Slow Cooker BBQ Beef & Jackfruit

The f**k is jackfruit? Well I just used it in a recipe and I still don't really know what it is, but I saw it as a featured new product in Trader Joe's so I grabbed a can of it. The nice, bearded hipster working at trusty ol' TJ's told me that jackfruit isn't actually sweet or fruity, and that it's often used in vegan cooking as a meat replacement. He then suggested I try it for a meat-free Taco Tuesday. My eyes glazed over for a second and then I had to consciously try really hard to not to laugh out loud at the suggestion. Nevertheless, I was still intrigued by the little can of vegan treasure. Since making a meat-free dish was obviously not in the cards for me, I thought I'd take it a borderline insulting step further and just add the jackfruit to a meat dish. Turns out it's actually delightful! It adds volume to the dish and really bulks it up. The jackfruit also takes on the BBQ sauce flavor really well - quite frankly, I was never entirely sure if what I was chewing was beef or jackfruit (vegans rejoice - this shi* can legitimately pass as meat!!!!). 

For a meatless version of this tasty pot, just omit the ground beef and double up on the jackfruit. #problemsolving.


For the BBQ Sauce

  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 (6oz) can tomato paste
  • 6 medjool dates, pitted
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp ground yellow mustard
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

For the Meat Mixture

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 (10 oz) can of green jackfruit in brine, drained


  1. Place all BBQ sauce ingredients in a blender and whiz up until smooth.
  2. Place the ground beef and jackfruit in your slowcooker. Break it all up as best you can.
  3. Pour the BBQ sauce over top and cook on LOW for 6 hours, or HIGH for 3.

Servings: 4-6