My Favorite Jerk Recipe

Jerk Recipe

This Jerk Recipe, otherwise known as Jerk seasoning or Jerk spice, is a rub or marinade used in Jamaican and Caribbean cooking to flavor meat or fish.

It tends to be tangy and spicy - the distinctive looking scotch bonnet chillies are rated fairly high on the Scoville Scale.

It does contain a few fresh ingredients, like garlic, ginger and chillies, which make it not so dry.

In fact, this recipe has more in common with certain marinade recipes than a barbeque rub for meat or fish.

But, for a dry version, leave out the last two ingredients for the time being and swap fresh garlic, ginger and chillies for the dried equivalent. Store the rub in a jar or whatever - and mix it with oil and lime juice when you come to use it.


  • 1 bunch of fresh thyme with the leaves stripped off 
  • 6 garlic clove, crushed
  • 2 Cinnamon sticks, finely crushed
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 tsp Coriander seeds, finely crushed
  • 2 tbsp Black peppercorns, crushed
  • 1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 3 tsp Whole allspice
  • 4 Scotch Bonnet chillies, roughly chopped and seeds removed
  • 2 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • Juice of 2 limes, zest of 1
  • 1/2 cup/130ml/¼ pint olive oil

Amazon is a great place to buy hard to find herbs and spices


You could make this as a dry BBQ rub recipe without the lime juice or oil, and have it in your store cupboard until you need it. The dry version of this jerk recipe can be mixed with oil and brushed or massaged onto meat.

Otherwise, place all of the ingredients in a blender or food processor and blitz it to a smooth paste. 

Rub it in to every crevice of your meat, or use it as a marinade leaving it for an hour or two.

Then grill it over gas or charcoal usually would.

To make it really special, try to get hold of pimento wood and smoke it. There are companies who export pimento wood specifically for barbecuing purposes.

This version will keep for a couple of weeks if it's refrigerated. Or with a few adjustments, make the dry version I mentioned above and it will keep forever practically.

Like this post? Care to Share?

Related Recipes and Pages

Return from Jerk Recipe to Barbecue Grill Maestro

What do you think?

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.

Follow Me!


Flavorings for BBQ food
BBQ techniques from around the world