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Beef Lettuce Wraps

Looking for a quick, delicious, and satisfying meal? Try my Beef Lettuce Wraps! With thinly sliced beef cooked in a flavorful sauce of soy, garlic, and ginger, these wraps are bursting with freshness and flavor. Perfect for a light dinner or a fun appetizer, they’re ready in under 15 minutes, making them ideal for busy weeknights!

Asian inspired beef lettuce wraps topped with green onions being picked up with a pair of chopsticks.

Why I Love This Recipe

I just can’t get enough of this Beef Lettuce Wraps recipe—it’s like a burst of creativity straight from my kitchen to your plate! What I love most is how effortlessly it comes together, yet it’s packed with such vibrant Japanese-inspired flavors! It’s the kind of dish that’s just so easy-breezy to whip up, yet it tastes like you’ve spent hours perfecting it!

Picture thinly sliced beef, sizzling away in a pan, soaking up all the goodness of my special Japanese stir-fry sauce that was created from fusing the flavors found in my Pan Seared Korean BBQ Brisket and Garlic Butter Steak Cubes. And get this, originally, I was trying to create a sauce for a beef sushi recipe! But then, a lightbulb moment, why not wrap this beef in crisp lettuce just like in my Chicken Lettuce Wraps leaves instead? Genius, right?

Now, making this dish is an easy adventure in itself! There’s the joyful sizzle of the beef hitting the pan and the satisfying crunch of fresh lettuce as you wrap it all up. Each bite is a burst of flavor—tender beef with that savory Japanese sauce, all hugged by the crispiness of the lettuce. It’s a complete meal that’s light, satisfying, and oh-so-delicious. Trust me, if you’re after something that’s fuss-free yet incredibly tasty, this pan-fried beef lettuce wrap is your ticket to flavor town!

Ingredients

Ingredients

  • Thinly Sliced Beef – thinly sliced beef around the thickness of deli meat. Rib-eye and chuck cut work best. These can be picked up from an Asian grocery labeled for the use of shabu-shabu or sukiyaki or you can request your local butcher to slice them for you.
  • Salt sea salt preferred.
  • Black Pepper – ground.
  • Ginger – fresh and finely diced.
  • Jalapeno – sliced. De-seed to make the sauce less spicy.
  • Green Onion – finely chopped green onion scallions.
  • Green Leaf Lettuce – fresh and individual leaves.
  • Japanese Sake – typically will come in a large bottle labeled junmai sake. Can also substitute with dry sherry wine or Chinese cooking wine, found at local grocery stores or Asian markets. 
  • Sweetener – use your preferred sweetener.
  • Soy Sauce – low-sodium Soy Sauce preferred. Can also use tamari for gluten-free.
  • Garlic freshly grated or pressed with a garlic press.

Flavor Add Ins

For an extra burst of flavor, consider adding a drizzle of Toasted Sesame Oil and a sprinkle of Red Pepper Flakes onto the beef mixture after cooking.

🥩 Beef Note

Use Shaved Beef available at grocery stores as a budget-friendly alternative to the sliced shabu shabu beef.

🥬 Crispy Lettuce Pro Tip

For crispy lettuce leaves, Soak in Cold Water for 30-45 Minutes before wrapping.

Asian inspired beef lettuce wraps topped with green onions served on a wooden plank, top down.

Essential Kitchen Equipment

  • Wok or Deep Large Skillet

Directions

☑ Before Getting Started

I recommend choosing a Large, Deep Skillet or a Wok to ensure even cooking and heat distribution for the sliced beef.

Step 1 In a skillet or frying pan, prepare the sauce by combining Japanese sake, sweetener, soy sauce, and garlic and bring to a light boil then remove from heat.

Sauce for beef lettuce wraps.

Step 2 Lightly season sliced beef with salt and black pepper. In a large skillet, add seasoned beef coated with oil and cook until browned under medium-high heat, about 2-4 minutes. Add in diced ginger, green onions, jalapeno, and the premixed sauce. Stir well and transfer to a plate.

Beef being cooked in a frying pan.

