Thai Minced Chicken Lettuce Cups

5 stars based on 74 votes

Thai-Minced-Chicken-Lettuce-Cups

This dish is similar to Larb Gai, the Thai dish made from minced chicken, fish sauce, lime juice, chilies and fresh herbs. The combination of sweet, salty, tangy and spicy flavors makes it highly addictive. In fact, I have to force myself to put the leftovers in the fridge immediately before starting the dishes, otherwise I’ll eat them straight from the pan while no one is watching! And did I mention it’s quick? You can walk in the door at six o’clock and be eating by six-thirty.

ingredients

As you can see from the photo, the recipe is inexpensive to make with ingredients found at your regular supermarket. You might have to search a bit for the fish sauce but most grocery stores carry it in the Asian foods aisle. Contrary to what you might expect, it doesn’t add a “fishy” taste, but rather a salty, savory flavor. If you’ve never cooked with it, I’ll warn you that it smells pretty bad (my kids RUN out of the kitchen when I use it) but please don’t let that deter you — it absolutely makes the dish! If possible, buy a brand imported from Thailand or Vietnam, and don’t worry about buying a large bottle; it keeps forever. (The brand I use is Tiparos, which is pretty strong. Some brands, like Kame for example, are milder so you may need to add a bit more to get the desired flavor.) The other Asian sauce in the recipe is Sriracha, the hot sauce named after the coastal city of Si Racha in Thailand, which you can also find it in the Asian foods aisle of most grocery stores.

prepping-lettuce-cups-1

Begin with the lettuce cups. Slice off the base stem of the lettuce, then run your knife around the inner core to remove.

prepping-lettuce-cups-2

Remove the flimsy, ragged outer leaves and submerge the head of lettuce in a bowl of water. The water will help you pull the leaves apart; if you try to pull them apart without the water, they will inevitably tear.

prepping-lettuce-cups-3

Place the lettuce cups on a paper towel to dry, then chill until ready to serve.

perfect-lettuce-cups

For the chicken, begin by cooking the onions and ginger in oil until soft.

red-onions-and-ginger

Add the minced garlic and cook one minute more.

red-onions-ginger-and-garlic

Add the ground chicken and use a wooden spoon to break the meat apart.

breaking-up-chicken-with-wooden-spoon

Add the fish sauce, soy sauce, lime zest, lime juice, brown sugar and red pepper flakes, and cook until the chicken is done.

adding-fish-sauce-sugar-and-lime

Finally, stir in the fresh cilantro, mint and nuts.

adding-herbs-scallions-and-nuts

Spoon into lettuce cups and serve with finely sliced carrots, herbs and one of my favorite condiments, spicy Sriracha sauce. Enjoy!

Thai-Mince-Chicken-Lettuce-Cups-

Thai Minced Chicken Lettuce Cups

Servings: 4
Total Time: 30 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 large head iceberg or butter lettuce
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh ginger (you'll need a thick 2-inch piece)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 pounds ground chicken (not all breast meat)
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce (see note*)
  • 1/4 cup light or dark brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons lime zest, from 2 limes
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice, from 1-1/2 limes
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 large scallions, white and green parts, finely sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
  • 1/4 cup chopped cashews or peanuts

Optional For Serving

  • Sriracha
  • Finely sliced carrots
  • Lime wedges
  • Cilantro and/or mint sprigs

Instructions

  1. Fill a large bowl with cold water. Place the head of lettuce on a cutting board; cut off the stem, then cut around the inner core of the lettuce and remove (do not cut all the way through the lettuce; just deep enough to remove the core). Discard the flimsy, ragged outer leaves and then place the head of lettuce in the bowl of water. Gently pull apart the leaves, then place them on a paper towel to dry. Cut any large leaves in half. Chill the lettuce cups in refrigerator until ready to serve.
  2. Heat the oil in large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onion and ginger and cook, stirring frequently, until soft, 4-5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute more.
  3. Add the ground chicken and turn the heat up to high. Cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, until partially cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add the soy sauce, fish sauce, brown sugar, lime zest, lime juice and red pepper flakes and continue cooking, stirring frequently to break up the meat, until the chicken is cooked through, 5-6 minutes more. Off the heat, stir in the scallions, cilantro, mint and nuts. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Spoon into lettuce cups and serve with optional garnishes.
  4. *Note that some brands of fish sauce are stronger than others. If using a milder fish sauce (such as Kame brand) you'll need to add about a tablespoon more.

