Simple BBQ Jerk Chicken

Some days, when it comes to cooking I don’t mind spending hours in the kitchen. It can feel really therapeutic to take my time in putting a great dish together, especially if I get to blast some of my favourite music and imagine unlikely scenarios in my head. But outside of those occasions, I love being able to get in and out of the kitchen quickly.

Finding hacks that make this possible for me means I can still enjoy amazing meals packed with flavour that don’t require spending the whole day cooking. Some of mine include:

  • Focusing on baked dishes where most or all of the work is done in the oven, e.g. Baked Salmon and Roasted Sweet Potatoes. This way I don’t have to stand and stir over the cooker but instead I just season and go.
  • Having a good range of seasonings and understanding which ones complement each other well. This is subject to taste but there are some flavours that pair well with each other and can make life easier for you when creating dishes. Smoked Paprika always tastes lovely with some Ground Mixed Spice on chicken for me. And if I really want to keep things simple, I go for things like Chinese Five Spice or Thai Seven Spice, or even Garam Masala which has all the work done for me.

I could go on about different ways to minimise the time you end up spending in the kitchen on days when you have limited time but one of my favourites is using ready made marinades and enhancing them by making a few tweaks and additions. Sometimes using these as a “cheat code” gets a bad rep but I don’t see anything wrong with it as long as you like the flavour you end up with and you can be honest about it if you’re asked how you made it.

Typically I love being able to get my Jerk Chicken from the same family owned Caribbean takeaway I’ve been going to for over 15 years but sometimes if I need something in large quantities for loved ones, I use this recipe to make a simple BBQ Jerk Chicken. It has a sweeter flavour profile which I enjoy because of my sweet tooth but you can definitely still taste the heat you would typically associate with jerk chicken.

I love to use the jerk marinade from Walkerswood and I opt for the hot & spicy but feel free to use the mild if that suits your palate better. It’s typically a good idea to mix the marinade in a bowl separate from the chicken first, so that way you can check for salt without having to taste it from the bowl of raw chicken.

For this dish, I’d recommend this because the Walkerswood jerk marinade already has salt added to it but by the time I add the other bits to tweak the flavour, I like to add a little more and I need to be able to taste it (without fear) to make sure it tastes just right.

Chicken leg quarters are great for these but alternatively you can use chicken thighs or drumsticks instead. For extra flavour, score the chicken through the skin and let it marinade for about 4-6 hours or overnight in the fridge if possible ands then let sit at room temperature before cooking.

Enjoy and share with loved ones if you’d like.


Super Simple BBQ Jerk Chicken

If you enjoy Jerk Chicken, then you'll love this sweet take on the dish.

  • 1.5 kg Chicken Leg Quarters
  • 0.5 jar Walkerswood Jerk Seasoning
  • 1 Shallot (quartered)
  • 1 small Scotch Bonnet
  • 1 handful Fresh Coriander
  • 2-3 sprigs Fresh Thyme
  • 3 bulbs Garlic
  • 2 tbsp Honey ((room temperature))
  • Knob of GInger
  • 1 stem Spring Onion
  • 1 Lemon or Orange
  • 1 tbsp Unsalted Butter ((room temperature))
  • 1 tbsp Chicken Boullion
  • 0.5 bottle Levi Roots BBQ Jerk Sauce (or alternative)
  1. Clean the chicken & pat dry and then score with deep incisions through the skin to help the flavour get in deeper.

  2. In a food processor, mix all the ingredients except the Levi Roots BBQ Jerk Sauce. Blitz until roughly chopped.

  3. Cover the chicken in this and allow to marinade for 4-6 hours or overnight in the fridge.

  4. Roast at 180 degrees celsius for 35 minutes.

  5. Baste with the Levi Roots BBQ Jerk Sauce and place back in the oven for 10 minutes.

  6. Serve with side dishes of your choice and enjoy!

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