Starving Student: Asian style slaw

By: Jonathan Munshaw, Editor-in-chief 

I truly hate most vegetables. Peppers and onions are where it’s at, but I’m not big on much of anything else. Celery is pretty good when used in soups or eaten with a veggie dip, and cucumbers are really good on salad, but that’s about it. I’m steering clear of most anything else. However, there are some ways to prepare vegetables that will trick you into thinking you’re not even eating vegetables.

It was that idea that fueled me to make these lettuce wraps (you know, like the ones at P.
F. Chang’s?)

It’s one of the healthier dishes that I make, but tastes just like something you’d get at a Chinese restaurant.

The base is just stir-fried chicken with soy sauce and some other traditional Asian seasonings, and the slaw is made up of three different vegetables which add plenty of nutrients. By the time you’re done making it, you’re basically going to be eating an Asian chicken salad that’s in the shape of a taco.

The toughest part of this recipe is trying to find the best kinds of lettuce to use as the wraps.

Iceberg would seem like the common answer, but the inside of a head of iceberg lettuce doesn’t actually keep the round shape it would appear to. That’s better left for shredding and put on sandwiches.

Radicchio lettuce is more bitter, but it has a good shape and brings a more unique flavor to the table rather than iceberg and is more expensive. Romaine lettuce hearts are also an option, but they create longer wraps (think a hotdog shape) rather than a taco-shape wrap. Butter lettuce is usually my go-to here, since it’s the easiest to get at the grocery store, but I’ve also done it with radicchio and it’s been fine.


  • 1 tbl. Olive oil
  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 2 tbl. Rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbl. ground ginger
  • Sriracha hot sauce, to personal taste
  • 1 head butter lettuce
  • 3 scallions, chopped

For the slaw

  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 large carrot (or a ½ cup of baby carrotts)
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 2 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 tbl. rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbl. olive oil
  • 2 tsp. soy sauce



  • Slice the vegetables for the slaw, lengthwise and into roughly three or four-inch pieces
  • In a small bowl, combine the veggies with the other slaw ingredients and refrigerate while you make the filling
  • In a wok or large frying pan, cook the ground chicken, mix in all ingredients
  • If needed, add more soy sauce (I prefer my filling to have more soy sauce than less, but it’s up to you)
  • Spoon about two or three tablespoons of filing into each lettuce leaf, and top with some of the slaw

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