Don’t eat a jackfruit alone–call your friends and host a jackfruit party
So, you’ve always wanted to try fresh jackfruit, and your local supermarket finally stocks them. Upon seeing the fruit in real life, the sheer size of it scares you—weighing in anywhere from 10 to 20 lbs. What are you going to do with all that fruit?
You call your friends and family over for a jackfruit party, that’s what you’re going to do.
The jackfruit is truly a community fruit, a fruit worth sharing. The largest tree fruit in the world, jackfruit could grow to be 100 pounds. In Asia, the bounty of the fruit is usually shared among friends and family members. Seriously, fruits from one tree could feed a village!
Here in the U.S., you can still call up your “village” and share the jackfruit experience. Set up a jackfruit station where you can show your friends how to cut into the jackfruit. Hand everyone a quarter of the fruit, then have each person divvy up the sweet yellow pods so everyone can take some home. (The seeds are also edible once cooked.)
You can even build a luau or tiki party around a jackfruit. Forget the pig roast. Haul in a 20-pound jackfruit and use that as the showpiece! Make vegan Hawaiian kalua “pork” with jackfruit for dinner and serve up the fresh cut jackfruit for dessert.
If you can’t get a party together, lucky for you, jackfruit pods are also great for freezing. Lay those yellow pods on a baking sheet, freeze whole, then put them in zip-top bags for storage. You can even refrigerate a whole slice of jackfruit—skin and all—to process later too if you can’t do it all at once.
For fresh jackfruit pods, choose fruit that is fragrant with a golden brown skin that yields to pressure. Softer fruit means it’ll be easier to process, and the pods will be fragrant and sweet too. If you need jackfruit for cooking like pork, you would want an under-ripe, green and firm fruit.
Watch this video below and follow our handy guide to processing jackfruit like a pro. You’ll master this giant fruit in no time.
To open a jackfruit, you will need:
- Newspaper or butcher paper, or plastic bag or disposable tablecloth to cover work area.
- Plastic wrap to protect your cutting board. You can also use butcher paper.
- Large, sharp knife
- Sharp parking knife
- Cooking spray, or a small bowl of vegetable oil and pastry brush
- Food handling gloves
- Lined trash can nearby
- Bowls to collect pods and seeds
Spray cooking spray or brush vegetable oil onto the knife to prevent sticking. Wipe down and re-oil the knife often so you don’t get stuck with all the sap at the end.
Quarter the fruit by first cutting crosswise, then lengthwise into quarters.
Cut out the core from each piece. You should be able to get to the pods more easily now.
Using your hands or a paring knife, extract the yellow pods from the filaments and remove the seed from each pod. Reserve seeds if using, or discard.
Rinse the pods in water, and they’re ready to eat. Pods can be wrapped/covered and refrigerated overnight or frozen whole. Wrap any uncut chunk(s) of the fruit in plastic wrap and refrigerate or freeze.
If the jackfruit leaves behind any gooey, sticky sap, clean up by rubbing the spots with cooking oil, and then hit it again with soap and water.
Have fun at your party!