Serves 3-4 people. Serve with Rice and Beans and Fried Plantains for a complete Jamaican meal!
Jerk Chicken is one of those insanely flavorful dishes that makes my mouth water every time I think of it. My first time trying Jerk Chicken was at Coconuts Caribbean in Palo Alto, California. I was mind blown by the spicy, smokey kick of their chicken and tender juicy dark meat.
From there I was hooked on trying to replicate the recipe with my home oven. I experimented with pre-made marinade blends, executed recipes from other blogs and watched Youtube videos, all in search of the best recipe. Deddy’s Kitchen and Mama Joan’s House on Youtube have exceptional family recipes fit for large gatherings. Through experimentation, I combined them into my own version of jerk chicken that I serve to my family.
- 3 lbs of chicken thighs (about 2 pieces of thigh for each person)
Marinade & Sauce
- 1 tsp ground thyme or 5-6 stalks worth of fresh leaves
- 1 Serrano peppers deseeded or 2 jalapeños (or 1 scotch bonnet if you can handle the heat) This part is highly up to your spice preference! Deseeding peppers makes them a lot easier to handle but make sure not to touch the seeds directly with hands.
- 1 small onion
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 1 small carrot or ½ large carrot
- 1/3 bell pepper (optional)
- 2 stalks of spring onions
- 1.5 tbsp pimento whole seeds (all spice), grounded with spice grinder
- 8 tbsp of soy sauce
- 1 tbsp dark soy sauce
- About 1 tbsp minced ginger or 2 tsp ginger powder
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp Vegetable oil
- 5 tbsp White vinegar
- 2 tbsp onion powder
- 2 tbsp garlic powder
- 2 tbsp paprika powder
- Blend everything in the Marinade & Sauce ingredients list in a food processor until it resembles a thick smoothie
- Sprinkle the spices evenly over all parts of the chicken thighs
- Place the chicken into an airtight container and pour the marinade over the chicken. Make sure to coat every part of the chicken.
- Marinate the chicken in the fridge for 1-2 days
- Preheat the oven to 400 Degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking dish with foil.
- Tip: A deeper baking tray will allow all the juices from the chicken to steam the chicken, keeping it moist and prevents the marinade from burning on the foil. If you only have a baking sheet, keep an eye on the pan and pour the drippings into a saucepan to prevent burning halfway through baking. The leftover marinade and drippings to be used for the sauce!
- Place the chicken single layer with skin side down onto the baking dish. Bake the chicken for 30 minutes with the skin side down
- Flip the chicken over (skin side up) and pour the drippings into a saucepan if using a sheet pan to prevent burning. Bake the chicken for another 12-14 minutes until the internal temperature is 165F.
- While the chicken is baking, take all of the remaining marinade in the bowl and cook it on high in a saucepan with the drippings until bubbling. Then turn the heat to low and let it simmer for 8 minutes until thick.
- Broil the chicken on high for 3 minutes with the skin side up so the fat renders and the skin is crispy.
- Optional, pour the remaining chicken fat and drippings in the baking dish and pour into the marinade. Continue to simmer the sauce for 5 minutes.
- Serve the chicken with the side of sauce immediately with rice and beans and fried plantains.