These Easy Chicken Lettuce Wraps are an quick and healthy lettuce wrap that will surely end up in your weekly rotation! They’re packed with ground chicken, chopped snow peas, water chestnuts, and lots of baby boy choy. The filling is tossed in a super flavor peanut peanut sauce and nestled into crisp iceberg lettuce.
Easy Chicken Lettuce Wraps
I was saving this post for after the New Year when healthy eating becomes all the rage again, but as I looked at the post I had planned for today (Supreme Nacho Burgers) I realized I’ve primarily been posting indulgent comfort meals for weeks on end. And while I have been eating Cheesy Chicken Pot Pie and Homemade Pizza Rolls and loving it, it’s not ALL I’ve been eating.
In between those calorie-laden meals I drink lots of smoothies, eat tons of veggies and make healthy meals like these Easy Chicken Lettuce Wraps.
These guys are:
- packed with lean ground chicken
- filled with TONS of veggies. Water chestnuts, baby bok choy, and chopped snow peas
- tossed in a super easy and addictive peanut sauce
PF Changs Lettuce Wraps
Like most of America I fell in love with the lettuce wrap when PF Changs chains were basically taking over the country. I remember when one opened up in KC and everyone from five to 45 minutes away flocked to the restaurant like it was the newest Cheesecake Factory (which happened to be right across the street). It wasn’t uncommon to have a two-hour wait on a random Wednesday night and back then, the food was worth the wait.
Kevin and I went back a couple months ago after a four-year hiatus and unfortunately, it just didn’t have the same sparkle to it. That’s why my friends, it was high-time to create my own PF Changs Copy
I have no clue how PF Changs make their lettuce wraps, but mine are full of ground chicken, hearty bok choy, crisp snow peas and crunchy water chestnuts. The chicken to veggie ratio here is almost equal, which I love not only for the added nutritional benefits but for the flavorful and incredible texture it lends.
You could swap out whatever veggies suit your taste, but I happen to think this particular trifecta is one for the books. IF you had to make a change, napa cabbage, baby corn, or shredded carrots could also be nice.
The ground chicken and veggies sautéed in a bit of coconut oil (with garlic!) is a great base, but the flavor really comes to play in the super easy peanut sauce everything is doused in.
Peanut Sauce for Lettuce Wraps
If there’s a sauce I’m addicted to, it’s peanut sauce. I will literally drink it straight from the bowl or jar or whatever vessel it’s served in, but on the blog, I’ve slathered it on everything from thai pizzas to broccoli salad to quinoa bowls.
Initially (years ago) I spent days and days trying to figure out the perfect recipe, and I still feel like I came up short. The flavor always seems off to me, and the color wasn’t the gorgeous caramel shade I’d seen in so many restaurants. The sauce was always too sweet or too soy sauce heavy, and then finally something clicked – water! It sounds silly, but water is honestly the one ingredient that took my sauce to the next level. For me, the flavors in the peanut sauce are so strong and the peanut butter makes it so thick that it needs something to soften it and loosen up at the same time, and water it is.
Ingredients in Peanut Sauce for Lettuce Wraps
- peanut butter
- tamari (you can also use soy sauce)
- thai chili sauce
That’s it. The ingredients are whisked together and after the chicken and veggies cook, the sauce is poured in, tossed, and ready to be spooned into lettuce wraps.
How to make Easy Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Grind the chicken. This is actually an optional step. I like to grind my own chicken because I just think it tastes better. Plus, it’s cheaper. All you have to do is cut the chicken into smaller pieces. Pop into a food processor and let it do it’s thing until the chicken is ground.
Sauté the vegetables. Heat a little bit of coconut oil in a large non-stick skillet. Sauté the veggies just until they start to soften. Make sure you don’t cook them too much, you still want them to have a crispness to them! Transfer them to a plate.
Cook the chicken. Brown the chicken in a little bit of coconut oil. Cook until it’s cooked all the way through. Add the veggies back into the pan.
Stir in the peanut sauce. Add the peanut sauce to the chicken and veggies. Toss to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Spoon into lettuce wraps. Sprinkle with chopped peanuts and green onions.
Can you make Easy Chicken Lettuce Wraps ahead of time?
Absolutely! Make the filling the day before. Heat in the microwave or over a low heat in a non-stick skillet.
What is tamari?
Tamari is a thicker alternative to soy sauce. It doesn’t have as much wheat in it, making it a good option for gluten-intolerant people. It’s also a little bit less salty than soy sauce, which works great in something like peanut sauce.
Do I have to use ground chicken?
No. You can use ground turkey breast or ground pork.
Substitutions and Tips and Tricks for Recipe Success
- Add in your favorite Asian veggies. Baby corn or red peppers would be great additions.
- If you can’t find tamari, regular soy sauce works just fine.
- Don’t overcook your veggies! You don’t want them to be raw, but they should have a nice bite and texture to them.
- Even though tamari has salt in it, you still want to season for salt and pepper, both in the peanut sauce and at the end of cooking.
- 1 lb chicken breasts
- 2 tsp coconut oil, divided
- 2 tsp sesame oil, divided
- 2 cups finely chopped bok choy
- 1 cup finely chopped snow peas
- 5 oz water chestnuts, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tbsp + 1 tsp tamari
- 1 tbsp + 1 tsp honey
- 2 1/2 tbsp thai chili sauce
- 3 tsp rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp creamy peanut butter
- 1/4 cup water or low-sodium chicken stock
- butter or iceberg lettuce
- chopped peanut for garnish
- Large skilet
- Cut chicken into 1-inch chunks. Add to a processor and blend until ground. (Use can also use already ground chicken, but I like doing it myself better, plus it's cheaper!)
- Heat a large non-stick pan to a medium-high heat. Once hot, add 1 teaspoon coconut oil and 1 teaspoon sesame oil. Once the oil shimmers, add bok choy and snow peas. Stir-fry (use a wooden spoon to continuously toss and stir) the veggies for 1-2 minutes until bright and slightly softened. Add water chestnuts and garlic, stir-fry another minute. Transfer to a plate and wipe pan clean.
- Heat the pan over a medium-high heat, and add remaining coconut oil and sesame oil. Once the oil is shimmering, add chicken. Use a wooden spatula to break up the chicken into as small pieces as you can get them.
- While the chicken cooks, whisk tamari, honey, thai chili sauce, vinegar, peanut butter and water in a small bowl.
- Once all the chicken is cooked, reduce the heat to low and add the veggies back in along with the sauce. Toss to coat. Spoon into lettuce wraps and garnish with chopped peanuts.