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Juicy Jamaican Jerk Chicken Recipe

Updated on December 3, 2012's finger licking' good's finger licking' good


4.3 stars from 4 ratings of Juicy Jamaican Jerk Chicken

Juicy Jamaican Jerk Chicken Recipe

So you have been craving the mouthwatering 'fall-off -the bone' jerk chicken for which Jamaica is famous? Tantalize your taste buds and prepare this very succulent meal yourself. Here are the ingredients to satisfy your cravings. Combine, cook and enjoy!


  • whole chicken
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 2 cups water, room temperature
  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 2 medium sized onions, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 scotch bonnet pepper, chopped with seeds (optional)
  • 11/2 tsp. ground all spice
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 2 tsp. brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup tomato ketchup
  • 2 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp. vinegar

Cook Time

Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 50 min
Ready in: 1 hour 10 min
Yields: 4 - 6 servings


  1. Get whole, thawed chicken and cut it into quarters omitting the back and the ribs. That is, leg attached to hip and breast attached to wing or (white and dark quarters). Set aside the back and the ribs. These can be used to make a delicious soup sometime in the future.
  2. Remove all the skin and excess fat from the chicken quarters. Place in a large bowl and wash with water and lime, drain and set aside.
  3. Combine all other ingredients (except vegetable oil) in a blender or a food processor until smooth. The finished product is referred to as a 'jerk sauce.'
  4. Divide jerk sauce into thirds.
  5. Pour the first third of the sauce over the chicken quarters and use both hands to ensure the sauce covers the chicken completely. Cover the bowl and place it in the refrigerator to marinade for one to two hours or leave it overnight. Tip: the longer the chicken marinades the better it will taste.
  6. Heat grill to 350 degrees and brush with vegetable oil. Remove excess sauce from the chicken quarters and place them on the grill. Cover the grill. Turn chicken over every five minutes and brush with the second third of the jerk sauce. Note: Chicken should be brushed on each side every time it is turned over. This helps the chicken to remain juicy The chicken should be ready in 50 minutes or when juices run clear when pierced with a fork. Be sure to check all quarters to ensure that the chicken is cooked adequately.
  7. Remove chicken from the grill and place it on a cutting board. Use a heavy cleaver to chop the chicken in four to six smaller pieces and serve while hot with remaining sauce and your favourite side. (Heat sauce over medium heat for about 4-6 minutes before serving.) Tip: Jerk Chicken goes well with rice and peas, festivals (hush puppies), roast breadfruit or hardo bread.
  8. Extra: Most persons use charcoal in the grill to jerk the chicken but to acquire the perfect Jamaican flavour, it is best to use pimento wood in the grill. If pimento wood is not available you can use either the cherry or maple wood. These give chicken a good flavour as well. The whole point of the chicken being 'jerk' is the unique blend of spices combined with the flavour from the wood and the smoke. Give your taste buds a treat and go the extra mile and use pimento, cherry or maple wood for full flavour. :) Enjoy!

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