Nutrition Information

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  • Per serving (4 servings)
  • Calories: 580
  • Fat: 33g
  • Saturated fat: 7g
  • Carbohydrates: 30g
  • Sugar: 20g
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Protein: 45g
  • Sodium: 1565mg
  • Cholesterol: 195g

Reviews & Comments

  • 3 stars

    My husband LOVED this dish and unfortunately, I just didn’t love it. I think I was expecting more of that famous Chinese chicken lettuce wrap taste – not realizing it was Thai rather than Chinese.

    - Shannon on August 26, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    First; I appreciate your food blog and find the recipes are consistently very good and result in tasty dishes. I made this last night and it was quick, easy, and very satisfying. I didn’t feel it took long to prep–30 minutes was about right. I did add some finely diced carrot for crunch and Thai chilis for heat, but that’s just a personal preference. I plan to serve leftovers tonight over rice.

    - Eve on August 16, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    My Thai mother-in-law would approve. All the elements of Thai food: sweet, sour, spicy and salty. Quick, easy and delicious.

    - Andrea Carlson on July 22, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I’ve made this a dozen times. It does take time to prep everything-but it’s an awesome dish. I use 2 tablespoons fish sauce rather than 3. Everyone raves about this and asks for it again. I use all dark meat chicken. Worth the effort when you have time. Excellent!!

    - Larue on July 21, 2016 Reply
  • What else would you serve with these as a side dish to round out the meal? Thanks!

    - Patrice on July 21, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Great dish. Not ready in 30 minutes though with the chopping and prepping, but no worries. Easy to make and great flavors. I did find that for whatever reason there was a lot of liquid once the chicken was cooked. I just added a bit of water and corn starch and it tightened right up and also gave it a nice silky glaze. This dish was immediately voted by my family to be put “in the rotation.”

    - Rich on July 19, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This recipe was fantastic! The only thing was, it was soupy. I saw another person wrote the same. I used fresh ground chicken. I just used a slotted spoon so it’s not too runny. Served this with your Thai crunch salad and that was incredible!! My husband couldn’t stop eating it. Thanks!!

    - Dani on July 4, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I omitted the fish sauce and nuts (because I couldn’t find fish sauce in my supermarket and I simply forgot the nuts). These were fantastic with a little Siracha sauce. One thing I would suggest with the blog is some more details. First I am relatively experienced in the kitchen although my knife skills aren’t the best. But this recipe took me about an hour. What wasn’t clear was do I zest the line before juicing or after. Which is easier? Do I need de-stem the cilantro and mint or can I chop the whole bit. Maybe these are no-brainers for most folks but if you’re going to offer a step by step picture guide so into some of the nuances of prep. Maybe then I could make this in 1/2 hour. Otherwise. Fantastic recipe.

    - Katrina on June 29, 2016 Reply
    • Hi Katrine, Glad you liked these! I’m sorry if you felt the recipe lacked some detail– in response to your questions– I recommend zesting any citrus fruit before you juice it (once you juice it, the shape is different and it’s much more challenging to zest). Regarding removing the stems before chopping herbs, generally, I will run a chef’s knife down the stem of herbs to scrape them off quickly. (I don’t bother to pick them off.) It’s okay if you get some of the stem(s) in there as long as they’re not too hard or fibrous.

      - Jenn on July 1, 2016 Reply
      • 5 stars

        Thanks Jenn. I appreciate the tips and will use them tonight when I make this again. I ate the leftovers for a couple of days after I made this the first time. This is really delicious recipe and reheats well.

        - Katrina on July 10, 2016 Reply
    • 5 stars

      Always zest first then cut and squeeze-

      - Larue on July 21, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I tried this recipe this evening for my family. We live in a small town in Spain and fish sauce is impossible to find. Other than that, I managed to find everything in our market and my chicken lady ground some chicken for me this morning. I have an abundance of celery and carrots in my garden right now, so I added both and it was crunchy and tasty. I followed the rest of the recipe as written and it was so delicious. My kids (ages 6 and 3) LOVED it and there were zero leftovers. This recipe is quick and simple and incredibly delicious. Will be adding this to our favorites for sure!

