Chili Chicken Lettuce Cups

Close up photo of a Chili Chicken Lettuce Cup garnished with spring onion greens on a white round place. In the top left of photo (center of plate) is a glass serving bowl filled with chili chicken mince. Scattered spring onion greens on the white background at the top right of photo.

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These Chili Chicken Lettuce Cups are perfect for a light lunch or appetizer, healthy, and super delicious! They’re ready from start to finish in just 35 minutes!


  • 78 Garlic cloves – minced
  • 2 TBLS Ginger (about 1.5″ chunk) – minced
  • 14 Red Chilies (Holland or Bird’s Eye), to taste and deseeded depending on desired heat level – minced
  • 12 Green Chilies (Holland or Bird’s Eye), to taste and deseeded depending on desired heat level – minced
  • ½ Red Onion – minced
  • ¼ Green Bell Pepper– chopped small
  • ¼ Red Bell Pepper– chopped small
  • 3 Spring Onions (Scallions) – chopped, whites & greens separated (reserve half of the greens for garnish)
  • 1.5 TSP Corn Starch
  • 2 TSP Garlic Paste*
  • 2 TSP Ginger Paste*
  • 3 TBLS Low Sodium Light Soy Sauce
  • 1.5 TSP Sweet Dark Soy Sauce (the thick and viscous type)
  • 1 TBLS + 1 TSP Spicy Vinegar (or regular white vinegar. I use Lee Kum Kee’s Spicy Vinegar.)
  • 1.5 TSP Encona West Indian Original Hot Pepper Sauce (can be substituted with Tabasco Original for a milder option, Tabasco Habanero Pepper Sauce, or any other vinegar based red pepper hot sauce)
  • 1.5 TBLS Asian style Chili Sauce (such as Tso Hin Kee Chili Sauce)
  • 1.5 TBLS Tomato Ketchup
  • 3 TBLS Water
  • 1.5 TBLS Peanut Oil (or any other cooking oil)
  • 1 TSP Chili Oil (optional)
  • 1 TSP Sesame Oil
  • 480g Minced Chicken
  • 12 TBLS Water (if and as needed while cooking)

To Serve:

  • 1 head Butter or Bibb Lettuce, leaves separated, rinsed, and dried (I used Butter Lettuce)
  • Reserved spring onion greens



  1. Chop/mince the garlic, ginger, red chilies, green chilies, red onion, green bell pepper, red bell pepper, and spring onion (whites & greens separated). Place in individual small bowls and set aside. (Deseed chilies if desired or omit entirely if you prefer less heat.)
  2. In a medium sized bowl, combine the corn starch, garlic paste, ginger paste, and low sodium light soy sauce, sweet dark soy sauce, spicy vinegar, Encona West Indian Original Hot Pepper Sauce, chili sauce, tomato ketchup, and 3 TBLS water. Mix with a spoon until blended well. Set aside.
  3. Rinse and drain the minced chicken.

For the Chili Chicken Lettuce Cups:

  1. Heat peanut, sesame, and chili oil (if using) over medium-high heat in a medium sized sauté pan or wok. Once the oil has heated, add the red onion and sauté until they become slightly tender (about 1 minute).
  2. Add the spring onion whites and ginger and sauté for 30 seconds more.
  3. Add the garlic, red and green chilies and continue sautéing for another minute.
  4. Add the minced chicken and cook for 10 minutes, stirring and breaking up the lumps with your spatula/wooden spoon as it cooks.
  5. Add the red and green bell pepper and stir until they soften a little – about 1-2 minutes.
  6. Pour in the sauce and stir to combine and coat the chicken and other ingredients. Cook while stirring occasionally for 2 minutes. If the mixture starts to looks a little dry, add water if needed.
  7. Add half of the spring onion greens and stir to combine. Cook for 3-40 seconds, then turn off the stove and remove from heat.
  8. To Serve: Spoon chili chicken mince mixture into lettuce leaves and garnish with remainder spring onion greens.+


  1. *You can usually find Garlic PasteGinger Paste, and also Ginger Garlic Paste at an Indian or Asian Grocery Store or try online. If using Ginger Garlic Paste, use 3 teaspoons. If you can’t find either of them, blend equal amounts of roughly chopped garlic and ginger together with 1-2 tablespoons of vegetable/olive oil. I recommend making a small quantity – ½ cup chopped ginger and ½ cup chopped garlic, as you will only need 4 TSP in total for this recipe. This paste can be stored in the fridge for about a week and used for quick and easy cooking in other recipes such as pasta, noodles, and stir-fries.
  2. +If the leaves of your lettuce are on the smaller size, you can spoon the mixture into two leaves like I did (double up the lettuce leaves for more support).
  3. The chili chicken mince will keep in the fridge for up to 3-5 days and you can use it in wraps and sandwiches as well. A wrap made with this Chili Chicken Mince is actually another one of my favorite light lunches! Totally delish and definitely give it a try if you have some leftover chili chicken mince! 👍


Keywords: light lunch, easy lunch, healthy, quick and easy