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Shredded chicken taco lettuce wraps on a round platter with all the fixings around it.
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Shredded Chicken Taco Lettuce Wraps

Light and healthy tacos made with shredded salsa-seasoned chicken and wrapped in a crisp lettuce cup.
Course Appetizer, Lunch, Main Course, Snack
Cuisine American, Mexican
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Cost $15

Equipment

  • baking dish or dutch oven
  • baking sheet

Ingredients

For the Shredded Chicken Taco Lettuce Wraps

  • 1 can black beans (15.25 oz) drained and rinsed
  • 1 head lettuce iceberg, romaine, bibb, or butter
  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts (2 ½-3 lbs)
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup homemade or store-bought salsa plus extra for topping
  • 4 corn on the cob husks and silk removed

Optional Toppings

  • cheddar cheese
  • diced tomatoes
  • jalapeño slices
  • diced onion
  • avocado
  • cilantro
  • Spanish rice
  • sour cream
  • salsa
  • guacamole

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Rinse and drain the black beans. Remove large pieces of lettuce from the head to form "cups". Then, gently wash and dry them.
  • In a baking dish or dutch oven, add chicken breasts. Pour olive oil over top and season with garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper.
  • Pour the salsa on top of the chicken. Mix it around to fully coat, but try to keep the chicken fully submerged in the juices.
  • Cover the baking dish with foil or place the lid on the dutch oven, if using. Cook in the oven for 40 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165 degrees F.
  • While the chicken is baking, clean the corn and place it on a baking sheet. Roast in the oven for 20 to 30 minutes.
  • Remove both the chicken and corn from the oven and allow to cool slightly.
  • Remove the chicken from the baking dish and place it on a cutting board. Shred it with two forks before placing it back in the dish and mixing it with the salsa and seasonings.
  • Cut the corn off the cobs.
  • Assemble the lettuce wraps by filling the lettuce cups with shredded chicken, black beans, and roasted corn. Then, top with your favorite taco toppings. Serve while the chicken and corn are still warm from the oven.

Storage

  • To store: Store all of the toppings separately in the refrigerator. Place a dry paper towel in the container with the lettuce to absorb moisture and prevent it from wilting.
    Allow the chicken to cool completely before placing it in an airtight container in the fridge. Store up to 4 days.
    To freeze: Freezing the tacos as a whole is not recommended. However, you can make the shredded chicken ahead of time, freeze it, and use it later with the rest of the fresh taco fixings.
    Make the salsa chicken according to the recipe instructions. Shred it. Then, allow it to cool completely before placing it in an airtight freezer-safe container. Store in the freezer up to 6 months.
    To reheat: Remove the chicken from the freezer and allow it to defrost in the refrigerator overnight. Prepare the lettuce cups, rice, beans, roasted corn, and other taco toppings.
    Heat the chicken in a dutch oven on the stove top over medium heat or heat in 30 second intervals in the microwave until just warmed through. Scoop warmed chicken into the lettuce cups and top with all the fixings.

Notes

  1. Instead of lettuce: if you prefer, you can always use corn or flour tortillas like a traditional taco, instead of lettuce wraps. You can also use other vegetables, like bell peppers, endive, chard, kale, or collards.
  2. Instead of chicken breasts: you can substitute with nearly any other protein. Flank steak, shrimp, tofu, ground turkey, ground chicken, ground beef, or grilled meats are all great substitutes. However, you may need to prepare them slightly differently.
  3. Instead of black beans: you can use any kind of bean. Or, you can also use refried beans.
  4. Instead of cheddar cheese: instead of cheddar, you can use a Mexican cheese blend, manchego, queso fresco, or cotija cheese.
  5. Other variations: if you prefer cooked onions on your tacos, you can add onions to the chicken and salsa mixture and cook them all together. You can also do the same with bell peppers to make these more resemblant of fajitas. You can also add fresh minced garlic for added flavor.
  6. If you want to make them spicy: you can add jalapeños to the chicken and salsa mixture before cooking. Or, you can also add a few dashes of cayenne pepper too. Also, keep in mind that the spicier your salsa, the spicier the shredded chicken will turn out.