    - Cheynna on June 27, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Great recipe. Made more or less as suggested. The flavours were great. Will definetly make again. Thank you for sharing.

    - Donna Sharpe on June 27, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Absolutely Fabulous! Added another ½ Tablespoon of minced ginger because I had chopped too much 😘. I only added 1 medium red onion which measured 1 cup fine minced onion. I could only find ground chicken breast so I mixed 1 pound of ground chicken breast with a pound of ground turkey. Everything else as written. I found the Tiparos brand fish sauce…..excellent flavor. The tip on how to make the lettuce leaves is awesome…so easy this way! This was a huge hit with everyone!

    - NanciH on June 25, 2016 Reply
  • 4 stars

    Loved the taste, however there was so much liquid once the chicken was cooked that it was almost like a soupy mixture. Your finished product doesn’t look soupy at all, did you drain it or cook it until most of the liquid evaporated? Draining it loses all the wonderful flavor and I thought cooking it until it evaporated would make the chicken too dry

    - Maryke on June 23, 2016 Reply
    • Hi Maryke, Sorry you had too much liquid in the chicken — was the meat by chance frozen?

      - Jenn on June 23, 2016 Reply
    • 5 stars

      Probably soupy if you use white meat chicken-use dark-much better

      - Larue on July 21, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I have never posted a review after testing out a new recipe, but this one has inspired me to post one!

    Absolutely delicious recipe, simple and easy to make and full of flavour!

    - Tania on June 14, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    We substituted the chicken for ground beef and added some crunchy chopped bell peppers and it was still very delicious!!! My kids devoured it. I have tried many of your recipes and it has never disappointed me. Thank you.

    - Mina on May 10, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This is next level delicious! We did it with half the chicken mince, and it worked out perfectly. Easy, quick, so flavoursome and tasty! Thank you for our new favourite recipe – from New Zealand.

    - Mikela on May 5, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I used to have a favorite Thai restaurant called Sawaddi. Well, Sawaddi closed and reopened under new management with a new name and new recipes. My favorite dish there was you guessed it Thai chicken lettuce wraps! I have searched high and low to find a recipe that came even close to theirs and I have found it finally! Bless you you amazing woman! You complete me! lol Thank you for sharing!

    - Megan on April 11, 2016 Reply
  • Hi Jenn,

    Thanks for sharing your recipes. Does this recipe have a vegetarian version?

    Best,
    Mariana

    - Mariana on March 6, 2016 Reply
    • Mariana, although I’ve not tried it this way, perhaps you could substitute the chicken with tofu, or vegetarian ground “meat.”

      - Jenn on March 6, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    The Thai Chicken Lettuce Cups were absolutely outstanding. I followed the recipe exactly, and I wouldn’t change a thing. The blend of flavors in the chicken kind of made my mouth dance every time I took a bite. : ) YUM!! My whole family — even my 8-year-old — loved this meal. Next time, I’m going to triple the recipe and freeze in batches for future meals. Thanks for another awesome recipe, Jenn!

    - Lisa on January 27, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Wow these little cups are so delicious. A real hit with kids and the adults. I live in Dublin, Ireland so no problem buying the fish sauce in the supermarket (Irish people love Thai and also Chinese food). I also add some bean sprouts to this dish to bulk it out slightly. Delicious recipe thank you

    - Sam on December 31, 2015 Reply
  • Would this recipe be a good wedding appetizer? I am in charge of appetizers at my sons wedding and he loves lettuce cups. Thanks, lynn.

    - Lynn on December 29, 2015 Reply
    • Yes, I think these would make a nice appetizer but they may be a little bit messy to eat, so just take that into consideration in your planning.

      - Jenn on December 29, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This recipe is delicious! It also tastes great left over.

