Try my vegan spin on the New England St. Patrick’s Day classic with some Vegan Corned Jackfruit!
This post was originally posted in 2016. // As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
Vegan Corned Jackfruit for St. Patrick’s Day
Growing up in New England (I was born in Boston!), corned beef was a traditional dish served every year for St. Patrick’s Day. This dish was made popular during wartime rationing, sometimes called a “boiled dinner.” Traditionally beef is “corned” by soaking it in a brine with pepper corns, allspice, and juniper (can be found in the bulk dried spice bins at the grocery store), along with other spices, for up to TEN days. My jackfruit version just brines overnight—so much faster, and without the beef! I serve it with roasted veggies, including my new favorite—roasted cabbage. So yummy!
A Perfect Vegan St. Patrick’s Day Dish
I first made this corned jackfruit in 2015, and it was a huge hit with my family….and still is! My vegan spin on the traditional holiday dish reminds me so much of the meal I grew up with. Jackfruit takes the place of the traditional beef—it’s amazing how much flavor it can absorb. Remember to plan ahead, as the jackfruit needs to marinate in the brine overnight.
What is Jackfruit?
Jackfruit it is a tropical fruit grown in southeast Asia. Young jackfruit is canned in a brine, or water, and has a very neutral, mild taste (don’t confuse it with ripe jackfruit that is canned in a syrup and is very sweet—same fruit, different preparation!). It is perfect to use in dishes instead of chicken or other shredded meats. I also use it in my Taco Soup, and in my Jackfruit Carnitas Enchiladas. Delicious! Corned Jackfruit would also make an amazing Reuben sandwich!
^^^ Remove the pod like pieces shown on the left, you will have the shredded pieces remaining, shown on the right.
What do you serve with Vegan Corned Jackfruit?
I like to keep things pretty simple when I make my vegan corned jackfrfuit. Just a sheet pan full of roasted veggies does the trick! If you haven’t tried roasted cabbage I highly recommend it—roasting it gives it a completely different flavor!
Perfect Side Dishes for Vegan Corned Jackfruit
However, if you want to go a bit fancier than roasted veggies, these easy sides will help you pull together a complete meal! They might not be traditional Irish food, but they’re delicious!
- Air Fryer Roasted Potatoes with Rosemary
- Green Beans with Garlic
- Vegan Classic Mashed Potatoes — Dairy Free!
- Easy Vegan Air Fryer Brussels Sprouts
- Vegan German Potato Salad with Bacon
Want more GREEN dishes?
Sometimes a color themed meal is just as festive!
- Peppermint Patty Brownie Cupcakes
- Classic Pesto
- Citrus Explosion Green Smoothie
- Green Beans with Garlic
- Vegan Spinach Fettuccine Alfredo
- How to Make Air Fried Broccoli (3 variations)
Let’s Make Vegan Corned Jackfruit
Give this a try for your St. Patrick’s Day feast—you’re going to love it! Drop me a note in the comments below and let me know how you like it!
Vegan Corned Jackfruit for St. Patrick's Day
For the Brine:
- 2 cups water
- 1 Tablespoon kosher salt try 2 teaspoons of regular fine grain salt
- 2 Tablespoons brown sugar or sub maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon prepared yellow mustard
- 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 8 whole cloves
- 8 whole allspice berries found dried in the bulk spice section
- 12 whole juniper berries found dried in the bulk spice section
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar
For the Jackfruit:
- 2 20 ounce cans YOUNG jackfruit in brine, NOT ripe jackfruit in syrup, found in Asian markets or online
- 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika optional, for color and smokey flavor
For the Roasted Vegetables:
- 1 head green cabbage
- 6 large carrots
- 2-3 pounds Yukon Gold or Red Potatoes
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
For the Brine:
- Place all of the brine ingredients into a small pan on the stove. Bring to a boil and turn off the heat. While the brine sets, begin to work on the jackfruit.
For the Jackfruit:
- Open and drain the cans of jackfruit. Using your fingers, shred the triangular shaped jackfruit into meaty shreds, discarding the harder point of each wedge as well as any pods.
- Place the shreds into a container with a lid, and pour the brine overtop. Allow to brine in the refrigerator overnight.
