This vegan BBQ jackfruit sandwich is a great dish to bring to a fall football tailgate. Jackfruit’s texture rivals meat in that it’s thick and chewy. You can shred jackfruit like pulled pork, making this vegan BBQ jackfruit sandwich a delicious and healthy plant-based version of the traditional sandwich. Stun all your meat-eating friends with this tangy BBQ recipe.
I’ve been eyeing jackfruit for a while now. I’ve seen it fresh at Jewel – it looks like a giant green watermelon that never quite ripened – and in the can at Trader Joe’s. I’ve also been tempted to buy it on Amazon when it’s popped up on my “suggested for you” items. Jackfruit is a low-calorie food meaning this BBQ jackfruit sandwich is a healthy meat alternative for those wishing to watch calories. Although jackfruit is low in calories, it is high in magnesium and vitamin C. That means it can boost your immunity and reduce the risk of diseases like diabetes and osteoporosis (source).
I’ve included a recipe for a vegan BBQ sauce, but you can also buy some at the grocery store to cut down on the amount of prep you need to do. The BBQ sauce makes about 3 cups worth and has a sweet, slightly smoky, tangy taste. I use the extra BBQ sauce as a dip for sweet potato fries and topping for vegan omelettes.
Vegan BBQ Jackfruit Sandwich
Heat the tomato sauce, oil, soy sauce, molasses, brown sugar and mustard in a medium sauce pan on medium-low heat. Stir and let heat for 5 minutes. Pro tip: If you don’t have molasses, you can substitute maple syrup in the same quantity. This brand of brown sugar is vegan, it’s at Whole Foods or online.
After 5 minutes, add in apple cider vinegar, chili powder, paprika, cinnamon and liquid smoke. Pro Tip: Liquid Smoke is usually near the BBQ sauces in the grocery store. Stir well to combine and let heat for another 10 minutes while you prep the jackfruit filling. The sauce shouldn’t be boiling, just a few bubbles every now and then. Continue to stir occasionally to ensure that the flavors are fully blending.
While the sauce is heating, drain and rinse the jackfruit. Pat dry and slice off the core portion of the fruit to discard. Pro tip: The “core part” is usually separated from the meat with a line – it’s really similar looking to a pineapple. Pull apart the remaining jackfruit pieces to create a shredded pulled pork look and texture.
Then make the BBQ rub. In a medium bowl, mix the brown sugar, chili powder, paprika, ground black pepper and sea salt. Add in the shredded jackfruit and toss to coat.
Heat a medium skillet over high heat. Add in 2-3 tablespoons of oil of your choice. Once hot, add the coated jackfruit and stir around to coat jackfruit with oil. Sauté for 3 minutes.
By now the sauce should be done. Add in about 2 cups of the BBQ sauce (about half of the sauce) to the skillet and stir to coat the jackfruit. Reduce the heat to low-medium, cover, and allow to cook for 15-25 minutes to allow the sauce to thicken up. The longer it cooks, the deeper the flavor and color. Occasionally remove lid
to drool over the look and smell to stir.
Once the jackfruit has cooked, remove from heat. Serve on your favorite hamburger buns and top with avocado, guacamole, coleslaw, or other preferred topping.
Vegan BBQ jackfruit sandwiches are tangy, filling and loaded with a sweet smoky flavor. I’ve brought this recipe to fall football potlucks and no one could believe it’s vegan! It’s definitely going to become a vegan lunch or dinner staple for me.
Have you ever cooked with jackfruit? If you try this recipe, let me know! Rate it, leave a comment, take a picture and tag @Rabbitfoodruns on Instagram. I’d love to see your vegan BBQ jackfruit creations!