With the rise of vegan and vegetarian diets, it is no surprise to see jackfruit growing in popularity in recent years.
Jackfruit is an exotic fruit that is part of the Moraceae plant family.
Although it is a fruit, this ingredient is becoming trendy in the plant-based community as a meat replacement due to its texture and size.
For example, because it is easily shredded, jackfruit can be a replacement for meat recipes such as pulled pork or pulled chicken.
It is very nutritious too because it is rich in vitamins, minerals, and fibers, whilst high in carbohydrates, and it does contain some protein. It is even reported to contain several types of antioxidants.
However, depending on where you live, it might not be easy to source this ingredient, but you can often find them in supermarkets that are canned in water.
You should be pleased to know that if you manage to get hold of any jackfruit, whether it is raw or caned, it will freeze well for up to one month.
This is good news if you have any leftover jackfruit or if you are planning to meal prep some recipes. It can be a great time saver too and prevent food wastage.
It is a very versatile ingredient you can substitute for meat or add to curries, yogurts, and stews.
How to freeze jackfruit
The reason why jackfruit freezes well, and better than other fruits, is because of the size and texture.
If you look at a raw jackfruit, it is a beast which can vary in size and weight.
However, it is most likely that you will be dealing with store-bought jackfruit which is already shredded and stored in water.
These chunks can be perfect for many recipes, which you can eat raw or cooked.
It is important to also know that there are two main types of jackfruit which you can buy which are soft and crisp.
Both are fine to freeze but you may lose some crispness as a result which is the only downfall.
How to freeze raw jackfruit
Depending on where you live, it can be very difficult to find raw or fresh jackfruit in your local supermarket but if you search hard enough, you might be able to find it from a specialist store.
If you manage to buy a raw jackfruit and use it straight away, it would be likely that you will have some leftover due to its size and weight.
Therefore, if you plan to freeze it, you will need to cut it into smaller pieces for the best results.
It is not recommended to store a whole jackfruit in your freezer because while it is possible, it is simply not convenient when you look at the space it will take up.
Here is how to freeze raw jackfruit:
- You will need to freeze each jackfruit arils for the best results.
- The quickest way to do this is to spread out the jackfruit arils and keep them separated in a freezer bag – you might need to use multiple freezer bags.
- Ensure you lay them flat and keep them on top of heavy items in the freezer – do not squash it or place anything on top of it.
How to defrost raw jackfruit:
Once you are ready to defrost and use your jackfruit, simply take out of your freezer bag or take out the individual pieces if you are planning to use them. You should not refreeze jackfruit once it has been thawed.
How to freeze Cooked Jackfruit
You can also freeze cooked jackfruit which can be ideal for meal prep or batch cooking.
This included common jackfruit recipes such as stews and curries.
Also, if the jackfruit has been marinated in sauces, such as BBQ sauce, this is also very freezer-friendly.
- You should use a freezer bag or meal prep container for the best results which ultimately depends on the type of dish which you have cooked. Freezer bags give you more control to make it airtight as possible whereas meal prep containers are more beneficial for specifically ready-made meals.
- Place in your freezer, if you are using a freezer bag, do ensure it is laid flat.
- To defrost, simply allow it to thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
How to Freeze Packaged Jackfruit?
Packaged jackfruit is the most common you can find in supermarkets which will provide you with label instructions.
Here is how it is done:
- If unopened: providing this is a vacuum-sealed package, place it directly in the freezer and read the label instructions.
- If it has been opened, transfer it to a freezer bag and remove the air by tightly sealing it.
Can you refreeze thawed jackfruit?
As with most ingredients, you should not refreeze thawed jackfruit. Not only will the quality decline but can also cause the risk of bacteria growth.
If you are looking for a vegan meal prep, or any type of batch cooking involving the jackfruit ingredient, it is great to know that it will be freezer-friendly.