Crunchy slaw and protein-rich chicken are bathed in a peanutty dressing then rolled into a handy wrap in this Asian-inspired meal that is sure to become a family favorite. As an option, feel free to skip a step and serve the chicken and slaw as a hearty, healthy salad!
Biting through a soft tortilla and into cool, crisp slaw is a treat for the senses. When that slaw has been tossed in a gingery peanut sauce and topped with a layer of sliced chicken, the result is incredibly satisfying.
The following easy-to-make wraps have made the list of family favorites in our house, and I make them often.
The recipe yield is six, and we’re a family of four, but leftovers are always claimed quickly. If you are cooking for one or two, you could absolutely halve the recipe. You may find, however, that leftovers are welcome, if not anticipated, over the following few days.
For convenience with best results, I often prepare the slaw and slice the chicken in advance, and then then assemble the wraps just before serving. This ensures crisp slaw without a soggy tortilla.
Everyone in my house adores the peanut dressing, so I add an extra drizzle before rolling the tortillas. This can lead to some drips while eating, but it’s nothing a napkin won’t remedy!
In order to fully encase the chicken and slaw, it’s important to use a burrito-size tortilla. These are the biggest ones you’ll find, and they tend to be flour only (as opposed to the flour or corn options available in the taco size).
For those requiring a gluten-free alternative, I recommend a gluten-free wrap that is of similar size. We’ve recently enjoyed a brand called Toufayan, which tastes a lot like a whole wheat wrap. (I found them at Wegmans and actually prefer them.) I’ve noticed the diameter of the GF wraps is a touch smaller than that of the flour tortillas, so when using these, I often roll them more like a gyro, leaving the top end open.
Roasted, baked, grilled, poached, or rotisserie chicken will work well in these wraps. For an extra layer of complimentary flavor and convenient leftovers, I often grill chicken soaked in this really easy 3-ingredient marinade one night, making sure to have plenty for leftovers.⇩⇩ (If you’ve never tried the marinade, I highly recommend it, whether you ultimately make the wraps or not! It’s delicious as a marinade for salmon and grilled vegetables, too.)
How to roll a burrito or wrap
If you haven’t rolled many burritos, the first time or two may feel tricky. My best tips are to not worry too much what it looks like and feel free to secure with toothpicks!
- Start by warming the tortillas for 10 seconds or so in the microwave (you could also wrap them in foil and warm in the oven). This will make the tortillas more pliable and less likely to crack when rolling.
- Next, place the slaw on the tortilla, just a tad closer to you than the center line. Spread the mixture into the shape of a rough rectangle, leaving an inch or so to the left and right ends so you have enough to fold in.
- After you top the slaw with the chicken and add and extra drizzle of sauce, if desired, fold in the ends (on your left and right). And then, as you hold in those ends, use your thumbs to bring the front end of the tortilla up and over, rolling away from you. Pull in with your other fingers at the same time, sort of tucking in the slaw mixture.
- Make sure what were the front and back ends of the tortilla are overlapping, and place the rolled tortilla so the seam side is down. If you didn’t quite get it right the first time, simply unroll, tuck the slaw mixture back into your rectangular pile, and re-roll.
- Secure with two toothpicks if you find that helpful, and then slice across the middle with a sharp knife.
- Troubleshooting: if you find it difficult to neatly roll the wraps burrito-style (or if you perhaps went heavy on the filling－which tastes great but does make them difficult to roll), you can roll them like a gyro (or a cone shape), folding in one end and leaving the top open.
- Following a low-carb diet? You could use a low-carb wrap, although as an alternative, the slaw and chicken mixture is deliciously satisfying served as a salad. When serving as a salad, I like to sprinkle with peanuts, sunflower seeds, or pepitas for added crunch.
- 4 cups coleslaw mix (or use a mix of 3 cups shredded cabbage and 1 cup shredded carrots)
- ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro (may omit or substitute parsley if not a fan)
- 2 cooked chicken breasts, shredded or thinly sliced (about 12-14 ounces cooked)
- 6 large (burrito size) flour tortillas (use gluten-free wraps if needed)
- Optional: ⅓ cup roasted peanuts; ½ a red bell pepper, julienned; 2 thinly sliced scallions
- ¼ cup (64g) peanut butter
- ¼ cup (60ml) low sodium soy sauce or tamari (gluten-free if needed)
- 3 tablespoons (60g) honey
- 3 tablespoons (45ml) unseasoned rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic (or 1 medium clove)
- 1-2 teaspoons sriracha sauce (or to taste)
- 2 tablespoons (28ml) mild olive or vegetable oil
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the peanut dressing ingredients. (Prep ahead tip: dressing may be prepared up to several days in advance and refrigerated. It will keep for several weeks.)
- To a large bowl, add the coleslaw mix, cilantro, and optional peanuts, red pepper, and/or scallions. Drizzle some of the sauce over the mixture and toss – you want just enough to lightly coat the slaw. Set the slaw and remaining dressing aside. (Prep ahead tip: the slaw may be covered and refrigerated until ready to use.)
- To make the tortillas more pliable and easier to work with, heat them for about 10 seconds in the microwave. Divide the chicken and coleslaw among each tortilla. You may drizzle with a bit more sauce, if desired, or serve some on the side for dipping. (Helpful hint: you don’t need to make all six wraps at once, as the components will keep in the refrigerator and may be used over several days.)
- Fold in the sides of each tortilla and then roll tightly to secure the filling inside. You may find it helpful to secure each side with a toothpick before cutting in half.
Beyond the optional wrap ingredients, you could add julienned cucumber or line the wraps with lettuce. Feel free to be creative, just beware of overstuffing the wraps. (I have done this, in which case I leave the top open and serve more like a gyro－or like a cone shape!)