These Middle Eastern Lettuce Wraps are a version of the Middle Eastern Burger I posted several years ago. These lettuce wraps are faster, easier, and even healthier than the original burger.
I learned how to make baklava, kibbeh and tabbouleh from my college sweetheart’s mom. Fast forward a few years, and we avoid wheat and gluten, which pretty much knocks out all of those tasty dishes. I decided to come up with a version of the lamb kibbeh I used to love, but gone is the traditional addition of bulgur wheat. We really don’t miss it! Then I went one step further and made it a flexible meal for both Whole30 followers, and those who have no problem eating dairy (or pita bread), since Spencer loves cheese and yogurt!
While you can totally use beef or ground turkey, I love the taste of lamb with the warm Middle Eastern spices. Prepare the meat and put out lots of toppings, lettuce leaves, and even pita bread. Everyone can build their own. Sliced onions, tomatoes, cucumbers, olives and mint leaves are great for the Whole30 gang. While everyone else can add tzatziki, feta, and hummus.
Serve this Quinoa Tabbouleh as a side dish; it’s naturally gluten free, since quinoa replaces the bulgur wheat.
- 1 pound ground lamb
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 medium onions, chopped, about 3 cups
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 Tablespoon ground cumin
- 1½ teaspoons ground oregano
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ cup toasted pine nuts
- ½ cup water
- Heat oil in a large skillet over a medium heat.
- Add onions and cook 2-3 minutes. Add garlic, lamb, and spices. Continuing stirring, breaking up lamb, and cook another 5-7 minutes, or until lamb is nearly done.
- Drain excess fat, if any, add water and continue cooking until water is evaporated and lamb is cooked through, about 4 or 5 minutes.
- Stir in toasted pine nuts and check for seasoning.
- Serve in lettuce wraps with fresh mint leaves, chopped tomatoes, sliced onions and olives.