30-minute shawarma lettuce wraps
with a truly addictive salad
Click here for the WTC recipe index, and scroll way down to the bottom of this post for a ramble-free printer version of the recipe for these wraps!
Oh boy — I’m so excited about this recipe. Ground beef (or whatever you’ve got!) is seasoned with a Middle Eastern spice blend, then rolled into lettuce leaves and drizzled with a creamy tahini sauce. The flavor is *insane*. The ease and speed is delightful. The crunchy and creamy cucumber avocado side salad might be my new desert-island food. The tahini sauce stays good for weeks and is delicious not just on these shawarma wraps, but also on chicken, roasted veggies, or used as a salad dressing. If you need a 15-minute meal, skip making the salad and make just the wraps and tahini sauce, which are a lovely and balanced meal all on their own.
Shawarma is a popular Arabic dish in which thin slices of seasoned meat are stacked onto a skewer, roasted by slowly rotating around a fire, then thinly shaved for pita sandwiches or to enjoy with rice and a salad. My last apartment in Manhattan was on Broadway between Houston and Prince (AKA in the heart of touristy hell in SoHo), and there was a shawarma stand right outside of my apartment. “Street meat” stands are not exactly known for their sanitation scores, but I freaking love street meat. I gobbled down more street-meat sandos than I can count during my time in that apartment.
I WTC-ified shawarma by using its traditional spices, but with ground beef instead of the whole meat tower situation you see above. It takes about 10 minutes to cook the meat, instead of hours and hours. Is it the same thing? No! Heck no. But it is absolutely delicious.
other ways to enjoy this recipe
The beauty of this recipe is that you can easily customize it to suit everyone you’re feeding.
Lettuce wraps aren’t filling enough: Cook some yellow rice (white rice works too, if you can’t find yellow) to serve as a side. Or, make pita sandwiches instead of lettuce wraps! Stuff the pita with meat, lots of thinly sliced lettuce, cucumber avocado salad, and tahini sauce.
I’m in the mood for a big salad: Cool — just throw the butter lettuce leaves, a big scoop of meat, a big scoop of the avocado salad, and a tablespoon of tahini sauce in a bowl and chop it all up and toss until everything is combined. Shawarma chopped salad!
I want a super healthy shawarma bowl: Cook some quinoa. Use ground turkey instead of beef. Build a bowl with quinoa and mixed greens as the base, turkey shawarma, and cucumber avocado salad over top. Finish it all off with a tahini sauce drizzle. YUM! I actually ate a lot of leftovers this way.
more cauliflower rice?
Just like with the healthy-ish turkey bolognese, we are adding cauliflower rice to ground meat to bulk it up with vegetables! It blends right into the ground meat; you/your family will have no idea there’s cauliflower in there. But if you’re cauliflower-averse, you could mince 8 ounces of mushrooms or broccoli, or use butternut squash rice (check the freezer section of your grocery) instead. You could also just skip it entirely (but if you do skip the added veg, reduce all of the spices by 1/4 teaspoon).
30-minute shawarma lettuce wraps
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