Easy Jamaican Chicken Curry Recipe [authentic style]

This original Jamaican chicken curry recipe is packed with aromatic spices and vegan chicken, a celebration of Jamaica’s rich culinary style. Indulge in the vibrant flavors of the Caribbean and discover the secrets to creating an authentic taste of Jamaica right in your own kitchen.

A portion of Jamaican chicken curry served with rice.

What is Jamaican chicken curry?

Jamaican chicken curry is a flavorful and aromatic dish originating from the island of Jamaica in the Caribbean. It usually consists of pieces of chicken marinated in a mixture of spices such as curry powder, thyme, allspice, garlic, ginger and Scotch Bonnet peppers. All of this gives it its distinctive Caribbean flavor profile.

The marinated chicken is then simmered in a sauce made with coconut milk, onions, tomatoes and additional spices until the chicken is tender and the flavors blend beautifully. The result is a rich, fragrant dish with the perfect balance of heat, sweetness and flavor.

Jamaican chicken curry is often served with rice and peas, fried plantains or roti. These combinations make for a hearty and satisfying meal that is enjoyed not only in Jamaica, but also enjoyed by food lovers around the world.

Ingredients needed to prepare Jamaican chicken curry collected on a board.Ingredients needed to prepare Jamaican chicken curry collected on a board.

What spices are in Jamaican curry?

Jamaican curry powder typically includes a blend of various spices that contribute to its distinctive flavor profile. Here are the common spices that go into Jamaican curry powder:

  1. Turmeric: This bright yellow spice is the main ingredient in curry powder and provides both color and an earthy flavor.
  2. Coriander: Adds a slightly sweet citrus flavor to the curry mixture.
  3. Cumin: Offers a warm, nutty flavor with an earthy touch.
  4. Allspice: A key ingredient in Jamaican cuisine, allspice provides a complex flavor reminiscent of a combination of cloves, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  5. Mustard seeds: These tiny seeds impart a subtle, tangy flavor to the curry mixture.
  6. Fenugreek: Adds a slightly bitter and nutty taste to curry powder.
  7. Black pepper: Adds heat and a peppery flavor to the mixture.
  8. Ginger: Gives a warm, spicy and slightly sweet flavor to the curry mixture.
  9. Garlic powder: Adds flavorful depth to the mix.
  10. Cinnamon: Adds heat and sweetness to curry powder, improving its overall flavor profile.

Some variations of Jamaican curry powder may also include additional spices such as cloves, cardamom, and chili powder for added depth of flavor and heat. The exact proportions of each spice may vary depending on personal preference and regional variations.

Step-by-step guide to making Jamaican chicken curry.Step-by-step guide to making Jamaican chicken curry.

Ingredients Needed to Make Jamaican Chicken Curry

If you want to create a delicious and flavorful Jamaican Chicken Curry, here are the ingredients you will need:

  • 15 ounces of vegan chicken you can find at your local grocery store.
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided, to help cook the chicken and other ingredients.
  • 2 teaspoons of curry powder, an essential ingredient in Jamaican cuisine that gives a unique and delicious flavor to the dish.
  • 3 cloves of garlic, pressed to add a touch of garlic flavor to the dish.
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions to add a sweet and savory taste to the chicken.
  • 2 tablespoons jerk seasoning, which is a classic Jamaican spice blend made with a blend of spices such as allspice, thyme, and Scotch Bonnet pepper.
  • 2 small potatoes, peeled and chopped, which will add body to the dish and make it more hearty.
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce, which will add an umami flavor to the dish.
  • 1 can (15 oz) of coconut milk which will give a creamy texture to the dish.
  • 1 teaspoon of chili flakes to add a little heat to the dish.
  • Salt and black pepper to taste, which will allow you to adjust the seasoning to your preference.

Visual guide showing recipe steps.Visual guide showing recipe steps.

How to Make Jamaican Chicken Curry:

First, marinate the chicken in a bowl by combining the jerk seasoning, curry powder, garlic, 1 tablespoon olive oil, chili flakes and chicken. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Let it marinate for at least 10 minutes or longer for a stronger flavor.

Next, heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a pan and cook the chicken for 5 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pot and set aside.

