To create the best jerk chicken, you will need a whole chicken, ideally about five to six pounds, and a marinade. You can also use individual parts of the chicken, such as breasts, thighs, drumsticks, and legs. The marinade should be applied to the chicken pieces in a shallow dish, and the pieces should be allowed to sit for at least an hour. It is best to marinate the chicken overnight, ideally overnight, and the marinade can be prepared up to four days in advance.
However, it would help if you kept in mind that the longer it’s left out, the less crispy it will become. You can also keep the leftover jerk chicken for up to five days, and you can also use the leftovers for salads or sandwiches. And don’t worry about the mess! While you can prepare the marinade up to 4 days in advance, it’s best to start cooking the chicken as soon as you finish marinating it.
Chicken Nutrition Facts
What Is Jerk Chicken?
Jerk chicken is a spicy grilled meat dish from Jamaica popular throughout the Caribbean. Jerk refers to a cooking style in which the main ingredient—usually chicken but also beef, pork, goat, boar, seafood, or vegetables—is coated in spices and slow-cooked over a fire or grill traditionally made of green pimento wood positioned over burning coals; the resulting smoke is essential to the dish’s flavor. The Taino invented the jerk method, then taught it to enslaved Africans, who altered it to make jerk chicken. According to legend, the name jerk comes from the Spanish word charqui, which means dried strips of meat, akin to modern-day jerky.
How To Make Jerk Chicken In The Oven?
Crispy, juicy, delicious chicken slathered in a spicy jerk sauce that’s quick and easy to cook. A Caribbean holiday directly from the comfort of your own home. I’m anticipating it. After you’ve taken a bite, you’ll notice it. Jerk chicken is one of my favorite foods. Who doesn’t want to be a part of that? The majority of tourists who visit the Caribbean say it is the best part of their trip. Of course, coconut rum beverages come in second.
Jerk chicken is a famous Jamaican or Caribbean cuisine that you should try if you haven’t already. It’s a dish with a lot of heat, and it can be made milder in flavor. I kept the recipe as simple as possible. You may add scotch bonnet to taste if you want more heat. This comes together quickly, primarily once you’ve gathered all of the ingredients. For the flavors to come together, marinate the chicken overnight in the refrigerator.
- One lime or lemon
- Eight chicken legs or 2 ½ – 3-pound chicken cut up
- Two teaspoons of creole seasoning replaced with salt and pepper or chicken spice
- One or more Scotch Bonnet Pepper Habaneros
- Six garlic cloves chopped
- ½ tablespoon cinnamon powder
- ½ tablespoon allspice coarsely ground
- ½ teaspoon coarsely ground white pepper
- ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- Three tablespoons of dark brown sugar
- One medium onion coarsely chopped
- Three medium scallions chopped
- One sprig of fresh thyme
- One tablespoon fresh ginger chopped
- One tablespoon of Soy Sauce
- 1/4-1/2 cup pineapple juice or water
- 1- tablespoon bouillon powder optional
- Salt and pepper to season
Trim chicken of excess fat and pat dry with a cloth or paper napkin. Rub with lemon and two teaspoons of creole spice or season with salt and pepper.
Heat oil in a skillet or sauté pan over medium heat. Then add scotch bonnet pepper, garlic sauté until it turns brown, about 2-3 minutes.
Add nutmeg, brown sugar, allspice, cinnamon, and continue stirring until the sugar melts and the mixture starts to clump together.
Remove from the heat and let it cool.
Place the mixture in a food processor or blender, then add thyme, white pepper, ginger, green onions, soy sauce, Maggi/bouillon, onion, and pineapple juice. Pulse for about 30 seconds until blended
Drench the chicken with jerk marinade, place in a zip lock bag and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight. Try not to touch the jerk blend with your hands because it was highly spicy hot- If possible, use gloves.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 425°. Remove chicken from the jerk marinade and remove excess marinade. Reserve the marinade
Line a baking pan with foil; top with a wire rack. Arrange chicken legs out in a single layer. While the chicken legs are baking, the oil will slowly drop to the bottom of the baking pan.
