These firecracker salmon lettuce cups are made with flavorful salmon bites wrapped in crisp butter lettuce. They’re gluten-free and can be made paleo and AIP.

A plate with firecracker salmon lettuce cups on it.

Lettuce cups are one of those crunchy, light, and refreshing types of bases for a dish that you can truly add so many different proteins or flavors to. They taste great with chicken, beef, and even fish. Add a yummy sauce, and you have the perfect main dish or appetizer.

These firecracker salmon lettuce cups seem fancy and like something you’d get at a restaurant, but they’re incredibly simple to make at home! All you need is a few simple ingredients and minimal cook time to make these gluten-free lettuce cups that can also be made paleo and AIP.

The Ingredients for the Firecracker Salmon Lettuce Cups

  • Buffalo Sauce. I recommend this for paleo and this for AIP.
  • Coconut Sugar, Coconut Aminos, Apple Cider Vinegar, Ginger Powder, and Garlic Powder. These ingredients plus the buffalo sauce make the firecracker sauce!
  • Salmon Filets. I like to use sockeye salmon.
  • Salt, Pepper, and Avocado Oil.
  • Butter Lettuce Leaves. These act as the cups! You can also use romaine leaves for this.
  • Steamed Rice. You can sub cooked cauliflower rice for AIP/paleo/whole30.
  • Green Onion. For topping!

How to make Firecracker Salmon Lettuce Cups

  • Make the firecracker sauce.

The firecracker sauce.

  • Prepare, cube, and season the salmon. 
  • Cook the salmon and add the firecracker sauce and stir to coat the salmon.

The salmon cooking in a pan.

  • Assemble the lettuce cups and serve. 

A plate with 3 firecracker salmon lettuce cups.

Can you use whole salmon filets instead of cubing them?

You can, but the salmon bites help to make the salmon more crispy, and give even more surface area for the sauce!

How do you make these salmon lettuce cups AIP?

  • Omit the black pepper
  • Use cauliflower rice instead of rice
  • Use this buffalo sauce

Can you use another type of lettuce for this recipe?

Romaine lettuce cups would also work for this recipe.

How do you make this recipe ahead of time?

You can make the salmon ahead of time and assemble everything fresh when you’re ready to enjoy it!

A plate with firecracker salmon lettuce cups on it.

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Firecracker Salmon Lettuce Cups

  • Author: Michelle
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x



For the firecracker sauce

  • 3 tbsp buffalo sauce (use this for paleo and this for AIP)
  • 2 tbsp coconut sugar
  • 2 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp ginger powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder

For the salmon lettuce cups

  • 2 salmon filets
  • Salt and pepper to taste (omit pepper for AIP)
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • 56 butter lettuce leaves
  • 1 cup steamed rice (sub cooked cauliflower rice for AIP/paleo/whole30)
  • 2 tbsp green onion, chopped


  1. Combine the ingredients for the firecracker sauce and set aside.
  2. Remove the skin from the salmon and pat dry. Slice the salmon into cubes and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Heat the avocado oil in a pan over medium heat and add the salmon. Cook for about 3 minutes on each side or until cooked through. Add the firecracker sauce and stir to coat the salmon.
  4. Assemble the lettuce cups by using one lettuce cup then adding rice, 2-3 pieces of salmon and green onion. Repeat for all of the lettuce cups and serve.


All nutrition facts are estimated and will vary.


  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 497
  • Fat: 16.5g
  • Carbohydrates: 46.2g
  • Fiber: .7g
  • Protein: 40.9g