As a private chef, I try my best to keep the meals as interesting as possible for my clients. One day it'll be Mexican food, the next Italian, and the following Asian. I try not to repeat meals too often but there is one dish that people always request. That meal is surprise surprise, chicken lettuce wraps. Lucky for me, it's easy to prepare and always comes out delicious. Today, I made a special variation of the original dish by adding a little heat. Ready for some spicy Thai chicken lettuce wraps?
Spicy Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Red curry peanut sauce
- 1 tablespoon red curry paste
- ⅓ cup smooth peanut butter
- ⅔ cup coconut milk
- 2 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- juice of 1 lime
Spicy chicken lettuce wraps
- 2 tablespoon hoisin
- 2 teaspoon sriracha
- 2 teaspoon rice vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 lb chicken cut into small chunks
- 1 teaspoon garlic minced
- 2 Thai chile finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon ginger minced
- 8 ounces water chestnuts thinly sliced
- 2 large carrots thinly sliced
- 5 scallions thinly sliced
- ¼ cup peanuts chopped
- salt and pepper
- 10-12 lettuce cups iceberg lettuce, romaine, red leaf, or little gem lettuce
- Make the red curry peanut sauce by whisking together 1 tablespoon red curry paste, ⅓ cup smooth peanut butter, ⅔ cup coconut milk, 2 tablespoon brown sugar, 2 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon fish sauce, and the juice of 1 lime until smooth. Set aside.
- Mix together 2 tablespoon hoisin, 2 teaspoon sriracha, 2 teaspoon rice vinegar, and 1 teaspoon sesame oil.
- Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the chopped chicken and saute until browned. Add 1 teaspoon garlic, 2 Thai chile, 1 teaspoon ginger, 8 ounces sliced water chestnuts, 2 thinly sliced carrots, and 5 scallions thinly sliced. Stir to combine and saute for 2 minutes or until the carrots have softened.
- Add the hoisin sauce mixture to the chicken and stir to combine. Saute another 1-2 minutes or until everything is well coated in the sauce. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle the chopped peanuts on top.
- Serve the lettuce wraps with red curry peanut sauce.
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
To give these spicy Thai chicken lettuce wraps a Thai spin, I paired the filling with a red curry peanut sauce. This sauce is everything. It's creamy, savory, a little sweet, and a whole lot of tasty. This is also my go-to sauce for spring rolls and chicken satay. To make it, just mix everything together until smooth. If you want some crunch, use crunchy peanut butter instead.
Even though the sauce is full of flavor, you still have to make the chicken just as delicious. Season it with hoisin, sriracha, rice vinegar, and sesame oil. Use aromatics like garlic, Thai chili, and ginger and toppings like water chestnuts, carrots, scallions, and peanuts to round out the filling.
For substitution ideas, swap the chicken for turkey, ground beef or pork, shrimp, or even tofu. If you can't have peanut butter, use almond butter or cashew butter. You can also skip the fish sauce in the red curry peanut sauce if you're making a vegetarian version of this meal.
The spicy Thai chicken lettuce wraps cook very quickly. It actually takes longer to prepare all of the ingredients then it does to cook it!
Serve the chicken with lettuce wraps and drizzle on a good amount of that red curry peanut sauce. You can use any type of lettuce for these wraps including iceberg, bibb, romaine, and even red leaf lettuce. Make a large batch of these wraps and enjoy them throughout the week!
For more chicken inspiration check out this spicy chicken pilaf!