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ATK Kids

These Beef Lettuce Wraps Bring the Sizzle to Family Dinner

They’re flavorful, customizable, and a hit with kids.
By Published Sept. 6, 2022

Want a family dinner that’s fun to make, fun to eat, and even fun to hear? Sizzling beef lettuce wraps are the answer.

This recipe comes from ATK Kids’ forthcoming cookbook, Kids Can Cook Anything! It’s a flavorful, customizable, textural delight that has been both kid-tested and kid-approved. 

The sizzling beef is the star of this dish, but when ground beef is cooked at a high temperature, it can become tough. To keep the beef nice and supple, we soak it in a mixture of water and baking soda before cooking it in a nonstick skillet. 

This step changes the meat’s pH, preventing proteins from linking up and making the beef tough while it cooks. 

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After the beef has cooked through, we add a mixture of soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, and sesame oil to the skillet. As the sauce hits the skillet, it bubbles up—that’s why we call this recipe “sizzling.” Plus, it gives the filling tons of flavor—as one of our kid testers said, “The tastes were very vivid! I loved the taste of the toasted sesame oil in the ground beef. All the toppings made it great!”

Speaking of toppings: We call for Quick Pickled Cucumbers (aka quickles), which you can make yourself in just a few minutes. We recommend prepping the quickles first and letting them sit in their brine while you make the wraps. 

As for the rest of the toppings, we went with cilantro leaves and sliced scallion greens. Once your toppings and lettuce leaves are ready, you can set it all up into a lettuce wrap bar.

Here’s where the customization comes in: Got one kid who loves pickles? Got another who thinks cilantro tastes like soap? With this recipe, everyone gets to enjoy dinner just how they like it. Using a piece of fresh, crunchy lettuce as a wrap, pile up the beef and toppings and finish it off with sauce for a meal the whole family will love.

Hey! Did you know ATK Kids has its very own YouTube channel? Subscribe now and watch great, funny, silly, and delicious cooking videos for the whole family.