Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Cups

When I started my first Whole30 I was a huge fan of Sriracha. Actually, my love for Sriracha goes so far back, I can hardly remember a time I didn't eat it. On avocado toast, drizzle on tacos and sushi, adding a kick to soup, you name it, I was eating it.

In fact, before I ever even started doing Whole30, my first journey into the health world was via the Whole Life Challenge. I vividly remember almost crying when they told me I couldn't have toast in the morning and couldn't drizzle my beloved Sriracha on literally everything I ate.

"You'll survive" they said. I didn't believe them...

Well, what do you know? I survived, and I've survived 2.5 Whole30 attempts since. You aren't allowed to have Sriracha because it has sugar in it (no wonder it's so addicting). So, in order to quench my spice-thirst, I had to find a new love.

I danced with Crystal hot sauce (still a fan favorite in my book), chili garlic paste (heaven in Thai Almond Butter dressing), and the usuals like Cholula and Tabasco (my favorite choices for tacos and spicy yogurt or mayo drizzles). However, I was lucky enough to find a new true love, Franks Red Hot Original.

I always used to associate buffalo sauce with wings and wings only, but how silly was I to pigeonhole this lovely dressing into one food category. Just like Sriracha, I put this stuff on everything. It's my go-to, every day hot sauce, and whenever I have some leftover chicken, you can bet it's getting a nice coating of the stuff.

If you love buffalo sauce as much as I do, this is the recipe for you. This one uses up leftover shredded chicken and the easiest quick pickled veggies. Just a few simple ingredients, and only 5-10 minutes of work (assuming you're using leftovers, if not...only 10-15 minutes on top of that), and you've got yourself a super tasty, easy Whole30 lunch.

Ingredients:

1 lb shredded chicken*

1/4 cup Franks Red Hot Original

2 tbsp mayo (for Whole30 use homemade or compliant brand like Primal Kitchen)

1/4 tsp salt

1/8 tsp black pepper

1 head iceberg lettuce

Quick pickled red cabbage and onions*

1 green onions, diced for garnish

Whole30 compliant Ranch for drizzle

Notes:

1. This is a great recipe if you have leftover chicken from a roast or crockpot shredded chicken. For a quick shredded chicken I usually just add 2 breasts to a pot with water (covering the chicken) and boil on medium high for about 7-10 minutes, or until cooked through and easily shredded with a fork.

2. Quick pickling veggies is very easy. I add equal parts water and vinegar (usually apple cider or red wine for red veggies). Bring to a simmer and pour over sliced red onion and cabbage. Let cool and store in a sealed mason jar. I usually pickle 1/2 a head of cabbage at a time, and usually 1 full red onion at a time. The leftovers are great for salads and tacos!

Instructions:

1. Wash the head of lettuce and pat dry. Gently peel off the layers, leaving whole as best you can. Some of these may break apart, so I usually shape any bigger ones into smaller lettuce cups. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl add the shredded chicken, mayo, hot sauce, season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine.

3. To assemble, take 1 piece of lettuce and add in a couple scoops of the buffalo chicken. Top with pickled cabbage and onions, garnish with diced green onions and a drizzle of ranch dressing.

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