Jamaican Curry Chicken Recipe

Curry Chicken can be made in so many ways and the diversity of its fragrance spans across the globe. The variety of dishes each kitchen creates, is what makes curry beautiful and unique. Growing up, I would watch my mom marinate the chicken and cook it with such precision in our dutch cast iron pot. She would pair it with rice or roti and diced potatoes, and it was amazing then and even now.

I found it a bit tricky trying to put the measurements on paper in order to share this post because how I learned to make things was by eyeballing everything. Typically, in our household we would use skinless chicken leg quarters chopped into 3-4 pieces depending on the size of the leg, but in this case, I used boneless skinless chicken thighs. I always opt for dark meat as I find it more juicy when prepared just right. This recipe I hold dear because it brings back happy memories of many Sunday dinner specials as a kid.

I hope you enjoy my version of my mom’s traditional curry chicken recipe and please comment down below if you made it or have any questions.


  • 8 chicken thighs boneless, skinless*

  • 1-1 1/2 cup of water**

  • Juice of 1/2 lemon or 3 tablespoons of white vinegar (to clean meat)

  • 1/2 white onion, sliced

  • 3 tablespoon Betapac curry powder (2 tablespoon for chicken marinade & 1 tablespoon for browning)***

  • 2-3 tablespoon canola oil

  • 1 tablespoon garlic power

  • 1/2 tablespoon of fresh ginger finely chopped

  • 1/2 tablespoon paprika

  • 6 sprigs of thyme

  • 2-3 green onions coarsely chopped

  • 3 cloves of fresh garlic, minced

  • 3 rustic potatoes, skin removed, cut into small cubes

  • 1 scotch bonnet pepper (whole) ****

  • Season salt and black pepper to taste

  • Disposable gloves (optional) to protect your hands and nails from being stained by the curry powder


  1. To clean meat, rinse chicken with fresh lemon juice or vinegar

  2. Cut each chicken thigh into 2-3 pieces

  3. In a medium size bowl, excluding the scotch bonnet pepper, and potatoes, combine all ingredients and mix well to ensure the curry powder has evenly coated the chicken. Cover with saran wrap or foil and refrigerate overnight

  4. In a medium size pot over medium heat, add 2 tablespoons of canola oil, 1 tablespoon of curry powder and stir. You want to brown the curry for about 30 seconds to a minute, just be careful as you don't want the curry to burn.

  5. Add chicken and about 1 -1/2 cups of water and stir, then cover with a lid. You do not want the chicken fully covered (or swimming in water), just enough so the chicken can stew as the water boils. Keep an eye on your meat and stir occasionally. If the water starts to reduce add a bit more water so the chicken can cook, this will help create your gravy.

  6. About 20 minutes before the chicken is complete add the potatoes and stir. You want to ensure there is enough water/gravy as this is going to cook the potatoes. The smaller your cubes the faster they will cook. Toss in the scotch bonnet pepper and reduce the heat just below medium to allow everything to simmer. At this stage you can taste test the chicken and gravy and add additional spices if needed.

  7. Chicken thighs don't take long to cook so everything should be ready in about 40 minutes to an hour. As the water reduces and your potatoes cook this will create a thick gravy

  8. Feel free to add in a few more sprigs of thyme when you add the potatoes for added flavour.

Serve over plain rice or with a side of roti and enjoy!


* I have prepared this using bone-in chicken pieces for added flavour, but you can use skinless dark or white meat, its really a personal preference.

**Boil a kettle of water and set aside. As the meat is cooking the water will reduce and you will need to add a little water at a time to ensure there is enough liquid to cook the chicken.

*** This curry powder is potent (in a good way) a little goes along way but you want to ensure the chicken is evenly coated with the curry power so add more if needed.

****Scotch bonnet pepper is hot so when I add it to my chicken I like to keep an eye on it so it doesn't burst in the pot otherwise I end up with an overly spicy dish that my poor tongue can't handle.



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