No need to get take out tonight! These EASY Instant Pot Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps can be thrown together quicker than takeout service and it tastes a million times better too!
Lettuce as a vessel for meat . . . what are your thoughts on that?
I've been teased many atimes over the past several years every time I would build my burger on leaves of iceberg. “Are you on a diet?” “Do you not eat carbs?” “Are you Gluten Free?” “Why do you have to make the rest of us feel so unhealthy” (harmless teasing from my brother, no offense taken).
Uh…No, no, no and “well, maybe you should try it”. I just don't want to waste belly space on bland bread when I could be eating more of the good stuff!
As a side note: a good portion of my family now eat my lettuce burgers. Don't…say…it…
I TOLD YOU SO!
There's a reason why Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps are so very popular (PF Changs anyone?). It's because a cold, crisp lettuce leaf makes the most refreshing serving vessel ever.
Such is the case with today's recipe which is going to have you happy dancing, happy crying, happy yelling, happy EVERYTHING!
WHY YOU WILL LOVE ASIAN CHICKEN LETTUCE WRAPS FROM THE INSTANT POT
- EASY: Literally, everything just gets thrown in the pot ‘cuz who wants to cook and crumble ground meat? Not I! Throw it in then use a meat chopper to break it up after it's cooked. You'll love this trick!
- FLAVORTOWN: SOOOO Flavorful! Salty, sweet, tart, and just a bit of spice, you'll be eating more piles of lettuce leaves than a family of bunnies.
- EAT YO' VEGGIES: Bring on the veggies! Carrots, jalapenos, and water chestnuts keep this wrap light and full of texture.
- BETTER THAN TAKEOUT: Homemade takeout food, in minutes that tastes good AND makes you feel good
HOW TO MAKE HEALTHY CHICKEN LETTUCE WRAPS
- Whisk up the sauce in the pressure cooker pot, add chicken, carrots, and jalapenos
- Cook for 2 minutes. Let pressure release naturally for 10 minutes
- Use a meat chopper to chop meat into small pea-sized pieces
- Thicken the sauce with a cornstarch slurry. Add lime zest, onions, basil, and water chestnuts
- Stir to combine
- Add some spice and crunchy peanuts, Devour!
I NEVER go out for Chinese food and with this kind of meal in my arsenal, I may never eat out again! Except for Thai food, won't give that up, EVER!
This is so light, flavorful, and easy to make, you simply must, MUST make this one ASAP! No pressure -HA! Pressure Cooker Blog classic pun right there 😜
BEST LETTUCE FOR WRAPS
Most common lettuce used for wraps:
- Green Leaf Lettuce
- Butterhead Lettuce AKA Butter, Boston, or Bibb Lettuce
- Romaine Lettuce
- Iceberg Lettuce
My personal favorites are romaine and iceberg because they hold up well and deliver that yummy crunch factor.
HOW TO MAKE LETTUCE WRAPS/CUPS
To prepare the lettuce wraps, cut off the root of the lettuce and simply peel away the outer leaves gently to make a pile of “cups”. Wash and dry them well, chill them until you're ready to serve them. This extra chill time makes them extra crisp and refreshing.
That's it! They are ready to serve!
WHAT ARE WATER CHESTNUTS?
Have you ever wondered what in the world are water chestnuts? Yeah, me too, so here ya go:
“Water chestnuts are an aquatic tuber vegetable. They grow in parts of Southeast Asia, Africa, Australia, and many Pacific islands. A water chestnut resembles an actual chestnut in both color and shape, but it is not a nut” – Medical News Today
They grow underwater in marshes in the mud. I have never eaten a fresh water chestnut, but apparently the fresh ones are sweeter and more crunchy than what we buy canned in the store.
They can be eaten raw or cooked in a dish. They are most commonly seen in Asian food and are an incredibly healthy way to amp up texture and fiber in a meal.
Now you know!
Enjoy more water chestnuts in:
TOOLS/INGREDIENTS USED TO MAKE INSTANT POT ASIAN CHICKEN LETTUCE WRAPS
- Instant Pot
- Meat Chopper
- Water Chestnuts (find them in the Asian section near the soy sauce)
- Fish Sauce (this is my favorite brand)
Recipe adapted from this skillet version at Mel's Kitchen CafePrint
Instant Pot Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Crisp, light refreshing Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps that can be cooked in no time in the Instant Pot!
