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Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa

Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa (Both Instant Pot & Stove Top + Oven Instructions)

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Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa is hearty, spicy and tastes like tender meaty goodness. The first time I had jackfruit I was very surprised by how much it tasted like slow-cooked pulled pork. If you haven’t drunk the Instant Pot Kool-Aid, I’ve got you—this can be made using the stovetop and the oven.

Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon

Ever since I busted out the Instant Pot for this recipe, foods that are made in the Instant Pot are all over my world. Now that I am comfortable using it, I’m big a fan.

I looked up Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon after it was referenced on the Netflix show Trinkets. Now the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon is everywhere—it’s not just Instant Pot recipes, blue Teslas, and that new-to- me-concept that seems to explain everything (this week it’s the IKEA effect). It’s so meta.

For instance, the other day my friend and my boyfriend, unbeknownst to one another, both referenced the movie Ghostbusters. Nothing about Ghostbusters for a very long time, and then bam—twice in one day. Maybe that’s more of a Carl Jung/Sting Synchronicity bread pudding story kinda thing?

Where am I? Mmm, Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa, that’s where.

Serving Suggestions

This Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa goes great with:

Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa served with tortillas, Easy Vegan Nacho Cheese Queso, Chipotle’s Official Guac Recipe, and salsa
Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa served with tortillas, Easy Vegan Nacho Cheese Queso, Chipotle’s Official Guac Recipe, and salsa

Ingredient Notes

Fungi?

You can use sliced Portabello or Baby Bellas a.k.a Creminis if you are a mushroom lover.

I really like what the shrooms do in this, but it doesn’t have to have them.

Do you have an aversion to mushrooms? You can just skip them, and if you want, lean a little more on the onion and pepper content. If you leave them out and don’t change anything, that works too.

Young Jackfruit

Young jackfruit is for savory foods. Old jackfruit is sweet and traditionally used in desserts. Please confirm that you have young jackfruit for this recipe.

Jackfruit cans come in 14 oz quantities and 20 oz quantities. I have used anywhere from 14 oz to 28 oz to make this. As you might have guessed, the 14 oz batch was saucier and the 28 oz batch was heartier.

I use two cans of this jackfruit
I use two 14 oz cans of this jackfruit
When I’ve shopped at the Korean Market, I use one 20 oz can of this jackfruit

To Prep the Jackfruit

Ideally, for most jackfruit recipes you want to remove as much water from the jackfruit as possible.

For this recipe you can drain the jackfruit and pull and squeeze it into a shredded texture or you can squeeze it out in a non-fluffy towel or nut milk bag after draining.

I prefer the towel/nut-bag method because after I’m done squeezing there isn’t much pulling apart work. Additionally, it helps to get the most water out. True to test kitchen form—I’ve tested it both ways for this recipe.

Wringing out the Jackfruit in a non-fluffy towel
Wringing out the Jackfruit in a non-fluffy towel

Pulled pork is typically shredded after cooking, but with jackfruit you shred before cooking.

Mise en place

According to Wikipedia:

Mise en place (French pronunciation: ​[mi zɑ̃ ˈplas]) is a French culinary phrase which means “putting in place” or “everything in its place”. It refers to the setup required before cooking, and is often used in professional kitchens to refer to organizing and arranging the ingredients (e.g., cuts of meatrelishes, sauces, par-cooked items, spices, freshly chopped vegetables, and other components) that a cook will require for the menu items that are expected to be prepared during a shift.

The practice can be applied in home kitchens.

In the kitchen, the phrase is used as a noun (i.e., the setup of the array of ingredients), a verb (i.e., the process of preparing) and a state of mind. The term’s broader meanings can be applied to classrooms, hospitals, and elsewhere.

It’s hardcore stuff, “Ask any chef to pontificate on the term, however, and you’ll hear everything from state of mind, to philosophy, to a Jedi code.”

When making Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa adopting a Mise en place state of mind creates a more enjoyable cooking experience. This is especially true when you are ready to sauté. Seriously? Who doesn’t want to be a culinary Jedi?

Let’s Make Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa

The Barbacoa Sauce

Place 1 TBSP of the oil, the Chipotle in Adobo sauce, tomato sauce, broth, and date syrup (all of the sauce ingredients except for the chopped garlic and 1 TBSP of the oil) into the blender. Set aside.

Heat small skillet over medium heat. Add the oil and garlic and pan-roast, stirring and flipping often until the garlic is light brown in color, about 4 – 5 minutes.

Transfer the garlic to the blender with the other ingredients.

Blend well for a completely smooth sauce.

Blending the Barbacoa sauce
Blending the Barbacoa Sauce

Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. You can add more adobo sauce for heat, salt for savoriness, or date syrup for sweetness. Set aside.

Blended Barbacoa Sauce
Blended Barbacoa Sauce

The Barbacoa

Instant Pot instructions; see notes for alternative Stovetop + Oven Method cooking instructions.

Ingredients for Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa
Ingredients for Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa

Set the Instant Pot to Sauté. Adjust it to indicate More as pictured below.

Add the oil, smashed garlic, and onions. Cook for about 5 minutes or until the onions start to brown, stirring occasionally.

Add the mushrooms and peppers. Cook for about 10 minutes or until the mushrooms start to deepen in color, stirring and tossing.

Add the jackfruit, cumin, oregano, and Barbacoa Sauce. Mix well.

Adding jackfruit and oregano
Adding Sauce
Mixing up the magic
Setting the Instant Pot gauge to sealing
Setting the Instant Pot gauge to sealing

Close and lock the lid and set pressure gauge to Sealing. Cook for 40 minutes on the Manual HIGH Pressure setting.

