Monday, January 6, 2014

Thai Butternut Squash Lettuce Wraps

Over the years, I've made various lettuce wraps -- first these beef or turkey ones, next these chicken ones, and finally this latest recipe for vegetarian lettuce wraps.  And we've loved them all.  This one has butternut squash (which I LOVE) and quinoa and you drizzle on a peanut sauce.  SO good.

It also came together really easily.  The quinoa takes about 20 minutes to cook and so does the butternut squash.  I had cubed the butternut squash earlier in the day --I think the secret is to peel the squash with a vegetable peeler and then microwave it for about 2 minutes just enough to soften it.  This helps a lot with being able to cut up the squash.

We loved the flavors of these lettuce wraps.  The peanut sauce might have been the star of the show but we liked the crunchiness of the bell peppers and peanuts as well.  My husband even requested to take the leftovers for lunch the next day so I would say this was a success!

Thai Butternut Squash Lettuce Wraps
Taken from: How Sweet Eats
Serves about 4
  • 4 cups cubed butternut squash (about one small or medium sized squash)
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water (could also substitute some coconut water or chicken broth)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 head of butter lettuce, leaves torn off (we used romaine instead)
  • 1 red pepper, thinly sliced
  • 4 green onions, sliced (I used some chopped red onion instead)
  • 1/3 cup peanuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup of fresh cilantro, torn
Thai Peanut Sauce Ingredients:
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons canned coconut milk (I used coconut water since I didn't have coconut milk; I've also used 1 tablespoon of coconut oil and 2 tablespoons water as a substitute too)
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 4 tablespoons of water (use as needed)
  1. Cook quinoa according to package directions (I cook mine in a rice cooker).
  2. Toss the squash with the salt, pepper and chili powder. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the coconut oil. Add the squash and cook until it is fork tender and slightly caramely in color, about 10-15 minutes. Half way through, drizzle in the honey to help the caramelization process. (I even added about 1/4 cup water for the last 5 minutes to help cook the squash all the way through.)
  3. To make the peanut sauce, combine all the ingredients together in a saucepan and heat over medium-low heat. Bring the mixture to a simmer and whisk until it is combined. Cook for 2 minutes. Add water, 1 tablespoon at a time to reach desired consistency. Remove from heat.
  4. Assemble the lettuce wraps by laying a few pieces of sliced red pepper in a butter lettuce leaf. Top it with the squash, quinoa, and then a hefty drizzle of the peanut sauce. Add a sprinkling of the onions, peanuts and cilantro.


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