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Vegetarian Pulled Pork image

Vegetarian Pulled Pork

With pulled pork, pulled beef and pulled chicken being so popular, we definitely need a vegetarian version. 

This one uses green jackfruit as the basis ingredient. The result: just like the real thing! As I cannot get a hold of fresh jackfruit, I use imported, canned young green jackfruit.

Jackfruit is quickly being discovered in the United States as a meat substitute. That is quite a feat for a fruit - but then this is no ordinary fruit. 

Jackfruit can be found in South-East Asia (Thailand), but also in some African and South American countries.

Photo by Augustus Binu, CC BY-SA 3.0, Hyperlink

Jackfruit can grow to a weight of over 30 kg! But the jackfruit we will use are young green jackfruit from a can. The canned jackfruit I can get my hands on contain parts of jackfruit in brine (saline solution). Rinse the parts of jackfruit under running water using a strainer.

You will notice that each part has a softer end and a tougher end. We will only use the softer end of the fruit. You will end up with a little more than half of the original quantity (have a recipe ready for the discarded quantity). 


Serves two:

  • 1 Can of jackfruit; drained weight is about 300 gr; hard parts removed, leaving about 200 gr
  • 2 Shallots
  • 1 Clove of garlic
  • Vegetable oil
  • 1/2 Teaspoon ground cumin 
  • 1/2 Teaspoon smoked paprika 
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes or some fresh chili pepper
  • Water
  • Barbeque sauce


Finely cut two shallots and one clove of garlic.

Add some vegetable oil to a pan on medium heat and sweat the shallots. After a few minutes, add the garlic and stir through.

Add good pinches of salt, pepper, ground cumin, smoked paprika and some dried chili flakes and stir through.

Add the jackfruit and stir through, frying for a few minutes.

Add water until the fruit is just submerged.

Let the mixture simmer for at least 30 minutes. Leave the top off, so the mixture will reduce.

While the mixture is cooking, make your favorite barbeque sauce. The basis for my BBQ sauces is tomato ketchup (preferably without added sugar), mustard, salt, pepper, smoked paprika. For the sweet note you could use brown sugar, honey, maple syrup or just sweetener if you are counting your karbs. 

Use a fork to test if the fruit is soft enough to squish.

Take the mixture out and put onto a baking mat (silicone works best, but regular greaseproof paper is ok too).

Using a fork, loosen up the structure of the individual pieces of fruit.

Add your favorite barbeque sauce, stir through and put the mixture under the grill to get nice and gnarly dark edges. 

Serve with rice or mashed potatoes and more barbeque sauce or a homemade chutney. Enjoy!