Fire up Your Taste Buds with Vietnamese Grilled Pork

In a world full of flavors, Vietnamese cuisine is undoubtedly one of the most exciting and interesting. The combination of sweet and savory, spicy and fresh creates a unique and unforgettable taste experience. One of the most beloved Vietnamese dishes is grilled pork wrapped in lettuce leaves. This dish combines tender pork meat with the warm sweetness of anise and cinnamon and the fresh flavors of cilantro, mint, and lime juice.

If you are a fan of grilled meat or Vietnamese food, this recipe will surely satisfy your cravings! Not only is it easy to make, but it is also a healthy alternative to heavy meat dishes. The juicy pork tenderloin grilled to perfection accompanied by crispy lettuce leaves and fragrant herbs make for a delicious low-carb meal that can win over even the toughest food critics.

As someone who specializes in Asian cuisine, I am happy to share with you my take on this classic Vietnamese dish that will surely become your new favorite! So get ready to treat yourself to a unique flavor explosion because this Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in lettuce recipe is not one to miss!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in  Lettuce
Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in Lettuce

If you are on the hunt for an interesting Vietnamese dish that tantalizes your taste buds and invites a burst of sweet and spice, then you’ve landed on the right page. This grilled pork wrapped in lettuce recipe is one of the best I have ever encountered, as it combines an array of flavors; from the delectable cilantro and mint leaves to the savory garlic and ginger accents, and finally, to the sweet anise and cinnamon. What’s more, it offers flexibility when it comes to choosing your preferred cut of pork meat. The preparation time is minimal, and this recipe is suitable for any celebratory occasion or casual dinner with loved ones.

The food com Vietnamese pork lettuce wrap recipe delivers savoury pork bites that offer exciting flavours with every mouthful. The grilled pork has a caramelized texture that adds a level of depth to its flavour. The assortment of herbs combine well with the fish sauce, soy sauce and lime juice, creating a tangy yet well-balanced taste that will leave your taste buds yearning for more. Whether you are a fan of pulled pork or prefer lemongrass-infused meat, this recipe exquisitely blends spices suitable for any cut of pork meat.

But why else will you adore this Vietnamese pork lettuce wraps? It is easy to prepare regardless of whether you are a top chef or just starting out in the kitchen. You won’t need fancy equipment or uncommon ingredients which makes it manageable even for novices as well as busy home cooks who wouldn’t mind whipping up something scrumptious in no time. Plus, its versatility allows for improvisation depending on available ingredients, making it easy to adapt to your preference.

In summary, these Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in lettuce wraps stand out amongst other wraps with their versatility and variety. So why don’t you give their breathtaking flavours a try? Not only will they satiate your cravings but will also surprise your palate with a taste of authentic Vietnamese cuisine.

Ingredient List

 Juicy grilled pork wrapped in crisp lettuce leaves, a refreshing Vietnamese favorite!
Juicy grilled pork wrapped in crisp lettuce leaves, a refreshing Vietnamese favorite!

The ingredients needed for this Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in lettuce recipe are easy to find and can be purchased at your local grocery store or Asian market. Here’s what you need:

For the pork marinade:

  • 1 pound pork shoulder, thinly sliced or pork tenderloin
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce

For the Vietnamese caramel sauce:

  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce

Other ingredients:

  • Lettuce leaves (butter lettuce, romaine lettuce or iceberg lettuce)
  • Cilantro leaves
  • Mint leaves
  • Lime wedges

Optional vegetables for the slaw filling:
– 2 medium carrots, julienned
– ½ medium onion, cut thin

With these ingredients, you can create a flavorful Vietnamese meal that you’ll love.

The Recipe How-To

 Bite-sized goodness packed with flavor, these lettuce-wrapped pork bites will surely satisfy your cravings.
Bite-sized goodness packed with flavor, these lettuce-wrapped pork bites will surely satisfy your cravings.

