Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps deliver a good hit of heat with a cooling sauce! Crispy chicken is tossed in buffalo sauce and loaded in crispy lettuce wraps, topped with crunchy veggies, and drizzled in a bold bleu cheese (or ranch!) dressing.

Overhead image of the Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Overhead image of the Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

These Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps are a part of our Back-To-School Lifesavers — a series of recipes that are intended to have little (or no) veggie chopping, minimal prep time, around 10 ingredients or less (not including pantry staples), and use kid-friendly ingredients. Click here to see all the recipes in the series!

Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Spicy buffalo chicken with a cooling bleu cheese dressing wrapped in a crisp piece of lettuce?! These Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps are an explosion of complementary textures and flavors!

These wraps definitely pack some heat, so you can play around with the amount of buffalo sauce you add to the chicken. We usually set aside some of the chicken for the kiddos and make their wraps without buffalo sauce and use ranch instead!

Ingredient shot-- image of all the ingredients used in this dish

Ingredient shot-- image of all the ingredients used in this dish

SHORTCUTS

Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps Short-Cuts

These lettuce wraps are supposed to be as quick as possible–just like the other recipes in this series. A few kitchen shortcuts get us there, but don’t worry– we aren’t sacrificing flavor! These wraps are loaded with plenty of it!

  • Matchstick carrots. Instead of cutting your own carrots into matchsticks, grab shredded carrots in the produce section of the grocery store. They’re usually right by baby and/or full-sized ones.
  • Prepared dressing. Instead of making a homemade bleu cheese dressing (which is delicious but time/ingredient intensive), we buy an already-made dressing. Our favorites are the refrigerated dressings in the produce section of the grocery store (not the shelf-stable dressings).
  • Microwaveable Packaged Quinoa. Microwaveable quinoa is already cooked and just needs to be reheated– ready in 90 seconds! This type of packaged quinoa is usually found among other types of pre-cooked quinoa, rice, and grains in the grocery store. There are lots of different flavors, so be sure to pick the plain (sea salt) quinoa so flavors aren’t competing. The only prep required for this type of quinoa is kneading the quinoa in the packet before microwaving it. This helps break apart the clumps of quinoa so it comes out in individual grains.
  • Buffalo sauce. Instead of making our own sauce to coat the crispy chicken, we rely on a store-bought sauce — Frank’s® RedHot Wings Buffalo sauce is our favorite! Frank’s makes quite a few sauces; be sure to use the one labeled “buffalo” not the cayenne pepper sauce!
  • Crispy chicken tenders. The biggest shortcut of them all — you don’t need to make the chicken for these Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps!  More on this shortcut for chicken tenders below.

Process shots-- images of the chicken being fried and the buffalo sauce being added

Process shots-- images of the chicken being fried and the buffalo sauce being added

Crispy Chicken Tenders

Taste of Home® shares the best chicken to use for this recipe. I personally use Tyson’s® crispy chicken strips for these Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps (not sponsored). I recommend baking or air frying the chicken tenders, not microwaving them. (Use an air fryer if you have one; that is our favorite method. It’s super quick, you don’t need to wait for the oven to preheattrv, and it delivers the best crispiness!) Pull the tenders out of the air fryer basket or off the sheet pan and coarsely chop them into bite-sized pieces before tossing them with the buffalo sauce

Process shots-- images of the quinoa, chicken, celery, carrots, cabbage, and cheese being added to these Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Process shots-- images of the quinoa, chicken, celery, carrots, cabbage, and cheese being added to these Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

VARIATIONS

Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wrap Variations

One of the fun things about lettuce wraps is just how easy they are to customize. Here are a few ideas to add more veggies or change up ingredients in these wraps:

  • Use leftover cooked and cooled quinoa instead of microwaved quinoa. (How to cook quinoa guide here)
  • Swap out the quinoa for cooked rice.
  • Garnish with thinly sliced green onions.
  • Add thinly sliced red onion — thinly sliced along with the carrots, celery, and cabbage to bulk up the amount of veggies.
  • Add a few slices of a ripe avocado for additional creaminess and good-for-you fats.
  • Throw in some crisp roasted corn for additional crunch and sweetness.
  • Not a fan of bleu cheese OR ranch? Try a creamy cilantro sauce instead! The sauce on this Mexican Chickpeas post would pair well with these Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps.