    - Alicia on December 10, 2015 Reply
    • This was amazing, so good and easy to prepare. Sure going to make it many times over. Thank you
      Iberia

      - Iberia Soares on December 21, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    My boyfriend and I made this last night for dinner. We both love Thai food so we tried this. But here’s the catch: we do not know how to cook! Thankfully I live in SE Asia and have all the ingredients ready. Oh my gosh when we tasted it we felt like professionals! It was so goooood! Definitely going to cook this again!

    - Gerri on November 28, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I eat low carb so these are just perfect for me! Thanks so much!

    - Ashley on October 29, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This recipe is yummy! We’ve tried the mixture in lettuce cups. We’ve had it over both rice and rice noodles. I’ve added stock, amped up the spices and turned it into a Thai inspired soup. We have used it over spinach &/or greens for a knockout salad. And we have even wrapped it in tortillas with some extra veggies. I’ve used ground chicken, turkey, and pork, depending on what I have on hand. It tastes great every time! It has that wonderful balance of sweet, sour, salty and spicy. Home run!

    - Connie B. on October 29, 2015 Reply
  • 3 stars

    This wasn’t my favourite of the recipes that I’ve gotten from Jenn, but still good. My boyfriend loved them. I think it was the mint that didn’t sell me, however I read someone substituted basil so I may try that next time. We may also try a different vessel as the iceberg lettuce made quite a mess while we were eating.

    - Hayley on October 29, 2015 Reply
  • Can I skip the brown sugar in this recipe? I just had gastric bypass and sugar is a big no-no. I don’t like the after taste of imitation sweetners. But this looks great!!

    - Cameo on October 21, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Cameo, That’s a tough one because you really need the sweetness to balance out the saltiness. Sorry!

      - Jenn on October 21, 2015 Reply
    • Maybe honey?

      - Bobbi Jo LaForce on February 6, 2016 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Another great hit. I made it for my friends and they really liked it and so did I. The best thing is this is kid friendly too. All the kids loved it.

    - Tara on September 11, 2015 Reply
  • Hi Jenn,
    Could you substitute shrimp for chicken in this recipe?

    - Cristina on September 11, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Cristina, Yes, I think shrimp would be delicious.

      - Jenn on September 13, 2015 Reply
  • I am making your recipe for a Vietnamese supper tonight with 24 people. Can you serve the chicken cold or is it best to serve the chicken warm in the lettuce cups? Thank you.

    - Carole on September 10, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Carole, I wouldn’t serve it cold but room temperature is fine. Hope everyone enjoys it :)

      - Jenn on September 10, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These are absolutely delicious! And easy to make. Full of flavor. Highly recommend.

    - Emily on August 31, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Made this for dinner a couple of nights ago – very good! Son and husband loved it too. Better than a restaurant!!!! Thanks for another great recipe!

    - Hedy DeCampo on August 28, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I tried these and they were wonderful. I had tried a different recipe before, but found that the flavor was not as robust as yours. I also like to serve these with a prepared lettuce wrap sauce ( I used Lee Kum Kee). Chicken is a big part of our diet, so these are a nice change from a whole piece of meat.

    - Brenda on August 28, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Hey Jenn! I absolutely loved this recipe. I made it last week for myself and my husband. It’s been hot as heck here on Maui and I wanted to spend as little time in the kitchen as possible. I prepped everything in the morning, used romaine lettuce instead of iceberg, cooked the meat up just before serving. It was fantastic! Definitely a keeper. Thanks for your creativity.

    - Laura Black on August 27, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These were fantastic! I do not know about the technique of peeling the lettuce leaves in water; that tip was extremely helpful! I could not find fish sauce at the grocery store so I subbed 1 tbsp of anchovy paste and 2 tbsp of Worcestershire sauce. These came out light and refreshing.

    - Nina on August 27, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This recipe was delicious. Very flavorful and healthy and easy. Love all the food I’ve been making from this website.

    - Christine on August 27, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    My daughter made this recipe on Tuesday and we’re having it again two nights later. It is my husband’s birthday and he chose to have this again! Last time we halved the recipe because I thought one pound of chicken would be enough….big mistake. Tonight we’ll be making extra for leftovers.

