Grilled Jamaican Jerk Chicken

A zesty lime and island-spiced marinade gives this easy grilled jamaican jerk chicken tons of bold flavor and a juicy, tender center.

Grilled Jamaican Jerk Chicken |

I have two words for you—> FLAVOR. BOMB.

Grilled Jamaican Jerk Chicken |
The process is so simple. Throw a bunch of spices and peppers into a blender, pulse til smooth, throw it in a bag with some chicken and let it hang out in the fridge for a few hours… then grill it up. done, done, and done. So if you break it down it’s two parts. Part one) marinade, part two) chicken. And it’s that marinade that turns the chicken in a flavor bomb.

Seriously, SO. MUCH. FLAVOR.

Grilled Jamaican Jerk Chicken |

It’s spicy with a little bit of sweetness and grilling gives the outside a nice crispness while the inside stays nice and juicy-tender. If you’ve never tried Jamaican jerk anything before, your mind is about to be blown. And don’t shy away from the ginger in this recipe! I generally don’t love ginger but in this recipe, it absolutely works – it’s not overpowering but ads a lot of umph to the dish and helps give it that signature Jamaican jerk flavor.

Grilled Jamaican Jerk Chicken |
5.0 from 5 reviews
Grilled Jamaican Jerk Chicken
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Main Dish
Serves: 4-6
  • 4-6 boneless skinless chicken breasts or 6-8 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 5 tablespoons oil
  • juice of 4 limes (about 5-6 tablespoons)
  • 2 green onions, roughly chopped
  • 4 habanero chiles (sems and seeds removed) roughly chopped
  • 4 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ tablespoon black pepper
  1. Combine oil, lime juice, and next 9 ingredients in a food processor or blender and pulse until well blended. Reserve ¼ cup of the mixture in a small bowl. Cover and refrigerate. Transfer remaining mixture into a large resealable bag. Add chicken, seal bag, and chill for 3-8 hours.
  2. Grease and preheat grill. Remove chicken from bag, discard the bag and remaining marinade. Grill chicken 5-6 minutes on each side.
  3. Brush reserved sauce over the chicken and grill 2-3 minutes longer on each side until cooked through (large chicken breasts may need some additional grilling time) Garnish with chopped cilantro if desired and serve immediately.
Prep and cooking time do not include 3-8 hours of marinating time for chicken.

Recipe roughly adapted from Bon Appetit.

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hey girl this looks amazing!

YUM! This chicken looks amazing, and I love the combo of delicious spices. I bet they would go well with pork, too. I’m getting hungry! I’ve been looking for a good grilled chicken recipe and I can’t wait to try this one. Pinning!

Can this be baked instead of grilled?


Holy crap! I made this tonight and it was SO GOOD. It was a big spicy for me (which almost never happens), so I may try using three habanero next time. Thank you SO MUCH!

It was delicious 😋

Made this tonight and everyone was fighting over the last piece. Thank you for helping me be a dinner super star!

    Isn’t that marinade to die for??? So glad you (and everybody else!) loved this dish Amber! 🙂

Can you serve this over pasta?

    Hi Katrina! I personally prefer to serve this with rice. I’ve never had it with pasta, but it could be great!

Can I use jalapeño instead of habanero?

    Yes, you may!

what kind of oil did you use?


Could you use this MARINADE aS a sauce to cooK fish in?

    Hi! I haven’t done this myself, but it may work! Definitely let me know if you try it! 🙂