Jackfruit (ขนุน)

(Artocarpus heterophyllus)

Jackfruit tree is known for its big fruit that are the hugest on Earth. The biggest fruit reach up to 1 m in length and weigh up to 55 kg. Usually fruit grow on trunk, because branches can’t hold the weight. Mature tree produces up to 200 fruit with an average weight 15-25 kg.

Taste of jackfruit

Slices of jackfruit have sweet taste that reminds a mix of pineapple, sweet apple and banana. Slices have rubber texture, not crispy. Ripe jackfruits spread distinct fruity odour around, even unpeeled.

How to eat jackfruit

If you want to taste jackfruit, search for its peeled slices in hypermarkets or at fruit stalls. The fruit is too huge to buy the whole one, and it contains sticky liquid that can be hardly removed from skin.

If you are allergic to any fruit or vegetables, have your medicine next to you, while tasting jackfruit. This is the only Thai fruit I’m a little bit allergic to.

Unripe jackfruit is used for cooking and its roasted seeds can replace chocolate aroma. In Thailand you can find preserved jackfruit slices and jackfruit chips (they are sold in hypermarkets and some 7-Elevens, the package has a picture of either a jackfruit or its slices or both).

Jackfruit slices
You can see jackfruit slices between bottles, they are ~10 cm each

When and where to buy jackfruit in Thailand

Jackfruit tree matures in the summer, during rainy season. But it can be found also in other seasons. Due to difficulties of peeling off the jackfruit, it is not sold at every fruit stall. Searching for a jackfruit look for its slices (not only the whole fruit) and pay attention if you detect a pleasant fruity smell. You may also see jackfruit vendors peeling off the fruit while selling it. The price is quite low, ~20 THB for a portion of peeled slices.

Jackfruit tree
Jackfruit trees grow almost everywhere, even in the middle of Bangkok, just take a look around
Jackfruit on a stem
The fruit grows on a stem attached to trunk

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