Smoked Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps with Soy Dipping Sauce

4.12 from 27 votes
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Tired of traditional BBQ sauce with pulled pork? Try this sweet and savory soy based dipping sauce to jazz up your next batch of leftover smoked pulled pork! These Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps are a fantastic (and light) alternative to tacos or sliders, with amazing flavor!

Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps on a serving platter

We’re total suckers for Taco Tuesday. It’s so easy to toss whatever you have laying around and layer it into a soft tortilla and chew away.

But, we’ve been trying to use up some leftover pulled pork lately. And I’m not gonna lie, I sometimes get a little tired of the traditional bbq sauce, cheddar cheese, combo. I’m often craving something a little more savory and lighter.

We love the combination of eastern flavors and spices (soy, ginger and spices like Chinese five spice).

Speaking of… if you are looking for similar flavors, you can check out our recipe for Smoked Pork Ribs with Asian Spice Rub.

Ingredients For The Sauce

The goal is a savory and sweet sauce and fresh vegetables for texture when making the lettuce wraps. You add the sauce with a small spoon or serving dish.

  • Soy sauce – We opt for low sodium. You can also substitute with tamari for a gluten free alternative
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Green onions
  • Brown sugar
  • Honey
  • Fresh ginger – grated
  • Garlic clove – finely diced.
  • Sprig of rosemary – About 4-6 inches, the whole sprig, no need to break apart or chop
  • Slurry – A mix of 1 tablespoon water and 1 tablespoon cornstarch, this will help the sauce thicken

Smoked Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps with Soy Dipping Sauce

Take any pulled pork you may have lying around. I’m totally cool with wherever it comes from (leftover smoked pulled pork, crockpot pulled pork, heck even if you buy the Trader Joe’s store-bought pulled pork, whatever works for you!).

pulled pork butt in a foil pan
  1. Just start warming up the pulled pork in a medium sized skillet over medium heat. We add some of the finished sauce to the pulled pork while it’s cooking.
  2. And while that’s warming up make your sauce.
  3. In a separate small saucepan, combine soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, green onion, rosemary, garlic, ginger, honey and let it reduce. It helps to add a bit of a slurry to get it to thicken up too.
  4. Once it gets to the consistency you want (should be thick, like maple syrup, but not as thick as honey) take it off the burner and toss a few tablespoons into the pulled pork and save the rest to serve over your lettuce wraps after you’ve loaded them up with all sorts of happiness.

Lettuce Wraps Ingredients

Speaking of “happiness” I’m obviously referring to all of the crunchy veggies and herbs you may choose to add (like carrots, cabbage, green onions… the options are endless!). So while the sauce is reducing cut up your desired veggies to add to your lettuce wraps, turn on some happy tunes, and pop open a bottle of wine and get ready for fantastic and healthy meal. Our favorite toppings include:

  • Warmed pulled pork
  • Butter lettuce
  • Carrots, julienned
  • Red cabbage, shredded or julienned
  • Green onions, chopped
  • Cilantro
  • Sesame seeds

You can add or substitute any of your fresh ingredients based on what’s in the store like water chestnuts, fresh snap peas, or fresh sprouted greens. The portions are in the recipe card.

Wine Pairing for Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps

Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps on a platter

I love the mix of savory flavors you get from the sauce (especially from the soy and balsamic), mixed with the mildly smoky meat, freshened up by the crunch raw veggies and fresh herbs. This is a great one to experiment with both red and white wines. We tried it with some local Pinot Noir and it was actually a lovely match.

But my favorite pairing for this dish is Riesling. We’ve been playing around a lot with Riesling and smoked meat and I’ve gotta tell you, Riesling can stand up to some smoke, folks. And with the complexity of flavors we’ve got here, the acidity in the wine, brightness, and fruity flavors, this was a winner!

More Recipes for Leftover Pulled Pork

About Vindulge

Mary (a certified sommelier and recipe developer) and Sean (backyard pitmaster) are co-authors of the critically acclaimed cookbook, Fire + Wine, and have been creating content for the IACP nominated website Vindulge since 2009. They live in Oregon on a farm just outside Portland.

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Now on 2nd edition

Fire + Wine Cookbook

“This book is a one-stop guide for anyone truly interested in elevating their BBQ experience into a culinary work of art.”
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*For our recipe and technique that we used for these lettuce wraps, check out this post on how to smoke a pork butt.  That post also includes some of my favorite uses for leftover pulled pork. 

