Jamaican Jerked Chicken Breasts

  • Recipe Comments
  • Max 5 stars
    My Rating
    (1 Rating)
  • Prep:
  • Cook Time:
  • Total:
  • Serving:
Recipe for Jamaican Jerked Chicken Breasts. Fiery cinnamon accented Jamaican jerked dishes have a long history of popularity both in Jamaica and around the world.


  • 4 to 6 chicken breasts, about 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 pounds total
  • The Rub:
  • 2 medium-size onions, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons ground allspice
  • 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • The Sauce:
  • 2 cups chicken stock or 2 chicken bouillon cubes dissolved in 2 cups water
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 2 tablespoons tamarind concentrate
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger root
  • a sliver of habanero chile


  1. Start the fire in your smoker about 1 1/2 to 2 hours before dinnertime.
  2. While the coals are heating, turn your attention to the chicken. Rinse the chicken breasts and pat them dry with a paper towel. Set them out on a platter that will give you some working room when you're seasoning them.
  3. Put the onion, brown sugar, allspice, black and cayenne peppers, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a food mill and mix until you have a rough paste. Rub the paste into the chicken breasts, coating them thoroughly. You'll find that even after you've covered the chicken pieces lavishly in spices, there will be some rub left. Scoop it off the platter into a small bowl and reserve it for the sauce. Transfer the chicken breasts one at a time to a piece of waxed paper laid out on your cutting board or butcher block. Cover the chicken with a second sheet of paper, then, using the smooth side of a meat mallet, whack the chicken breast until it's about half as thick as it was when you started and the seasoning is well impressed into it.
  4. Add some wet smoking wood to the fire pan of your smoker and transfer the chicken from the waxed paper to the grill, placing about half the reserved rub in the smoker?s water pan along with the hot water before putting the lid on the cooker. Smoke the breasts for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, keeping the cooking temperature between 200° and 220 °F.
  5. While the chicken is smoking, start the sauce to go with it. Pour the chicken stock or bouillon into a small stainless steel or flame-proof ceramic saucepan and add the reserved rub along with the molasses, tamarind concentrate, and ginger. Stir well and simmer until the sauce is reduced by about one-half. For those with an asbestos mouth, a smidgen of habanero chile can be added, as it is in Jamaica. But be careful with this one. It really is dangerously hot. Serve the pungent sauce on the side.