Jackfruit, Banana, and Peanut Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting24

cupcakes topped with chopped peanuts and salt

I have heard of Jackfruit. After all, I do live in San Francisco and get exposed to a variety of “exotic” ingredients. This was, however, my first time tasting it and to be honest, I am not sure how to describe it. I am told that I need to try the real (fresh) jackfruit as opposed to canned (canned was admittedly what I had on hand), but have also been warned of the amount of work it involves to wrangle one into submission. I have since learned that many Asian grocery stores sell manageable chunks of fresh jackfriut, so I wouldn’t have to commit to a large whole one.

So, while I can’t easily compare jackfruit to something familiar to the US palate, I will describe the resulting cupcakes as tasty starting off with a hint of banana then rounding out with a jackfruit or “tropical” flavor. They are dense and muffin-like with definite chew and crunch. The cake could be lightened up some by cutting back some on the jackfruit and peanuts.

20 cupcakes / 350 degree oven

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups sugar
3 large eggs
3/4 cup oil
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 ounces canned jackfruit, drained and chopped
2 bananas, mashed
1/2 cup peanuts, chopped

1. Whisk flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and sugar in a medium sized bowl.
2. In a separate medium sized bowl bowl, beat eggs to break up.
3. Add oil, coconut milk, and vanilla to the eggs and mix to combine.
4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, mix to combine.
5. Add jackfruit, mashed bananas, and peanuts to the rest of the ingredients and mix to combine.
6. Scoop into cupcake papers about 2/3s full with an ice cream scooper.
7. Bake at 350 degree oven for ~25 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.

jackfruit and banana
jackfruit & banana

Cream Cheese Frosting

12 ounces or 1-1/2 packages of Philly cream cheese
1/2 stick butter
4-5 cups sifted powdered sugar

1. Bring butter to room temperature by letting it sit out for 1 or 2 hours.
2. Sift powdered sugar into a bowl or onto parchment.
3. Beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed until creamy.
4. Add 4 cups of the powdered sugar and beat until combined.
5. Add more sugar until you get to the consistency and sweetness you like

1. Frost cupcakes.
2. Chop some unsalted peanuts with salt.
2. Sprinkle peanuts on top of cupcakes

jackfruit, banana, and peanut cupcakes with cream cheese frosting

24 comments for Jackfruit, Banana, and Peanut Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting »

  1. I had to de-lurk to tell you that I love your blog and the delicious recipes you shares.

    And…if you live in SF and have access to exotic fruits…I highly recomment the king of all fruits – Durian. You either love it or hate but in Singapore, it’s made into the most delicious cream puffs, cakes and ice creams. I think the durian would make an awesome cupcake too. Oh…and don’t let the smell fool you – it tastes heavenly! If you dare and do use it in a recipe, let me know.

    Comment by Kisane — May 8, 2007 @ 11:04 pm

  2. I always look out for new recipes from your site. They are all so lovely.

    Anyway, I love jackfruit and to have it as an ingredient in a cupcake sounds brilliant! I’m sure to try this one out! Oh, if you do have jackfruit left overs, you might want to try making fritters out of it. Taste good fried.

    Comment by Nina — May 9, 2007 @ 12:41 am

  3. I love all the cool flavor combinations you do. It’s really inspiring. Those look great.

    Comment by Lindsey — May 9, 2007 @ 6:15 am

  4. Just found your blog yesterday and I’m in love!!! What extraordinary works of beauty and deliciousness you’re creating…

    Comment by Summer — May 9, 2007 @ 6:57 am

  5. I have never heard of Jackfruit, but I am so impressed that you were able to put something so exotic into a fantastic cupcake!

    Comment by Kristen — May 9, 2007 @ 12:13 pm

  6. I like the idea of using Jackfruit, but not a fan myself. Tastes like overripe cantelope to me. Still, I love the idea of using the peanut to kind of salt the whole thing and give the cake a crunch.

    Comment by Garrett — May 9, 2007 @ 4:19 pm

  7. Such a tropical and unique idea. I’ve had jackfruit in Indian desserts, but never in a cupcake. I’m going to give it a try :)

    Comment by mandira — May 10, 2007 @ 8:12 am

  8. hi! I just had fresh jackfruit the other day for the first time. I did think it was banana-y too. I got it on the street in san jose – I’m sure you can get it in sf too! try chinatown or clement. :)

    Comment by susan — May 10, 2007 @ 8:21 am

  9. Hi!!! I´m brazilian and we have jackfruit so easily here. I didn´t know the name in english was jackfruit, it´s funy. But i hate the smell of it, but it´s very sweet..
    But these cupcakes sounds so delicuous, with banana!!!! Hmmmm
    I love your site!!!

    Comment by Lígia — May 10, 2007 @ 9:03 am

  10. Hey there!

    As one of your fawning fans, I totally agree that you have to try the Asian King of Fruits, Durian. I am sure you will have hours of fun either contorting your face eating the fruit, or form an opinion that all asians are mental to actually love durians.

    Anyways, I was just wondering, would you say your receipe is half-able? If so, do I do a direct division by 2? I always end up with too many cupcakes and would like to for once, manage just enough cupcakes for a few colleagues and myself, all eaten at one go.

