If you have not tried jackfruit, you are missing out. It’s a beautiful tropical fruit that grows to enormous dimensions. You can tell when it’s ripe by its fruity odor. The fruit of the jackfruit is known as Arils. Arils have a big seed that is also edible. But does jackfruit spoil like a lot of tropical fruits, or can it be stored and eaten later?
Did you know that jackfruit is the largest fruit in the world to grow on trees? In some countries, jackfruit is used as a meat substitute because it is tender but firm.
This aromatic, tender fruit is full of nutrients and vitamins, and it tastes sublime. In this article, we will look at how to store jackfruit and if it can be stored for a long time. We answer many frequently asked questions to bring you the information you need.
Let’s get into it.
Does jackfruit expire?
Yes. Jackfruit may look hardy in its shell with its nobbly exterior and gigantic size. Still, inside the rough exterior, the shell is a tender fruit that is aromatic and sweet that will spoil if not kept in the right conditions. Jackfruit expires after 7 days in the refrigerator.
But there is more to jackfruit than just eating the tender Arils, you can also use the jackfruit rags boiled as a vegetable if you wish, and the seeds are also edible. Clearly, the seeds have a longer life than the Arils.
However, most of you are only interested in the Arils, and why not? They are sweet and gorgeous to eat and have many health benefits.
Once you have opened the jackfruit, you will notice the Arils are easy to access, and once you get the hang of it, you can strip the jackfruit of the Arils in minutes. The seeds just pop out easily without hassle.
To store the jackfruit, it’s best to place the Arils in a Ziploc container and place them towards the back of the fridge where the temperature is coolest. But, even then, the Arils will only last for approximately 7 days, depending on how fresh the jackfruit was when it was purchased.
When Arils expire, they will become limp and discolored. They may also come slimy, which is a sure sign they should be tossed in the garbage.
For the less adventurous, you can buy canned jackfruit. Canned fruit has a long shelf life of 2 years and more if the cans are in good condition, such as with no dents or leakage.
But once you open the can of jackfruit, it will start to spoil at roughly the same time as fresh jackfruit, which is around 7 days.
Does jackfruit need to be refrigerated?
Yes and no, it depends on how long it will take you to eat. Typically, there are a lot of Arils from a whole jackfruit, anywhere from 100 to 500 pieces depending on the size of the fruit.
Inevitably you will end up storing jackfruit in the fridge to keep it fresh for as long as possible. However, when you store jackfruit in the fridge, place it in an airtight container for two reasons.
The first reason is it will help to preserve the jackfruit and help to prevent bacteria growth on the fruit that will accelerate its expiry.
The second reason is that jackfruit is aromatic, and the aroma can be strong, which will taint the other food in the fridge with the jackfruit flavor. If you are traveling and staying in a hotel, some hotels ban jackfruit due to its strong aroma, but it is not offensive, just strong and sweet.
Does it make a difference if you cover jackfruit?
Yes. Unlike other fruits you may store in the fridge, like apples, the fruit is protected, but once the fruit is open to the air, the fruit will start to discolor due to oxidation. Jackfruit has been opened, so the fruit should be covered to prevent oxidation and discoloration.
Storing jackfruit in a Ziploc bag should be sufficient to contain the aromas preventing your cooked deli meats and cheeses from smelling and tasting like jackfruit.
Does jackfruit go bad if left out?
Yes. The problem with leaving jackfruit on the side is it will attract insects, such as flies. If that is not a problem, the next issue will be.
Jackfruit is a perishable food. Its tender flesh at room temperature will start to grow bacteria. After two hours, the bacteria will have multiplied to such an extent that the jackfruit should be tossed in the garbage.
According to the USDA, this is the same rule for all perishable foods that are left sitting out for two hours or more.
Does unopened jackfruit go bad?
An unopened jackfruit will rot on the ground. It will fall from the tree and simply rot. Animals and birds will eat the seeds and deposit them, giving the jackfruit tree a chance to propagate.
However, it is unlikely you will buy a whole jackfruit. They are enormous and develop a lot of fruit.
Then there is canned jackfruit, another great product that lasts for a long time past the expiration date. It’s normal for canned fruits to last between 1 year and 2 years in a can if the can does not exhibit signs of swelling, leakage, or rust.
But once the can is open, the countdown will start to expire. The can’s fruit will last 7 days if refrigerated and sealed in an airtight container.
How long does jackfruit last in the fridge?
Jackfruit has a relatively short shelf life. The jackfruit should be stored in an airtight container to prevent oxidation and discoloration of the fruit, but even then, the fruit will only last for 7 days.
Keep jackfruit towards the back of the fridge. It’s a cooler place and is less susceptible to temperature fluctuation from the door of the fridge opening.
Does frozen jackfruit go bad?
In theory, no. All frozen foods at 0℉ or below have an indefinite shelf life, but it is not entirely true. Freezing foods for extended periods can cause freezer burns, rendering the food inedible, but it’s not bad.
But the good news is jack fruit freezes really well and can be stored for up to a year without degradation, but it will depend on how they are stored.
Place the jackfruit Arils into sealable bags, and pack them loosely so they are almost separated. Once the Arils are bagged and marked with the freezer date, they can be placed directly in the freezer.
There is some debate about freezing time. Some say it’s two months or six months, but twelve months work fine. Although tender, the skin of the Aril has a silky outer layer that protects the Arils.
After a year in the freezer, you can expect some degradation to the Arils, which will lose flavor and texture.
Nothing prevents you from freezing canned jackfruit, but open the can and pour away the liquid before placing the fruit in an airtight container. Store canned fruits in the freezer for a couple of months. They will have been pasteurized and become softer in the canning process.
How do you keep jackfruit from rotting?
It is a tough job. If you have a whole jackfruit, it is unlikely to fit in your fridge, so it makes sense to store it for a little while until it’s perfectly ripe.
If you think your pantry is a great place to store the jackfruit, it’s not unless your pantry is enormous with good airflow and is 10℉ or below.
You should avoid keeping jackfruit in an unventilated area that is warm. It will cause mold and maybe insect infestation.
If you can store the jackfruit below 4℉, the fruit will not go moldy and will last a considerable time without rotting.
Does jackfruit really taste like meat?
No. It’s a fallacy, but jackfruit is a meat substitute in Thailand and is a great food for vegans and vegetarians.
Jackfruit doesn’t taste like meat but can have the texture of pulled pork if the pork is tender. Arils, the jackfruit part you are most likely to eat, is silky but firm. When pulled, it can be stringy.
So, if you are expecting your jackfruit to taste like a prime cut or wagyu beef, you will be disappointed.
What country is jackfruit from?
Jackfruit grows in the forests of India, Thailand, and all over South East Asia. The climate has to be warm all year round with plenty of moisture. Jackfruit does grow in Florida.
Jackfruit is a beautiful, tasting fruit and shouldn’t be ignored if it’s in the grocery store. It is loaded with essential vitamins and minerals and has many health benefits, from heart health to weight control.
You can store fresh jackfruit in the fridge for seven days, and in the freezer, it will last for 1 year if packed correctly prior to freezing.
If fresh jackfruit is not available, then opt for the canned variety, it is delicious, and the shelf life is immense, as you would have come to expect.