Thai Lettuce Wraps With Beef and Fresh Basil

Thai Lettuce Wraps with Beef & Fresh Basil!

D. Schmidt

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 12 mins
Total: 27 mins
Servings: 10 to 12 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
154 Calories
9g Fat
8g Carbs
10g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 10 to 12
Amount per serving
Calories 154
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 9g 12%
Saturated Fat 2g 12%
Cholesterol 25mg 8%
Sodium 489mg 21%
Total Carbohydrate 8g 3%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 10g
Vitamin C 24mg 118%
Calcium 42mg 3%
Iron 2mg 11%
Potassium 417mg 9%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Crisp, crunchy, savory, with just the right amount of spice, these fresh Thai lettuce wraps make dinner into something you'll look forward to. Just get yourself a head of fresh lettuce, preferably some with wide, large leaves, and then stir-fry the filling. For casual everyday eating, serve it like this:

Put the whole wok on a pot holder in the center of the table (serving it in the wok keeps the filling hot). Set individual leaves on a plate beside it. Add a small bowl of chopped cashews as the topping. Then tell your loved ones to put their own wraps together. And if you have anyone at your table who loves it extra spicy, another side dish is Thai chili sauce (completely optional). Now everyone wrap up and enjoy.


  • 1/2 to 3/4 pound ground beef, or ground bison

  • 1 head fresh lettuce, wide, firm leaves

  • 3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced

  • 3 to 4 medium green onions, sliced

  • 1 thumb-sized piece galangal, or ginger, sliced into matchstick-like pieces or grated

  • 1/2 to 1 fresh red or green chile, minced, to taste

  • 1 small green pepper, diced

  • 1 to 2 cups cherry tomatoes, sliced in half

  • 1/3 cup fresh basil, or mint

  • 1/3 cup dry-roasted cashews

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

For the Stir-Fry Sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce

  • 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce

  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar, packed

  • 1 tablespoon lime juice

Steps to Make It

  1. Separate lettuce leaves and rinse. Spin in salad spinner and set in refrigerator until time to serve.

  2. With a large knife, roughly chop cashews on a cutting board with a knife. Set in a small serving bowl. 

  3. Stir all stir-fry sauce ingredients—fish sauce, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, brown sugar, and lime juice—together in a cup. Set beside the stove.

  4. Heat a wok or large frying pan over high heat. When hot, drizzle in the oil, then add the garlic, onion, galangal or ginger, and chili. Stir-fry to release the fragrance, about 1 minute. 

  5. Add the ground beef. Stir-fry 5 to 6 minutes. As you stir-fry, gradually add up to half of the stir-fry sauce.

  6. Add green pepper plus a few more tablespoons of stir-fry sauce. Stir-fry 2 to 3 minutes.

  7. Add the tomatoes plus remaining stir-fry sauce. Stir-fry 2 more minutes.

  8. Switch off heat.  Rough chop up the basil and add to the wok. Fold in.

  9. Taste test for flavor, adding more fish sauce if not flavorful enough. If too salty for your taste, add more lime juice. More chili can be added for more spice. 

  10. To put wraps together, simply take a lettuce leaf, spoon some hot stir-fry into the center, and top with chopped cashews (for more serving tips, see introduction above). Enjoy.