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4.12 from 27 votes

Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps with Soy Dipping Sauce

A fun way to jazz up lettuce wraps. Use leftover pulled pork and combine with this savory and sweet sauce. Top with your favorite veggies and pair with a crisp Riesling.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Servings: 4 servings


For the Sauce:

  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup green onions
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ¼ teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 garlic clove, finely diced
  • 1 sprig rosemary, (about 4-6 inches, the whole sprig, no need to break apart or chop)
  • 1 tablespoon slurry, (a mix of 1 tablespoon water and 1 tablespoon cornstarch, this will help the sauce thicken)

For the Lettuce Wraps

  • 2 cups pulled pork,, (approximately 1 lb)
  • 2 carrots, julienned
  • 2 cups red cabbage, shredded or julienned
  • 1 head butter lettuce, leaves separated
  • ½ cup green onions, chopped
  • ¼ cup cilantro, chopped


For the Sauce:

  • Whisk all the sauce ingredients together (except the slurry) in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Reduce at simmer for 10- 12 minutes. Strain (to remove rosemary and any chunks) the sauce into a separate container using a collander and add back into the saucepan over heat.
  • In a separate small sealed container add 1 tablespoon of water with 1 tablespoon cornstarch or flour and shake or mix to combine. Add the "slurry" to the saucepan with the strained sauce. Whisk to combine. Let continue simmering for 8-10 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Set aside.

For the Wraps:

  • Warm up Pork: In a large skillet heat up the pork on medium heat until warmed. Add 2-4 tablespoons of the sauce to the meat, as desired. Save the remaining sauce for topping your wraps. Remove from heat.
  • Assemble lettuce wraps: Scoop pork mixture into lettuce leaves, and top with your vegetables, onions, and cilantro. Drizzle with more reserved sauce as desired.


For our recipe for pulled pork, click here.


Calories: 360kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.03g | Cholesterol: 51mg | Sodium: 3993mg | Potassium: 533mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 37g | Vitamin A: 7374IU | Vitamin C: 35mg | Calcium: 145mg | Iron: 4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Course: easy
Cuisine: Asian inspired, barbecue, bbq, leftover pork, lettuce wraps
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 360
Keyword: grilled chicken lettuce wrap recipe, pulled pork leftovers, pulled pork lettuce wraps
Like this recipe? Leave a comment below!

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About Mary

I'm Mary, a wine/food/travel writer, Certified Sommelier, mom of twins, former vegetarian turned BBQ fanatic, runner, founder of Vindulge, and author of Fire + Wine cookbook. Thanks for stopping by!

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  1. 4 stars
    I loved this dish but felt that the sauce was too thick. I diluted it with a quarter to a half cup of water and it was delicious. Just wondering if I went wrong somewhere.

    This was my first time on your site. Love it! Thanks for the recipe.

    1. Thanks for the feedback. Happy to hear you enjoyed the recipe 🙂
      I’m thinking a couple things could lead to it being too thick. The first would be simmering it too long, and it reducing too much? Or perhaps you were using balsamic that was already reduced (or aged)?
      Either way what you did with thinning it out with water is perfect, and exactly what I would have recommended for a too-thick sauce.

  2. 4 stars
    I made these last night with a couple of amendments.

    Instead of just using the shredded cabbage and carrots, I make a slaw of green and red cabbage, carrots, mint, cilantro, jalapeno, lime juice, salt and pepper.

    I used coconut aminos instead of soy because I avoid that stuff like the plague.

    But they came out great (we always have pulled pork around since we smoke a butt once a month).

    I used the lettuce only, and my bf just placed the lettuce cup inside a small flour tortilla.

    Really enjoyed them.

  3. 5 stars
    We love eating smoked pork shoulder, but after sandwiches the first day, nachos the second, and pizza the third, we were looking for something fresh. With the fresh lettuce and spinach, cilantro and radishes and green onions all coming straight from our spring garden, this recipe was perfect! And so, so delicious. Thank you,

  4. I was wondering if anyone has tried these cold? Thinking of maybe wrapping in a tortilla for my daughter’s lunch. Any thoughts on that? Thanks

    1. Absolutely. They’re great cold. And that’s a great school lunch idea btw! I’m totally stealing that for my kids. These days I’m rotating between PB&J and turkey hummus wraps. I need to change up our lunch game!

  5. I made Asian pulled pork tacos in the crock pot. Ginger, sesame oil, chili sauce, etc. all go into the crock and then I add coleslaw made with spicy pepper jelly and put them in a corn tortilla. SO GOOD. I think I might try your variation next time. YUM.

  6. We love Taco Tuesdays at our house as well! I would never have thought to try a Pinot Noir with this dish but can see how it would be delicious. I’m not normally a fan of Riesling, but can definitely see that being a wine of choice for these. What a great way to use up pulled pork — we always have so much leftover whenever we make it, and this looks so tasty!

    1. Thanks 🙂 And we love Pinot and pork in general, but I originally though the sauce might be a bit overpowering. But with the right Pinot (especially something from a warmer vintage like Oregon’s ’14s) it can really stand up to the flavors.

  7. Delish! I’m so tired of pulled pork sandwiches – so I love the take you took of making lettuce wraps and giving it a fresh twist 🙂

    1. Right?! I have to admit, but I get tired of them too. Mostly the monotony of it. And the excessive bread. This is definitely a freshened up way to eat delicious pulled pork!

  8. Yummmmmm this sounds so good!! We love lettuce wraps and non-traditional tacos! When I started eating meat again pulled pork and beef roasts became a big favorite. So satisfying! I love the different flavor twist!