Enjoy Vegan Ackee, this amazing fruit reminds me of scrambled eggs. It is yummy served at breakfast, lunch, or dinner. A vegan, gluten-free version of the popular traditional Jamaican Ackee and Saltfish recipe.

Vegan Ackee (Gluten-Free)

What Is Jamaican Ackee And Saltfish?

Ackee (Blighia Sapida) originated in Africa and was brought on slave ships to the Caribbean in the eighteenth century. It became very popular in Jamaican as a cheap source of protein. Ackee and saltfish is now the national dish and is customarily served with salted fish (cod) that have been soaked overnight to remove its saltiness. It is served for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

The fruit is ready to eat when the red pod splits open naturally exposing 3-4 creamy yellow flesh topped by 3 shiny black seeds. The pod, the black seeds, and the red inner membranes of the yellow flesh are discarded; leaving only the yellow flesh. The yellow flesh is then rinsed and ready to be boiled.

Vegan Ackee (Gluten-Free)

How To Cook Ackee Without Saltfish?

Only imported canned ackees are sold in West Indian supermarkets here in the USA, therefore I’ll provide instruction for preparing canned ackee.

I first saute onion, garlic, bell pepper, green onion, thyme, tomatoes. Open the can ackee and add to the cooked vegetables, be very careful to gently stir ackee because they are very soft and delicate. Stir to coat, adding salt and pepper, and allow to cook until flavors blend.



Vegan ackee reminds me of scrambled eggs when cooked. I have always loved ackee and try to keep a supply handy. Fortunately here in Florida Publix and Walmart carries it.

Ackee reminds me of home and it is strange that even though it is grown in other Caribbean islands, it is not as popular as it is in Jamaica.

I love to prepare it well seasoned and it is delicious served with roasted breadfruit, yellow yams, dumplings, callaloo, plantains. or even these deep-fried  Puff Puff (Deep Fried Dough Balls) {Vegan}.

yellow yam with Jamaican produce, ackee, plantain, green banana, dasheen on a marbled counter

Other Delicious Jamaican Recipes

Jamaican Lentil Patties

Jamaican Rice And Peas

Vegan Ackee Quiche

Jamaican Ackee Pizza

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(Per portion)
  • Energy: 274 kcal / 1145 kJ
  • Fat: 23 g
  • Protein: 4 g
  • Carbs: 14 g

Cook Time

  • Preparation: 10 min
  • Cooking: 10 min
  • Ready in: 20 min
  • For: 2 servings



  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add onions and cook stirring occasionally until soft, about 3 minutes.
  2. Stir in garlic and bell pepper and cook for another minute. Add spring onions, thyme and tomatoes and cook stirring for 1 minute.
  3. Add ackee to skillet with salt and Scotch Bonnet pepper stirring gently to coat with seasonings.
  4. Cover skillet and reduce to simmer for 5 minutes. Delicious served with dumplings, callaloo and fried plantains.


Note: Until the pod of the fresh ackee is opened naturally on the tree, exposing the yellow flesh it is poisonous! Also, the red inner membrane has to be discarded as well. Only the yellow flesh is fit for food. Thankfully purchasing the canned ackee makes sure you are getting ackee that is safe to eat!

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Vegan Ackee (Gluten-Free)
Recipe author's Gravatar image

Michelle Blackwood, RN

Hi, I’m Michelle, I’m the voice, content creator and photographer behind Healthier Steps. I share vegan and gluten-free recipes because of past health issues. My goal is to help you make healthier choices and show you how healthy eating is easy and delicious.