40 minutes, Manual, High Pressure
40 minutes, Manual, High Pressure

After 40 minutes, carefully move gauge to Releasing and let the steam release. I use an oven mitt when I twist the steam gauge. Once the steam has released, open the lid and mix before serving or letting cool and storing.

Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa
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5 from 2 votes

Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa

Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa is hearty, spicy and tastes like tender meaty goodness. If you haven’t drunk the Instant Pot Kool-Aid, I’ve got you—this can be made using the stovetop and the oven.
Course Dinner, Dip, Game Day, Holiday, Meal Prep
Cuisine American, Caribbean, Mediterranean, Mexican, Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword flavorful, freezes, gluten-free, hearty, savory
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Sauté Time + Time for Instant Pot to heat 25 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 379kcal

Equipment

  • Blender
  • Instant Pot OR Stovetop + Oven

Ingredients

Barbacoa Sauce

  • 2 TBSP divided Earth Balance, avocado oil, olive oil, or neutral oil of your choice, 1 TBSP to pan-roast the garlic, 1 TBSP goes directly into the sauce.
  • 3 cloves garlic minced, 3 cloves about 1 1/2 Tbsp
  • 1 15 oz can tomato sauce,
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, plus an additional pepper or adobo sauce for more heat
  • 1/2 cup water or sub vegan broth for more flavor I use Better than bouillon no-chicken base (1/2 teaspoon mixed with 1/2 cup water)
  • 1 – 2 TBSPs date syrup, maple syrup, coconut sugar or sweetener of your choice
  • Sea salt and ground black pepper  to taste, if desired, I do about 1/8 teaspoon (a big pinch) of each

Barbacoa

  • 20 – 28 oz young jackfruit, two 14 oz cans or one 20 oz can, drained and pulled/shredded with fingers or a fork OR drained and then squeezed out the extra moisture with a non-fuzzy towel or nut-milk bag then pulled/shredded if needed.
  • 3 – 4 portobello mushrooms 12 – 16 oz sliced, can sub equal weight of creminis/baby bellas if desired
  • 1 poblano pepper de-seeded, de-ribbed and julienned
  • 1 red bell pepper de-seeded, de-ribbed and julienned
  • 1 yellow or orange de-seeded, de-ribbed and julienned
  • 1 large or two small red or yellow onions, 10 – 12 oz or a combination of both, sliced into half-moons
  • 8 cloves garlic, about 25 grams smashed or roughly chopped, more if desired
  • 2 TBSPs Earth Balance, avocado oil, olive oil, or neutral oil of your choice
  • 1 TBSP ground cumin
  • 1 TBSP oregano

Instructions

The Barbacoa Sauce

  • Place 1 TBSP of the oil, the Chipotle in Adobo sauce, tomato sauce, broth, and date syrup (all of the sauce ingredients except for the chopped garlic and 1 TBSP of the oil) into the blender. Set aside.
  • Heat small skillet over medium heat. Add the oil and garlic and pan-roast, stirring and flipping often until the garlic is light brown in color, about 4-5 minutes.
  • Transfer the garlic to the blender with the other ingredients. Blend well for a completely smooth sauce. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed, adding more adobo sauce for heat, salt for savoriness, or date syrup for sweetness. Set aside.

The Barbacoa (Instant Pot instructions; see notes for alternative Stovetop + Oven Method cooking instructions)

  • Set the Instant Pot to Sauté. Adjust to the More setting if More is not indicated. Add the oil, smashed garlic, and red onions. Cook for about 5 minutes or until the onions start to brown, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the mushrooms and peppers. Cook for about 10 minutes or until the mushrooms start to deepen in color, stirring and tossing.
  • Add the jackfruit, cumin, oregano, and Barbacoa Sauce. Mix well. Close and lock the lid and set pressure gauge to Sealing. Cook for 40 minutes on the Manual HIGH Pressure setting.
  • After 40 minutes, carefully move gauge to Releasing and let the steam release. I use an oven mitt when I twist the steam gauge. Once the steam has released, open the lid and mix before serving or letting cool and storing.

Notes

Nutrition Information is approximate.

Stovetop + Oven Method

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Sauté the smashed garlic, and red onions in oil using one or two big sauté pans. I used my two biggest pans, you can do it one, it just may take longer to get everything to brown. Cook for about 3 minutes or until the onions start to brown.
  3. Add the mushrooms and peppers. Cook for about 8 minutes or until the mushrooms start to deepen in color.
  4. Add the jackfruit, seasonings and barbacoa sauce to an oven save casserole dish, I used a 9x11x3 sized dish. Mix well and cover tightly with foil. Cook for 40 minutes, give it a good stir and let it cook with the foil off for 5-10 minutes. Remove from oven and stir before serving or letting cool and storing.
 
www.planttestkitchen.com

Nutrition

Calories: 379kcal | Carbohydrates: 73g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 158mg | Potassium: 793mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 928IU | Vitamin C: 82mg | Calcium: 155mg | Iron: 2mg

Recipe adapted from Rini at Healing Tomato.

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If you like Instant Pot recipes you might also like Instant Pot Ancient Grains.

Did You Make Vegan Jackfruit Barbacoa?

How was it? Did you use an Instant Pot/pressure cooker or the Stovetop + Oven Method? Would you make it again? Any variations? How did you serve it? Tell me about it in the comments section below.

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One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    I didn’t know that there were different ages of jackfruit – it would be quite the sweet surprise to buy the older jackfruit for something so savory, so that’s good to know! I love all the different varieties of peppers that you accompany with the jackfruit: chipotle, poblano, bell. The peppery meatiness of this shredded jackfruit seems like it would be perfect as a pulled jackfruit sandwich, too. Quite a versatile recipe – thanks!

    “Seriously? Who doesn’t want to be a culinary Jedi?” Truer words have never been spoken.

    May the jackfruit be with you.

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