In the same pan, add the remaining tablespoon of oil, onions, potatoes, coconut milk and soy sauce. Cook for another 10 minutes.

Return the chicken to the pan and cook for another 5 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

Side-by-side photos of the steps involved in making Jamaican Chicken Curry.Side-by-side photos of the steps involved in making Jamaican Chicken Curry.

What to do with leftovers?

Leftover Jamaican chicken curry can be reused in a variety of delicious dishes. Here are some ideas:

  • Chicken curry wraps or sandwiches: Shred leftover chicken and place it in wraps or sandwiches with fresh vegetables like lettuce, tomatoes and cucumbers. Add a spoonful of your favorite sauce or chutney for added flavor.
  • Curry chicken salad: Cut leftover chicken into bite-sized pieces and toss with mixed greens, diced mango or pineapple, and a light vinaigrette. You can also add some nuts or seeds for crunch.
  • Curry Chicken Fried Rice: Cut leftover chicken into small pieces and stir-fry with cooked rice, diced vegetables (like carrots, peas, and peppers), and scrambled eggs. Season with soy sauce, garlic and ginger for extra heat.
  • Chicken and curry pasta: Toss leftover chicken with cooked pasta and a creamy sauce made with coconut milk, curry paste and a squeeze of lime juice. Garnish with fresh cilantro or parsley before serving.

Top view of Jamaican chicken curry in a pan.Top view of Jamaican chicken curry in a pan.

  • Chicken and curry pizza: Use leftover chicken as a topping for homemade pizza. Spread a little tomato sauce on a pizza crust, sprinkle with cheese and add the chicken curry and your favorite vegetables. Bake until the crust is golden and the cheese is bubbling.
  • Peppers stuffed with chicken and curry: Core the peppers and stuff them with a mixture of leftover chicken curry, cooked rice, black beans and corn. Top with cheese and bake until the peppers are tender and the topping is heated through.
  • Chicken Curry Soup: Make a hearty soup by simmering leftover chicken with broth, diced vegetables, and cooked grains like rice or quinoa. Season with additional curry powder, salt and pepper to taste.

These are just a few ideas to get you started, but feel free to get creative and experiment with your leftovers to create some exciting new dishes!

Close-up of a serving of Jamaican chicken curry.Close-up of a serving of Jamaican chicken curry.

Other Easy Curry Recipes to Try

Collage of two photos of Jamaican chicken curry with recipe title text.Collage of two photos of Jamaican chicken curry with recipe title text.

Share your love for this easy Jamaican chicken curry in the comments below and on Instagram And Facebook.

Enjoy, Florian.

Ingredients

  • 15 ounces vegan chicken

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

  • 2 teaspoons of curry powder

  • 3 cloves of pressed garlic

  • 1/2 cup onions, chopped

  • 2 tablespoons jerk seasoning

  • 2 small potatoes, peeled and chopped

  • 1 tablespoon of soy sauce

  • 15 oz coconut milk, canned

  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes

  • Salt, black pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. First, marinate the chicken in a bowl by combining the jerk seasoning, curry powder, garlic, 1 tablespoon olive oil, chili flakes and chicken. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Let it marinate for at least 10 minutes or longer for a stronger flavor.Step-by-step guide to making Jamaican chicken curry.Step-by-step guide to making Jamaican chicken curry.
  2. Next, heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a pan and cook the chicken for 5 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pot and set aside.Visual guide showing recipe steps.Visual guide showing recipe steps.
  3. In the same pan, add the remaining tablespoon of oil, onions, potatoes, coconut milk and soy sauce. Cook for another 10 minutes.Side-by-side photos of the steps involved in making Jamaican Chicken Curry.Side-by-side photos of the steps involved in making Jamaican Chicken Curry.
  4. Return the chicken to the pan and cook for another 5 minutes. Serve and enjoy!A portion of Jamaican chicken curry served with rice.A portion of Jamaican chicken curry served with rice.

Nutritional information:

Yield: 4

Portion: 1 cup

Amount per serving:

Calories: 430Total fat: 12gSaturated fat: 4gTrans fat: 0gUnsaturated fats: 8gCholesterol: 0 mgSodium: 562 mgCarbohydrates: 24gFiber: 3gSugar: 3gProtein: 30g

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