Hi! Meet your new friend, the most saucy, meaty-like BBQ sandwich with a crunchy slaw on toasted brioche bun that is so filling, so day-making, so flavorful and easy, and also…totally meatless.
That’s right. We’re calling upon that can of JACKFRUIT to impress us with her meaty-textured ways here, and she does not disappoint.
What You’ll Need To Make BBQ Jackfruit Sandwiches
Here are your short-ingredient-list essentials for this beautiful towering crunchy-saucy sandwich:
- a can of jackfruit
- BBQ sauce
Plus or minus some extras like garlic, a few extra spices, maybe some pickles and/or hot sauce as a topping, and boom. You’re there.
New To Jackfruit?
Let’s talk about this meaty-but-not-meaty filling for a moment.
If you’ve never cooked with canned jackfruit, listen up. You’re in for a fun adventure because IT’S SO EASY, pantry-friendly, and just really unique. The hardest part is probably finding it, but even that isn’t too hard: most health-emphasis or specialty grocery stores carry it, and when all else fails, Amazon!
When you push on the jackfruit pieces with the back of a wooden spoon or fork, they press apart into shreds that resemble shredded chicken, pork, etc. And when you add spices, a little brown sugar, and some BBQ sauce and let it all fry up in a pan? You’re going to get some really nice sweet and smoky roasty-ness on that jackfruit that is going to make you wonder where it’s been all your life.
And to take things to the next level, my friend Melissa has taught me the way: get some blitzed up chickpeas in there with those jackfruit shreds to kind of boost up the oomph factor and make it really feel substantial, filling, and crave-able.
Check, check, and check.
Now To Some Sandwich Styling
Toppings are your choice, naturally, but I am a big proponent of just a bag of store-bought coleslaw, especially in these SOS times that we are in. Do I prefer the delicate texture of a homemade cabbage slaw? Yes. But when I’ve got 100 other fires to put out in the house, like, NOW? That is not the moment for me to be shredding up a head of cabbage.
Other toppings that I’ve loved that require zero advance prep: avocado, pickles, pepperoncini, and hot sauce. Whatever gives it a little zip and zazz and maybe even a little bite – that’s what I like.
Should you eat a pile of jalapeño cheddar kettle chips with your sandwich? I mean, do you love yourself? I think that is the real question at hand.
Source notes: I finally got the push I needed to try jackfruit from my friend Melissa when she posted this recipe and swore that it was really, actually a good meaty alternative. And I had my doubts but dang, she was right. Her idea for the chickpea addition is unique and honestly… just super smart. It adds some protein and fiber and still keeps things squarely centered on all things veg! Thanks, Mel! ♡
BBQ Jackfruit Sandwiches: Frequently Asked Questions
Lots! Jackfruit is a great vegetarian substitute for almost any recipe that requires shredded chicken or pork.
The brown sugar really helps balance all of the flavors here, so it’s best to keep it in. You could try reducing the amount though if you’d prefer.
That should still work! You might just need to add a little squeeze of lime to bring all the flavors together.
Prefer To Watch Instead Of Read?
These BBQ Jackfruit Sandwiches feature a “meaty” mix of jackfruit and chickpeas tossed in spices, garlic, and a bit of BBQ sauce. Pile it all on top of a toasted bun with slaw and dinner is ready!
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 14-ounce can young jackfruit in brine, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- several good shakes of paprika, chili powder, and onion powder
- a pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup barbecue sauce
- ideally, a pre-made slaw bag mix!
- otherwise: thinly sliced cabbage + mayo, lemon juice or vinegar, sugar and salt
- toasted buns (I like brioche buns)
- any other toppings you like – I’d recommend avocado, pepperoncini, pickles, hot sauce, etc.
Shred the Jackfruit: Heat the olive oil in a pan over medium high heat. Add the jackfruit and break it apart into “shreds” with the back of a spoon.
Make the Filling: In a small chopper or food processor, pulse your chickpeas and garlic until they have a finely chopped texture. Add the mixture to the pan, along with the brown sugar and spices. Stir it all up to get it seasoned and happy. Add barbecue sauce and let it get a little roasty. More undisturbed time in the pan = more meat-like browning.
Assemble Sandwiches: Serve your jackfruit BBQ on a bun topped with slaw and anything else you like! Add a pile of salt & pepper chips to your plate and you are in delicious business.
Nutrition info includes the BBQ jackfruit, buns, and slaw.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Sauté
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: bbq jackfruit, jackfruit recipe, vegan sandwich
Other Meatless Sandwiches You Need In Your Life
- Spicy Falafel and Roasted Veggie Naan-wich (why is everything so much better on naan?!)
- The Ultimate Wild Rice Burgers (these just might be the very best vegetarian burgers we’ve ever had)
- Firecracker Vegan Lettuce Wraps (crispy tofu bits with saucy brown rice noodles…umm…YES!)
- Portobello French Dip with Horseradish Aioli (did we mention a zippy horseradish aioli? YOU NEED THESE!)