I never buy “fake meat”, I consider it heavily processed and not what you could categorize as healthy, plus I’m usually satisfied with veggies, whole grains, and tofu anyway. But if you are like me, sometimes you are craving something with a more “meaty” texture. Then this jackfruit “chicken” certainly won’t disappoint!
It is tender, buttery and comes together in 30 minutes!
If you have never heard of jackfruit (which I doubt), it is a fruit usually sold in cans in Asian stores, or even on Amazon, I use this one. It is available in two versions: ripe jackfruit in syrup and young green jackfruit in brine. You want to buy the latter. It is very bland if not seasoned properly but has a fibrous meat-like texture.
To add flavor to our jackfruit, we will use a sauce made of almond butter, cashew butter, soy sauce, sesame oil, and spices. The mix of all these ingredients gives the jackfruit a “chicken” and buttery flavor. I also add sautéed mushrooms to create a richer texture.
It all starts by cooking the quinoa, brown rice or your favorite grains. In the meantime, you prepare the jackfruit “chicken”. Sautée the onion and garlic, cook until they start to caramelize, and add the mushrooms and jackfruit. Stir in the sauce and mix to coat. It’s that easy! The sauce gives the jackfruit a rich and buttery flavor.
Then assemble the quinoa, sautéed (or raw!) greens and jackfruit “chicken” in bowls.
I’m sure this will become a regular on the menu here and I have no doubt it will become one for you too!
Let me know in the comments if your try this recipe!
- 2 tbsp almond butter (I like this one)
- 2 tbsp cashew butter
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1/4 tsp ground cumin
- 1/8 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 20-ounce cans young green jackfruit
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 4–5 cremini mushrooms, sliced
- salt, pepper to taste
- 1 cup quinoa (or brown rice)
- 2 cups salted water
- 4 cups sautéed greens like spinach, kale, etc (optional)
- Combine all the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl and mix until smooth. Set aside.
- Start by preparing the quinoa, combine the quinoa with water in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for about 20 minutes, or until no liquid remains. In the meantime, prepare the jackfruit “chicken.
- Drain and rinse the jackfruit. Chop off the center (the firm part) and discard. Keep the softer edges.
- Heat one tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add onion and garlic. Cook for 3-5 minutes until onions are soft and start to caramelize, this is important to add flavor.
- Add mushrooms and cook for another 5 minutes, or until lightly browned.
- Add the jackfruit and slightly shred it by pressing with a spatula as it cooks. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently to make sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the skillet. If needed, add 1-2 tablespoons of water to prevent sticking.
- Stir in the sauce and mix well, making sure all the jackfruit is coated. Continue to cook for one more minute.
- Divide the quinoa into 3 serving bowls, top with the jackfruit “chicken” and a squeeze of lemon juice. You can also serve with your favorite greens like spinach, kale, chard or arugula.
Please do not omit any ingredient in the almond butter sauce, each one contributes to the “meaty” flavor. Smoked paprika can be replaced with 1/8 tsp liquid smoke though.
Optional garlic quinoa sauce: in a small bowl combine 2 tbsp tahini, 1 tsp chopped garlic, 1/4 tsp maple syrup, 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp ground coriander. Add enough water to thin out and drizzle on quinoa.
Nutrition information includes quinoa and spinach.
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 447
- Sugar: 4.1g
- Fat: 16.5g
- Carbohydrates: 60.6g
- Fiber: 16.4g
- Protein: 16.6g