It’s my very first Recipe Redux! This monthly recipe challenge was founded by registered dietitians, and helps create an amazing collection of delicious, healthy recipes. June’s theme is Sandwich Upgrades (and the Redux birthday month!) and I can’t think of a better theme for my premier post: Cherry BBQ Jackfruit with Tahini Mint Slaw.
Summer is in full swing – meaning BBQs, beach trips, and delicious summer produce. Pulled pork sandwiches are a BBQ staple and served as the inspiration for my summertime sandwich makeover. I swapped in jackfruit for the pork, and made a silky smooth cherry BBQ sauce that celebrates the seasonal fruit, and skips the added sugar and extra salt.
Honestly, I was never a huge fan of jackfruit until very recently. Los Angeles has no shortage of vegan options, and jackfruit graces many menus in the form of taco filling, nacho topping, faux crab cake meat and not-tuna salads. It’s stringy texture matches that of a pulled meat, and it’s great at soaking up sticky sauces. It has a fruity undertone that threw me off for a while when I wanted something savory, but it’s really grown on me as a versatile vegan option!
You can find jackfruit fresh in some stores, but it’s usually enormous and tough to break down, so I opted for good old canned jackfruit. Trader Joe’s sells it, but my location was out, so I found some at my local Indian grocery store. Be sure to look out for jackfruit packed in water, not syrup!
Some kind of slaw is essential with a BBQ sandwich, so I whipped up this insanely easy and refreshing tahini mint slaw. It’s crisp, crunchy, creamy and refreshing all in one, which pairs perfectly with the savory, spicy pulled jackfruit. The tahini lends a slightly nutty flavor, and the fresh mint and apple cider vinegar cut through the creamyness to brighten it up.
For the bread, I found some really fluffy looking gluten-free buns that were calling my name. They soaked up the sauce and provided the perfect pillowy structure to (barely) keep the filling in.
So whether you’re hanging out in the backyard with family and friends or just looking to try something new this summer, give this sandwich a try! Hey, we all love toast, but isn’t it really just an open faced sandwich?
- 1 can jackfruit (packed in water)
- 1 16oz package frozen pitted cherries
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp low-sodium tamari
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 chipotle pepper in adobo (gives it the perfect kick!)
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 cups shredded purple cabbage
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 2 tbsp cup freshly chopped mint
- ¼ cup tahini
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp salt
- Heat a saucepan over medium heat. Add all BBQ sauce ingredients and cook for 5-7 minutes until cherries are broken down.
- Add all ingredients to a blender, and blend until smooth.
- While the sauce is cooking, heat a skillet over medium heat. Drain and rinse jackfruit and add to the skillet. Cook for 7-10 minutes until it easily shreds apart with a fork.
- Add the cherry BBQ sauce and toss until thoroughly coated. You’ll have leftover for extra sauce!
- Combine cabbage, carrots and mint in a large mixing bowl. Add tahini, apple cider vinegar and salt, and toss until well combined.
- Place jackfruit and slaw on a bun, add more sauce if desired, and enjoy!