Sweet And Spicy Jackfruit Pulled Pork Sandwiches With Creamy Slaw

Sweet And Spicy Jackfruit Pulled Pork Sandwiches With Creamy Slaw

Perfect for a Lenten meal or Meatless Monday, these Sweet And Spicy Jackfruit Pulled Pork Sandwiches With Creamy Slaw are so meaty, hearty, and delicious that even your biggest carnivore will love them.

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A wooden serving board with a Sweet And Spicy Pulled Pork Sandwich with creamy slaw and a side of french fries.

For a vegetarian meal that’s out of this world, try our Fennel & Orange Salad, Southwest Quinoa Salad, or French White Bean Salad. A Chimichurri Potato Salad, Sweet Corn Fritters, or Old Fashioned Macaroni Salad would also make great sides.

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Jackfruit Pulled Pork?

Ripe jackfruit flesh in white plate on wooden table for tropical fruit or meat substitute concept.

A Jackfruit is the ‘seed pod’ of the jack tree which is a species in the fig, mulberry, and breadfruit family. It’s indigenous to Southern India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Malaysia.

The jackfruit is known for its meaty texture that shreds perfectly, which is why its become so popular in vegan and vegetarian restaurants. 

The fruit itself has a very mild flavor, but absorbs all of the flavors that it’s cooked with, lending it perfectly as a meat replacement in dishes such as tacos, nachos, 

All About Jackfruit

Closeup view of shredded raw jackfruit.

A jackfruit looks like a durian fruit from the outside. Fortunately, it doesn’t smell like durian fruit. It’s large with a greenish-yellow spiky skin.

One jack tree can grow between 150 and 200 jackfruits, each one can weigh up to 100 pounds.

The jackfruit peaks in late spring and summer. It also has a low carbon and low water footprint. It’s pest and drought-resistant as well. Researchers predict that the jackfruit could replace crops under the threat of climate change as a sustainable solution.

Ripe jackfruit has a sweet, bubblegum-like flavor and strong fruity odor. Unripe jackfruit is slightly sour and very neutral in flavor.

You can find jackfruit in both its whole form or canned-packed in water, brine, or syrup. It is impressive when it comes to nutritional value. The jackfruit is low in calories but high in fiber, Vitamin C, potassium, and B vitamins. It also has anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal properties.

Ingredients Needed

  • Ketchup – I used Heinz.
  • Dark brown sugar – you can also use light brown sugar, but the dark brown sugar gives it a deeper, richer flavor.
  • Molasses
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Apple juice – you could also use water or any other juice that you have on hand.
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Dry mustard, sweet paprika, granulated garlic powder, celery seed
  • Kosher salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper
  • Mayonnaise – I used Hellmann’s
  • Sour cream – use full fat.
  • Shredded cole slaw mix
  • Coconut oil – or any oil you choose. You’ll use this to oil your knife before cutting into the jackfruit.
  • Olive oil – for sauteeing the onion and jackfruit.
  • Pork rub – I love this brand, but any that you like will work. Use what you would use on regular pulled pork for the best flavor.
  • Onion – I used a sweet onion
  • Lager beer – used to cook the jackfruit – you could also use vegetable broth, apple juice, pineapple juice, or orange juice. I like using either beer or fruit juice to help caramelize the onions and jackfruit.
  • Buns – I used a crusty Kaiser roll, but any hamburger bun will work. 
Closeup view of a Sweet And Spicy Pulled Pork Sandwich with creamy slaw and a side of french fries.

Tips For Making This Recipe

  • Oil your knife before cutting your jackfruit. It contains a sticky ‘latex’ sap that will stick to your knife, your hands, and your cutting board. I also line my cutting board with plastic wrap and wear disposable gloves when cutting the jackfruit to make clean-up easier.
  • Don’t discard the seeds, they’re edible. Allow them to dry, spray with oil and sprinkle with sea salt or barbecue seasoning, then bake in a 400-degree oven for 20 minutes. Baking the seeds will pop the outer shell allowing you to eat the inside.
  • Take the time to caramelize the onions. This will add sweetness and a depth of flavor.
  • For crispy edges on the pulled jackfruit (think bark on barbecued meats), spread your cooked and sauced jackfruit on a lightly oiled baking sheet in a shallow layer and bake in a 400-degree oven for 10 minutes, tossing once. I like to crisp about half of the recipe and keep half tender and moist.

