If you’ve been on a quest to find the perfect plant-based alternative to pulled pork, look no further. Our BBQ Pulled Jackfruit Sandwiches are not only juicy, tangy, and bursting with barbecue goodness, but they’re also surprisingly simple to make. This recipe will take your vegan BBQ game to a whole new level. Let’s dive into the magic of jackfruit and explore this delectable dish.
My Introduction to the Jackfruit
On a sunny afternoon, I wandered into a local farmer’s market. The vibrant colors, fresh scents, and bustling atmosphere were truly captivating. As I strolled past various stalls, a peculiar fruit caught my attention: large, green, and covered in spiky bumps. It was my first encounter with a jackfruit.
Curiosity piqued, I decided to buy one. Back at home, I was stumped on how to use this intriguing fruit. A cherished memory of a smoky BBQ pulled pork sandwich from my childhood came to mind. Could I possibly recreate that iconic taste using jackfruit?
After some research and culinary experimentation, I crafted a recipe for “BBQ Pulled Jackfruit Sandwiches”. The result was astonishing. The sandwich had a depth of flavor and a meaty texture that even rivaled the traditional pulled pork sandwiches I remembered.
Word of my BBQ Pulled Jackfruit Sandwiches spread in my circle. Friends, family, and neighbors all wanted a taste. It became not just a favorite dish but also a conversation starter, showcasing the unexpected and delightful possibilities of vegan cuisine.
Who’s This Recipe For?
Anyone and everyone! Whether you’re a staunch vegan, a curious flexitarian, or just someone looking to add a bit of culinary variety to their week, this dish is for you. Jackfruit, with its remarkable meaty texture, is the ideal substitute for traditional pulled pork. Not to mention, it’s packed with fiber and free from cholesterol. So, if you’re aiming for healthier choices without compromising flavor, this is the sandwich to try.
Why BBQ Pulled Jackfruit is Simply Irresistible
- Texture: Jackfruit nails the shredded, meaty texture we love in a pulled pork sandwich. When prepared right, it’s tender, moist, and utterly satisfying.
- Flavor: This fruit soaks up flavors like a sponge. Combined with smoky BBQ sauce and aromatic spices, the result is an explosion of savory goodness.
- Versatility: Apart from sandwiches, the pulled jackfruit can be a star in tacos, pizzas, and even salads.
Pro Tips, Shortcuts, and Variations:
- Quick Prep: Buy pre-sliced onions and pre-minced garlic to cut down on prep time.
- Variations: Use your favorite BBQ spice blend in place of the individual spices listed, or add a pinch of cayenne pepper for some heat. For an Asian twist, consider a teriyaki or hoisin-based sauce instead of BBQ.
- Buns and Beyond: While sandwich buns are classic, consider serving pulled jackfruit in lettuce wraps or over a bed of steamed rice for a gluten-free option.
Storing Your Masterpiece:
Leftovers? No problem. Store any remaining pulled jackfruit in an airtight container in the fridge. It’ll stay fresh and flavorful for up to 3-4 days. When you’re ready to enjoy it again, simply reheat it in a skillet or microwave until warmed through. Consider using leftovers as a topping for nachos or a filling for vegan enchiladas.
- Sides: A side of baked sweet potato fries or a fresh green salad complements the sandwich beautifully.
- Drinks: A tangy, homemade lemonade or a cool, craft beer can elevate your dining experience.
- Can I use ripe jackfruit?
For this recipe, always opt for young green jackfruit in water or brine. Ripe jackfruit is sweet and unsuitable for this savory dish.
- What if I don’t have a skillet?
A large non-stick frying pan will work just as well.
- Is jackfruit a good source of protein?
While jackfruit offers numerous health benefits, it’s not particularly high in protein. Consider adding some cooked lentils or beans to the mix for a protein boost.
BBQ Pulled Jackfruit Sandwiches are more than just a vegan alternative; they’re a culinary revelation. If you’ve been skeptical about plant-based alternatives in the past, this dish is bound to change your mind.
- 2 20 oz cans of young green jackfruit in water or brine, drained and rinsed
- 1 medium onion thinly sliced
- 2-3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup BBQ sauce your choice, but ensure it’s vegan if that’s a priority
- 2 tbsp olive oil or avocado oil
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika or regular paprika
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp salt or to taste
- 1/2 cup vegetable broth or water
- 4 sandwich buns optionally toasted
- Optional toppings: coleslaw pickles, onions, etc.
- Prepare the Jackfruit: After draining and rinsing the jackfruit, cut away and discard the core portion of each piece (it’s harder than the rest). Using your fingers, press and tear apart the jackfruit chunks to achieve a “pulled” or shredded texture.
- Sauté Onions and Garlic: In the large skillet over medium heat, add the oil. Once hot, add the thinly sliced onions and sauté until they become translucent (about 5 minutes). Add the minced garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes.
- Cook the Jackfruit: Add the shredded jackfruit to the skillet, followed by the paprika, chili powder, salt, and black pepper. Stir to ensure the jackfruit is evenly coated with the spices. Cook for 5-7 minutes, occasionally stirring.
- Add the BBQ Sauce and Broth: Pour in the BBQ sauce and vegetable broth (or water). Stir well, ensuring the jackfruit is thoroughly coated with the sauce.
- Simmer: Reduce the heat to low, cover the skillet, and let it simmer for about 20-25 minutes. Stir occasionally, ensuring it doesn’t stick to the bottom. If the mixture becomes too dry, you can add a little more broth or water.
- Pull the Jackfruit: Once the jackfruit is tender and the flavors are melded, use two forks to “pull” or shred it further in the pan, until it resembles the texture of pulled pork.
- Serve: Pile the pulled jackfruit high onto the sandwich buns. Add any additional toppings like coleslaw or pickles as desired. Serve immediately.
- Jackfruit: Make sure to use young green jackfruit in water or brine, not ripe jackfruit in syrup. The latter is sweet and won’t work for this savory recipe.
- BBQ Sauce: Depending on your preference, you can choose from a variety of BBQ sauces. There are spicier versions, smokier ones, or even sweet ones. For a low-sugar option, look for sauces that are sweetened with natural ingredients or use less sugar.
- Spices: If you have a favorite BBQ spice blend, you can use that in place of the individual spices listed.
- For Heat: If you like a bit of spice, consider adding a pinch of cayenne pepper or some sliced jalapeños.
- Oil-Free: If you’re looking to reduce or eliminate oil, you can sauté the onions and garlic using vegetable broth.
- Gluten-Free: Ensure that the BBQ sauce and sandwich buns you use are gluten-free if that’s a dietary requirement. There are many delicious gluten-free buns available on the market.
- Serving Suggestions: You can also serve the pulled jackfruit over rice, in tacos, or as a topping for nachos or pizzas.
- Storing: Leftover pulled jackfruit can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. It can be reheated in a skillet or microwave.