Now that you have all the ingredients ready, it’s time for the fun part – cooking! Follow these easy steps to prepare a mouth-watering Vietnamese Grilled Pork Wrapped in Lettuce.

Marinating the Pork

Step 1: Begin by marinating your pork. In a bowl, combine 2 medium cloves of minced garlic, 1 tablespoon of brown sugar, 1 tablespoon of grated ginger, 1 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of ground anise, and 1/4 teaspoon of ground cinnamon. Mix well.

Step 2: Add in 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, 2 tablespoons of fish sauce, and the juice of one lime. Stir until everything is well combined.

Step 3: Cut your pork shoulder or tenderloin into thin slices or small pieces (about 1/4 inch thickness).

Step 4: Place your pork pieces into the marinade and toss until coated evenly. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour or overnight for best flavor.

Grilling the Pork

Step 5: Once the pork has marinated, remove it from the fridge and preheat your grill to medium-high heat.

Step 6: Grill your pork slices for about 2-3 minutes per side or until charred to perfection.

Step 7: Once they’re cooked, set them aside on a plate to rest and cool down a bit.

Preparing the Wraps

Step 8: While waiting for your pork to cool down, prepare your lettuce cups. Separate lettuce leaves and rinse them under cold water. Pat dry with paper towels or a clean kitchen towel.

Step 9: Tear a handful of greens such as cilantro leaves and mint leaves into smaller pieces for added freshness.

Step10: Julienne one medium-sized carrot and thinly slice half an onion to add crunch and texture to the wraps.

Wrapping the Pork

Step 11: Take a piece of lettuce leaf and place it on your palm. Add in a couple of pieces of pork, julienned carrot, and some thinly sliced onion.

Step 12: Sprinkle with some cilantro and mint leaves on top.

Step 13: Fold the sides of the lettuce over the filling like a taco and roll it tight. Repeat until all your pork is used up.


Step 14: Place your pork lettuce wraps on a platter and serve alongside some dipping sauce made by simply mixing together
1/4 cup of fish sauce, 1/4 cup of white vinegar, 1/2 cup of water, and 3 tablespoons of sugar in a small bowl.

These grilled Vietnamese pork lettuce wraps are perfect for any time of day as they make an excellent appetizer or a light meal. Enjoy!

Substitutions and Variations

 Want to impress your guests with some Asian-style appetizers? Try these grilled pork lettuce wraps, they won't disappoint!
Want to impress your guests with some Asian-style appetizers? Try these grilled pork lettuce wraps, they won’t disappoint!

The beauty of Vietnamese cuisine is its flexibility to accommodate various ingredients and methods. This recipe for grilled pork wrapped in lettuce is no exception. Here are some substitutions and variations you can try to make this dish your own:

– Protein: while the recipe calls for pork, you can also use chicken, beef, shrimp or tofu as a protein base. Adjust cooking time as needed, depending on the type of protein.

– Seasoning: if anise and cinnamon aren’t your thing, try other fragrant spices like star anise or cloves. You can also add a kick with chili powder or cayenne pepper.

– Herbs: cilantro and mint are traditional herbs used in Vietnamese cuisine, but feel free to experiment with basil or parsley. You can also use a combination of different herbs to give your wrap a unique flavor.

– Lettuce: butter lettuce is recommended for this recipe, but you can substitute it with bibb lettuce or even romaine leaves. If you want to increase the nutritional value of your wraps, replace the lettuce with cabbage leaves.

– Sauces: fish sauce is commonly used in Vietnamese cooking, but soy sauce or hoisin sauce can be used as well. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different combinations – peanut sauce or sweet chili sauce are excellent options.

By swapping ingredients and trying different seasonings, you can create unlimited possibilities for this dish. The important thing is to keep the balance of sweet, salty and acidic flavors that characterizes Vietnamese cuisine.

Serving and Pairing

 Say goodbye to boring appetizers, these lettuce-wrapped pork bites will add some spice and excitement to your party.
Say goodbye to boring appetizers, these lettuce-wrapped pork bites will add some spice and excitement to your party.

