Chinese Chicken Lettuce Wraps

These Chinese chicken lettuce wraps are an easy, healthy meal made with ground chicken that’s cooked in soy sauce, ginger, and oyster sauce and served in butter lettuce leaves.

A rectangular plate with six Chinese chicken lettuce wraps and a bowl of extra filling beside it.

This is one of those dishes that I have to order every single time I go to Chinatown and see them on the menu. I love the crunch of the lettuce, the saltiness of the soy sauce, and the sweetness of the oyster sauce.–Joanne Weir

Chinese Chicken Lettuce Wraps

  • Quick Glance
  • (4)
  • 20 M
  • 20 M
  • Serves 6
4.5/5 - 4 reviews
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Warm the oil in a skillet or wok over medium-high heat.

Add the chicken, scallions, and cornstarch and cook, stirring constantly and crumbling the chicken with the spoon, until the chicken is cooked through 3 to 4 minutes.

Add the water chestnuts, carrot(s) if using, soy sauce, ginger, and oyster sauce and cook for 1 minute. Remove from the heat.

To serve, take 1 lettuce leaf at a time and spoon a heaping tablespoon of the chicken mixture into the center. Wrap the lettuce around the filling. Serve immediately. Originally published March 18, 2004.

Print RecipeBuy the Weir Cooking in the City cookbook

Want it? Click it.

    Wine Suggestion

    • Gewürztraminer, pinot gris, or pinot grigio.

    Recipe Testers' Reviews

    This is a great appetizer and much healthier than the usual spring rolls. You do need nice large leaves so that you can wrap these up like a cabbage roll and then eat them in your hand. Needless to say, there were no leftovers and that, to me, is always the sign of a good recipe.

    Joanne Weir knows how to take simple ingredients and add just the right combination of herbs, spices, and other accents to make the dish special. There is not a thing unusual or difficult about this recipe, but it comes together so deliciously, you’ll think you had takeout delivered from the best Chinese restaurant in town—only fresher.


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    1. Made this today, after a lengthy hunt for water chestnuts all over the neighbourhood. I used fresh mushrooms and chopped everything by hand. It is good and filling and a very good dish for people avoiding carbs, but having had the real thing I found it bland on Chinese flavours.

      1. We’re sorry to hear that this didn’t quite live up to your expectations, Sana. Judging from your photo, you did a fantastic job of making the lettuce wraps!

    2. Made this last night. Incredibly quick and very delicious.

      Pulsed air-chilled chicken thighs, cold from fridge, to a moderate degree in processor.

      Garnished liberally with hand-torn Thai basil leaves just before serving. Wilted nicely into the hot chicken.

      Romaine leaves instead of butter lettuce, I fold like a taco. Tiny amounts of leftover Jasmine rice in lettuce first, then chicken atop.

      Great for when pressed for time but want something delicious.

      Thank you Joanne Weir, via David and Company.

      1. Hi N, we had the same thing last night for dinner! There is something so fun about folding up food in a lettuce leaf, right?

    3. Good stuff – And tasty! Love the hint of ginger and the hefty dose of scallions…but still so quick and easy you can pause whatever you’re watching on Netflix and have these ready for the second half.

    4. This is very quick and tasty, and healthy, too. We’re not big lettuce fans, but this made polishing off an entire head between two people absolutely no problem. The balance of flavors is a bit Americanized but pleasant nonetheless.

    5. The wraps came out well, and this was a quick and easy recipe to follow. I think this works best accompanied by some dim sum, and it’s a great weeknight dinner for the family. The chicken mixture was tasty, and it was fun eating it with our hands.

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