Backyard BBQ season is here, and I’ve got the perfect vegan pulled jackfruit BBQ burger with fennel slaw for you to share with family and friends. Pour yourself a big glass of ice cold lemonade and get ready to mix up the easiest burger filling no actual barbeque required!
WTF is Jackfruit?
If you are vegan you’ve probably heard of and already enjoy jackfruit. If you’ve never heard or tried jackfruit…your life is about to change! So what is jackfruit? It grows on the jackfruit tree which is in the same family as fig trees and mulberry trees. Jackfruit trees are native to India but have started growing all over the world. The “meat” of a ripe raw jackfruit has a similar taste to mango, pineapple, and banana. Unripe jackfruit has more of a neutral flavour like a potato making it great for soaking up flavours in savoury dishes. Not only is this fruit so versatile, but it is also full of nutrients, antioxidants, and fibre.
Okay, But Where Do I Find It?
Jackfruit is starting to pop up in more and more grocery stores, not just specialty food stores, so when looking to purchase there are a few things you should consider.
How is it packaged? Fresh is always best but let’s get real, I’m not about to tell you to go buy a whole jackfruit and start hacking away at it (they are huge)! I prefer and highly recommend using The Jackfruit Company. Their product goes straight from the farm to being cooked, it is never soaked in a brine, syrup, or water, like canned jackfruit.
Where does it come from?The Jackfruit Company have partnerships with over 1,000 farming families in India, where their jackfruit is harvested. The jackfruit farms are naturally organic, don’t require irrigation, and no pesticides or herbicides are used.
Is it ready to eat? You can purchase jackfruit raw or cooked. It really depends on how much time you have and how much work you want to do. Again The Jackfruit Company has all the options and for this recipe, I used their lightly seasoned Jackfruit flavour as a base for my pulled bbq burger. You could totally try another one of their flavours as they would all give you a great tasting burger, they offer other varieties like:
To accompany this vegan pulled jackfruit burger I made a fennel slaw. Fennel is very fragrant, but don’t be alarmed, just make sure you shave it really thin and avoid using the first layer if you find it too strong. This burger is great for summer and all year round. By switching up the veggies in the slaw you can make it perfect for each season. Think Fall and roasted root veggies, or Winter with warm squash or brussel sprouts!
Backyard BBQ Essentials
This perfect vegan pulled jackfruit BBQ burger is the perfect addition to any backyard cookout! You can stick to the traditional pulled fruit version or try mashing the jackfruit together and coating it in panko for more of a patty. You could also skip the bun altogether and make jackfruit “meat” balls. For some other BBQ essentials be sure to check out:
Check out the recipe below and don’t forget to let me know what you think over at @foodbymaria and below in the comments! Tag #foodbymaria and #fearnotfoodisyourfriend so I can see all your beautiful recreations.
Into a large bowl, add all your ingredients for the Fennel Slaw. Stir and set aside for around 30 minutes.
Into a small bowl combine your marinate ingredients – apart from the Jackfruit – and stir till well combined. Remove your Jackfruit from the package and place into a medium sized mixing bowl. Add 1/2 of the marinate to the jackfruit and stir till well combined. Place in the fridge for 20 minutes.
While the magic happens prepare your cucumber by using a vegetable peeler.
Remove Jackfruit from the fridge and cook for 15 minutes in a well heated cast iron skillet. I suggest cooking for 7 minutes on each side, on medium heat. You want to get those lovely crispy bits all around. You can also cook on a non-stick skillet. The Jackfruit is ready when it’s hot throughout.
To assemble your burger, add mayo to both sides of your toasted bun, then place your desired amount of Jackfruit, cucumber, slaw (make sure to avoid adding any liquid) and some of your BBQ sauce you made . Enjoy immediately. You’re not going to believe how amazing this combo of flavours is!
You can prepare your Jackfruit in advance and store in the fridge for up to 5 days before cooking.
I also suggest this Jackfruit in wraps and sandwiches.
Store your BBQ sauce in a tight sealed container in the fridge for up to 2-3 weeks.