Jackfruit Seeds – pine, ash wood, and mahogany

My three month lull in recipe-posting has come to an end, that is, if you can call this a ‘recipe’. It’s probably more of an introduction to an interesting food, than a recipe per se. Come to think of it, that marshmallow post wasn’t a recipe either. Whatever. 


If you love the flavour of banana, mango, papaya, lychee, longan or pineapple, you’d like jackfruit, because all these fruits have been likened to the multifaceted flavour of jackfruit. But the good thing is that it doesn’t have that gross mushiness of banana and papaya, or the tart tongue-burning effect of pineapple. The texture is a bit harder to describe, but I can tell you, if you are fond of peeling off the little peely cheese sticks, one by one, you’ll love doing that to jackfruit. So imagine strands of peely cheese, with a mouthfeel not unlike firm longan. Jackfruits come in an interesting morphology: the main eating component are lunar-shaped units, which, after gauging out of the very thick skin (a process which would require the barrier of gloves, as they produce an incredibly sticky ‘resin’), leaves many strands of fibrous thingies still attached and resembling a bed of anemone, edible, but requiring a knife to cut out and also very chewy). The main drawback lies in the aftertaste: a rather pungent odour that lingers for a day, and on rare occasions, jackfruits can have a foul, detergent-like taste.


The seeds are also edible, surprisingly (isn’t googling random things so good as a procrastination tool?!). They are similar to chestnuts, but less moist, less starchy, less sweet and a little more savoury/acidic, with a hint of jackfruit notes. Every time you eat a jackfruit sac, one of these little seeds, with a beautiful pinewood-like pattern, are encased within. Pop it out of the membraned pouch and rinse with water; there will still be a sticky film of slime, that’s okay. Place in a container, storing it for several days (up to two weeks, and the seeds were still fine, but they become a washed-out ash wood grain rather than the deep pinewood when fresh, as the photo juxtaposes), until you have accumulated enough seeds to cook with. I boiled them in water for 10-20 minutes (more towards 20, if you like it a bit more soft, and the acidic flavour also fades with more cooking)… but apparently you can roast them or stud them on rice in the rice cooker (works well), and used in the manner of potatoes for mash or curries.


jackfruit-seeds-3-waterA most peculiar thing happens to the water it’s boiled in: it turns to a crimson liquid like it’s for X-ray developing, which must have leached out of the mahogany-hued inner skin (isn’t it amazing how the colours of the seed can exhibit features of such a variety of wood species?) (I don’t think X-ray developer is actually crimson-coloured. Being a dental assistant, I should know it’s actually brownish. But oh well, first imagery that came to my mind for crimson water was X-ray liquid. My mind is rather strange).


There are two layers of husk: the tough outer husk that you need to peel after it’s cooked (which is usually effortless with just your hands, because it usually cracks a little when dried raw (as you can see from the photo above)), and the thin skin that’s edible, albeit chewy (like the peanut skin).  


A word of warning though: like baked beans, it is recommended this food is consumed in well-ventilated areas. :P


About Bonnie

I was born in Hong Kong, lived there until 11 years old, moved to Adelaide, then Wagga Wagga, and finally Brisbane. I am number four in the Enneagram and an INFP in the Myers-Briggs. I aspire to be a dietitian someday.

25 responses to “Jackfruit Seeds – pine, ash wood, and mahogany

  1. George

    Where do you even buy jackfruit? I don’t know anywhere that sells it, not even in chinatown.

  2. I bought one yesterday at a “Super H Mart”.

  3. tess lobo

    i just saw one in Chinatown. I love the seeds. and so with the fruit. taste and smell like heaven….

  4. sam

    how can i convert starchy seeds starch into flour?

  5. In Brisbane, they are usually sold in Asian grocery stores… I think from some Vietnamese greengrocer in Inala.

  6. renzo

    can you fry and make up of a chip in the seed of jackfruit|?

  7. Dee

    You can find them at Whole Foods.

  8. Neutral Universe

    I just ate jackfruit seeds. yummy! Thanks for the great info..

  9. Monea

    is it possible to make a milk product out of jackfruit seeds?

  10. I actually have no idea, sorry! I’ve never heard of it but hey you could always give it a go, it might taste alright!

  11. Anonymous

    9125 NORTH PLAZA # 55 AUSTIN.TX 78753


    thank you
    julio roman

  12. jackfruit

    You better test the jack fruit and its seed for never was one time did the jack-fruit seed I boiled gives out crimson liquid . If your body is too acidic or you have too much heat in your body already, you should avoid jackfruit .

  13. You can buy jackfruit at any Vietnamese super market and right now it’s in season. When picking the jackfruit make sure it’s soft on the outside; that’s when it’s ripe and sweet. Peeling the fruit can be a challenge and messy though. To avoid the stickyness from the sap rub oil on your hands and knife prior to peeling. To wash off your hands; use salt and oil. I hope this helps.

  14. Anonymous

    we have a jack fruit tree in our house:)

  15. can i extract from this seeds ??

  16. can I extract oil from this seeds ??

  17. Anonymous

    you could try extracting if you want to.. experimenting is fun!

  18. do have lots of jackfruit tress here in the phi..it’s season year roundja

  19. Pingback: Weekly Photo Challenge: Foreign | small house/BIG GARDEN

  20. elle

    how to extract oil from the seeds?xD

  21. K2

    Can you drink the water the jackfruit seeds are boiled in. It just smells so funny …

  22. K2

    The water turned a light crimson for me too … and it smelled really yummy … Is it possible to drink the water that the seeds are boiled in?

  23. Graham G

    you can’t drink seed water – POISONOUS

  24. Graham G

    But you can try and tell me what happens…

  25. Thank you for the information
    its great article

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