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What Lettuce To Use for Tasty Vegan Wraps

Filled with taco-spiced lentils, Asian stir-fried vegetables, barbecue-sauced jackfruit, or other meat alternatives, lettuce wraps are addictive. The best part of serving up lettuce wraps as an appetizer or meal? You can eat as many as you want without counting carbs or calories.

 

Below is a comprehensive guide to the best lettuce for wraps.

Why Is Lettuce Perfect for Wraps

Move over, tortillas, flatbreads, and crepes. Lettuce is perfect for vegan wraps for multiple reasons. 

Low in Carbohydrates 

Lettuce has carbohydrate calories, but not that many. There are about 2 grams of carbohydrates in one cup of lettuce. These are healthy carbs – full of fiber with high water content. 

Nutritious 

All varieties of lettuce contain vitamins A and C, making them the most nutritious choice you could make for a wrap. 

Colorful 

The greens of lettuce – from pale green iceberg lettuce, darker greens of leaf lettuce, and romaine – make your wraps a feast for the eyes. Colorful, veggie-filled wraps are more appetizing than if those veggies were in a beige tortilla. 

Lettuce

Lower in Calories 

A leaf of lettuce has about 5 calories. A tortilla can have as many as 150 calories for a corn tortilla or more than 350 for a flour tortilla.

Texture 

Wrapping your favorite fillings with a fresh green lettuce leaf adds more than color to your meal. You’ll get a little crunch, too. Eating a lettuce wrap is far more satisfying texture-wise than a wrap made with a soft tortilla.

Mild Taste Lets Filling Flavors Shine 

Lettuce has a mild flavor that adds to the taste of your wrap, making the wrap better by accentuating the flavors of the fillings.

Best Lettuces for Wraps

Not every lettuce works well in wraps. Oak leaf won’t do, as lettuce for wraps need a large enough surface to hold a filling and wrap around it. The best lettuce for wraps will have a little crispness but not so much that it will crack when folded around a filling.

Lettuce varieties fall into two camps: head lettuce and leaf lettuce. The good news is that both kinds are great for using in your favorite wrap recipes.

These lettuce varieties are the best lettuces for wraps ranging from Asian to Tex-Mex. When buying these options, go with organic since you’ll be eating the leaves, and be sure to wash them well by hand or in a salad spinner. 

Butter Lettuce

Closely related to Boston lettuce, butter lettuce is head lettuce that’s also known as Bibb lettuce. Despite its name, butter lettuce doesn’t taste like butter. It does have a mild, pleasant flavor that brings spring to mind, a tender texture, and coloring that ranges from bright green to deep purple.

 Butter Lettuce

Green varieties of butter lettuce tend to be more tender than the purple varieties. Sometimes butter lettuce is sold with its roots still attached. Leave those on the head of butter lettuce until you’re ready to make wraps.

A cup-size serving of butter lettuce has:

  • 7 calories
  • 1 gram of protein
  • 1 gram of carbohydrates
  • 1 gram of fiber

Butter lettuce provides 36 percent of your daily value of vitamin A along with small amounts of iron, calcium, and vitamin C.

Romaine Lettuce 

One of the most popular varieties of lettuce in America, romaine accounts for most lettuce consumption in the United States. Often associated with Caesar salads, romaine lettuce is leaf lettuce that’s perfect for vegan tacos since romaine leaves have a boat-like shape.

Romaine leaves are deep green at the edges, fading to a greenish-white stalk at the center of the leaves. That stalk gives them more stability to hold fillings, not to mention a satisfying crunch. 

 Romaine lettuce

A one-cup serving of romaine lettuce has:

  • 8 calories
  • 1 gram of protein
  • 1 gram of fiber
  • 2 grams of carbohydrates

Romaine is packed with vitamin A, providing you 82 percent of your daily value in one serving. It also contains small amounts of iron, calcium, and vitamin C. 

Iceberg Lettuce 

Iceberg lettuce has gotten a bad reputation for not being as healthy as deep, leafy greens. A head of iceberg lettuce has plenty of fiber and a high water content, and the cup shape of its leaves lends itself to holding fillings like jerk-sauced jackfruit with some cabbage slaw on top. A crunchy lettuce, iceberg is also delicious as a vegan taco topping. 

Iceberg lettuce is a perfectly healthy wrap choice since it’s not high in calories and fat. It also contains some nutrients, so enjoy! 