When it comes to serving Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in lettuce, there are a variety of options. I prefer to serve my pork lettuce wraps family-style with piles of fresh lettuce leaves, cilantro and mint sprigs, and a bowl of the pork filling. This allows everyone at the table to assemble their own lettuce wraps exactly how they like them.

This dish pairs perfectly with a crunchy Vietnamese noodle salad or a simple side of steamed rice. The bright flavors and textures of both dishes complement the complex flavor profile of the pork, creating an explosion of taste in your mouth.

For those who prefer something more substantial, this dish can also be paired with banh mi or Korean BBQ for an interesting fusion spin. The crispiness of the baguette makes it the perfect companion to contrast with the soft texture of the pork.

No matter how you choose to serve these wraps, make sure you have plenty on hand – they will disappear quickly!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Need a quick but tasty lunch option? Grab some lettuce and grilled pork and make these delicious wraps in no time.
Need a quick but tasty lunch option? Grab some lettuce and grilled pork and make these delicious wraps in no time.

As with most Vietnamese dishes, this grilled pork lettuce wraps recipe is actually tastier when prepared a day in advance. This is because the marinating process can infuse more flavors into the meat, and allow the sweet and spicy notes to meld together for a truly delightful experience.

After grilling, allow the pork to cool completely before storing it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will last for up to 3 days if properly stored. You can reheat the pork by placing it on a baking dish and heating it in the oven for 10-15 minutes at 350°F, or until heated through.

If you have extra pork, you can also use it to create various other dishes inspired by Vietnamese cuisine. Some of my personal favorites include banh mi sandwiches, pork noodle salads, grilled pork patties, and even Korean BBQ-style lettuce wraps. The possibilities are endless!

Finally, when preparing your make-ahead meals or leftovers of these Vietnamese pork lettuce wraps, remember to keep any herbs or vegetables separate from the meat until right before serving. This will ensure that they retain their fresh flavor and texture, providing a contrast of colors and tastes that will take your meal to another level.

Tips for Perfect Results

To ensure that your Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in lettuce recipe turns out just the way you want it, here are some helpful tips:

1. Marinate your meat for at least 4 hours.

The longer the pork is marinated, the more flavorful it will be. This is because the marinade needs enough time to penetrate the meat and tenderize it. So, for a rich taste, prepare the marinade early and let it rest in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours before putting the pork on the grill.

2. Keep an eye on the pork while it’s grilling.

Vietnamese grilled pork can quickly become dry and tough if left on the grill for too long. The cooking time needed for this dish depends on how thick your pork slices are and how hot your grill is. To prevent overcooking, check your meat regularly while it’s grilling.

3. Cutting the Pork into Thin Slices

When slicing pork, make sure to use a sharp knife and cut thin slices of meat against the grain for tenderness. This will make biting into each wrap more enjoyable as the meat melts in your mouth without being chewy.

4. Pair with Savory Greens & Herbs

To enhance its taste and keep its authentic flavor, pair with herbs such as mint leaves or cilantro leaves along with lettuce leaves as these provide brightness and crunch to balance out all of those savory bits of smokey grilled pork.

5. Play with Flavors and Add Some Zing

If you want to give your Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in lettuce a bit more spicy kick, you can add a sprinkle of Thai chili pepper or crushed red pepper flakes on top.

6. Be Creative With Substitutions

Don’t be afraid to substitute ingredients based on your preference or ingredient availability. For instance; you can add sliced cucumbers, shredded carrots or bean sprouts for added crunch while still keeping true to that Vietnamese flavor profile.

By following these tips, you’ll achieve the best results each time you make Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in lettuce. So, give it a try and enjoy the exotic flavors of this dish!


