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Are you craving some smoky bbq with great flavor and super tender texture? This vegan BBQ jackfruit is the perfect solution! It goes together quickly and easily using mostly pantry staples!

process of mixing bbq sauce to pan of jackfruit against white background

When I’m craving comfort food, this vegan jackfruit bbq often comes to mind first! It’s so easy to make and I am constantly amazed at how authentic the jackfruit serves as a meat substitute.

There are lots of smoky flavors and you can change it up to your own tastes with a variety of different bbq sauces. It’s truly a recipe you will want to save and come back to time and again.

Whether you’re new to jackfruit or a pro when it comes to it, you might also enjoy these jackfruit carnitas or jackfruit lettuce cups

Why This Recipe Works

  • So versatile! Jackfruit bbq can be used to create a variety of different dishes from vegan pulled pork sandwiches to tacos or wraps!
  • Easy to meal prep. Make a batch and then repurpose it in a variety of ways during the week.
  • Family-friendly vegan option. This bbq jackfruit recipe is one the whole family will love.
  • Great tasting shredded meat copycat that’s easy to make for weeknights.

What Goes Into This Recipe

Less than 10 ingredients are all you need to make this jackfruit bbq recipe.  Many are basic, easy-to-find ingredients and even pantry staples you may already have on hand.

clear bowl of jackfruit alongside measured out ingredients for BBQ jackfruit
  • Jackfruit: For best results buy green or unripe jackfruit. It comes canned and packed in water. Many organic or health stores carry this product if you can’t find it in your local grocery store.
  • Smoked paprika, cajun seasoning, garlic powder: Easy pantry staple spices make up the seasoning mixture to coat the jackfruit and give it some flavor.
  • Fresh garlic and diced onion: Aromatics that add more depth of flavor to the dish.
  • BBQ sauce: Any vegan bottled barbecue sauce will work. 
  • Liquid smoke: Optional but it gives the sauce a bit more smoky flavor like regular bbq!

Substitutions and Variations

There are a few ways to change up this jackfruit bbq recipe to make it a little different or to fit your own tastes.

  • Spicy: If you like your bbq with a little heat, add some coarse ground black pepper, cayenne pepper, red chili flakes, or sliced fresh chilies.
  • Sweeter: Some like their bbq on the sweeter side of things. If this is you, you can add some brown sugar or maple syrup to make it a little sweeter. 

How to Make BBQ Jackfruit

  • 1) Prep the jackfruit. Preheat the oven and while it’s heating, open up the can of jackfruit and rinse it under cold water.  Remove the bottom triangle section of the jackfruit. Drain off all the excess water from the jackfruit.
  • 2) In a small bowl, mix the paprika, cajun seasoning, and garlic powder together.
  • 3) Place the jackfruit in a bowl with the minced garlic and diced onion. Add the seasoning mixture and toss until evenly coated.
  • 4) Add the jackfruit mixture to a nonstick pan and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • 5) Add the BBQ sauce and continue to cook for 15 minutes.
  • 6) Transfer the jackfruit mixture from the pan to a nonstick baking sheet and bake in the oven for 10 minutes.

Expert Tips 

  • Drain, rinse and prep the jackfruit. All these steps are key to creating the best flavor in your bbq jackfruit.
  • Don’t skip finishing your bbq jackfruit in the oven! This step is what gives it a nice crispy texture that’s more like vegan pulled pork.
  • Feel free to experiment with the flavors! Try making it sweeter, spicier, or just as you prefer!

FAQs

Is pulled jackfruit healthy?

Yes, it’s a tasty healthy option for meals! It’s relatively low in calories and contains a bit of just about every nutrient you need. Also, for a fruit it contains a remarkably high amount of protein at 3 grams per one cup serving. It also contains a good amount of vitamin C, magnesium, potassium, copper, manganese and is a good source of antioxidants.

Is store-bought bbq sauce vegan?

