Minced chicken in lettuce cups with hoisin-flavored chicken and crunchy vermicelli noodles served taco-style in crisp lettuce leaves. It's budget-friendly, tasty, and easy to make weeknight dinner!
Summer is almost here, and I am far from beach ready.
I love blogging, yes, I do! Because of it, I can wake up in the morning and live my passion doing what I love to do. But as much it has changed my life, the whole process of testing and developing recipes does come with a hefty price. And by a hefty price, I mean weight.
Being surrounded by good food all the time is bound to have repercussions and in my case, fifty pounds of it. 😭
So while I can plop myself in a puddle of self-loathing, I can instead get up and do something about my burgeoning waist. It's not easy, this weight loss stuff. Not when I'd rather have extra fries than exercise.
Thank goodness for my newly found addiction, minced chicken in lettuce cups, watching my carbs need not be an ordeal. With succulent chicken morsels and crunchy noodles served taco-style in crisp lettuce cups, I get to enjoy a healthy meal without sacrificing flavor. I get to eat without the guilt. 🙂
Tips on How to Make Chicken in Lettuce Cups
- Although you can substitute ground chicken, I highly recommend mincing the meat for best texture.
- Grate the ginger so you get the flavor but without peppery bits to bite into.
- The rice vermicelli (sotanghon noodles) are deep-fried; if you want to trim down the fat without losing the added crunch, swap with julienned carrots
- Iceberg lettuce has a nice crisp texture but doesn't hold up well to the heat of the dish. Try green leaf or butter lettuce.
- This is a great lunch option to bring to work, just make sure to pack the chicken, the crispy noodles, and lettuce separately.
- The minced chicken freezes well for future use. Store in an airtight container and it should keep in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw and reheat when ready to enjoy.
Minced Chicken in Lettuce Cups
- 3 pieces dried shitake mushrooms
- 2 ounces vermicelli noodles
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken, finely minced
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon Chinese cooking wine
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- ¼ cup hoisin sauce
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 thumb-size ginger, peeled and grated
- 1 can (8 ounces) water chestnuts, drained and finely chopped
- 2 pieces green onions, finely choped
- 1 head iceberg, green leaf, or butter lettuce, leaves separated
- In a small bowl, soak shitake mushrooms in warm water for about 30 minutes or until softened. Drain and squeeze out liquid. Stem mushrooms and mince. Set aside.
- In a pan over medium heat, heat about 1 cup of oil until hot. Add noodles and deep-fry for about 10 to 15 seconds or until puffed up and color changes to white. Using a slotted spoon, remove from pan and drain on paper towels. Set aside.
- In a bowl, combine chicken, one tablespoon of the soy sauce, Chinese cooking wine, and cornstarch. Marinate for about 10 to 15 minutes.
- In a small bowl, combine hoisin sauce, the remaining one tablespoon soy sauce, and rice vinegar. Whisk together until blended and set aside.
- In a wide skillet over medium heat, heat about 1 tablespoon oil. Add garlic and ginger and cook, stirring regularly, until aromatic.
- Add chicken and cook, breaking apart with the back of a spoon, until lightly browned.
- Add water chestnuts and mushrooms. Continue to cook for about 2 to 3 minutes or until vegetables are tender-crisp.
- Add hoisin sauce mixture and stir until chicken is well coated. Continue to cook for about 3 to 5 minutes or until sauce is absorbed and chicken is cooked through.
- Add green onions and stir to combine.
- Remove from heat and transfer onto a serving platter. To serve, spoon chicken mixture into center of lettuce leaf and top with fried noodles.