As your trusted chef, I want to provide you with valuable insights and answers to any queries regarding this delectable dish. Below are some FAQ’s that will help you attain the perfect grilled pork wrapped in lettuce recipe. Keep in mind these helpful tips and recommendations as you journey through preparing this delicious Vietnamese and Asian cuisine.

How to make lettuce crisp for lettuce wraps?

To prepare our lettuce cups for the dish, start by filling them up with water. Let the water sit for a while so that it fills up the cups nice and full. Once you’ve given it some time, carefully remove the outer leaves and place them in a colander. Make sure to give them a good shake and drain them completely. You can then use a paper towel or clean tea towel to pat them dry.

To ensure that the lettuce cups are extra crispy for the dish, place them in a large plastic bag and refrigerate them for a few hours. The chilled environment will help make the cups even crispier and ensure they’re ready to use when you need them.

Is Boston lettuce good for wraps?

When it comes to creating edible cups, I prefer to use head lettuces that have robust leaves with thick ribs. Varieties such as iceberg, bibb, Boston, and little gem work well as their leaves are able to contain the filling without collapsing. It is important to choose a lettuce that can withstand heat and heavy toppings without wilting.

What to serve with lettuce wraps?

Lettuce wraps are best enjoyed when accompanied by delectable side dishes. You can never go wrong with a variety of options ranging from crispy egg rolls, beef fajitas, to shrimp pasta. Other delicious options include Thai cucumber salad, crispy shrimp tempura, cheesy dips or even pickled carrots. Those wishing for a healthier option can enjoy the Southeast Asian staple, cauliflower rice or quinoa and black bean salad. The possibilities are endless!

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in lettuce recipe is a must-try for everyone who loves bold flavors and adventurous dishes. The combination of sweet and savory pork with aromatic spices and fresh herbs creates a delightful explosion of flavors in every bite. Plus, the fun of wrapping the pork in lettuce leaves makes this dish a unique and interactive dining experience.

Whether you’re hosting a dinner party, planning a picnic or craving something new to spice up your weeknight meals, this recipe is easy to prepare and delivers the best results every time. With its versatility and flexibility, you can make substitutes or variations according to your preference or dietary needs, but I highly recommend sticking to the original ingredients for the authentic Vietnamese taste.

As a chef specializing in Vietnamese and Asian cuisine, I’m confident that this recipe will be one of your go-to favorites once you try it. So, grab the ingredients from your grocery store, fire up the grill or oven, wrap the juicy pork in lettuce leaves, and indulge in this interesting Vietnamese dish that will surely impress your guests or family. Trust me; it’s worth it!

Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in Lettuce

Vietnamese grilled pork wrapped in Lettuce Recipe

This interesting Vietnamese grilled dish combines pork with the sweet spice of anise and cinnamon. The longer the pork is marinated, the more flavorful the dish. To serve according to Vietnamese tradition, wrap in lettuce leaves, with noodles and fresh mint and cilantro leaves inside. I found this recipe at the EthnicGrocer sight. How good and easy does it sound! I think I'll make it with chicken!
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Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Vietnamese
Calories 228.2 kcal


  • 1 lb pork tenderloin


  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon anise, freshly ground
  • 1 tablespoon ginger, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon stir-fry oil
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic, chopped


  • lettuce leaf
  • mint leaf
  • cilantro leaf
  • 1 cup vermicelli, cooked


  • Cut pork into 8 to 10 strips.
  • Combine marinade ingredients.
  • Add meat and marinate meat for 1 hour.
  • Grill or broil pork until done, about 10-15.
  • Arrange lettuce leaves, mint, cilantro, and noodles on a serving platter.
  • To serve, wrap hot meat, mint, cilantro, and noodles in lettuce leaves.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 194gCalories: 228.2kcalCarbohydrates: 8.6gProtein: 31.2gFat: 7.6gSaturated Fat: 1.8gCholesterol: 73.8mgSodium: 4081.5mgFiber: 1gSugar: 4.4g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Asian, Meat, Pork, Vegetable, Vietnamese
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