Chicken Banh Mi Lettuce Wraps

Chicken Banh Mi Lettuce Wraps - New Kid On The Guac

Visiting Peru a few weeks ago gave me a serious travel bug. I’ve always had it on a minor scale – which explains draining my paychecks for small weekend getaways to Mammoth, Big Sur, Vegas, and the list goes on. But ever since I got back from Peru, it’s like a lightbulb went off in my head that the rest of the world is waiting out there, and all we have to do is go! So as I was scanning flights on expedia, planning my next trip (I’m crushing so hard on Thailand right now), I realized quickly that my financial situation did not warrant a trip to Southeast Asia anytime soon. In fact, it strongly encouraged I don’t even take a trip to the local Thai restaurant this weekend. That said, I figured it was time to bring some culture and flavor to a dish right within my own kitchen.

While spiralized zucchini pad thai is my go-to asian-style dish, I was itching to try something new this weekend. Staying true to the Southeast Asia vibe I’ve been feeling lately, I created a vietnamese-inspired dish: Chicken Banh Mi Lettuce Wraps. Technically speaking, banh mi is the vietnamese term for bread. In this recipe, I swap the traditional bread in the sandwich with a lettuce-wrap carrier. I should probably rename it to something like “Vietnamese Chicken Lettuce Wraps” but that seems less fun, and I like fun, so I’m keeping it the way it is.

Chicken Banh Mi Lettuce Wraps

Yield: 6 lettuce wraps

Ingredients: 

Sauce: 

1/2 cup low-fat mayo

2 teaspoons sriracha

1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

1/2 teaspoon rice vinegar

Toppings: 

1/2 cup carrots, shredded

1/2 cup radishes, julienned

1/2 cup cucumber, julienned

6 tablespoons rice vinegar

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/8 teaspoon table salt

1/8 teaspoon black ground pepper

Chicken and Everything Else:

1 teaspoon sesame oil

1 teaspoon olive oil

3 medium chicken breasts, chopped

2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce

1 teaspoon sriracha

2 teaspoons brown sugar

6 pieces red romaine lettuce

1/4 cup cilantro (optional)

1/4 cup jalapeños (optional)

Instructions: 

  1. In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients of sauce. Set aside for later use.
  2. Pickle dem veggies! In a medium bowl, combine carrots, radishes, cucumbers, rice vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper. Set aside for later use.
  3. Place a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add sesame oil and olive oil. Add  chicken and cook until browned, about 10 – 15 minutes. Add soy sauce, sriracha, and brown sugar. Stir another 1-2 minutes.
  4. Fill each leaf of lettuce with 1/4 cup chicken, 1/4 cup picked vegetables, and top with a quarter-sized dollop of sauce, or serve sauce on the size. If desired, top with jalapeños and/or cilantro.
  5. Sit back, enjoy, plan your next vacation.

Bonus life hack: This recipe is great for leftovers! Toss the chicken, pickled veggies, and spicy dressing over a bed of chopped romaine for a quick and easy salad for work. Because who has time to make lunch, when they are busy planning their next adventure?!

Chicken Banh Mi Lettuce Wrap - New Kid On The Guac   Chicken Banh Mi Lettuce Wraps - New Kid On The Guac

 

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