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Taco lettuce wraps make a healthy, light post-holiday meal

By Linda Gassenheimer • Dec 29, 2017 at 7:00 AM

Offset some of the rich holiday meals we’ve enjoyed with this quick, light, vegetarian meal.

Using lettuce leaves instead of flour tortillas creates a fresh crisp wrap for these tacos. I’ve adapted this recipe from Richard Ingraham’s “Eating Well to Win” cookbook.

He is a private chef to NBA stars and talked about healthy eating at the Miami International Book Fair this year. In a recent interview, he told me his job is to feed the players a healthful meal, one that gives them the energy they need for a game.

Helpful Hints:

— Butter lettuce is sometimes called Boston lettuce. Iceberg or Romaine lettuce can be used instead.

— Any type of onion can be used.

— To quickly ripen an avocado, place it in a bag in a warm spot. It also helps if you can place it in a bag with a banana.


— Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

— Assemble the ingredients.

— Make the tacos.

Shopping List:

To Buy: 2 portobello mushroom caps, 1 bottle ground cumin, 1 bottle smoked paprika, 1 can reduced-sodium canned black beans, 2 small ripe Haas avocados, 1 container cherry tomatoes, 1 red onion, 1 bag frozen corn kernels, 1 head butter lettuce, 1 lime and 1 bunch cilantro

Staples: olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and black peppercorns.



Recipe by Linda Gassenheimer

1 tablespoon olive oil, divided use

1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon ground cumin divided use

1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika

2 portobello mushroom caps, stems removed, sliced into strips (about 3 cups)

1/2 tablespoon lime juice

2 small, ripe Haas avocados, peeled, seeded and sliced

1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half

1/2 cup diced red onion

1 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels, defrosted

1 1/2-cups reduced-sodium canned black beans, rinsed and drained

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

8 large butter lettuce leaves

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and add 1/2 tablespoon olive oil, balsamic vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin and smoked paprika. Stir to combine ingredients. Add mushrooms and toss with the mixture. Spread mushrooms out in one layer on the baking sheet and roast 5 minutes, or until mushrooms are soft.

Meanwhile, add the remaining olive oil, lime juice, remaining 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin to a bowl. Mix well. Add the avocado slices, cherry tomatoes, onion, corn kernels, black beans and salt and pepper to taste. Toss well.

Divide lettuce leaves between 2 plates. Fill the center with the roasted mushroom slices and spoon the avocado mixture on top. Sprinkle cilantro on top.

Yield 2 servings.

Per serving: 613 calories (44 percent from fat), 30.1 g fat (4.3 g saturated, 17.1 g monounsaturated), no cholesterol, 21.9 g protein, 76.5 g carbohydrates, 27.9 g fiber, 183 mg sodium.


(Linda Gassenheimer is the author, most recently, of “Delicious One-Pot Dishes,” featuring 60 recipes designed to be stewed, braised, slow-cooked or steamed, each in a single pot. Additional titles by Gassenheimer include “Quick and Easy Chicken,” “Simply Smoothies: Fresh & Fast Diabetes-Friendly Snacks & Complete Meals,” “Fast and Flavorful: Great Diabetes Meals from Market to Table” and “The Flavors of the Florida Keys.” Her website is dinnerinminutes.com. Follow her on Twitter @lgassenheimer. Email: [email protected])


©2017 Tribune Content Agency, LLC

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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