Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Easy Traditional Jamaican Jerk Chicken Recipe


We had a really fun Relief Society activity where my friend Michelle, a native of the Caribbean, shared a few recipes with us. She adds her own twist of spices to this dish, but this is the basic recipe she used. We also had some delicious “rice and peas” on the side. It was all so yummy! I can’t handle too much heat, but she made a mild version, and it was perfect. Just a mouth-watering mixture of flavor! So fun to add some culture to the mix! Thanks for sharing Michelle!

Homemade Jamaican Jerk Chicken (
  • 1 whole chicken, sectioned and with each piece containing a few ½ inch deep slashes
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 seeded and finely chopped habanero or Scotch bonnet pepper for a very hot flavor or a jalapeno pepper for a milder spice
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
Cooking Directions for Jerk Chicken
  1. Combine all the ingredients, except the chicken, in a food processor and blend into a smooth puree to form the jerk marinade.
  2. Place the sectioned chicken in a large bowl and cover each piece completely with the marinade.
  3. Cover the chicken and marinate for at least six hours. Leave overnight for best results.
  4. When the chicken is fully marinated, remove it and grill it over a hot grill until the chicken is fully cooked.

If one does not have a grill, the chicken can also be baked in a 425° oven until it is fully cooked. (Michelle bakes hers in the oven in a casserole dish.)

For the perfect meal, pair this jerk chicken with a cold, crunchy coleslaw or salad and Jamaican rice. Make sure to have plenty of cold drinks on hand as this recipe is spicy. For a less spicy version, leave the hot pepper out all together. This marinade can also be used with pork if desired.

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