Looking to try a lettuce wrap? Grilled chicken lettuce wraps are healthy, high in protein flavorful, and easy recipe to make. They’re perfect for a quick lunch or dinner and can be made ahead of time for meal prep. I like to use boneless, skinless chicken thighs for the best flavor and juiciness. The key to making these wraps is to get the chicken nice and char-grilled before wrapping it up in the lettuce. I like to use romaine lettuce leaves for my wraps, but you can use any type of lettuce you prefer. Be sure to add your favorite toppings and sauces inside the wrap for extra flavor.
Grilled Island Chicken Lettuce Wraps Recipe
This recipe serves 2 with a prep time of 15 minutes and a cook time of 10 minutes.
Ingredients for chicken and marinade:
- 1/3 cup oil (original recipe called for vegetable oil but I replaced it with extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
- 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 1-2 lemons)
- 1.5 tablespoons soy sauce – I used the Tamari variety
- 1 clove garlic, finely minced
- Half a teaspoon of dried oregano
- Quarter teaspoon salt – I used pink Himalayan sea salt
- A quarter teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
- 1-2 chicken breasts (depending on size, Whole Foods has huge chicken breasts)
Vegetables for wrap/bowl:
- lettuce – as noted above, go with butter for the bowl, romaine for the wrap
- 1 large lemon
- 1 package cherry tomatoes
- 1 English cucumber
- large handful of green beans with ends trimmed
- 1 medium red onion
- 1 pepper – could be green or red although I used a roasted Hatch chili as it appears to be popular here in Austin
- handful of spinach
- 1 large Fuji apple
Prepare the Chicken
- Add all of the marinade ingredients into a zip-top bag and mix well.
- Place the chicken into the bag and massage the marinade all over the chicken.
- Place the bag in the fridge for 3-24 hours (I marinated it for 12 hours).
- Turn the bag over a few times in the fridge.
- Grill the chicken until completely cooked. Set chicken aside to cool.
Get your Veggies Ready
Fruit/Veggies – Juice the lemon into a bowl. Chop and dice the apple and place it into a bowl with the lemon juice. This will help the apple keep its color and not go brown from oxidation. Chop and dice all veggies into equal-sized small-ish cubes.
Place the veggies into the bowl with the apple and lemon juice and toss with a dash of sea salt and pepper. Drain out any excess lemon juice and liquid so the bowls/wraps stay nice and dry.
How to Make a Chicken Lettuce Wrap
- Form lettuce into bowl shape or into long strips for the wrap.
- Place a good amount of the veggie mix into the lettuce wrap or bowl.
- Slice chicken into strips and evenly place on top of veggies.
- If using the wrapped format, carefully wrap the chicken and veggies and use a toothpick or skewer to keep the wrap closed.
Tip: Marinated chicken is best
Marinating chicken before grilling helps to tenderize the meat and infuse it with flavor. The acid in the marinade helps to break down the proteins in the chicken, making it more tender. The longer you marinate chicken, the more flavor it will have. But be sure not to marinate chicken for too long, or the acid can start to cook the meat.
What is the best type of lettuce to use when making lettuce wraps?
There are many types of lettuce that can be used for lettuce wraps, but the best type to use is romaine lettuce. This type of lettuce is very crisp and has a good crunch to it, doesn’t wilt as quickly as other lettuces which makes it perfect for wrapping around fillings.
Romaine lettuce is also very refreshing and has a mild flavor, which won’t overpower the other ingredients in the wrap.
How do you keep lettuce from getting soggy?
It helps to soak the lettuce in cold water for a few minutes before using it. This helps remove any excess moisture that is on the leaves and will prevent them from wilting later. Once rinsed, be sure to dry the lettuce well before storing it or adding it to a recipe.
Is iceberg lettuce good for wraps?
Iceberg has high water content, making it less than ideal for salads and cooking. … Use iceberg only if you have no other options, but know that your wrap will be slightly more fragile and won’t taste as fresh as with other types of lettuce.
Can I use spinach instead of lettuce for wraps?
While lettuce adds a light crunch to meals like sandwiches and wraps, spinach offers more vitamins A and C than iceberg or romaine. You might not be able to use spinach to make a wrap, but, you could opt to make it into a salad bowl with spinach instead.
Why use lettuce instead of the tortilla when making chicken wraps?
There are several reasons to use lettuce instead of tortillas when making chicken wraps. For one, lettuce is a much healthier option than tortillas. Lettuce is low in calories and fat, while tortillas are high in both. Lettuce is also a good source of vitamins and minerals, while tortillas are not. Additionally, lettuce wraps are much easier to make than tortilla wraps. All you need to do is wash and dry the lettuce, then lay it out on a plate or cutting board. Tortilla wraps require you to cook the tortillas first, which can be time-consuming.