In a previous blog, I shared with you the Taco Lettuce Cups. The recipe is almost similar to this Asian Lettuce Wraps which is a copycat recipe inspired by P.F. Chang. I like to experiment with flavors and I found this recipe unique. The addition of the water chestnuts give it a slightly different flavor of mushrooms.
To give you a background about water chestnuts, they are not really nuts. Water chestnuts are aquatic tuber vegetables and are native to Southeast Asia, China, Taiwan, and even in Australia and Africa. Water chestnuts are nutritious and low in calories. They are also high in antioxidants and can even help lower the risk of heart disease and high blood pressure. You can eat them straight out of the can and use them in a salad or mix them with other dishes.
How to Make Asian Lettuce Wraps
This Asian Lettuce wrap with chicken recipe is a versatile dish. You can serve this as an appetizer or as a snack. One time I ran out of lettuce, I used cabbage leaves instead and they tasted just as good. What you need to do is to separate the cabbage leaves first, blanch them in hot water, then soak them in iced water before using. Don’t forget to dry the leaves before serving.
Making these Asian Lettuce Wraps is also a great activity for children. It develops their fine motor skills such as spooning filling into the leaves and handling them properly so they won’t spill. You should not also worry about spills especially if you have the taco holder trays.
When I make these wraps, I also prepare some flour tortillas for my kids. They can easily put all the ingredients in the tortillas and enjoy their tacos. Keeps them fuller, too.
I suggest that on your next taco party, just place all the ingredients on a platter and let them decide what they want. Don’t forget to bring out those classy taco holders!
Asian Lettuce Wraps with Chicken
- 3 tbsp hoisin sauce
- 2 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
- 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp Sriracha optional
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 medium onion diced
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1 tbsp freshly grated ginger
- 1 lb ground chicken you can also use chicken breast strips
- 1/2 cup canned water chestnuts drained and sliced
- 2 green onions thinly sliced
- kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- large lettuce leaves for serving
- cooked white or brown rice for serving/ optional
- To make the sauce, mix the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, sesame oi, and Sriracha.
- Heat some olive oil on a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the onions for 5 minutes. or until softened. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for a minute or until fragrant. Add the ground chicken and cook until no longer pink. Make sure to break up the meat with a wooden spoon.
- Pour the sauce and cook for 1 to 2 minutes until the liquid is reduced.
- Turn off heat and add the green onions and water chestnuts. Season with salt and pepper as desired.
- Spoon the chicken mixture into the lettuce leaves and add rice as needed.