There is good news to all our vegetarian and vegan friends! You can now throw a meat-free, vegetarian barbecue party by using jackfruit as one of your meat substitutes!  

All thanks to Chef Hari Nayak, a cookbook author and culinary director of Café Spice. He grew up in India with a jackfruit tree in his backyard which led him to developing countless jackfruit recipes.  

Now, let’s take a look at what makes jackfruit the best meat substitute. 

What is Jackfruit? 

Jackfruit is a tropical fruit that grows in South and Southeast Asia. According to NPR, Jackfruit is the largest tree fruit in the world – one fruit can reach up to 45 kilograms! The taste of fresh jackfruit is sweet flesh with a slight flavour of mango. 

What nutrients does jackfruit have? 

Jackfruits have so many nutritional benefits that will boost one’s health immediately. It is high in protein, potassium, fibre and even vitamin B and C. In short, jackfruits are packed with lots of essential vitamins and minerals.  

It has around 2.84 grams of protein and 157 calories per 136 grams of jackfruit. 

Are Jackfruit Trees Good for the Planet? 

Yes, they are. Jackfruit trees are not harmful nor supplementing to the global rising temperatures and huge climate change the world is experiencing. In fact they are resistant to higher temperatures and drought. On top of that, they do not need any artificial pesticide, herbicides or other “cides” because they are naturally resistant to pests as well. In order words, jackfruit trees are very organic and self-grown, which is exactly what we currently need.  

Why is Jackfruit the Best Meat Substitute? 

Versatile and meat-like it’s ideal for barbecue or pulled meat style recipes as jackfruit has a similar texture to pulled pork (when unripe and shredded, the mild, tropical flesh of jackfruit has a similar texture to pulled pork). Which is the reason why jackfruits has become so popular as a meat substitute. 

Global Market Research & Market Insight, Mintel, predicts that jackfruit will be the most popular vegan barbecue option according to their reports. There are thirty-three percent of U.S. consumers – and thirty-seven percent of millennials are planning to buy more plant-based foods in the coming years. This trend will only continue to rise as conscious consumerism continues to spread world-wide! 

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