Yes and no! Many brands are vegan but watch out for bbq sauces sweetened with honey. Many of these may be labeled as such on the front but I highly recommend giving a glance to the ingredient list to be sure.

completed vegan bbq jackfruit in a white bowl alongside white towel

How to Store

Leftovers: Store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to five days or in the freezer for up to three months.

Reheat: If frozen, thaw it out in the refrigerator overnight. Reheat in a non-stick skillet on the stove until heated through. You can also heat on a baking sheet in the oven at 350° F for 10-15 minutes.

How to Eat BBQ Jackfruit

Turn it into a sandwich like this vegan pulled pork sandwich! Serve it up with some homemade pickles and coleslaw for a classic vegan BBQ meal.

Turn it into tacos! Swap out your regular vegan taco meat for a tasty bbq jackfruit taco! It goes great with all the regular taco toppings such as guacamole, pico de gallo, and veggies!

Use it as a salad topping or add it to a grain bowl.

Wrap it up in a giant tortilla as a sandwich wrap or burrito! It’s so yummy topped with a bit of brussels sprout slaw.

More Vegan BBQ Recipes

Photos by Alfonso Revilla

Vegan BBQ Jackfruit

5 from 27 votes
Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 35 mins
Total: 45 mins
Servings: 4
Are you craving some smoky bbq with great flavor and super tender texture? This vegan BBQ jackfruit is the perfect solution! It goes together quickly and easily using mostly pantry staples!

Ingredients 

  • 34 ounces of jackfruit in water
  • ½ teaspoon of smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon of Cajun seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • ½ cup of diced onion
  • 1 cup of BBQ sauce
  • ½ teaspoon of liquid smoke optional

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Rinse the jackfruit under cold water. Remove the bottom triangle section of the jackfruit.
  • In a small bowl, mix the paprika, cajun seasoning, and garlic powder together.
  • Toss the jackfruit pieces, minced garlic, and diced onion in the seasoning mixture until evenly coated.
  • Add the jackfruit mixture to a nonstick pan and cook on medium for 10 minutes.
  • Add BBQ sauce and continue to cook for 15 minutes.
  • Remove jackfruit mixture from the pan and add to a nonstick baking sheet.
  • Place in the oven for 10 minutes.

Notes

  • Drain, rinse and prep the jackfruit. All these steps are key to creating the best flavor in your bbq jackfruit.
  • Don’t skip finishing your bbq jackfruit in the oven! This step is what gives it a nice crispy texture that’s more like vegan pulled pork.
  • Feel free to experiment with the flavors! Try making it sweeter, spicier, or just as you prefer!

Nutrition

Calories: 358kcalCarbohydrates: 90gProtein: 2gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0.1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.1gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.1gSodium: 766mgPotassium: 454mgFiber: 3gSugar: 25gVitamin A: 535IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 139mgIron: 1mg

Disclaimer: Although plantbasedonabudget.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, kindly note that these are only estimates. Nutritional information may be affected based on the product type, the brand that was purchased, and in other unforeseeable ways. Plantbasedonabudget.com will not be held liable for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information. If you need to follow a specific caloric regimen, please consult your doctor first.

Additional Info

Author: Toni Okamoto
Course: Entree
Cuisine: American
Method: Stovetop
Diet: Vegan
Keywords: BBQ, bbq jackfruit recipe, BBQ Recipes, easy recipes, jackfruit, meat free, meat substitute, plant protein, vegan dinner, vegan lunch, vegan recipes
Tried this recipe?Please tag us at @PlantBasedOnABudget! 🙂
About

Toni Okamoto

“They say you are what you eat, so I strive to be healthy.
My goal in life is not to be rich or wealthy,
‘Cause true wealth comes from good health and wise ways…
we got to start taking better care of ourselves ” – Dead Prez

More about Toni Okamoto

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  1. I made recipe, I told my husband it was pulled chicken BBQ sandwiches. We both enjoyed. will make again maybe as Tacos!