    - Monica on August 27, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    All I can say is, “Wow!” I made this dish the other night using ground turkey. As usual, Jenn’s dish was a hit for the entire family! It was the right amount of savory and spice, and the lettuce cooled it down in the mouth beautifully! I love that so much of it can be prepared in advance! Although I would say that for my family, this dish was more appropriate as an hearty appetizer. My kids and hubby chowed it down in 5 minutes flat and I had nothing more to feed them!

    - Mimi on August 27, 2015 Reply
    • LOL :)

      - Jenn on August 27, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These were fun to make and really good! Kids and adults scarfed these down and declared them delicious. They have a sweet-spicy flavor that is really unusual. I will be making these again soon! Thank you for another winner. I love your recipes and pictures. :o)

    - Janet Miller on August 27, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I make this dish once a week. My children take any leftovers in their lunches to school. My family eats it without the lettuce or sriracha sauce. This is one of my favorite recipes.

    - L Gordon on August 26, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Dear Jenn, I love all your recipes because they are all exquisite! I have tried and have great success with many of them. Today I made the Thai chicken lettuce cups, but it seems there is a little mistake with the pictures b/c the photo with the popcorn and another with carrots appear there and also the last photo is the minced chicken. Always it’s perfect but today there is a mismatch, so I’d rather advise you.
    Have a great week and thanks again for sharing your wonderful and well described recipes!

    - Ingrid on August 21, 2015 Reply
    • Thank you, Ingrid. That is very strange! I will look into it :)

      - Jenn on August 21, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made this over the weekend for my husband to try. Happy, happy, joy, joy! We practically finished it off, just the two of us!

    - Renae on August 17, 2015 Reply
  • Wondering if I could use this as a taco recipe?

    - Lynda Kelly on August 15, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Lynda, Sure, I think that would work :)

      - Jenn on August 19, 2015 Reply
  • 4 stars

    Made this dish and followed the directions completely. Two observations, 1. the finished product needs something to tighten it, perhaps cornstarch and, 2. a veggie on the side or on top.
    I’ll do this on my next try.
    The dish has allot of flavors going on and spicy heat which I like.

    - Bob Pulley on August 12, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made this tonight and it was absolutely delicious! I used butter lettuce, which I don’t recommend. It is too flimsy to hold the meat mixture so I’ll use iceberg next time. My husband and I have found a new favorite!!

    - Patsy on August 10, 2015 Reply
  • I don’t have mint but do have an abundance of basil. Would basil work ok.

    - David on August 7, 2015 Reply
    • Hi David, Yes absolutely.

      - Jenn on August 10, 2015 Reply
  • Five stars. Unfortunately, I didn’t have
    a few ingredients. I used lemon instead of lime. Will have a shopping list next time I make this great recipe.
    Was out of brown sugar so used 1/4 cup of maple syrup, didn’t have fish sauce, but
    had lobster broth. Had all the other
    ingredients and yet it still came out
    fantastic. Great recipe. Thanks so much.

    - gen on August 6, 2015 Reply
  • Is there a substitute for fish sauce? Allergic to many fish!

    - Elaine on August 6, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Elaine, Unfortunately, there’s no great substitute for fish sauce — it has a very distinct flavor. Sorry!

      - Jenn on August 7, 2015 Reply
      • My understanding is that, outside of Israel, one can’t find fish sauce with a reliable hechsher. Joy of Kosher has a recipe to make an acceptable but not great substitute. You can store it for a couple or few months. I haven’t tried it. We will have to accept whatever can make do. http://www.joyofkosher.com/recipes/kosher-fish-sauce/

        - Atara on October 14, 2015 Reply
        • Sorry, I didn’t notice the recipe for fish sauce included anchovies. So, if keeping kosher, you can’t use that recipe containing fish in the same course that meat is served.

          - Atara on October 15, 2015 Reply
  • Would chopped water chestnuts be a good substitute for the peanuts?

    - David on August 6, 2015 Reply
    • Hi David, Yes, that would work.

      - Jenn on August 7, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Delicious! My husband and I loved them. I might add more red pepper flakes next time, to make them tingle just a bit more. Also, I agree with other commenters that it’s important to do all the prep before you start cooking–things move fast! Thank you for this terrific recipe.

