Jul 16, 2019
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These Thai chicken lettuce wraps are full of delicious Asian-inspired flavors and crisp textures you crave.
This homemade recipe is a healthier option than everyone’s favorite restaurant appetizer, and because the chicken is made in the slow cooker, it’s a zero-fuss recipe you can come home to and enjoy as a meal.
Thai Chicken Lettuce Cups
If you love Thai, Indian, and Asian-spired recipes, these Thai chicken lettuce cups are sure to be a winner.
Each lettuce cup is filled with slow-cooked chicken, that’s both juicy and tender, mixed with lots of fresh veggies, and served with the ultimate drizzle of Thai peanut sauce.
It’s the type of recipe you can make ahead for a party and serve as an appetizer or make it in the middle of the week when you want to come home to a delicious meal without having to go out to eat!
Make this recipe once and watch it become one of your family’s go-to dishes when you’re tempted to order takeout.
Thai Chicken Lettuce Wrap Ingredients
To make these Thai chicken lettuce wraps at home, you’ll need a slow cooker and a few ingredients. Check your pantry and fridge for:
- Limes: both for the sauce and to serve, lime adds a citrus flavor to balance out the other spices.
- Soy sauce: a staple in Asian-inspired dishes, part of the slow cooker sauce.
- Brown sugar: used to balance out the salty in the slow cooker sauce.
- Oil: a little goes a long way
- Fish sauce: adds depth of flavor and smokyness to the sauce.
- Chili paste (sriracha): adds heat to this dish, more if you’d like.
- Garlic cloves: aromatics, to add depth to the slow cooker sauce.
- Ginger: aromatics, in the slow cooker sauce.
- Green onions: we’re using both the green and white parts.
- Chicken: breasts or thighs
- Lettuce: grab iceberg or Boston bibb to make lettuce cups
- Cabbage: purple or green, shredded to mix with the chicken and veggies
- Carrots: grate large carrots or save some time and use matchstick carrots
- Red bell pepper: adds so much crunch and freshness, pick the color bell pepper you love
- Peanuts: a few, chopped up, add texture and flavor pairs great with the sauce
- Peanut sauce: make your own peanut sauce or store-bought, you’ll love how great it finishes these lettuce cups!
Make sure to print the recipe card below with measurements.
Peanut Sauce for Lettuce Wraps
Peanut sauce for lettuce wraps, also called Satay sauce, is a slightly spicy thick peanut-based sauce. While it’s often paired with popular Thai dishes, it is used throughout much of Southeast Asian cuisine.
Peanut sauce pairs great with chicken, pork, and beef dishes and can be used as a dip, a salad dressing, or to drizzle and finish off a recipe.
How to Make Shredded Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps
You’re going to love that the chicken comes together in the slow cooker and the rest of the filling ingredients can be prepped ahead of time.
Here is the step-by-step for making Thai chicken lettuce cups
- Cook the chicken
In the bowl of your slow cooker, whisk to combine lime juice, soy sauce, brown sugar, oil, fish sauce, chili paste, garlic, ginger, and white parts of the onions.
Add in chicken, cut into a few smaller pieces to make it fit in the slow cooker bowl, and stir to coat with sauce. Cook, on high for 4 hours or 8 on low.
- Make the peanut sauce
If you’re making your own peanut sauce, follow the recipe directions and then refrigerate for later. This can be made 3 to 4 days ahead!
- Shred or chop up the chicken
Once the chicken is cooked, remove the chicken from the slow cooker and cut it into small pieces or shred it between two forks.
- Make the filling
In a medium bowl, combine the cooked chicken, shredded cabbage, carrots, bell peppers, peanuts, green parts of the onion, and cilantro.
Scoop chicken and veggie mixture inside lettuce leaves and drizzle with peanut sauce.
Want to see how this recipe is made? Watch the video!
What Type of Lettuce is Best for Wraps?
For wraps to hold lots of delicious ingredients, you’ll want to use sturdy leafed lettuce like an iceberg, Boston, or Bibb. The leaf should be deep enough to form a cup or a wrap; if not, you can always double up on the leaves.
Assembling Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Assembling the chicken lettuce waps is easy; you simply fill each lettuce cup with the chicken and veggie mixture and drizzle the peanut dressing over the top.
If your lettuce is big enough, you can roll it like a burrito and turn it into a wrap; or, simply fold it in half like a taco.
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What Else to Serve with Thai Chicken Wraps
These Thai Chicken Wraps can be turned into a meal and serve 4 people or as a side or appetizer and serve 8. You might also enjoy:
- Steamed rice
- Fresh fruit salad
- Salted edamame
Healthy Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps
For the chicken:
- ¼ cup lime juice
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 2 teaspoons chili paste Sriracha
- 4 cloves garlic grated or minced
- 2 teaspoons ginger grated
- ¼ cup green onions white part only, reserve green for serving
- 1 ½ lbs chicken breasts or thighs boneless, skinless
For the Filling & Serving
- 1 large head of lettuce
- 1 cup purple cabbage shredded
- 2-3 large carrots shredded, about 1 cup
- 1 red bell pepper chopped
- ⅓ cup unsalted peanuts chopped
- Tops from the green onions
- ⅓ cup cilantro chopped
- Lime wedges for serving
- Peanut sauce for serving
- If you're making your own peanut sauce, follow the recipe directions and then refrigerate for later. This can be made 3 to 4 days ahead.
- In the bowl of your slow cooker, whisk to combine lime juice, soy sauce, brown sugar, oil, fish sauce, chili paste, garlic, ginger, and white parts of the onions.
- Add in the chicken and stir to coat with sauce. Cook, on high for 4 hours or 8 on low.
- Once the chicken is cooked, remove the chicken from the slow cooker and cut it into smaller pieces or shred it between two forks.
- In a large bowl, combine the cooked chicken, shredded cabbage, carrots, bell peppers, peanuts, green parts of the onion, and cilantro.
- Serve by scooping chicken and veggie mixture inside lettuce leaves and drizzle with peanut sauce.
I have made this recipe multiple times and my family LOVES it (and I have 2 picky eaters). It’s a staple. The home-made peanut sauce is the icing on the cake!
really enjoy making this Thai Chicken. I have made this with chicken and beef, both are very good.
Can this be cooked longer than 8 hours on low?
absolutely. it will cook a little longer and pull apart. after 10h the chicken sort of dries out.
Do you recommend serving this warm or cold? Can’t wait to try it!
I prefer it warm 🙂
OMG, made this tonight and it was soooooo good!! I used ground turkey instead of chicken and made it in a pan I stead of crockpot and still DELICIOUS! Totally recommend, and the peanut sauce was bomb!!
I’m so glad you loved these Ali!
Very good, fresh, & healthy tasting! I forgot to add in the peanuts though! Unfortunately I don’t think it was worth making again to try it with the peanuts. It made a lot of leftovers, more than we can handle and while it seems like it’s be great the next day, I really didn’t find it to be. The presentation is great though and this is the best peanut sauce I have ever made!