BBQ series: Jerk chicken

Jerk chicken is always a big hit with me at a barbecue. I know you can buy jerk sauce in supermarkets now, but I reckon a lot of people don’t know just how easy it is to make yourself. I love to serve my jerk chicken with grilled pineapple, and you can serve rice with it too.


A lot of recipes use soy sauce to moisten their jerk marinade, but I prefer to use rum. I find it really adds to the flavour, but also helps me to keep the saltiness in check. And who doesn’t like rum?! There’s also a bit of brown sugar in this recipe to balance the heat from the chillies and to help get that BBQ stickiness – yum!


This jerk sauce is great brushed on vegetables too – especially cauliflower which makes a great veggie/vegan BBQ dish.



Serves 2

  • 300g high welfare chicken thighs and drumsticks
  • Pineapple batons for grilling to serve

For the jerk sauce:

  • 1-2 scotch bonnet chillies
  • 6 spring onions
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • Juice 1 lime
  • 2 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp dark rum
  • 2 tbsp dark brown sugar
  • About 1cm section of fresh ginger


  1. Whizz the jerk sauce ingredients together and taste to check whether you need to adjust anything.
  2. Coat the chicken in the sauce and let it marinate for as long as you’ve got, but preferably overnight.
  3. Check the barbecue is ready by holding your hand over it. If you can hold your hand above the grill (not on the grill!) for about 3-4 seconds then you’re good to start cooking your chicken.
  4. Pop the pineapple on the barbecue too ready to serve when the chicken is ready.
  5. Cook the chicken through and then it’s ready to serve with the juicy grilled pineapple.

Alternatively, you can brown the chicken in a griddle pan before finishing it off in the oven for about 30 minutes at 200°C. Great for if you cooking a midweek meal or if your good old British barbecue gets rained off!

3 thoughts on “BBQ series: Jerk chicken

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