Bake chicken legs until cooked through, and skin is crispy, about 45-50 minutes-rotate, chicken halfway through-roughly 20 minutes.
In a small saucepan, simmer the remaining jerk marinade and the one from the chicken for about 7 minutes.
Here Are Some Essential Tips While Cooking Jerk Chicken:
- For a juicier result, add some vinegar and lemon juice to the mixture, bringing out the juiciness and crispy skin. You can also omit the skin, which keeps the chicken moist and flavourful during the cooking process.
- Once the marinade is ready, you can start marinating the chicken. You can make it up to four days before cooking, and the chicken should soak in the marinade for at least three hours and 24 hours.
- The chicken should be bone-in, as it is the most flavorful. Moreover, the skin is an excellent addition to the final dish. After marinating the chicken, the skin is crispy and delicious.
- Once you’ve prepared the marinade, it’s time to prepare the chicken. You can even make the chicken up to four days ahead of time. Just be sure to marinate the chicken until it’s tender and golden.
- You can also use the leftovers for a salad. If you don’t feel like cooking the whole chicken, make it ahead of time and store it. It’s much more convenient to save the marinated chicken for another day.
- You can also try grilling the chicken for a more authentic jerk chicken experience. The only thing to remember is that every grill is different, so you should keep the temperature slightly reduced, so it doesn’t overcook. It’s best to use a non-stick pan.
What Is The Flavor Of Jamaican Jerks?
Jerk chicken comes to mind when most people think of Jamaican cuisine. Jerk chicken is so deeply rooted in Jamaica’s delicious heritage that it’s no surprise that outstanding jerk chicken is the defining characteristic of a good Caribbean restaurant. While many of us are aware that jerk chicken is a spicy dish, many of us are unaware of the complex tastes that go into preparing a superb jerk chicken, so let’s learn more about this Jamaican delicacy!
Jerk chicken is distinguished by its distinct flavor, derived from Jamaican spices. Jerk chicken gets its spiciness from spices like the scotch bonnet pepper. Allspice, ginger, garlic, and thyme are other spices used in jerk recipes. To be classified as a jerk recipe, it must contain some combination of these spices. Jerk chicken is sprinkled with spices, marinated, and then grilled over a barbeque grill or coals creating a smokey, sour, and delectable flavor profile. It can be served with various sides, but rice cooked in coconut milk and beans are traditional accompaniments for a spicy dish.
While jerk chicken is the most well-known jerk dish, the savory rub and marinade may be used on various meats, fish, and vegetables. The name “jerk” is derived from a Spanish word for dried meat or jerky as we call it in the United States. Please meet us at Caribbean Hut for jerk chicken today to experience this unique flavor profile for yourself.
Is Jerk Chicken Healthy?
If eaten as part of a well-balanced diet that includes fiber and complex carbohydrates, jerk chicken is one of the healthiest options. Chicken is a slice of lean meat that is one of the healthiest choices, exceptionally if you choose chicken breast. It works well with a low-carbohydrate diet. Chicken is an excellent choice if you’re attempting to lose weight or change your shape by cutting down on carbs. You won’t need much else on the side because the jerk chicken pairs so wonderfully with a simple salad.
Using the oven, you can bake jerk chicken without a grill. It is possible to grill the chicken, but make sure you have a high temperature that doesn’t get too hot. The jerk chicken marinade will impart deep flavor to the meat. Ensure that you choose the thighs for best results and avoid drying them out. If you are using a grill, you can use a wire rack to help keep the meat from burning.
You can also use a grill for cooking the jerk chicken in the oven. The key is to cook it over medium heat to prevent the chicken from getting overcooked. The charred skin will help to add to the flavor. Using a stovetop oven, you can apply the jerk chicken marinade to the chicken with a brush. A thin layer of olive oil will make the chicken moist and succulent.