turkey lettuce wraps


It’s taken me a little longer than I’d planned, but this month I have officially lost……100 pounds!! Still would like to lose about another 30 pounds, ideally before my 50th birthday in February. The thing with losing an extreme amount of weight is that once you get going, the pounds come off pretty quickly in the beginning, which is incredibly motivating, but then as time goes on the losses get smaller. In fact, I lost my first 30 pounds in about 2 months, but I have absolutely no expectations of losing these last 30 pounds that quickly. Yes, I could probably do it if I really cut back on what I eat and spent several hours a day at the gym, but for me that just isn’t realistic. When I started this weight loss journey I promised myself that I wouldn’t do anything drastic or anything that I couldn’t continue to do for the rest of my life. So I’ll lose these next 30 pounds by doing what I’ve been doing all along..eating sensibly, keeping track of every bite I take, and working out 5-6 times a week. Doing it any other way just isn’t an option for me, and I’m pretty confident I can hit that final goal within the next 7 months. That’s about 4 pounds a month..totally doable!


So, you may be saying to yourself, “Well, that’s nice, Lisa’s lost 100 pounds, good for her, but I came here to check out a recipe for lettuce wraps. What does this have to do with pictures of lettuce wraps??? Wouldn’t it make more sense for her to be sharing pictures of herself instead of turkey sitting in lettuce leaves??” And yes, of course that would make more sense, but I absolutely, positively despise having pictures taken of myself. And that hasn’t changed since losing all this weight..crazy, I know, but along with working on getting healthier and in better shape, I’m also working on changing how I see myself, and you know what? That’s way harder for me than losing weight has been. So don’t judge me for still not being ready to show some before and after photos, but trust me..they’re coming. Soon. Really. One of these days. Honestly.


Now, where was I before I started over-sharing about my self-image problems..oh yeah, turkey wraps and their connection to losing 100 pounds. Well, a couple months ago I joined a new gym and had a few sessions with a personal trainer. Up until that point I’d been working out at a bare-bones type of gym, which I actually really enjoyed and almost felt sad leaving, but I knew it was time to change things up and challenge myself even more. I love the new gym and really enjoy my training sessions, and one of the nice little perks of working with my trainer is the healthy recipes she shares. Her turkey wrap recipe sounded great and inspired me to come up with this version. As with most of the recipes I share, it’s very easy and versatile. Since I’m the only one in my house who was eating these (yeah, those crazy men I live with who don’t eat mushrooms or most other veggies) this recipe was in my fridge for a couple of days and made a great post-workout snack. Also made a pretty good midnight snack too..cold, right out of the fridge..yum! Perfect for these hot summer days (and nights).


Now don’t get intimidated by the seemingly long list of ingredients…yeah, there are a lot of things in here, but this all comes together in less than 30 minutes..I promise. For the cabbage and carrots, I used a bag of pre-chopped stuff from Wegmans (I think it was called Asian slaw mix), but if you don’t have a Wegmans in your area, you should be abe to find something similar at your local market. If you can’t find the 5-spice powder in the spice section, try the Asian section..that’s where I found it after unsuccessfully searching high and low in the spice section. That’s also where you’ll find Hoisin sauce, but if you’re not a fan, use your favorite stir-fry sauce instead..that’s what I’ll be doing the next time I make this. As always, I hope you’ll try it and make it your own by skipping what you don’t like and adding in what you love, and let me know how it goes.



turkey lettuce wraps
Prep time

Cook time

Total time


Serves: 4

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil (optional)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup mushrooms, coarsely chopped
  • 1 pound ground turkey breast
  • 1-2 Tablespoons ginger, freshly grated
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, grated or finely minced
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon 5-spice powder
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce or stir-fry sauce
  • 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 8-ounce can water chestnuts, drained and coarsely chopped
  • ¼ cup chicken stock or water
  • 1-2 cups slaw mix, preferably Asian-style
  • 2 heads of Boston lettuce leaves

  1. Heat the oils over medium heat in a large non-stick skillet. Add the onion and mushrooms, cooking 2-3 minutes until the onions just begin to soften. Add the turkey, ginger, garlic, red pepper, and 5-spice powder and cook until the turkey is cooked-through, about 5 minutes, stirring often and breaking up the turkey as it cooks.
  2. Add the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, and water chestnuts to the turkey mixture, cooking another 2-3 minutes, stirring often, until water chestnuts are heated through. If the mixture seems too dry, add about ¼ cup of chicken stock or water to moisten. Taste for seasoning and add additional soy sauce, hoisin sauce, or salt if needed.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in the slaw mix. The slaw mix should remain crunchy and barely cooked.
  4. Serve in lettuce leaves.
  5. For a quick dipping sauce, combine a little soy sauce, hoisin sauce, and red pepper flakes.



1 comment

  1. Lisa October 18, 2013 at 11:11 am Reply

    I love lettuce wraps and don’t make them nearly enough!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *