Jackfruit Bulgogi

In today’s post, I’m sharing a recipe for a delicious, meat-free alternative to the traditional Korean dish known as ‘Bulgogi’. It’s simple to make and highly versatile too. So far, I’ve served it in salad bowls and as a sandwich filling, however I also think it would be great for filling tacos and tortilla wraps, topping pizzas and for serving in ‘Buddha bowls’ along with sticky rice and wok-fried greens. This Jackfruit Bulgogi has been a big hit with my family and I hope you enjoy it too!

I first came across the recipe for Jackfruit Bulgogi in July’s edition of the Vegan Life magazine. I must admit, I’d never heard of Bulgogi before, but a search on Wikipedia soon enlightened me. It turns out that Bulgogi is a Korean dish consisting of thinly sliced beef which is marinated in a mixture of soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil, garlic, ground black pepper and other ingredients such as ginger, onions and mushrooms. The marinated meat is traditionally grilled (hence the Korean name Bulgogi – ‘Fire meat’) though, in more recent times, pan-cooking has become popular too.

The shredded appearance of jackfruit and its ability to soak up marinades makes it a great alternative to beef when making a plant-based version of Bulgogi. You could simply use two cans of drained jackfruit in this recipe or, as I tend to do, substitute one of the cans for chickpeas. Not only do the chickpeas taste delicious coated in the marinade, but they also add extra nutrients to the dish, including a healthy dose of protein and iron. As an added bonus, they’re often much cheaper than cans of jackfruit, so a great budget-friendly option too!

The recipe in the Vegan Life magazine included Korean gochujang chilli paste or sriracha in the Bulgogi marinade; however to make the recipe family-friendly (and palatable to spice wimps like me!) I chose to forgo the chilli and substituted it with some tomato puree (paste) instead. This switch worked really well and added to the flavour of the marinade but, of course, if you’re a chilli fan feel free to add the gochujang back in.

Products used in this recipe:
– Mae Ploy Young Green Jackfruit in Brine
– Clearspring Organic Tamari Soy Sauce
– Meridian Organic Toasted Sesame Oil
– KTC Minced Ginger and Garlic Paste

Pin for later ⬇️

Where to Buy Jackfruit in the UK
Here in the UK, you’ll find cans of jackfruit in Asian supermarkets, independent health food shops and online stores (such as The Vegan Kind supermarket). Asian supermarkets are currently offering the best value options. I buy my jackfruit from Hai Na Oriental Supermarket in ‘The Corridor’ in Bath, and it costs £1.79 per can.


My New Favourite ‘Cheat’ Ingredient
I love using garlic and ginger in my cooking, but I’m less keen on the amount of time it takes me to press, grate and wash up the gadgets (especially the garlic press!) I recently discovered KTC Minced Ginger and Garlic Paste and it’s saving me so much time, hassle and washing up. It’s a great price too – around £1 for a 210g jar. I buy it from Sainsbury’s (on the world food aisle).


Do you have any ‘cheat’ ingredient recommendations? I’d love to hear them!

Also, if you make this Jackfruit Bulgogi recipe, I’d love to hear your feedback and any suggestions for adaptations. Tag your photos with #bitofthegoodstuff on social media and they’ll find their way to me. You can also connect with me on my social media channels here: Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest.   

Happy cooking!




6 thoughts on “Jackfruit Bulgogi

    1. I was late joining the jackfruit party too, but I’m so glad I made it. I haven’t experienced anything quite like it before! It’s got a really interesting texture and I love how it soaks up marinades. I’m excited to see what I can create with it next 😀

  1. I’ve not tried jackfruit yet. I know it will probably be good, but I can’t get over the fact it looks so much like the meaty original. It’s a real mental block. I am going to share this though as I know other people love it.

    1. Hey Jac! You should definitely give jackfruit a try. In photos it does look quite ‘meaty’ but it doesn’t have a meaty texture like mock meats. It definitely tastes like a plant. I really love how versatile is. It has no flavour of its own but soaks up marinades really well. I’m excited to try new flavour combinations 😊

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