I’ve seen jackfruit BBQ on quite a few blogs and websites as a vegetarian version of barbeque but I was always a little skeptical about how a fruit could remotely even resemble meat barbeque. I finally broke down and decided to give it a try when I spotted cans of jackfruit in the Asian market. As it turns out, there’s a reason there are so many recipes for jackfruit barbeque-- when prepared properly it really have the perfect texture and taste of barbeque! So what exactly is jackfruit? According to Wikipedia, the jackfruit is a tree, native to Asia, that produces a fruit with soft bulbs. Once ripe, the tropical fruit has a sweet flavor, however, it is often used when unripe in savory dishes (like this recipe). Canned jackfruit might be a little challenging to find but ethnic grocery stores or Asian markets will likely have it. Be sure to buy the young (unripe) jackfruit and only buy jackfruit packed in brine NOT syrup for this recipe. Finding the jackfruit is the really the most difficult part of the dish, the recipe itself is quite low maintenance. You will need to do a little advanced planning, however, since the barbeque has to marinade overnight and then simmer all day in the crockpot. The extra planning is completely worth it though when you taste this unbelievable meat-free barbeque. To prepare the barbeque, simply season the jackfruit with a barbeque spice rub and then let marinade in the fridge. The next day, throw the jackfruit in a crockpot and let it slowly simmer in an amazing Asian barbeque sauce. The jackfruit absorbs all of the wonderful flavors of the spice rub and sauce to create a delectable meal. You can enjoy the the barbeque on it’s own, or serve as sandwiches. I know this recipe sounds pretty strange but you really must try it!
Asian Jackfruit BBQ
Click Here for Printable Recipe
1 can (20 ounces) young green jackfruit in brine
1/2 cup vegetable broth, check for gluten
1 tablespoon paprika
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1.5 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon granulated Truvia
3/4 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne
Asian Barbeque Sauce:
1/2 cup crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup ketchup, check for gluten
2 teaspoons gluten free soy sauce
2 teaspoons granulated Truvia
4 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon sambel oelek chili paste (use less for a milder sauce)
pinch of ground ginger
1. Drain jackfruit and rinse under water.
2. Transfer jackfruit to a cutting board and use two forks to shred jackfruit into small pieces (use one fork to hold in place, while you shred the fruit with the other fork). Scoop shredded jackfruit into a medium sized tupperware container and set aside.
3. In a small bowl, whisk together all spice rub ingredients. Pour spice rub over jackfruit and stir thoroughly to ensure that all of the jackfruit is coated in spices. Cover tupperware container and transfer to refrigerator. Let barbeque marinate over night.
4. Prior to cooking the barbeque, prepare the barbeque sauce by whisking together all sauce ingredients in a medium bowl until combined. (You can make the sauce ahead of time if you want-just store, covered, in the refrigerator, up to 1 week).
5. After the jackfruit has marinated, coat a small crockpot (about 3 quart capacity) with nonstick spray.
6. Add jackfruit to crockpot. Stir in barbeque sauce and vegetable broth until combined. Cook over low heat for 8 hours.
7. Divide between two plates and enjoy!
Nutrition Information--approximately 150 calories per serving