Chipotle Elk Lettuce Wraps with Cashew Queso

We’ve pretty much made lettuce wraps the go-to lunch on the whole30. They’re just so easy, versatile and always hit the spot. Who needs tacos and burritos when you’ve got lettuce wraps. I love these pulled pork lettuce wraps so much, but the prep is a lot more involved. With these chipotle elk lettuce wraps you can literally whip them up in under 20 minutes. If you don’t have access to elk you can most definitely just use ground beef. Lucky me, a friend of a friend is a hunter and scored an elk not too long ago. As i’m making this beautifully fresh elk, my man starts you tubing elks in heat. What an appetizing sound it is, check that shit out AFTER you eat these.

Elk is such an amazingly rich meat. Wild meat is something else, when its hunted properly it doesn’t get those fear hormones that make meat taste off. Not to mention the amazing nutrition from an animal that spent its life grazing wild forests. Have you ever thought about how most of our meat is female? It’s a little out of balance if you ask me. I mean, we don’t eat the roosters, or the bulls, or the boars. Not for any good reason either. These guys just require different cooking styles, but they’re delicious none the less. I like to have some yin and yang balance in my meat eating, which is why wild is where it’s at.

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It’s day 8 of the whole30 and I just posted a new meal plan for week 2. I don’t always follow my own meal plans, but they are inspiring and I think they paint a picture that the whole30 isn’t this wretched deprivation experiment. My major vice is cheese, mostly because of the way it melds flavours together. It’s like a fatty little vehicle that ensures a deep feeling of satisfaction. So I’m thankful for cashews, as they turn into this magical, creamy, cheese like substance with just a few pulses of the blender. You can keep the cashew queso liquid enough so that it can be used as a salad dressing. I like to make extra as a dip for raw veggies and last nights indulgence, tostones, aka fried plantains, aka basically fries from McDonald’s that are totally good for you.

 

Chipotle Elk Lettuce Wraps with Cashew Queso

Ingredients

    For the Chipotle Elk Lettuce Wraps
  • 1 head butter or iceberg lettuce
  • 1 tsp cooking oil or fat of choice
  • 1 white onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 lb ground elk (or ground beef)
  • 1 tsp chipotle powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp fresh cracked pepper
  • juice of 1/2 lime+ extra wedges for serving
  • 2 carrots, grated
  • For the Cashew Queso
  • 1 C cashews (soaked for at least 20 minutes and drained)
  • 3/4 C fresh water
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tbs nutritional yeast
  • handful fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • fresh cracked pepper

Instructions

    For the Chipotle Elk
  1. Melt oil in a large skillet, add onions and cook until golden.
  2. Add elk and seasonings, cook on med-high until nicely browned. Finish with a squeeze of lime juice.
  3. Separate lettuce leaves and assemble on a plate, put a neat little pile of grated carrots, followed by a small scoop of the chipotle elk and some lime wedges.
  4. For the Cashew Queso
  5. In a blender or food processor, combine cashews, water, lime, garlic, nutritional yeast, cilantro and seasonings and pulse until super smooth and creamy. You can add more water to achieve your desire thickness.
  6. Drizzle over top of lettuce wraps and enjoy!
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