Chicken Satay Lettuce Wraps with Peanut Sauce

For me, this recipe epitomizes the perfect balance of flavor.  It’s savory and sweet with a touch of spice.  Turmeric, known for it’s anti-inflammatory healing properties, lends its beautiful yellow hue to this dish.   Wrap the chicken in a cool, crisp green lettuce leaf and top it with the ever-so-simple-but-so-very-tasty peanut sauce.  Trust me, you’ll be licking the bowl.  The chicken will cook quickly depending on how high you set your grill or broiler, so keep a close watch so that it doesn’t overcook and dry out.  

Chicken Satay:

1 ½ pounds boneless chicken breasts, pounded thin into cutlets

¼ cup coconut milk

2 TB soy sauce, preferably low sodium

1 TB lime juice

2 tsp rice vinegar

2 tsp minced garlic (2 cloves)

1 tsp grated or minced ginger

1 scallion, finely minced

1 TB brown sugar

1 tsp coriander

1 ½ tsp turmeric

¼ tsp cumin

Wooden skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

1 head of lettuce, Bibb or Boston, leaves rinsed

Lime wedges, for serving



Slice the chicken cutlets into 1-inch wide strips.

Mix the coconut milk, soy sauce, lime juice, vinegar, garlic, ginger, scallions, brown sugar, coriander, cumin, and turmeric in a glass dish or a plastic bag.   Add the chicken, toss to coat and let marinate in the fridge for a few hours, or overnight.

When ready to cook, remove the chicken from dish, and wipe of excess marinade.  Season with salt and pepper, and thread on the skewers. (Alternatively, cook chicken without skewers if you don’t have them.)

Prepare a grill or broiler to medium-high, and cook chicken for about 6-8 minutes, turning half way through. Take care not to let the end of the skewers burn by covering with foil.  Serve with the lettuce leaves, the peanut sauce (below), and a wedge of lime.

Serves 4


Peanut Sauce

1/4 cup crunchy peanut butter (preferably natural, low sugar)

2 TB water

2 TB coconut milk

1 TB sugar

1 TB soy sauce, preferably low sodium

1 TB lime juice

1 tsp minced garlic

½ tsp chili oil, or ¼ tsp red pepper flakes


Combine peanut butter, water, coconut milk, sugar, soy sauce, lime juice, garlic and chili oil in a small saucepan. Stir mixture over a medium heat until combined.   Cover, remove from the heat, and set aside to cool. Transfer to a serving bowl and refrigerate until ready to serve.  Add a little hot water before serving, if needed, to soften sauce to desired consistency.

Makes about ½ cup.