Chicken Lettuce Wraps




Yield: 4 to 6 servings

I love this recipe so much it hurts.  It’s healthy, easy, gluten-free (if you use Tamari soy sauce), hearty and so flavorful.  See that picture up there…I ate that whole plate for dinner and did not feel one bit guilty about it.  I came from an all-white meat family; dark meat was NEVER served at our house.  My first real experience with thigh meat was when a friend made some delicious Pad Thai for me, and my second experience was eating the rightfully famous chicken from Zuni Café in San Francisco…that was enough to convert me for life.  I recommend using a mix of breast and thigh meat, but you can, of course, use all one or the other.  Ground chicken would be equally delicious and a little faster if you’re in a pinch for time.


2 tablespoons vegetable oil

8 ounces cremini or shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and finely chopped

2 tablespoons fresh ginger, finely minced

5 to 6 garlic cloves, finely minced

1-1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken, preferably a mix of breast and thighs, or 1-1/2 pounds ground chicken

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


1/4 cup Thai sweet chili

1/4 cup hoisin sauce

2 tablespoons Sriracha

3 tablespoons light soy sauce

2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil

3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

1 tablespoon mirin

1 tablespoon oyster sauce

1 tablespoon light brown sugar


1 head butter lettuce, leaves separated

1 red pepper, thinly sliced into matchsticks

2 carrots, peeled, halved and thinly sliced into matchsticks

1 bunch of green onions, thinly sliced

1/4 cup cilantro leaves, picked from the stem but left whole

1 jalapeno, thinly sliced

3 limes, quartered


Heat one tablespoon of the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  When hot, add the chopped mushrooms and allow to cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 6 minutes; season with salt and pepper once the mushrooms have begun to release some moisture.  Add the ginger and garlic and cook until softened and fragrant, 1 minute more.  Cut the chicken into small, bite-sized pieces. Reduce the heat to medium and add the second tablespoon of vegetable oil.  Add the chicken to the mushrooms and season generously with salt and pepper, stirring to coat.  Cook, stirring occasionally, for 9 to 11 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.  Remove from the skillet to a large cutting board, and chop the chicken into smaller pieces (no need to do this if using ground chicken).


Combine all of the sauce ingredients in a small bowl; return the chicken to the skillet and add the sauce.  Allow to simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, until the mixture is combined and heated through.


Serve the chicken and sauce in the lettuce cups with the red pepper, carrots, green onions, cilantro, jalapenos and limes on the side.

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