top down view of vegan lettuce wraps with thai quinoa meatballs on a plate with items surrounding.

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These easy Thai Lettuce Wraps with ‘meatballs’ featuring chickpeas and quinoa are a perfect healthy and delicious vegan lunch or dinner! And it wouldn’t be complete without peanut sauce! Recipe comes from Minimalist Baker’s cookbook, ‘Everyday Cooking‘.




  • 1 can (15 oz) chickpeas
  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar (or organic brown sugar)
  • 2 tablespoons salted natural peanut butter (smooth or chunky)
  • 23 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup scallions (green onions), thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon chili garlic sauce
  • 1/4 cup roasted salted peanuts, crushed or finely chopped

Peanut Sauce

  • 1/3 cup natural peanut butter or almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon tamari or soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar or organic brown sugar
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • 1/21 teaspoon garlic chili sauce
  • 24 tablespoons hot water, to thin

Lettuce wraps

  • 1 head butter or bibb lettuce or 12 head romaine
  • shredded carrots
  • sliced green onions
  • chopped peanuts
  • chopped fresh cilantro
  • lime wedges


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or silpat, or lightly grease with oil.

Mash chickpeas: Drain, rinse and pat the chickpeas dry as possible. In a medium size mixing bowl, add chickpeas and mash well with the back of a fork (pulsing in a blender/food processor will also work).

Mix the meatball mixture: Add in the remaining ingredients for the meatballs with the mashed chickpeas. Mix well to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. If mixture is too wet, add a bit more crushed peanuts (a few tablespoons of breadcrumbs would work great too). I will depend on how wet your quinoa and peanut butter are.

Roll meatballs: Scoop up mixture, using about 1 – 1 1/2 heaping tablespoons. Gently, but firmly press the mixture together and shape into balls, rolling between your palms. Take your time. You should get about 12. The mixture my be sticky and you may need to rinse your hands after rolling 2 – 3 balls, it helps to keep your hands clean.

Bake: Place ‘meatballs’ on the prepared baking sheet. Place on the center rack in the oven for 25 – 20 minutes.

Peanut sauce: In a small bowl, mix the peanut butter, tamari, sugar, lime, garlic and chili sauce. Add hot water a tablespoon or so at a time until desired consistency. If too thin add more nut butter.

Serve: Place lettuce (you may want to double up the lettuce for added strength) on individual serving dishes, top with carrots, meatballs, scallions, peanuts, cilantro and a drizzle of peanut sauce. Enjoy to the fullest!

Serves 3 (4 meatballs per serving)

Store: Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 – 6 days.


In her cookbook, Dana suggested serving the meatballs over top carrot ribbons and topping with scallions, peanuts and the peanut sauce. Keeping it fresh, you could also do spiralized zucchini or cucumber noodles. You may also like to top them over soba or rice noodles with the peanut sauce as well. Anyway you serve them, they are delicious!

Nutritional values are estimates only. See our full nutrition disclosure here.