Jun 01

Jackfruit BBQ Taco

Have you ever seen a jackfruit?


Looks aren't everything!


I had passed by them in the farmer’s market, not knowing what that prickly thing was.  Never thought twice about it.  Until I saw this recipe by Jessica @ Clean Green Simple: Carolina Pulled “Pork” BBQ Sandwich.


BBQ?  Jackfruit?  Curiosity killed the blogger.

Exhibit A: the funny-looking fruit in the back left corner of the $35 farmer’s market pic I posted Monday:

Jackfruit.  Not just any jackfruit – that is just 1/4 of a jackfruit (they pre-slice them).  They can grow to be 8o lbs and 3 ft long!  My quartered piece was just 99 cents.  So cheap – I would have been losing money if I didn’t buy it!

The Low-Down

It was delicious raw – a little chewy, tropically-sweet, reminiscent of a mango in flavor.  It’s also in season right now!

Jackfruit is also super-nutritious:

  • Energy replenish-er and revitalizes the body instantly (I can vouch for this – I perked up and went to the gym after dinner!)
  • Good source of Vitamin-A, B, C cancer-preventing antioxidant flavonoids (like β-carotene and lutein)
  • Mineral-rich (potassium, magnesium, manganese and iron)
  • Full of fiber
  • Improves iron absorption
  • Normalizes blood sugar levels and supports healthy thyroid gland


Using about 1.5 C of fresh jackfruit (you can also find it canned), I followed Jessica’s dry rub recipe (red pepper flakes, paprika, cayenne pepper, ground mustard, black pepper, and garlic powder) except I subbed shallot for the regular onion and I omitted the salt and onion powder (the spices were more than enough flavor!).


Tossed in the dry rub


The wet sauce I ad-libbed a bit based on what I had on-hand.

Coated in wet sauce and ready to bake


So.  Good. It took a long time to make since I had to peel/seed the jackfruit and I got the spice rub in my eye, but it was TOTALLY worth it.


Doesn't it look like the taco is levitating?!


I had also just seen Evan @ The Wannabe Chef post a socca taco shell, so I decided to turn Jessica’s sandwich into a taco!  These were super easy to make and I liked them much better than “regular” hard taco shells.


Coolest thing I've ever made

Served with a salad of roasted tomatillo, cilantro, watercress, and lime juice.

Oh, and did I mention you can eat jackfruit seeds?  Yup.  I can’t find the stats, but they are rumored to be a good source of protein.  I toasted those up in a skillet and tossed them on my salad too!


My BBQ-Taco ended up being vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, dairy-free, and soy-free. Combine that with a 99 cent jackfruit, it felt $$$ free.


Favorite dish so far this year

Jackfruit BBQ Taco

  • 1.5 C jackfruit (~1/2 of a jackfruit)
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • Socca, bread, or taco shell… whatever you want to put it in

For the dry rub:

  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp ground mustard
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • pinch garlic powder

For the wet sauce:

  • 4 T fire-roasted tomato chunks
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp canola oil
  • 1 tsp blackstrap molasses
  • 1 tsp cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 C water


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Sauté shallot with a splash of oil over medium heat until translucent.  Add garlic and sauté ~1-2 mins longer, until fragrant.  

Mix together dry rub spices and toss with jackfruit pieces until coated.  Add to a medium-sized pan and cook over medium-high heat for ~5 mins to toast spices.  

Stir together wet sauce ingredients and add to pan, along with shallot and garlic.  Simmer jackfruit in sauce for 20-30 mins until softened.

Using a fork, shred the jackfruit pieces into small stringy bits.  Spread mixture evenly on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake for 15 mins until slightly dried out and toughened.

Scoop in to taco shells (or bread) and garnish with lime and cilantro.  Enjoy!

Serves 2-4.


Happy WIAW!!!

It’s certainly not everything I ate, but everything else paled in comparison.

Have you ever had jackfruit?  What is the coolest thing you’ve ever made?



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  1. Cait @ beyond bananas

    Never had jackfruit, Laura – but but the wway you are descrbing it- I think I am going to have to give it a try. I’ve never seen it in a store, but I will keep a look out for it at farmer’s markets!