🍳 Cooking Pro Tip

Avoid Overcooking the thin slices. Once they’re browned, they’re ready. It’s best to use Medium Heat to cook the meat evenly rather than searing it. This approach preserves the tenderness and flavor of the beef slices, ensuring a delicious final dish without any dryness or toughness.

Step 3 Take a spoonful of the seasoned beef mixture, place it into a prepared lettuce leaf, roll together and serve.

Beef lettuce wraps.

Pairing Recommendations

While these lettuce wraps are a filling meal by itself, consider enhancing the experience by serving them with my Japanese Soy Sauce Pickled Garlic for added tanginess. For a satisfying meal, pair them with a bowl of Japanese Chicken Soup.

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of lettuce works best for lettuce wraps?

For lettuce wraps, you'll want varieties with large, flexible leaves like green leaf, butter, romaine, or iceberg lettuce. Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference and availability. To ensure crispy wraps, soak the lettuce in cold water for 30-45 minutes before using.

Can I make the sauce ahead of time?

Yes, absolutely! You can prepare the sauce ahead of time and store it in the fridge until you're ready to use it in cooking.

What other vegetables can I add to the wraps?

For additional veggies in your wraps, carrots and cucumber are excellent choices, adding a crunchy texture and fresh flavor. You can also elevate the taste with some kimchi or pickled garlic for a delicious twist!

Storage Tips

Store the cooked beef in an airtight container in the refrigerator where it will remain fresh for 5-7 days.

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Watch How To Make It

Asian inspired beef lettuce wraps topped with green onions served on a wooden plank, side view.

Beef Lettuce Wraps

Welcome to our flavorful Beef Lettuce Wraps recipe! Enjoy tender beef wrapped in crisp lettuce leaves for a delightful and satisfying meal. Try our delicious beef lettuce wraps today!
5 from 5 votes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Asian
Keyword: beef lettuce wraps, beef wrapped in lettuce
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 8 wraps
Print Recipe
Calories: 117kcal

Ingredients

  • 3/4 lb Beef thinly sliced chuckroll or ribeye
  • 1/8 tsp Salt
  • 1/8 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1/4 Inch Ginger
  • 1/4 Inch Jalapeno
  • 1 Stalk Green Onion
  • 8-12 Leaves Lettuce green or iceburg
  • 3 tbsp Japanese Sake
  • 2 tbsp Sweetener your preferred sweetener
  • 2 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 2 Cloves Garlic

Instructions

  • Gather all the ingredients.
    Ingredients for beef lettuce wraps on the countertop.
  • Lightly salt and pepper both sides of the meat and set aside.
    Seasoned sliced beef.
  • Finely dice ginger, green onion, and optional jalapeno and place all into a holding bowl.
    Chopped ginger and green onion in a mixing bowl.
  • Prepare lettuce leaves by washing, drying, and cutting into 5-6 inches widths. Transfer to serving plate.
    Washed lettuce in a colander.
  • Grate garlic with a grater or garlic press and set aside.
    Grated garlic.
  • In a small fry pan, add 3 tbsp of Japanese sake, sweetener, soy sauce, grated garlic and bring to boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to med-low and let it cook for 1 minute while stirring occasionally. Once the minute has passed, remove from heat and set aside.
    Sauce for beef lettuce wraps.
  • In a large fry pan, bring up to temperature on medium-high, should take around 1 minute. Once up to temp, place the sliced beef inside, mix well and cook until browned, should take around 2-4 minutes. Once browned, add bowl with finely diced ginger, green onion, and optional jalapeno and mix well. After mixing, pour sauce from step 6) and cook for additional 10-15 seconds and transfer to serving plate.
    Beef being cooked in a frying pan.
  • You can either serve this dish as family style where each person would wrap their own lettuce beef rolls, or serve it pre-wrapped on individual plates. Either way, you would prepare the rolls by placing 1-2 slices of beef onto the center of each lettuce wrap and rolling the leaf to form a roll. You can use a toothpick to ensure it holds its shape if you are serving it as pre-wrapped rolls!
    Beef lettuce wraps.

Nutrition

Calories: 117kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 318mg | Potassium: 145mg | Vitamin A: 56IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 13mg | Iron: 1mg
*Values Based Per Serving
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