I know what you’re thinking.
What the who is that?
It’s BBQ jackfruit – aka the ticket to reclaiming your favorite BBQ sandwich.
This recipe was inspired by the talented folks at FuD – a vegan eatery in Kansas City.
When we were still Midwest dwellers I had the chance to eat at FuD several times and was most drawn to their faux meat dishes using jackfruit.
I’d seen jackfruit in Asian stores before and just thought it looked like a giant green eyesore (because that’s what it is). However, I had no idea that its texture lends itself to mocking meat and absorbing just about any flavor you throw its way.
In other words, it’s a vegan’s dream food.
This recipe is simple, requiring just 10 ingredients (give or take a spice) and 30 minutes!
The only ingredient this recipe requires that’s likely not lying around your pantry is green jackfruit, which can be found at practically any Asian market and on Amazon.
NOTE: Just be sure it’s young green jackfruit in water, not brine or syrup. This is key to achieving proper flavor and texture.
The process is so simple.
Drain and clean jackfruit.
Toss with BBQ spices.
Add BBQ sauce.
BBQ jackfruit in just 30 minutes that will fool any carnivore into thinking they’re eating pulled pork. This stuff is legit.
To add more flavor and texture to the mix, I include a quick avocado veggie slaw that’s easily prepared while the jackfruit is simmering.
And for even more healthy fats and some protein, roasted salted cashews – because who doesn’t want a giant handful of cashews on anything they’re eating? (Shush, Rhonda – just shush.)
This BBQ jackfruit sandwich is legit! It’s:
Big in BBQ flavor
Crunchy from the slaw
Even the novice can make this sandwich. All that’s left to do is sit back and watch your friends marvel at what they’re eating. I’ll never scorn the jackfruit again, no matter now ugly and weird it is.
If you try this sandwich, let us know! Take a picture and tag it #minimalistbaker on Instagram! We’d love to see what you come up with. Cheers!
BBQ Jackfruit Sandwiches with Avocado Slaw
- 2 20-ounce cans young green jackfruit in water (NOT in syrup or brine)
- 1/4 cup BBQ seasoning (For 1/4 cup or ~45 g BBQ seasoning, use 2 Tbsp brown sugar + 1 tsp paprika + 1 tsp garlic powder + 1/2 tsp salt + 1/2 tsp pepper + 1/2 tsp chili powder)
- 3/4 cup BBQ sauce (ensure it’s vegan // plus more for topping)
AVOCADO SLAW (optional)
- 2 cups shredded cabbage + carrots (Trader Joe’s has a great cruciferous veg mix)
- 1/2 ripe avocado
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup (or sweetener of choice)
- 1 lemon or lime (juiced)
- Salt + pepper (to taste)
- Water (to thin)
- 4-6 whole grain vegan buns (GF for gluten-free eaters)
- 1/2 cup roasted salted cashews (or roast on your own*)
Rinse, drain, and thoroughly dry jackfruit. Chop off the center "core" portion of the fruit and discard. Place in a mixing bowl and set aside.
Mix together BBQ seasoning and add to jackfruit. Toss to coat.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add 1-2 Tbsp oil of choice and seasoned jackfruit (use more oil, as needed, if increasing batch size). Toss to coat and cook for 2-3 minutes to achieve some color.
Add BBQ sauce and thin with enough water to make a sauce. Stir and reduce heat to low- medium and cook for about 20 minutes (up to 35 minutes on low for a deeper flavor).
Remove lid and stir occasionally. TIP: For finer texture, use two forks to shred the jackfruit as it cooks down.
In the meantime, make slaw by adding all ingredients except vegetables (avocado through salt + pepper) to a small mixing bowl and whisk to combine. Thin with water until a thick sauce is made, then add veggies and toss to coat. Set in the refrigerator until serving.
Once the jackfruit has been properly simmered, turn up heat to medium-high and cook for 2-3 more minutes to get a little extra color/texture (a tip I learned from Namely Marly!). Then remove from heat.
Place generous portions of slaw on the bottom buns, top with generous serving of BBQ jackfruit, and cashews. Serve with extra BBQ sauce!
Leftover jackfruit keeps for up to a couple days in the fridge, though best when fresh.
*To roast your own cashews: Toss 1/2 cup cashews in a bit of oil and sea salt and spread on a baking sheet. Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 10-12 minutes, or until roasty, fragrant and slightly golden brown.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with avocado slaw and roasted cashews.
*Loosely adapted from Blissful Basil.
Nutrition Per Serving (1 of 5)
- Calories: 431
- Fat: 13.6g
- Saturated fat: 2.6g
- Sodium: 1000mg
- Carbohydrates: 65g
- Fiber: 15.7g
- Sugar: 17g
- Protein: 11.5g