Vietnamese Meatball Lettuce Wraps

During the week we sometimes don’t get around to eating dinner until around 9PM. I’m a fan of eating larger meals earlier in the day and having the meal size taper off as the day dwindles down. I also try not to leave about 3 hours between dinner and bedtime. However, with our late dinners and early bedtime, this can get challenging. So I try to have light dinners with as much vegetables as possible. Lettuce wraps are great for light dinners. While I especially love them in the summertime, I make them all year round. Usually I use ground turkey or thinly cut chicken breast meat that has been stir fried. This time, I actually wanted to make these Asian inspired meatballs first. And then I had to figure a way to eat them without covering up their flavor. Lettuce wraps seemed perfect.


  1. In a large bowl, mix together the turkey, garlic, shallot, chili flakes, fish sauce, soy sauce and black pepper.
  2. Let marinate for about 30 minutes.
  3. Make the dipping sauce while the meat is marinating.
  4. Preheat oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with either parchment paper or foil.
  5. Make the meatballs by wetting your hands and scoop out enough meat to make a scant golf-ball sized (or about 1.5″ diameter) meatball.
  6. Roll into a ball and place on the baking sheet.
  7. Repeat until the mixture is used up.
  8. Bake for 20 minutes.
  9. To serve, take a piece of lettuce, add a meatball and some of the condiments and dipping sauce.

Cook’s Notes

Make sure your hands are wet as you are forming the meatballs because the water will help prevent the meat from sticking to your hands.

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