will allow you to shape the lettuce around the chicken mixture without it splitting too much. 

Bell pepper: red, orange or yellow are best as they tend to sweeter than green peppers. 

Ingredients for chicken lettuce wraps on a wooden cutting board
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What is hoisin sauce?

While hoisin looks a lot like soy sauce one of the first things you will notice is that it is considerably thicker and more viscous than soy sauce. Hoisin is often used as a glaze or dipping sauce in many different Cantonese dishes. It uses fermented soy beans like soy sauce but there are additional flavors like garlic, fennel, vinegar, red chili peppers and sugar. This makes it a wonderfully complex sauce that is perfect for this dish.

Ingredients for the sauce and a mixing bowl
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Ingredients for the chicken filling
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A bowl of sauce with a whisk
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Tamari vs Soy Sauce

While tamari and soy sauce are normally used interchangeably they are a bit different. One of the first differences is that tamari is made with miso which is a fermented soy bean paste with soybeans, fermented rice, seaweed and salt. This makes it higher in sodium than soy sauce but also makes it slightly thicker and has a more well rounded and richer flavor than soy sauce. Also since it is made with fermented rice it is naturally gluten free. 

Cooking ground chicken in a pan
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Bell peppers added to ground chicken in a pan
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Water chestnuts and green onions added to the chicken mixture.
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Chicken mixture with sauce in a pan
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Making the filling

Once you are ready for the filling everything will start moving pretty quickly. You will want to cook the ground chicken until it is almost opaque. Once that is done then add the peppers. This will give you time to allow the peppers to soften without over cooking. Then add the water chestnuts and green onions. You only want to cook them for a couple of minutes before adding the sauce. Cook until it is reduced by half and then you are good to go!

White platter with 5 chicken lettuce wraps
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Chicken lettuce wraps for dinner

One of the best things about this recipe is that you can make it as an appetizer or for dinner. If you are going the diner route you can use bigger leaves like romaine or iceberg which tend to be a bit more rigid. However since you are doubling the amount of filling in each leaf you don’t have to worry about the lettuce breaking as much. Also this is the perfect topping on a bed of lettuce if you would like to make it a salad instead. I lean towards a light a sweeter dressing. My favorite however is to put it over a bowl of rice. 

Close up of a chicken lettuce wraps
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Looking for other Asian themed appetizer recipes?

A platter of chicken lettuce wraps
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Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Sean
Ground chicken sauteed with red peppers and green onions wrapped in lettuce. A delicious quick and easy appetizer inspired by PF Chang's,
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Asian
Servings 8 wraps
Calories 159 kcal

Equipment

  • Skillet
  • Whisk
  • Mixing Bowl
  • Wooden spoon or spatula

Ingredients
 
 

  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 8 ounces water chestnuts 1 can, drained, and minced
  • 1 cup red pepper diced
  • 3 green onions thinly sliced
  • ½ tablespoon sesame oil
  • 8 lettuce leaves such as butter lettuce

Sauce:

  • 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 3 tablespoons tamari reduced sodium
  • tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • ½ tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon gochujang or other chili sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon powdered ginger

Instructions
 

  • In a bowl combine all of the sauce ingredients together and whisk until blended. Set aside.
  • In a skillet over medium-high heat the sesame oil. Add the chicken and cook 5 minutes until the chicken is almost opaque.
  • Add the peppers and cook for another 3-4 minutes until the peppers start to soften. Add the onions and water chestnuts and cook for another 2 minutes.
  • Pour the sauce over the chicken mixture, bring to a boil and cook until the sauce thickens and reduces by half.
  • Spoon the chicken mixture onto the the lettuce leaves. Top with additional chili sauce, peanuts, or green onions if desired.

Nutrition

Serving: 1wrapCalories: 159kcalCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 12gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.04gCholesterol: 49mgSodium: 354mgPotassium: 479mgFiber: 2gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 1129IUVitamin C: 26mgCalcium: 20mgIron: 1mg
Nutrition Disclaimer*
Keyword Chicken, Hoisin, Lettuce, Soy Sauce
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chicken lettuce wraps Pinterest pin
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