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Lettuce Wraps: Vegan or with Pork

Asian-inspired lettuce wraps, zingy with lemongrass, pineapple, and ginger. Make them vegan or with pork. Perfect for lunch, dinner, or as an appetizer. You can get this fast and flavourful lettuce wraps on the table in under 30 minutes. 
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American, Asian, North American, Thai
Keyword: Asian lettuce wraps, lettuce wraps,, spicy lettuce wraps, Thai lettuce wraps, vegan lettuce wraps
Servings: 4
Calories: 139kcal
Author: sylvia

Ingredients

For Vegan Version

  • 1 cup textured vegetable protein (TVP) (measure before rehydrating)

For Meat-eater version

  • 1 pound lean ground pork (or you could sub with ground chicken or turkey)

For all versions

  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 3 tablespoons onion finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons ginger finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon lemongrass finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons pineapple juice
  • 3 tablespoons soya sauce
  • red chili pepper flakes (optional, to taste)

To serve

  • lettuce leaves (romaine, butter, iceberg)
  • 1/2 cup grated carrot (and/or spiralized raw butternut squash)
  • 1/2 cup diced pineapple
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro

Instructions

  • If you are making the vegan version, rehydrate the textured vegetable protein (TVP) according to package directions. This usually takes about 5-10 minutes. 

Make the filling

  • Heat the oil in a large frying pan. 
  • Add in the onion, ginger, lemongrass and saute for 3-5 minutes until the onion is softened. 
  • If you are making the vegan version, add in the TVP and remaining ingredients and cook until heated through. 
  • If you are making the pork version, add in the pork and remaining ingredients and cook until the pork is no longer pink. 

To serve

  • Spoon the filling into lettuce leaves and top with your choice of grated carrot, and/or raw butternut squash, diced pineapple, and cilantro 

Notes

About Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP)

See the post for detailed information. I used Bob's Red Mill TVP (this is not a sponsored post). TVP is made from soybeans. It's often used as a meat substitute in vegan and vegetarian foods.

Making the Filling Ahead

You can make the filling ahead. You can either leave it on low heat on the stove for at least 30 minutes after cooking, or if you store it in the fridge and reheat it over low heat. If the mixture starts to get a little dry, add some pineapple juice, or even water. 

Storage

If you want to make these as appetizers, you could make them an hour or two ahead of time and store them in the fridge. If you use romaine lettuce, it holds up quite well.  
You can keep the filling for a few days in the fridge. It's good hot or cold. 

Nutrition Information

Nutritional information is an estimate only and is based on using textured vegetable protein (TVP) and not pork. It does not include additional toppings.

Nutrition

Calories: 139kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 3g | Sodium: 758mg | Potassium: 85mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 15IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 77mg | Iron: 2.9mg