    - Mrs T on July 21, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made the Thai minced chicken lettuce cups last night. It stinks to high heaven when you cook it (because of this seasoning called fish sauce). But push past the smell and the outcome is so worth it! I used ground pork instead of chicken and it tasted incredible! My hubby and 13 year old absolutely loved it and devoured it! Going to make it again tonight.. It was that good! Better than what we wait in line for at PFChangs!

    - Kim on July 17, 2015 Reply
  • The calories and sodium content are way high in this recipe. Why? I thought this would be a low calorie, healthy dish.

    - Lyn on July 9, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Lyn, I don’t believe the dish is high in calories for a main course, but the sodium is high because of the fish sauce. Unfortunately, it can’t be omitted — it’s what makes the dish so delicious.

      - Jenn on July 9, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Easy to make. My family loved it! This dish will become a regular at our table. Thank you for sharing the recipe.

    - Nicole on June 22, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    My husband, parents, and toddlers loved these lettuce wraps! I loved that this was one of the few recipes that didn’t have peanut butter in it. I tweaked it a bit by adding some shiitake mushrooms and some oyster sauce but the foundation for the recipe was terrific. It’s definitely going to be a make again recipe. Thanks so much!

    - Clare on May 21, 2015 Reply
    • Wow, Clare — so impressed that your toddlers ate this! It’s a tough sell to my big kids :)

      - Jenn on May 21, 2015 Reply
  • I have left over shredded chicken breast. Do you think it would work instead of ground chicken?

    - Tori on May 20, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Tori, If it is raw it will work but not if it is already cooked.

      - Jenn on May 20, 2015 Reply
  • I am already sold by the fabulous reviews. My question is how far ahead can these be made and refrigerated before serving? I would like to bring them to a Derby party.

    - Mary Berchtold on May 1, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Mary, You can make the chicken mixture 1-2 days ahead but I wouldn’t fill the lettuce cups or they’ll get soggy. I would probably serve the cups next to the chicken and let people assemble themselves.

      - Jenn on May 1, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Fan-freakin-tastic! Followed the recipe exactly, and hubby and 2 boys devoured them! Hard to find a winner for all, but this did the trick. A bit labor intensive, but it came together in the end so it was totally worth it! We topped it with a PF Chang style sauce we made with rice vinegar, mustard, and a touch of soy. YUMMMM!
    This is the second recipe I’ve tried from this site, and I am very glad to have discovered it-cant wait to make more!

    - Jen on April 13, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This one is a winner! Easy, tasty and infinitely versatile. I make this a lot.

    I tend to ditch the sugar, mint, cilantro and sriracha and use thai curry paste instead (red, yellow or green, whatever I’m in the mood for). The curry paste gives it a great flavour with a nice spicy kick.

    Last time I made it, I used pork mince instead, and I added some peeled and diced cucumber a couple of minutes before I finished cooking. Very yummy — I’ll definitely be trying that again!

    - Laura on April 1, 2015 Reply
    • When you say pork mince…do you mean ground pork? Did you use the fish sauce with the pork mixture as well?

      - Kim on July 15, 2015 Reply
      • Ah, yes, sorry. Pork mince is British for ground pork :) And yes, I use the fish sauce and soy sauce with the pork mixture as well. (Except when I’ve run out and don’t realise, anyway!)

        - Laura on July 16, 2015 Reply
        • Awesome! I am so making this tonight!!!!

          - Kim on July 16, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This recipe received an “A” from every member of the family! (That’s a big deal!) I was a little nervous about the fish sauce, but I stuck to the recipe and used 3 tablespoons, and it wasn’t “fishy” or overpowering at all. We all had so much fun eating this meal together, and I have added it to the rotation.

    - Hilary on March 31, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I’ve made these several times and they are just delicious!! Easy, quick, and the fresh herbs and lime juice/zest really make this dish stand out. My toddler will eat it, too, and I feel like it’s a great way to expose him to new flavors. I’m a huge fan!

    - Christine S on March 20, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Made this last week and it was wonderful. Even my 17 year old son – who initially looked at it and said “That’s dinner?” – ate three wraps. He added a dollop of peanut butter to his third one.

