Jerk Chicken

This national dish of Jamaica never disappoints. This spicy twist on the traditional bbq chicken hits all the flavors-sweet, salty, spicy, and extremely fragrant. I love the combination of the tender dark meat and the spicy crust you get with the grill. Served with a light slaw, this dish is great for the backyard bbq!

Serves: 4


  • For the marinade:
    • ½ cup soy sauce
    • ½ cup Worcestershire sauce
    • Large bunch of thyme
    • 1 heaped tbsp allspice
    • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
    • ½ white onion, roughly chopped
    • Salt and pepper
    • 1 tbs sugar/honey
    • 2 tbs olive oil
    • 4-6 garlic cloves
    • 2-inch piece of ginger, roughly chopped
    • 2 bay leafs
    • 2-3 habaneros, deseeded
    • 2 tbs white vinegar
  • 1 ½ lbs chicken thighs, boneless and skinless
  • For the slaw
    • ½ cabbage, red or white, shredded
    • ½ white onion, thinly slices
    • 2 carrots, thinly sliced
    • Small handful mint and parsley, chopped
    • 2 tbs greek yogurt
    • Juice/zest of 1 small orange and lemon
    • 1 tbs extra virgin olive oil
    • Salt and pepper to taste
  • For the Jerk BBQ sauce
    • 3 tbs olive oil
    • 1 small onion, finely chopped
    • 3 garlic cloves, minced
    • ½ tbs brown sugar
    • 1 tbs smoked paprika
    • 3 tbs apple cider vinegar
    • ¼ batch marinade
    • ½ cup ketchup
    • ½ cup water
    • Salt and pepper


  • For the jerk marinade
    • In a blender add all the ingredients and blend until smooth 
  • For the bbq sauce
    • Add the oil, onions, and garlic to a pan on medium heat and coom for 3-5 minutes or until fragrant. 
    • Add the brown sugar and paprika continue cooking until caramelized
    • Deglaze with the vinegar, reduce to a syrup and add ¼ of the jerk marinate
    • Cook the mixture for another 5-6 minutes or until very fragrant before adding the ketchup and water
    • Reduce heat to a simmer and cook out for 15-20 minutes
    • Taste and finish with salt and pepper as needed
  • For the chicken
    • Marinade the chicken in ¾ of the marinade for 2-24 hours
    • Heat up a grill on high for 10-15 minutes
    • Add the chicken in one flat layer, cook until the bottom is brown and caramelized
    • Flip and cook until internal temperature reaches around 165
    • Coat both sides in the bbq sauce and finish cooking until the temperature hits 185 and both sides are nicely charred. 
    • Remove to a plate, cover with foil, and rest for at least 5 minutes
  • For the slaw
    • Add all the ingredients to a bowl and toss to combine
    • Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. 

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