    Comment by Caroline — May 10, 2007 @ 9:11 am

  11. there you go with the new and different flavors. and i’ve seen jackfruit before, but never canned. the canned ones look like little organs or something, kinda scary slimey. but i’m sure your cupcakes aren’t scary-slimey!

    Comment by connie — May 10, 2007 @ 9:32 am

  12. You can find dried jackfruit fairly easily on the web, which may be useful for baking. Also did you know that jackfruit is the flavor that Juiceyfruit gum was modeled after?

    I’ll put a fresh jackfruit prep tutorial on my new blogspot as soon as I can.

    Comment by junglegirl — May 11, 2007 @ 2:38 am

  13. hi! i love your site and just looking at the at the yummy pictures seem to satisfy my sweet tooth already. the flavor combination of banana and jackfruit is a classic here in the Philippines. we have a traditional snack using bananas and jackfruit sprinkled with brown sugar and wrapped in a springroll wrapper and then deepfried till crispy. the brown sugar caramelizes and coats the whole thing – resulting in a gooey/crispy treat. good with ice cream on the side!

    Comment by betsy — May 11, 2007 @ 11:42 pm

  14. Caroline asked:
    I was just wondering, would you say your receipe is half-able? If so, do I do a direct division by 2?

    Caroline, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but this recipe is not halfable. Due to the flavor profile of the jackfruit, the recipe must be divided into *thirds* if you’re not going to use the full amount. Otherwise, everything becomes too starchy.

    This “rule of thirds” is the same for all tropical fruits (mangoes, passion fruit, pineapples, etc.)

    So, in this case, divide everything directly by three. For example, you’ll use 1 cup of flour, 1/3 tsp baking powder, etc.

    Many people forget to convert the oven when they make smaller batches, keeping the cake in the oven far too long. Don’t forget to divide both the baking time AND the temperature into thirds too. In this case, instead of 35 minutes in a 350 degree oven, bake them for 8.3 minutes in a 117 degree oven.

    Comment by Banneker — May 15, 2007 @ 1:25 am

  15. We have a jackfruit tree in our backyard. Recently, my father harvested a large one and kept the fruit frozen. We usually just eat it as it is. Commercially, it’s sweetened and added to ice cream, native rice cakes, or sold dried. I’ve never cooked or baked with it. Will have to try this one. Thanks for the recipe :-)

    Comment by Candice — May 15, 2007 @ 10:16 am

  16. I personally would not recommend dividing the baking time and oven temperature. Whether I bake 6, 12, or 24 cupcakes, the temperature is always at 350 and the baking time is somewhere between 20-25 minutes. The only exception is mini cupcakes… still keep the oven temp at 350, but they usually finish baking in 15 minutes or so. I have never heard of baking anything at 117 degrees F. That is barely hot enough to warm leftovers, that is unless you have all day.

    Comment by chockylit — May 15, 2007 @ 10:28 am

  17. And to answer your question, Caroline, this recipe would be difficult to divide in two, because of the 3 eggs. I would divide it in 2/3s or 1/3.

    Comment by chockylit — May 15, 2007 @ 10:30 am

  18. I was looking for a way to use up bananas and roasted rhubarb that I had and just took the first tray out of the oven. Smell wonderful! I tried jackfruit and not a big fan, but I had the canned one so I am sure that took away from the “real” fruit. I doubt I’ll ever find the whole fruit here in SC but who knows!

    Comment by Helen — May 15, 2007 @ 2:25 pm

  19. If you get fresh jackfuit, save the seeds. Boil them in salted water until tender. Yummy!

    Comment by zigzagza — May 20, 2007 @ 6:08 am

  20. YES!! Finally…I can’t wait to try this out. I’m tired of making jackfruit margaritas (amazingly enough).

    Comment by Enthusiastically Human — May 21, 2007 @ 7:06 pm

  21. I am so happy to see more and more recipes for the little known jackfruit! This recipe looks delicious – I will have to give it a try.

    Comment by Neena — June 4, 2007 @ 4:12 pm

  22. Great recipe! It’s the first day of summer and my husband is having a potluck tomorrow. I’m going to see if I can track down some jackfruit tonight.

    One question, for future batches of these that I’ll inevitably make: could I substitute peanut butter for the peanuts? My brother doesn’t like nutty chunks in his food, so I figured peanut butter could sub for the actual nuts. Would I still use 1/2 cup of peanut butter, or should I lessen the amount?

    Thanks so much!! You never fail to impress me, this blog is grrrrrreat!


    Comment by Mehgan — June 21, 2007 @ 7:50 am

  23. You can get jackfruit at Saturday’s Alemany Farmer’s Market from this one woman who gives you fresh pieces, cut as much or little as you need.

    Comment by Nicole — July 1, 2007 @ 8:17 pm

  24. Yay! I just made these for a potluck two days ago and they came out fabulous! I thought I had peanuts at home but I didn’t so I skipped that and added an extra banana (they were smaller than average) and some more jackfruit to compensate. It turned out very moist, great flavor, and dense like a light banana bread. Everyone loved it and they all disappeared in minutes.

    Comment by Anna — July 13, 2007 @ 12:15 pm

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