Jerk Chicken Drumsticks

by jenna on January 18, 2013

It’s Friday! Friday! Fri-daaaaaaaaaay!

What are you up to this weekend? I am teaching a yoga class this afternoon then cooking dinner for some friends. Tomorrow, Adam and I are going to do some wine tasting before having dinner at a friend’s house {this same friend is throwing me a bridal shower in March — I can’t wait!}. Sunday we have church and I’m hoping to get outside for a hike, too, because the weather has just been so beautiful here lately. Cool, crisp sunny days all around. I can’t complain especially because I’m headed to the arctic next week {aka Wisconsin} and will be wearing every single piece of clothing I own to stay warm. It should be a pretty low-key weekend…the kind I love because its filled with the people I love.

I made this jerk chicken the other day after cleaning out my desk drawer and coming across a rather tattered piece of notebook paper with the recipe scribbled across. It’s my friend from culinary school, Cathy’s, recipe and I remember copying it down hastily after tasting her delicious dinner one evening before class. Cathy is Jamaican and knows her jerk chicken. I can’t believe I’m just now finding this recipe after almost five years!

To make this dish, you practically need your entire spice cabinet. Seriously. There’s a lot going on in this marinade including a whole scotch bonnet pepper {or serrano or habanero} and an onion.

But don’t worry — it’s not ALL spicy! There’s also some brown sugar and lime juice thrown in. I don’t know about you, but I love the combination of meat + brown sugar! Major yum.

The drumsticks need about a four hour chill-out session in the fridge, so plan accordingly! This particular recipe isn’t overly spicy either {I swear} as long as you take the seeds out of the hot pepper before processing it in the marinade. I like to serve my drumsticks over mashed sweet potatoes — this is actually a combination of sweet potato, Japanese sweet potato and russet potato — because I like the combination of the creamy sweet potatoes and the spicy chicken.

The recipe today is over at PBS Food. I hope y’all enjoy it!

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{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

megan @ whatmegansmaking January 18, 2013 at 3:13 am

Love those recipes that are tried and true from friends. Great pictures jenna – I always have a hard time with chicken 🙂


Averie @ Averie Cooks January 18, 2013 at 3:28 am

Sounds like you have a fun weekend lined up and I hope you have a great time. At yoga…and then with friends. And vino! 🙂


Kristen @ notsodomesticated January 18, 2013 at 3:43 am

Yum! I love any recipe with lots of spices … bring it on! 🙂


Madison January 18, 2013 at 3:49 am

Delicious and the perfect amount of spice. I love Jerk Chicken! Your weekend sounds like so much fun–we have snow here on the ground. It’s beautiful but I’m ready for spring. 🙂


Butterfingered January 18, 2013 at 4:11 am

Looks good!I just ate but the pictures have gotten me hungry again!


Caitlin in MD January 18, 2013 at 4:34 am

This looks awesome, I think I’ll make it this weekend! Question though – do you think it would be as tasty with chicken breasts? I don’t care for dark meat chicken…


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat January 18, 2013 at 4:56 am

This sounds great! And don’t you worry, I’ve got a cabinet FULL of spices so I’m sure I won’t need too many more ingredients! Unlike our horrible wintery weather, jerk chicken reminds me of holidays to the Caribbean, beaches, and margaritas. Your weekend sounds like so much fun. Have a great yoga class this afternoon!


Molly @ RDexposed January 18, 2013 at 5:06 am

It’s not thaaaat cold in the Midwest yet. Just grab some Alterra coffee (said coffee in my hand now) and warm up!


Amy James January 18, 2013 at 5:24 am

When and where in Wisconsin will you be? For business or pleasure? I’d suggest bringing wool and some cozy scarves.


Tabitha (From Single to Married) January 18, 2013 at 6:12 am

I’m with you – happy that it’s Friday! 🙂


joelle (on a pink typewriter) January 18, 2013 at 6:33 am

Love that first photo! Magazine worthy.


Sarah @ Yogi in Action January 18, 2013 at 7:28 am

Love this recipe! I will definitely be making it. My boyfriend and I were in Jamaica in September and both commented how amazing the chicken was. They know how to make good chicken.

Thanks for the delicious recipe 🙂


Julia {The Roasted Root} January 18, 2013 at 7:30 am

Wow, any chicken that’s marinated in that many spices has got to have wooooonderful flavor! I’m anxious to try it – we’re real big chicken people round these parts! And congrats for being featured on PBS Food!


Erin January 18, 2013 at 7:33 am

Make sure to bring some WARM clothes when you visit my lovely state of WI next week – high of 9 degrees on Monday!!


Colleen January 18, 2013 at 8:03 am

Erin’s right – Today in Madison it’s going to be 40 and then it’s plummeting! This sounds incredible and a good choice for Mardi Gras next month!


Heather January 18, 2013 at 7:37 am

I think my mind tried to convince me this was a breakfast food because upon first look I thought the chicken was nestled on scrambled eggs haha.

I’m jealous of your mild weather because it is straight up BLUSTERY today here in Philly. Don’t forget your Under Armour!


Rachel January 18, 2013 at 7:46 am

LOVE Jerk Chicken and have been searching for one that’s just right. Definitely giving this one a try stat!


Caroline L. January 18, 2013 at 7:47 am

I’m completely craving some sugar & spice, no joke! 🙂 I’d love to feast on this!


deva at deva by definition January 18, 2013 at 8:26 am

I love jerk chicken! It’s the perfect combination of spice for me.


Carley January 18, 2013 at 8:53 am

Looks good! The husband will definitely approve too 🙂


Emily @ Life on Food January 18, 2013 at 9:38 am

I wish I could join for the weekend activities. They sound marvelous.


Julie January 18, 2013 at 12:02 pm

This chicken looks incredible! And I love the idea of serving it with mashed sweet potatoes, that would be a fantastic pairing (and paleo, which is just the greatest).


a farmer in the dell January 18, 2013 at 12:21 pm

Looks delicious! I’m heading over now to check out the recipe!


Sara {Home is Where the Cookies Are} January 18, 2013 at 5:19 pm

Oooo! I can’t wait to try these! I spent some time in Jamaica when I was in college, and I LOVED the jerk meat, but every time I have tried to duplicate it, it falls short. I hope it works, I hope it works, I hope it works!! Thanks!!


morgan January 20, 2013 at 1:06 pm

Oh boy, did you pick a bad week to head to the Great White North. Single digit highs up here almost all week. Sad face.


Carrie January 20, 2013 at 8:29 pm

Looks delish! I’m not a fan of dark meat, though… How would boneless skinless breasts do as a substitute?


Caitlin in MD January 23, 2013 at 8:28 am

I asked this question last week but Jenna never responded to it. I went ahead and used breasts and they worked perfectly. Stayed very moist, thanks to the marinade. I will say that it was very, VERY spicy.


jenna January 23, 2013 at 3:56 pm

good to know! Eeek — I hope it wasn’t TOO spicy! 😉


Kate January 28, 2013 at 9:03 pm

We did breasts too + it was very,very spicy. As in almost couldn’t eat more than a few bites at a time. Next time I’ll double the chicken amount for the marinade. The jerk flavor was spot on!


Nick Goodall January 22, 2013 at 6:57 am

I knew I had to read further as soon as I saw the title.. Those drumsticks look deelliccciouuusss!!

A chicken dish with a not too spicy tang is something that I’ll be trying, it’s a shame it’s 4 hours in the fridge, I’ll judge whether that’s worth it or not when I try. Thanks for sharing the awesome recipe!


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