Overhead image Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Overhead image Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

QUICK TIP

Lettuce Options

  • Our favorite lettuce for these Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps is butter lettuce (also known as Boston or Bibb). It has a nice flavor, the perfect amount of crispness, and rolls up nicely.
  • Green leaf and iceberg also work nicely in a lettuce wrap. Note that iceberg lettuce tends to be harder to wrap as it breaks easily.
  • In a pinch, romaine lettuce is also a workable option.

More lettuce wrap recipes

Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps deliver a good hit of heat with a cooling sauce! Crispy chicken is tossed in buffalo sauce and loaded in crispy lettuce wraps, topped with crunchy veggies, and drizzled in a bold bleu cheese (or ranch!) dressing.

Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps deliver a good hit of heat with a cooling sauce! Crispy chicken is tossed in buffalo sauce and loaded in crispy lettuce wraps, topped with crunchy veggies, and drizzled in a bold bleu cheese (or ranch!) dressing.

Ingredients

  • 13 oz. (320g) prepared chicken tenders Note 1
  • 3 tablespoons (60g) buffalo sauce (or more to taste) Note 2
  • 1 packet (227g) Microwaveable Packaged Quinoa
  • 12 large lettuce leaves Boston or Butter
  • 1/2 cup (51g) matchstick carrots
  • 1/2 cup (41g) thinly sliced celery
  • 1/2 cup (48g) thinly sliced red cabbage, optional
  • bleu cheese dressing or Ranch Dressing, to taste
  • Bleu cheese crumbles, optional

Instructions

  • CHICKEN: Start by preparing chicken tenders according to package directions. We like air frying them best — they’re done in about 11-12 minutes! Dice into small pieces and add to a bowl; set aside for now.

  • QUINOA: Meanwhile, follow package directions to microwave the quinoa. Set aside to slightly cool.

  • LETTUCE LEAVES/VEGGIE: Wash and completely dry 12 lettuce leaves. Set out carrots, thinly slice celery, and (if using) thinly slice red cabbage. Once everything is prepared, toss the chicken with the buffalo sauce until coated. Add more buffalo sauce to personal preference, if desired.

  • ASSEMBLY: Divide the microwaved and cooled quinoa (there will likely be extra) and then buffalo-sauced chicken evenly among the 12 lettuce leaves. Divide the carrots, celery, and cabbage evenly among the wraps. If desired, sprinkle bleu cheese crumbles on each wrap. Drizzle dressing generously over the wraps and enjoy immediately (dunk the wraps in more dressing — yum!). Serve any leftover quinoa on the side of the wraps.

Recipe Notes

Note 1: Chicken strips: I use Tyson® Crispy Chicken Strips (not sponsored) which cook up in about 18 minutes or 11-12 in the Air Fryer. Make sure to cook them in the oven or air fryer, not the microwave. Use whatever chicken tenders you like; you can even do homemade chicken strips. 13 ounces is about 5 chicken tenders.
Note 2: Buffalo sauce: Frank’s RedHot Wings Buffalo sauce is our favorite! Frank’s makes quite a few sauces be sure to use the one labeled “buffalo” not the cayenne pepper sauce! We like about 3 tablespoons tossed with the chicken RIGHT before it’s ready to eat (otherwise the sauce softens the chicken). Add more for a saucier/spicier chicken and less for less heat.
Note 3: Quinoa: We need Microwaveable Packaged Quinoa for this recipe to be as quick as possible– or use leftover fully cooked quinoa. 
Nutrition information does not include the optional bleu cheese crumbles. We used 1/3 cup of bleu cheese dressing to drizzle over the mixture. If you use a different amount or type of dressing, that will affect the nutritional information.

Nutrition Facts

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 309kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 65mg | Sodium: 1550mg | Potassium: 482mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 11063IU | Vitamin C: 34mg | Calcium: 89mg | Iron: 3mg

We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed.

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