Iceberg Lettuce

One cup of iceberg lettuce has:

  • 10 calories
  • 1 gram of protein
  • 1 gram of fiber
  • 2 grams of carbohydrates

That serving of iceberg lettuce contains 7 percent of your daily value of vitamin A. Along with small amounts of vitamin C and iron. This variety is considered the lowest in nutrients among lettuce varieties, but if you fill it with nutrient-dense foods, you’ll still be getting a balanced meal.

Green Leaf Lettuce 

Green leaf lettuce leaves are big enough to wrap around a thick black-bean burger even when you add toppings such as sweet onion, tomato, and jalapenos. These lettuce leaves make them versatile wrap choices. Also, look for leaf lettuce varieties with red tips to add more color to your wrap.

Green leaf lettuce isn’t as tender as butter lettuce, so it stands up to hefty fillings. Sturdiness is essential for lettuce to be used in wraps. Otherwise, you could have a mess on your hands.

green leaf lettuce

A serving of green leaf lettuce has:

  • 5 calories
  • 1 gram of carbohydrates
  • Less than 1 gram of fiber
  • Less than 1 gram of protein

A cup of green leaf lettuce provides more than 15 percent of the daily value of vitamin A and is an excellent source of vitamin K.

Lettuce Nutrition Facts

Different varieties of lettuce have varying nutrients. Usually, the darker green lettuce varieties are richer in nutrients than the lighter ones, like iceberg lettuce. They all are low in calories, but iceberg lettuce has twice as many calories as green leaf lettuce.

Whatever variety of lettuce you pick, be sure to wash them thoroughly since there have been cases of E. coli contamination because of agricultural runoff that reaches lettuce farms. Few people have allergies to lettuce. 

Lettuce is low in calories and carbs, but it’s also low in protein. If you’re planning to serve vegan wraps, fill lettuce leaves with high-protein fillings. Along with a tasty meal, you’ll get these benefits from dining on lettuce wraps: 

 Lettuce

Stronger Bones 

Green leaf lettuce is an excellent source of vitamin K, which helps bones grow stronger and reduces the risk of fractures. 

Better Vision 

Lettuce is a good source of vitamin A, which promotes eye health, can help prevent macular degeneration, and has been shown to prevent cataracts. 

Hydration 

Eating lettuce helps support hydration since raw lettuce is more than 95 percent water! While you still need to drink plenty of water, eating lettuce supports healthy hydration. This feature makes summertime an excellent time to enjoy lettuce wraps as part of a healthy diet

Makes You Feel Full

Lettuce takes up space, so including lettuce in your diet will leave you feeling full after a meal without adding a lot of extra calories or carbohydrates. Lettuce wraps for lunch that are filled with plant-based protein with some healthy fats will keep you full until dinner.

No Fat 

Lettuce doesn’t contain any fat, so it’s a fantastic choice for those on a low-fat meal plan. Add fats such as avocado, cashews, or olive oil to your lettuce wrap fillings to keep you full longer if they’re part of your healthy eating plan.

You Can’t Overindulge 

One of the best reasons to eat vegan lettuce wraps is that you won’t have to worry about portion control, carbs, or calorie-counting when you’re eating lettuce. Eat as much lettuce as you’d like – those leaves will only add benefits with no downside. 

You’ll Feel Great 

One of the best benefits of eating vegan lettuce wraps is how good you’ll feel afterward. Lettuce won’t weigh you down like other wrap choices. 

You’ll feel comfortably full but not sleepy, even after eating a second helping of lettuce wraps. Take lettuce to work along with your wrap fillings, and you can enjoy any lettuce wrap leftovers the next day. 

Conclusion

Lettuce wraps are so delicious that you might forget they’re healthy. The best lettuce for wraps is one with leaves large and sturdy enough to hold your favorite fillings. Try wrapping your favorite plant-based burger up in lettuce leaves, or roll up some spicy tofu in butter lettuce or romaine.

 

Making lettuce a part of your favorite wraps is easy. You can use the lettuce in place of a tortilla or put it inside a veggie-packed wrap. You’ll enjoy the taste and texture while getting benefits ranging from significant calorie savings to a boost in nutrients, including vitamins A and K and hydration support.

 

Resource References:

 

https://www.webmd.com/diet/differences-between-corn-flour-tortillas 

https://www.thespruceeats.com/what-is-butter-lettuce-4773670 

https://www.eatingwell.com/article/7956297/is-romaine-lettuce-healthy/ 

https://www.webmd.com/diet/health-benefits-lettuce 

https://lettuceinfo.org/products/green-leaf/ 

https://veganliftz.com/best-vegan-meat-recipes/

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/21-best-low-carb-vegetables

https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/vitamin-a/

https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/vitamin-c/

https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/vitamin-k/

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