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  • Writer's pictureSusie Csorsz Brown

Spiced Chicken Lettuce Wraps with Quinoa and Cilantro Sesame Sauce

Updated: Mar 22, 2022

I'll just preface this recipe with this: my boys love to eat with their hands. Me? Not so much. This is a great recipe for a weekday because it comes together quickly. In the time it takes to cook the quinoa, you'll have also made a super yummy dipping sauce and a great slightly-spicy chicken that makes for a fun meal. As I said, I do not like to eat with my fingers, so I just pile everything on a bed of lettuce and enjoy it that way. My boys are all about eating everything with their hands so this is a perfect option for them!

I've included the steps to cook the quinoa; if you have some already cooked or have a different grain you'd like to include, please feel free to swap it out.

Ansel's Spiced Chicken Lettuce Wraps with Quinoa and Cilantro Sesame Sauce

Servings: 4 - 6 S



1 1/2 cups quinoa, rinsed

1 T olive oil

1 tsp chicken bouillon

salt and pepper

Cilantro Sesame Sauce

4 T soy sauce

3 T olive oil

3 T sesame oil

3 T water

1 T fish sauce

1 T brown sugar

2 T pickled jalapeño, chopped

juice of 1 lime

1/2 cup coarsely chopped cilantro

Spiced Chicken

1 kg ground chicken

salt and pepper

1 T olive oil

1 T sesame oil

2 inches fresh ginger, peeled and grated

3 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped

3 Hungarian chilis, cut in half lengthwise and then cut into half rings (use what you have on hand; if all you have are spicy fresh chilis, remove the seeds before slicing)

2 T soy sauce

2 T fish sauce

juice and zest of 1 lime

7 - 8 spring onions, thinly sliced

For serving

Bib or baby romain lettuce


If you are making fresh quinoa, start that first:

Heat olive oil in a pot over medium high heat. Add quinoa and bouillon, and season with salt and pepper. Heat, stirring often, until fragrant. Slowly add 3 cups of water. Stir well, and cover to cook until water is mostly absorbed, 20 minutes. Once most of the water is absorbed, remove from heat, cover and let sit. Fluff with fork when ready to serve.

Make your dipping sauce next:

Combine all of the ingredients in a medium bowl. Stir well to dissolve sugar. Chill until ready to use.

Make chicken:

Heat 1 T olive oil in a large skillet. Add chicken, and season well with salt and pepper. Heat, stirring, until crispy and browned. Once cooked through, careful pour chicken into a strainer to drain off juice and fat.

Do not wash pan; return it to heat again. Heat 1 T sesame oil. Add garlic and ginger, stirring to cook. Once fragrant, 3 to 4 minutes, add chopped chilis, cooking to soften. Return chicken to the pan, and add soy sauce and fish sauce, stirring to coat well. Once sizzling, add zest and juice of lime. Remove from heat, and stir in chopped spring onions.

To serve, scoop a bit of the chicken in the lettuce cup, add a scoop of quinoa, and drizzling with a bit of sauce. Enjoy! Repeat!

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