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Thai-style Pork Lettuce Cups

Active Time: 30 minutes / Cook Time: 15-20 minutes / Total Time: 30 minutes

Makes 4 servings

Nutrition Corner: Soaking Grains, Nuts, & Seeds
Soaking your grains, nuts, and seeds helps to remove some of the natural phytic acids present. Phytic acids are used as part of a plant's defense mechanism, however, when we consume them, these anti-nutrients inhibit vitamin and mineral absorption in our digestive tract. Soaking also helps to break down proteins, making grains easier to digest, and can drastically reduce cooking time.

Thai-style Pork Lettuce Wraps.JPG

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup quinoa
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 lb. ground pork (can substitute chicken or turkey)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
  • 4 thinly sliced scallions, divided
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 cup diced, seeded cucumber
  • 1 cup diced red bell pepper
  • ½ cup shredded carrot
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 small jalapeño, seeded (if desired) and minced
  • ¼ cup dry-roasted almonds, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce*
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 head Boston/Bibb/Butter lettuce, separated into individual leaves (you can also use Romaine) (about 16-20)

Directions:

  1. Place quinoa and water in a small saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and cover pan. Cook 15 minutes, turn off the heat, fluff with a fork, and let steam until needed.
  2. Heat coconut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork and cook, stirring to crumble, until pork is browned, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add ginger, garlic, and salt to pork and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in half of the scallions.
  4. In a medium bowl, combine the remaining scallions with the cucumber, pepper, carrot, cilantro, jalapeño, and peanuts.
  5. In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, fish sauce, and honey.
  6. Add juice mixture and quinoa to pork mixture and toss.
  7. Fill lettuce cups with 2 slightly heaped tablespoons pork mixture and top with two tablespoons of vegetables.
  8. Serve ¼ of the lettuce cups per person for dinner tonight.
  9. Package remaining lettuce cups in airtight containers for lunch tomorrow and refrigerate until needed.

*You can substitute 2 teaspoons gluten-free tamari plus 1 teaspoon chicken broth for the fish sauce, if desired.