    - Bonnie on February 17, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This recipe is da’bomb. Oh my goodness, it’s one of those rare recipes that reap huge dividends but it’s soo simple to put together AND the infusion of all the aromstic herbs & spices just transports you & everyone else in your house to Thailand. The smells are just amazing and if you can believe it, after all those delicious odors, the taste is .. to die for. Why even a beginner can sample the unique pleasure of putting a dish together that is simple [the illustrated steps will keep you on the right path] but really wonderful in the coming together and most importantly–the taste. A stellar recipe !

    - Kathryn on January 28, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Excellent! I had to substitute toasted pine nuts for the peanuts (because I didn’t have any) and left off the scallions for the same reason. I added shredded carrots and Shiracha sauce at the end and would add additional cilantro and not forget to buy the scallions as well next time. We devoured them.

    - Marilyn on January 25, 2015 Reply
  • Is one lettuce cup considered a serving? Also, will omitting the nuts change the taste drastically? They are really high in fat and would like to eliminate them.

    - karin on January 25, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Karin, It depends on how large the lettuce cups are and how much you fill them, but I’d say one serving is about 2-3 lettuce cups. And totally fine to omit the nuts :)

      - Jenn on January 25, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Fabulous! Fabulous! Fabulous! Every one who tries this asks me for the recipe. I would give it more than 5 starts if I could.

    - Jill on December 29, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Great recipe! My fiance loved it! Thank you Jenn! :0)

    - Ana on December 23, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made these tonight and they were yummy. I have made lettuce wraps before but the lime added an interesting note and I really liked it.

    - Donna on December 4, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This recipe was amazing!! I love the sauce it makes. It’s really good to mix some quinoa or rice with it to soak up those wonderful juices. I didn’t have chicken so I used ground turkey and it turned out beautifully! Don’t skip on the fish sauce it makes a big difference.

    - Ryan on December 4, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    For years I’ve loved lettuce wraps but these are better than any I’ve had in a restaurant. It’s good to have all ingredients assembled and ready-actual cooking time is very quick. I’ve made them with ground turkey or ground chicken either way delicious. Might try ground pork next. Very versatile recipe. If possible I’d give 6 stars.

    - Janice on December 3, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Love the Thai minced chicken lettuce cups for a quick mid-week easy dinner. So tasty!

    - Josie McGann on December 3, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These were a hit with my family. Even my son ate them and he’s a challenge!

    - Drew on December 3, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I’ve made these several times and given the recipe to a friend. They are delicious. The flavour is is complex and hits different parts of the tongue. This recipe is also easy to make ahead and take to a potluck. The hardest thing is not to fill them too full, as, depending on what kind of lettuce used (I’ve used both romaine and butter), the filling is so good you just want to load it up and sometimes the lettuce breaks. These have been a hit with my most fussy foodie friends.

    - Barb on December 3, 2014 Reply
  • I guess the fish sauce can be to old. I just looked at mine and it was almost black and was full of salt crystals. I saw that it was 3 years past its expiration date. I didn’t realize I had it for THAT long! I also noticed that it says, “do not refrigerate”. Yep, you guessed it, it was in the frig!

    I’m going to have to buy a new bottle.

    - Donna on November 24, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Thank you so much for these amazing recipes!!!! I am having so much fun trying them and being awed by the results!!! What kind of frying pan do you use? The picture in the Thai chicken lettice cups looks like a good large thick stainless steel pan. I want it!!

    - Rachel on November 22, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    We all just finished devouring this, all five of us aged 7 to 47 gave it 5 stars, and declared it to be a new family favorite. Not that I’m surprised, because I love everything from this site, but this one is a superstar dinner. Walked in the door at 6 and we were eating by 6:35… light & delicious.

    - Sheila on November 3, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Made these tonight for dinner and they were amazing. Used ground turkey instead of chicken. You didn’t mention draining the meat, so I didn’t. Next time I will drain before adding the soy/fish sauce mix. So light, flavorful and tasty!!!

    - Sheree on October 28, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Hi Jenn,
    I have made this recipe once and it was well received. My question is when do you add the scallions? It looks like, from the photos, you should add them when adding the cilantro, mint and nuts.

