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Harissa Jackfruit Balls

These 7 ingredient Harissa Jackfruit Balls are spiced just right! Enjoy them as a tasty snack or smother them with some sauce and enjoy they as a plant-based meatball alternative with pasta.

6 ingredient jackfruit balls

So far this year, I haven’t been very successful at getting my hands on fresh jackfruit. I simply love munching on ripe and juicy jackfruit pods and using them in smoothies and popsicles. 

Thankfully, the canned jackfruit supply has been plentiful! While canned jackfruit is good at absorbing the flavors it is introduced to, it isn’t sweet like ripe, fresh jackfruit. As a result I rarely eat it raw or use it in smoothies. 

I do, however, enjoy canned young jackfruit in curries, tacos, and cakes (like fish cakes), and now in these Harissa Jackfruit Balls.

My daughter and I love these jackfruit balls because they are:

☑️ so incredibly easy to make
☑️ so delicious 
☑️ so versatile
☑️ are plant based
☑️ can be made with 7 pantry-staple ingredients

7 Ingredients to make jackfruit balls

The 7 ingredients in these plant based balls (in order of usage) are:

  1. Onion,
  2. Ginger,
  3. Garlic,
  4. Potato,
  5. Canned jackfruit,
  6. Harissa, and
  7. Cilantro.

Along with a smidge of oil to sauté the ingredients together and salt and pepper to taste.

If you would like to tone down the heat, then half or quarter the amount of harissa I use in this recipe. Instead of 4 teaspoons, use 2 or 1. But, do keep in mind that you would also be loosing a bit of the flavor that harissa lends to a dish.

Making jackfruit balls

Harissa, a popular Tunisian spice, is usually a blend of other spices such as smoked paprika, cumin, coriander, garlic, onion, and spearmint in addition to chili powder. So, if you do choose to use 1 teaspoon of harissa, then add in at least 2 tsp of coriander, 2 tsp smoked paprika, and 1 tsp cumin. I’ve bought harissa from many different places and I must say, no 2 varieties of harissa are alike. But, no matter where it’s from, harissa lends a deliciously smoky, almost lemony, flavor to these jackfruit balls.

If you boil, bake, or microwave your potato first, this recipe is a quick one. Simply sauté the onion a bit. Add in the ginger and garlic and sauté. Then mash the potato and drain the jackfruit and add them along with the harissa to the onion, garlic, ginger mix and sauté a bit. Let the mixture cool so it can be handled – and then merely form into balls, bake them, and enjoy!

Tasty vegan jackfruit balls

I’ve made these balls quite a few times. Most times, I also make some sweet chili sauce or some mango chutney. And we dip these jackfruit balls into them and enjoy them as a snack. The harissa in the jackfruit balls is complemented beautifully by the sweet and spicy flavors in both the sauce and chutney.

There have been a couple of times when we dunked these harissa jackfruit balls into a vat of creamy butternut squash sauce along with some pasta for an immensely enjoyable dinner!

Enjoying plant-based jackfruit balls with sweet chili sauce.

You can find canned jackfruit as well as harissa online at many retailers like Sprouts, Trader Joe’s, and Walmart. 

So, please do grab a can of young green jackfruit and some harissa and make these harissa jackfruit balls. Then come back and please do let me know your thoughts on these plant-based balls/ meatless balls.

Tasty vegan jackfruit balls

Harissa Jackfruit Balls

Yield: 20
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

These 7 ingredient Harissa Jackfruit Balls are spiced just right! Enjoy them as a tasty snack or smother them with some sauce and enjoy they as a plant-based meatball alternative with pasta.


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 a yellow Onion,
  • 1 inch piece of ginger Ginger,
  • 2 cloves Garlic,
  • 1 yellow Potato - boiled/baked and peeled
  • 1 20 oz Can of jackfruit,
  • 4 tsp Harissa,
  • 2 tbsp Cilantro,
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Using a fork, roughly mash up the cooked potato
  2. preheat oven to 350 degrees
  3. Peel and chop the onion, garlic and ginger as finely as possible so large chunks are not floating around the balls.
  4. Add oil to a large pan and add in the onions, ginger, and garlic and saute over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring often.
  5. Drain and squeeze out as much liquid as you can from the jackfruit, then add it to the pan with the onions, etc.
  6. Add the mashed potato, harissa, and cilantro and saute a couple of minutes so well incorporated.
  7. Season with salt and pepper and remove pan from heat and let cool for a few minutes.
  8. When mixture can be handled, gather up a tablespoon or two and shape it into a ball. Repeat until all the mixture is used up.
  9. Place he jackfruit balls on a baking sheet, spray them lightly with cooking spray and place in the preheated oven for 25 minutes.
  10. Serve with sweet chili sauce or mango chutney.
Nutrition Information
Yield 20 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 46Total Fat 1gSaturated Fat 0gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 1gCholesterol 0mgSodium 32mgCarbohydrates 9gFiber 1gSugar 6gProtein 1g

Did you make this recipe?

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[…] Harissa Jackfruit Balls: This makes the perfect combination for a vegan spaghetti and meatballs! Enjoy the zoodles with these plant-based meatballs with the ever so popular Tunisian spice, harissa. […]

John / Kitchen Riffs

Wednesday 14th of October 2020

I've made harissa in the past, but just buy it these days -- easier, and I always like to be surprised by the differing tastes of different brands. Anyway, what a nice dish! Glad I can make it with canned jackfruit -- I rarely see the fresh. Thanks!

Toni Dash

Tuesday 13th of October 2020

This is packed full of amazing flavors! Thanks so much for the recipe!

David @ Spiced

Tuesday 13th of October 2020

I didn't realize jackfruit is available in cans - good to know! I was pretty happy the other day as I noticed our local grocery store finally (!!) started carrying harissa. I went on a hunt for it a year or two ago, and nothing at all. These balls would be a tasty recipe for sure! They'd be fun for an appetizer-for-dinner kinda night. You know, like the kinds you have when you're busy moving. :-)


Tuesday 13th of October 2020

These jackfruit balls look simply delicous, I could snack on them quite easily. What I love is how they can be easily incorporated into other meals too.

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