Get Your Grill On With These Bone-In Barbecue Vegan Ribs

Vegan meat wizard Sauce Stache makes bone-in ribs using jackfruit.

These bone-in jackfruit vegan ribs are grill season-approved.

In this episode of EATKINDLY With Me, Mark Thompson—also known as Sauce Stache—whips up a delicious-looking batch of vegan jackfruit barbecue ribs.

“So on Sauce Stache, I spend my time recreating meats and cheese. I make a lot of plant-based foods” Thompson explains. “I try to take the path of doing it scientifically, doing what some of the big plant-based meat creators are doing in the industry and figuring out how we can do that at home.”

Thompson’s recipe features the bone-in jackfruit ribs and a dry rub sauce. The ribs feature a can of young green jackfruit brine. “That is the jackfruit that makes things meaty,” he says. 

“Now, the vital wheat gluten is essentially what’s going to bind this all together,” he continues. “While the jackfruit is what gives it its fibrous kind of meat-like texture. The pea protein is what works in between the two.” He explains that the pea protein adds bite and bounce to the gluten to make the consistency of the recipe more similar to ribs.

To flavor the vegan ribs, he opts for mushroom seasoning. “It packs a super umami punch,” he says. He also uses onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and cumin. Thompson uses one surprising ingredient to achieve the “bone-in” look: Lemongrass stalks.

Ready to make this summer-worthy recipe yourself? Keep reading for the recipe below.

Get Your Grill On With These Bone-In Barbecue Vegan Ribs
Throw Sauce Stache’s vegan ribs on the grill. | Mark Thompson/Sauce Stache for LIVEKINDLY

Jackfruit Barbecue Ribs

By LIVEKINDLY

1 hour 30 mins to prep
55 mins to cook
Vegan

Ingredients

Ribs

  • 1 20-ounce can young green jackfruit 
  • 1 cup vegetable stock 
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce 
  • 1 cup cold water 
  • 1 cup vital wheat gluten 
  • 2 tablespoons pea protein powder 
  • 1 tablespoon mushroom seasoning (or 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast)
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder 
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika 
  • 1 teaspoon cumin 
  • 1 tablespoon tapioca starch 
  • 1 teaspoon oil
  • 2-3 stocks lemongrass 

Dry Rub

  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar 
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt 
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder 
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder 
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard 
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika 
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper 

Preparation

  1. 1
    Drain and wash your jackfruit in a colander. Press the hard ends of the jackfruit and separate any seeds you find under the cold water.
  2. 2
    Add your washed jackfruit along with vegetable stock, soy sauce to a small or medium sized saucepan and use cold water to cover the jackfruit (about a cup of water). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and allow to simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. 3
    Now in the bowl of a stand mixer or mixing bowl add gluten, protein powder, mushroom seasoning, onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and cumin. Mix the dry ingredients together.
  4. 4
    Once the jackfruit is done simmering, drain the liquid from your jackfruit. You can pour the jackfruit through a colander into a mason jar.
  5. 5
    Add the jackfruit to your mixing bowl along with the gluten and seasonings and turn on slow mix to combine.
  6. 6
    Add ½ cup of your remaining broth from the jackfruit to the mixer while mixing. Allow to mix together, knead and combine for around 5 minutes. (if you don’t have ½ cup of broth left you can add water, or more vegetable stock.
  7. 7
    Your mixture should now look very meaty! Add your tapioca starch and oil (you can use chili oil to add some spice.) Knead together on 2-3 speed for 5-10 more minutes. Your mixture should look slightly wet. If needed add more broth about a teaspoon at a time.
  8. 8
    Remove from the bowl and knead together by hand until fully combined. Flatten mixture into a long rectangle about the width of your hand and 3x as long!
  9. 9
    Remove outside of lemon grass and cut into 3 even sized pieces for your “bones.” On your “rib meat” place your “bones” about 1-2 inches apart covering only half. Fold over your meat and press together. Wrap in parchment paper, and allow to rest refrigerated for at least 1 hour to overnight.
  10. 10
    After your meat has rested mix together your dry rub seasonings and cover the entire outside of your ribs, rubbing into the meat.
  11. 11
    Prepare your grill. For a charcoal grill, you can use real wood chunk charcoal along with a steam box. For a steam box, you simply use a foil pan filled with water placed next to the hot coals. This will create moisture in the grill and help regulate the grill temp. You can create a hot zone and a steam zone in the grill by placing the charcoal in only half of the grill.
  12. 12
    Once your grill is ready and grates of been oiled, temp between 250º and 300º Fahrenheit place your rib meat on the cool side above the water pan, cover and let grill for 45 minutes, flipping half way through. After 45 minutes flip your ribs to the hot side above the grill to sear for 1-2 minutes per side.
  13. 13
    After you got your sear, while still on the sear side of the grill brush with your favorite bbq sauce. You can use a 50/50 mixture of sweet BBQ sauce and ketchup. Slice between rib bones and enjoy!

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