- The next day drain the jackfruit. Heat a skillet (I like my cast iron) and drizzle a little olive oil on it. Add the jackfruit shreds. Sprinkle with paprika and toss to incorporate. Heat through, allowing the shreds to brown and crisp very slightly. Remove from pan and serve. I like to serve my corned jackfruit with roasted vegetables, see below.
For the Roasted Vegetables:
- Preheat oven to 400°.
- Slice the cabbage from top to stem into large discs, about 1/2" thick, discarding core. Carefully lay them onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Peel and slice carrots on the diagonal, about 1/4" thick. Dice potatoes into 1" cubes. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper, and spread out on a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Roast both pans of veggies for about 45 minutes, carefully flipping the cabbage discs half way through, and tossing the potatoes and carrots.
- Serve with corned jackfruit.
From the Blog Archives, 2016….
Last Friday my mom and I took the boys on a little day trip. We rode the ferry from Seattle to Bainbridge Island—just a 30 minute ride, but probably the highlight of our trip for Jonathan—”a boat, a boat, a boat!” Once there we drove to the Bloedel Reserve—a 150 acre estate that has been opened to the public to walk the gardens. It was beautiful. Apparently Mr. Bloedel was color blind, so instead of colorful flowers he had plants in varying shades of green. Washington State is known as the Evergreen State, and the name is quite fitting—because of our seemingly continuous rainfall everything stays green year round, and these gardens were no exception.
^^^ So many beautiful shades of green—my favorite color!
This would be a great jackfruit recipe idea! I will have to try this! Thanks for the recipe. 🙂
Can I just use the McCormick pickling spice blend or do you think it would be drastically different from yours?
Also have your tried boiling the jackfruit like you would with actual corned beef?
Really excited to try!
I’ve never used the pickling blend, and am not sure what the ingredients are in that. Are they the same as a corned beef brine? I’ve not boiled jackfruit, as it is very delicate and I think it would disintegrate, or get really mushy. I don’t think it would hold up. If you didn’t want to do it in a skillet you could probably roast it on a parchment lined baking sheet in the oven. You’d want to be drying it out, not adding more water. Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Tess R. says
We love this jackfruit recipe and enjoy it on St. Patrick’s day as well as many other times throughout the year. Don’t skip the cabbage steaks, they’re delicious too.
Thanks Tess! I’m so glad to hear that you love it! I agree—roasting cabbage takes it to a whole new level!
I couldn’t find juniper berries anywhere. Can I get away without?
I got them in the bulk section of my natural market. If you can’t find them you can skip. It will add flavor, but it’s not the end of the world!
I actually cut a fresh jackfruit 2 days ago- it is fairly ripe and sweet. Do you think I could use this instead of canned for this recipe? Thanks!
You need green jackfruit for this, or “unripe.” The ripe jackfruit is very sweet. My husband actually uses it for an ice cream topping! For this recipe (and other savory “meaty” recipes) you’ll want green jackfruit in water or brine!
Jackfruit has been my jam I love making dishes with it. This corned beef is going be great making for family and clients fingers crossed this goes well with my stuffed cabbage and irish soda bread.. will let you know how it turns out on Tuesday.. thanks for the recipe
Oh awesome! I hope they all love it! I love the versatility of jackfruit!!! It can blend into anything!!!
Mel | avirtualvegan.com says
This sounds great. I’ve only tried jackfruit once and that was a fresh one. I cooked it in the slow cooker and it ended up overcooked, too soft and almost slimy. It put me right off. I need to try it again but I can’t seem to find it in cans around these parts and the fresh ones aren’t available often.
Amazon is your friend!
Amy Katz from Veggies Save The Day says
Brad has been really into jackfruit lately, so we’ll have to try your recipe. It’s amazing what you can make with it!
Oh, this looks wonderful! Corned beef was always a must for me on St. Patty’s Day. I haven’t had it on sooo long! I love your veganized version, and I’m going to give it a shot. 🙂
Dianne's Vegan Kitchen says
I’ve actually never had corned beef, despite being Irish. I’d love to give this a try!
Mary Ellen @ VNutrition says
This is such a great idea! I haven’t had corned beef in almost 10 years (since going veg) so I’m totally going to have to try this!