Make Ahead, Storing, And Freezing

Make ahead – you can make this dish up to 5 days ahead and keep it in the refrigerator until needed.

Storing and reheating – Store your jackfruit pulled pork in a tightly covered container. To reheat, the best way is to lay it out on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake it at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Add a bit more barbecue sauce, toss, and continue to bake for another 5 minutes. 

Freezing – Store your leftovers in a tightly covered container and freeze them for up to 3 months. Allow it to thaw in your refrigerator before reheating.

More Vegetarian Entrees

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A wooden serving board with a Sweet And Spicy Pulled Pork Sandwich with creamy slaw and a side of french fries.

Sweet And Spicy Jackfruit Pulled Pork Sandwiches With Creamy Slaw


Perfect for a Lenten meal or Meatless Monday, these Sweet And Spicy Jackfruit Pulled Pork Sandwiches With Creamy Slaw are so meaty, hearty, and delicious that even your biggest carnivore will love them.



For The Bbq Sauce:

For The Creamy Slaw:

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon celery seed
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 bag (16-ounces) shredded coleslaw mixture

For The Jackfruit:

  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 8 pound fresh jackfruit
  • 1 tablespoon pork rub, plus more to coat the jackfruit
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 white onion, halved and very thinly sliced
  • ½ cup lager beer
  • 1 cup barbecue sauce
  • 68 large Kaiser or hamburger buns


Make the barbecue sauce.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, stir together all of the barbecue sauce ingredients until well combined.

Bring the mixture almost to a boil, stirring often.

Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring often to prevent sticking, for 30 minutes.

Remove from the heat and allow the mixture to cool.

Store in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator.

Make the creamy slaw.

In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sour cream, vinegar, sugar, celery seed, pepper, and salt until smooth and well combined.

Place the slaw mixture into a large mixing bowl. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss until all of the vegetables are coated in the dressing.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate until needed.

For the jackfruit pulled pork:

To cut the jackfruit, coat your knife with coconut oil. This will keep your knife from getting too sticky.

Cut the jackfruit in half and then into quarters.

Use your fingers to pull the fleshy pods out, discarding any seeds and any white, stringy, pithy pieces.

Place the pods into a large bowl and set aside. You should have about 2-4 cups of usable fruit.

Sprinkle the pork rub over the fruit and toss to coat.

Place a large, non-stick skillet with deep sides over medium heat.

Add the olive oil and onions to the pan.

Saute the onions until they are translucent – about 8 minutes.

Add the jackfruit and cook, stirring constantly, until it begins to soften – about 10 minutes.

Pour in the beer.

Continue to cook until the liquid has evaporated.

Pour the barbecue sauce over the mixture.

Reduce the heat to low, and cook, tossing the fruit with the barbecue sauce, and pulling the fruit into shreds.

Cook, stirring and pulling the fruit until the sauce thickens and the mixture resembles pulled pork.

If you want crispy bits, like bark, take half of the sauced jackfruit and spread it out on a baking sheet. Bake in a 400-degree oven for 10 minutes. 

Combine both the sauced jackfruit and the crispy jackfruit in a small bowl.

Pile the jackfruit with some of the sauce onto the bottom half of the buns.

Top with a scoop of creamy coleslaw and top with the remaining bun half.

Serve hot.

  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Category: Main Dish – Vegetarian
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: Vegetarian

Keywords: Sweet And Spicy Jackfruit Pulled Pork With Creamy Slaw, jackfruit, pulled pork, vegetarian recipes, vegetarian entrees, Lenten recipes, Meatless Mondays

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