I recently wrote in our Foodness Gracious newsletter that Summer = Grilling. My kids had never tried Jamaican Jerk seasoning before this recipe, and they didn’t know what to think when I told them that we were having it for dinner. Sure, it sounds a little funny…okay, a lot funny!
Yes! Jerk chicken. I told them they were going to love it. The first thing you will notice is the aroma. It’s just so different than other chicken that is more boring with just salt/pepper or maybe even with a little garlic powder. This has IT ALL.
Oh, and they did love it just as I predicted. Your family will too.
Why You’ll Love This – That One Thing
There is nothing like the sweet and spicy of jerk seasoning. Trust me, I’ve looked. The combination of the brown sugar, thyme, nutmeg bring a savory sweetness that blends so wonderfully well with the kick from the cayenne pepper and hot pepper flakes. Something many may not realize also…when you add that sugar component to a dry rub on your protein, then place it on the BBQ grill, the caramelization that occurs gives the greatest tasting char ever.
Ingredients You’ll Need – Quick Snapshot
Here are the ingredients you will need (see quantities below):
- Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs – You can always do bone-in, skin-on, chicken breasts, even drumsticks
- Pre-Made Jerk Seasoning – If you are pressed for time or even want to go a cheaper route than purchasing 15 different seasonings, you could go with just one that did all the work for you
If you want to jump in and make a homemade jerk seasoning, here is what you will need:
- Onion Powder
- Garlic Powder
- Cayenne Pepper
- Black Pepper
- Brown Sugar
- Hot Pepper Flakes
Whether you go the route of making homemade Jamaican Jerk seasoning or going the easier (and possibly cheaper depending on what you have in your cabinet already), this chicken recipe is so easy.
First, it all starts with the foundation of the recipe…the seasoning!
Once you have your chicken thawed, you can coat your chicken on both sides with the seasoning.
After your grill is warmed up to a medium/high heat, it is time to put that glorious chicken on the grill.
Chicken is not something where there is a significant amount of debate about the desired temperature. Cooking the chicken to an internal temperature of 165 degrees is commonly considered to be fully cooked.
When in doubt, you can always use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature by inserting the thermometer into the thickest part of the thickest piece of chicken. If that reads 165 degrees, you can be confident that the thinner pieces of chicken will also be at 165 degrees or higher.
Pull the chicken off the grill and let it rest for 3-5 minutes before serving to ensure all the juices stay inside the chicken.
That’s it! You’re ready to serve!
Jamaican Jerk Grilled Chicken Thighs
- 1 tbsp onion powder
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp ground thyme
- 2 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp allspice
- 1 tsp ground parsley
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp hot pepper flakes
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp ground clove
- 1/4 tsp ground cumin
Or to replace all of the jerk seasoning ingredients above
- 3.5 oz container of Simple Truth Organic Jamaican Style Grill Spice
- 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
- Thaw the 2 lbs of boneless skinless chicken thighs
- Heat grill to medium/high heat
- To make the jerk seasoning, combine the ingredients listed below
- OR if you want to make your life a lot easier because you’re crazy busy at home and work, you can purchase Jamaican Jerk seasoning already prepared for you. We used Simple Truth Organic Jamaican Style Grill Spice (3.5oz)
- Coat the chicken with the jerk seasoning
- Cook the chicken thighs to required doneness (approximately 165 degrees internal temperature)