Spicy Jerk Chicken

These delicious Jamaican chicken skewers get their heat from Scotch bonnet chiles; ginger, allspice and thyme add to the deep Caribbean flavor. Slideshow:  More Chicken Recipes 

Spicy Jerk Chicken
Photo: © Paul Costello
Active Time:
40 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 10 mins


  • 10 scallions, coarsely chopped

  • 1 medium onion

  • 1/3 cup thyme leaves

  • 10 garlic cloves, peeled

  • 2 to 3 Scotch bonnet or habanero chiles, stemmed

  • One 4-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced

  • 3 tablespoons ground allspice

  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt

  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 12 skinless, boneless chicken thighs (about 2 1/2 pounds), cut into thirds

  • 12 wooden skewers, soaked in water for 1 hour

  • Fresh pineapple salsa, for serving


  1. In a food processor, combine the scallions, onion, thyme, garlic, chiles, ginger, allspice, salt and oil and puree. Pour the puree into a bowl, add the chicken and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 12 hours or overnight, turning the chicken once or twice. Remove the chicken from the refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking.

  2. Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Thread 3 pieces of chicken onto each skewer, wiping off as much of the marinade as possible as you go. Grill the chicken skewers over moderately high heat, turning once, until lightly charred outside and cooked through, about 8 minutes. Serve hot off the grill, with pineapple salsa.

Suggested Pairing

WINE: Ripe, peach-scented, off-dry German Riesling.

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