Jack Fruit BBQ is a great dish for plant based diets, Vegetarians, or anyone who just wants to try something new and off the beaten path! I think most of y’all are going to be completely blown away by today’s recipe. Not only is it the easiest barbecue you’ve ever made, but it’s also stunningly delicious – and made with a fruit. If you’ve spent most of your life steeped in Southern food culture (like myself) you probably have no idea what to expect from a BBQ JackFruit Sandwich – and you may be glancing up at that picture over and over just wondering how something that looks so much like pulled bbq can be anything else! Well, as an old dog, I confess that it’s nice to learn a few new tricks every now and then so I’m going to pass this one on just in case some of y’all would like to expand your horizons, too.
- Why make Jackfruit BBQ? I have a niece who is a vegetarian and my daughter eats mostly plant based. She will still eat meat from time to time but prefers more plant based dishes when possible. Also, we have an amazing Asian market near us and I saw this a few months back and wanted to try it!
- Does it taste like fruit? Not at all but it is important that you get the right kind of jackfruit.
- What kind do I get? You want it to say “Young, Green”. Either both or one of those descriptors is fine. Young jackfruit is not sweet and easily adapts to any flavor sauce you cook it with. You also want to make sure it is in either water or brine, not syrup. I have always managed to find Jackfruit in water so that is my preference.
- Where do I find it? If you have an Asian market near you they will most likely have a ton of it on their shelves. Other health food grocers may have it as well (such as Whole Foods, etc). You can also buy it online at places like WalMart.com, although my local WalMart does not carry it in the store.
- How do you make it? That is the super easy part. Let me show you!
You’ll need: A can of young jackfruit in water or brine, your favorite BBQ sauce, and some buns.
This is what Jackfruit looks like. Sometimes it will be more white in color, sometimes more pale yellow, but often like this, which is kind of a chicken color to me. Pour out your can and drain it well. I usually take my hand and press it a bit to remove a little extra liquid.
Place this in a medium to large skillet and use your fingers or a spatula to mash it up a bit. In doing this, it will separate into meat looking strands as pictured. Doesn’t that look like meat? It’s amazing!
Place this on medium to medium high heat and cook for about five to ten minutes, stirring often, to get more of the water cooked out of it.
Add in your BBQ sauce. The amount is up to you. I usually add about a cup.
Stir that up and continue cooking until heated through, then serve!
Does it taste like BBQ? Yes, it sure does. To me, there a slight juicy burst to the last part of the bite that is reminiscent of eating pineapple in terms of texture, but the flavor itself is bbq all the way! I hope you get to try this soon. It will definitely fool some folks!
- 14 oz can young green jackfruit in water or brine
- 1 cup barbecue sauce
Drain jackfruit in a colander. Place in large skillet over medium high heat. Chop up with spatula or chopper* and stir often for 5-10 minutes until more water is evaporated.
Add in enough bbq sauce to taste- I usually add about a cup. Stir and continue cooking until heated through. Serve on buns and enjoy!
*You can also just moosh it up with your hands as you put it in the skillet.