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 2 minutes
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 4 - 6 servings 1x
- Category: Entree
- Method: Pressure Cooker
- Cuisine: Asian
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 – 4 tablespoons lime juice – depending on how strong you want the lime flavor (remove the zest of 2 limes before you cut them)
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar or honey
- 1 pound lean ground chicken
- 2 medium-sized carrots, grated
- 1 jalapeno, minced (seeded and deveined for less spice)
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon water
- zest of 2 limes
- 1/4 cup chopped green onions
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
- 8 ounce can sliced water chestnuts, chopped
- lettuce cups – romaine, iceberg, green leaf, or butterhead lettuce
- For serving – cooked brown or white rice, soy sauce, lime wedges, sriracha, chopped peanuts
- Pour fish sauce, soy sauce, lime juice, and brown sugar into the pressure cooker pot. Whisk to combine.
- Add ground chicken – make sure it's a flat slab of chicken. If it's in a tube, break it up a bit so it will cook through evenly.
- Top chicken with carrots and jalapeno.
- Secure the lid and turn pressure release knob to a sealed position. Cook at high pressure for 2 minutes.
- When cooking is complete, use a natural release for 10 minutes, then release any remaining pressure.
- Mix together cornstarch and water to make a slurry.
- Use the saute function to bring meat to a simmer; whisk in cornstarch slurry until thickened, about 1 minute.
- Stir in lime zest, green onions, basil, and water chestnuts.
- Layer a lettuce cup with rice, meat mixture, and desired toppings; serve!
- Meat mixture doubles well so make extra for a crowd or freeze half of it for another day
- Fish sauce doesn't make the meat taste fishy but adds a flavorful salty element to the meat. Add extra soy sauce if you don't like it
- I haven't tried it yet, but I suspect you could make rice pot in pot with the meat. Try 1 cup white rice plus 1 cup of water and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a cake pan (don't use pyrex it slows the cook time) on a trivet above the meat. I would use a full natural pressure release if I did this
Keywords: instant pot, quick dinners, asian chicken lettuce wrap
This looks so good! I had planned to make this tonight but realized I’m out of ground chicken. Would ground beef be weird?
Natalie, I think beef would work fine. I’d use it in a pinch 🙂
We don’t like fish. Does it taste fishy?
Linda, I’m not a big fish fan either and I adore this meal. You could always leave out the fish sauce though if you prefer.
I added a splash of rice vinegar and sesame oil at the end. Omitted the jalapeño and topped with red pepper flakes on my bowel. Hubby does not like spice. Very good recipe.
Missy, I love your additions! My husband and I both like spicy, but he likes “over the top” spicy.
I absolutely love lettuce wraps and make them all the time at home, so I’m excited to try your recipe soon! I noticed in your bio you said that you always, ALWAYS follow up with dark, salty chocolate. I was curious what your go to one was because I noticed you look so trim and healthy and I’m on the lookout for a better option to get my sweet fix. Thank you for all your hard work on this blog! You’re one of my favorites and must reads!
Crystal, You’ll love these wraps. The flavor is amazing!
For chocolate, I actually make my own, kind of, haha! I like 90% chocolate but it’s hard to find in a variety of flavors so I have to make my own and sprinkle them with flaky salt. Check out this post https://tidbits-marci.com/instant-pot-chocolates/
I’ve recently discovered Hu Chocolate. It’s sweetened with coconut sugar and is the best store-bought chocolate I’ve ever tasted. Expensive, but to me, it’s worth it! And thank you for your sweet comment!
I made this just now and after eating I rechecked the recipe. Too much lime for me. I made it and it curled my toes! Reduce that and add some grated fresh ginger to make a bit more palatable.
Diane, thank you for your feedback! Someone else told me the same thing. I’ll edit the recipe to make sure it’s pleasing to all palates, thank you!
How can I make this recipe without using a pressure cooker?
sandy, yep! Just saute in a pan
Holy lime batman!! This is a yummy recipe but the lime is over powering. I recommend less unless that is a flavor you love!
Thanks Angie for your feedback, that’s great to note! I do love a strong lime flavor on this dish, especially with the fish sauce.
Amie R says
Delicious! Made it with rabbit and used Napa cabbage as the wraps. Thanks so much!
Amie, Can’t say I’ve ever had rabbit, but I’m glad it worked for you! I’ve never used Napa as a wrap, what a great idea.
I made this for dinner tonight. Absolutely delicious!
There was not a single bite left. Everyone loved it.
Lyn, Brock and I will about eat this whole thing ourselves! I’m so glad you loved it, it’s one of my favorites 🙂
Lola Zunker says
This recipe is delicious. Thanks for sharing it.
I’m glad you liked it Lola! It’s one of my shining stars in my home 🙂