  2. JL goes Vegan

    Okay. I want jackfruit. NOW!

  3. Hayley @ Oat Couture

    Wow that looks great and i’m sure I have seen something similar at our veg shop! Will have to investigate further! Thanks for the recipe! :)

    1. Laura

      Let me know if you do! This was seriously one of the best things I’ve ever made.

  4. Alayna @ Thyme Bombe

    I have always wanted to try it but didn’t want to buy one of those huge 80 pounders. Good to know the farmer’s market has them cut, I’ll definitely pick up a wedge next time. Those tacos look killer!

    1. Laura

      They’re over by the pre-cut melons and pineapple. :)

  5. Liz @ IHeartVegetables

    ok I’m not going to lie… that fruit KIND of freaks me out! You’re a brave soul!

    1. Laura

      LOL! They always freaked me out too. Try it canned (just be sure it’s not the kind in syrup)!

  6. Lee

    I actually saw those bigass Jackfruits in the farmer’s market this weekend too. They looked a little scary!

  7. Jenny (Fit Girl Foodie)

    I’ve never had jackfruit before but I’d definitely give it a try :D

  8. Hannah@mindrunningwild

    Wow. Can I say delicious? I just posted about dragonfruit a couple days ago and you’re posting about another exotic fruit- must be summer!! Jackfruit looks like fun. I remember seeing one in the chinese food market but it was HUGE and I had no idea how I’d finish it alone. Seriously though, those tacos look so good!

  9. Heather @ girlyeverafter

    I pass by jackfruit all the time at the farmer’s market! There are so many things that I never think to try, but clearly I’m missing out! You’re so creative and I will check these out on my next trip!

  10. briarrose

    I’ve heard of jackfruit, but I’ve never had a chance to try it. What a creative way to use it. So tasty.

  11. Veronica Gantley

    I too have seen this fruit. I didnt know the name thought it looked funny. All prickly and such. Thanks for the recipe.

  12. Jenn L @ Peas and Crayons

    ahhhh this is ridiculously creative!!!!! I’ll have to try my hand at it sometime! i’m beyond curious now =)

  13. Parita @ myinnershakti

    Vishnu’s favorite fruit is jackfruit! Apparently it’s all the rage in South India!! LOL!

  14. Macaroon

    I’ve been wanting to try Jackfruit for a long time, but can’t seem to find it anywhere. I’ll definitely check out the farmer’s markets for it.

  15. Kate (What Kate is Cooking)

    I’ve never even heard of jackfruit! I’ll pretty much buy anything if it’s only a dollar, so if I ever see it near me, I’ll have to try it. It looks tasty!

    1. Laura

      Haha – I’ll buy anything for a dollar too. :)

  16. Allie

    I have never tried jackfruit andddd now I want to!

  17. Allison @ PickyEatingRD

    What an amazingly creative meal. I have never even heard of a jackfruit but am so intrigued to go on the hunt and buy one. I also loveee socca and am impressed with a socca taco shell!

  18. E @ Act Fast Chef

    Wow! I also have never heard or seen a jackfruit. I am going to have to hunt one down and post it for my “What’s New Wednesday” post! Thanks for sharing.

    1. Laura

      Awesome! Can’t wait to see what you do with it. Apparently it’s used in a lot of sticky rice desserts too.

  19. Connie Fletcher

    I would love to know what part of the world has jackfruit in the farmer’s market….it surely ain’t Vermont!! There is, however, a wonderful Asian market where I can buy the green jackfruit in brine as well as the ripe jackfruit in syrup…the best of both worlds!!!!

    Thanks for the recipe!!!!

    1. Laura

      We are blessed with the most incredible market in ATL. They have anything you could imagine!

      Do let me know if you try it! I need to do it again when they come back in season.

  20. Connie Fletcher

    I used the canned version and it was a huge hit!!! Absolutely delish!! Thank you for the recipe!!!

  1. Carolina BBQ Jackfruit Pulled “Pork” Wraps with Pickled Red Onions « the taste space – steam, bake, boil, shake!

    [...] Next time, I think I will try my hand at socca taco shells, which Laura made for her jackfruit tacos. [...]

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