    Thanks,
    Mary B

    - Mary Brown on October 14, 2014 Reply
    • Hi Mary, Yes, that is correct.

      - Jenn on October 14, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    We have been experiencing record breaking heat here in San Diego so this was the perfect dish for something light. We love Thai lettuce wraps and these were delicious. Very easy, healthy and a great meal for people watching their carbs. I served it with peanut sauce and also a sweet chili sauce.
    Thanks, Jen!

    - Linda on September 20, 2014 Reply
  • I am allergic to fish and shellfish. Is there anyway to make this dish with a substitute for the fish sauce?

    - Jillian on September 17, 2014 Reply
    • Hi Jillian, You could try soy sauce but it will be a completely different dish — more Chinese than Thai.

      - Jenn on September 17, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This is a very delicious and colorful dish. My daughter isn’t a big fan of lettuce. But, tonight she asked for more lettuce cups to wrap the meat. Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe!

    - Lynne on September 17, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made this last night and it was so delicious!!! I add some crunchy vegetable like carrots, celery and water chestnut. It’s just so tasty and my little girl love it very much. Thank you for sharing.

    - Ahmie on September 10, 2014 Reply
  • Dear Jenn, I have always stayed from fish sauce because I don’t like the taste of strong fish. Can you make me feel better about this, so I can start cooking with it.I really want to make these lettuce cups. Thank you, Joanne

    - Joanne D'Abate on September 1, 2014 Reply
    • Hi Joanne, Fish sauce is one of my favorite ingredients for cooking! It doesn’t really have a fishy taste at all; it’s more of a salty, deep, funky (in a good way) flavor. It’s used extensively in Southeast Asian cooking so if you like Vietnamese and Thai food, chances are you like fish sauce. Fair warning: it doesn’t smell great and it’s not a sauce you would ever taste on its own, but it adds a very delicious, distinct flavor to so many dishes. Hope that helps, and please come back and let me know how the lettuce cups turn out :)

      - Jenn on September 2, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This dish was delicious and easy to make. I
    had never tried ground chicken before, but I will be making these again. I love your step by step instructions.

    - Carmen Sierra on August 21, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I used diced chicken instead of minced chicken and it still turned out delicious! I shredded jicama & carrots & cut snap peas in half lengthwise for extra garnish. I would have never tried fish sauce since anchovies aren’t my favorite, but your site convinced me otherwise.

    - Deb Hume on August 16, 2014 Reply
  • What do you usually serve these with?

    - Sam on July 30, 2014 Reply
    • Hi Sam, They are delicious with jasmine rice.

      - Jenn on July 31, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Tried your Thai Minced Chicken Lettuce Cups last night for dinner and got rave reviews from the family. Really yummy! The only very small things I changed were to add more nuts because we like them and to use the lettuce more like wraps than cups. A definite keeper!

    - Terri Freeman on July 28, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These were really great! I liked the easy directions (although fresh ginger can be a pain, it is worth it). Served it with green beans. Another wonderful recipe! Thank you.

    - Karen GC on July 27, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These lettuce cups were BANGIN! I followed the recipe exactly and it was beyond delish. I gave my husband the option of using mini tortillas in case lettuce cups were too light for him. They were a hit all around.

    - Lindsay on July 27, 2014 Reply
  • 4 stars

    The recipe is very similar to Larb Gai (Thai Chicken salad) but to make it truly Thai omit the nuts and the brown sugar. Add toasted/blended Jasmine rice during the cooking and instead of brown sugar use palm sugar (which can be found at most Asian Markets). Instead of using the lettuce, substitute with sliced Green Cabbage and cucumber. Not matter what, you still have a winner!!!

    - Kevin on July 27, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This recipe was dynamite! We loved it.

    - Julie on July 27, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Excellent recipe! Made it with leftover roast chicken chopped fairly fine (approx 3-4 cups). Only thing I changed was using less red onion due to the amount of meat. Followed the recipe for the rest of the ingredients. I’m not a big cilantro fan but this was very good. Like it better than my PF Chang copy-cat…much easier.

    - Mary Casper on July 26, 2014 Reply
  • This looks awesome. I’m going to try this as soon as possible thanks for posting.

    - Suzan on July 24, 2014 Reply

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