This Caribbean-inspired Jamaican Fried Chicken is bold, irresistibly flavorful, and crispy. Join us as we walk you through the steps of marinating, coating, and frying to achieve that golden, crunchy goodness!
This recipe goes really well with our Coconut Milk Rice Instant Pot recipe.
The Jamaican people are warm, vibrant, and resilient. And this can be seen in their cuisine. Whether it is Jerk Chicken, Rice and Peas, oxtail, Ackee or saltfish, their food embodies their warmth heritage, and friendliness.
(This post may contain affiliate links, which means we might earn a small commission if you make a purchase through those links. We only recommend products we support and trust.)
Why You'll Love This Recipe
Bold Jamaican Flavors: The combination of spices creates a bold and satisfying taste that's sure to please your family.
Crispy Texture: The double coating technique ensures a crispy and crunchy exterior that keeps the pieces of chicken moist and tender inside.
Customizable Heat: Whether you prefer a mild kick or spicy food, you can tailor the recipe to suit your spice tolerance.
You’ll need the following ingredients to make this Jamaican fry chicken.
Chicken pieces : For this recipe we used bone-in as well as boneless chicken pieces.
Baking Powder: Baking powder enhances the crispiness of the chicken coating by creating a lighter, airier texture. Self-rising flour, beer, carbonated water, cornstarch, and baking soda can be used as alternatives.
How To Make Jamaican Fried Chicken Step-By-Step
Check out these step-by-step instructions with images. Just so you know, you'll find all the details and exact ingredients of this recipe on the printable recipe card below!
Step 1 Wash the Chicken:
Trim the extra fat from the chicken pieces and rinse them with lemon juice or vinegar. Pat them dry and place them in a large bowl. Jamaicans never skip this step!
Step 2 Place the chicken in a mixing bowl:
Add chicken seasoning, curry powder, onion powder, salt, black pepper, minced garlic, sliced onion, bell pepper strips, thyme, green onions, and habanero to the chicken.
Step 3 Combine the ingredients:
Combine the ingredients, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or ideally overnight for more flavor.
Step 4: Prepare the Coating:
In a shallow bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, chicken seasoning, salt, curry powder, and 1 teapoon of baking powder for extra crispiness.
Step 5 Coat the Chicken:
Remove the marinated chicken from the fridge and then dip each chicken piece into the seasoned flour mixture, ensuring they are all evenly coated.
Step 6 Dip in water:
Dip the coated chicken in a bowl of water and coat it again in the seasoned flour. This double coating creates a thicker and crispier crust. Be sure to shake off any excess flour.
Step 7 Fry the Chicken:
In a large pan or deep fryer over medium heat, heat the vegetable oil to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Carefully place the coated chicken pieces into the hot oil. Be sure not to overcrowd the pan. Fry your chicken for 10-20 minutes or until the skin turns golden brown and the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F (74 degrees C).
Step 8 Serve:
Once the chicken is cooked, place it on a paper towel to absorb excess oil. Serve the Jamaican fried chicken hot, garnished with additional green onions or a wedge of lime.
Pair this delicious dish with traditional Jamaican sides like rice and peas, coleslaw, or plantains for a complete and delightful meal.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
Pat Dry the Chicken: Before marinating the chicken, pat them dry with paper towels or absorbent paper. Removing excess moisture ensures that the seasonings and coating will stick to the piece of chicken and result in a crispier exterior.
Use a Thermometer: Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the chicken. It should reach 165 degrees F (74 degrees C).
Monitor Oil Temperature: Maintain a steady oil temperature around 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) throughout the frying process. Fluctuations can affect the texture of the chicken and make the chicken greasy.
Double Coating Technique: The double coating method (dipping in water and recoating with flour) enhances the crispiness of the chicken. Don't skip this step for crispy fried chicken
Rest on a Rack: After frying, place the homemade Jamaican fried chicken on a wire rack that's on a baking sheet instead of paper towels. This will let the oil drain and prevent the chicken from becoming soggy.
Marinate Overnight: Marinating the chicken overnight allows the flavors to penetrate deeply, resulting in a more flavorful dish.
Storage & Reheating
Store any leftover Jamaican fried chicken in an airtight container or wrap it tightly with plastic wrap. Additionally, we recommend that you refrigerate the chicken within 2 hours of cooking and eat leftovers within 3-4 days.
To freeze, cool the fried chicken to room temperature and place them in a freezer-safe container with parchment paper between layers. Also, label the container with the freezing date and store it in the freezer for up to 2-3 months.
Additions and Substitutions
Experiment with additional spices such as paprika, cumin, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, allspice, or ginger to personalize the seasoning to your taste.
Before marinating, soak the chicken in buttermilk for a few hours or overnight. This adds tenderness and a subtle tang to the meat.
Use gluten-free flour in the coating for a gluten-free version.
While vegetable oil is traditional, you can experiment with different types of oils like peanut oil, light olive oil, or coconut oil for frying.
Your Questions Answered
The chicken is done when the thickest part of the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C). This can be checked using an instant-read thermometer. You can also pierce the chicken with a fork; the juices should run clear, not pink.
Fried sweet cornmeal dumplings, rice and peas (beans), coleslaw, fried plantains, sweet potato fries, and mac and cheese pair well with Jamaican fried chicken.
You can fry the chicken in a heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven. Make sure the pot is deep enough to shallow fry or fully submerge the chicken pieces. You can also coat them with cooking spray and air fry or oven-bake the chicken at 375°F (190°C) until the internal temperature reaches 165°F (74°C).
Yes, you can use boneless chicken thighs or breasts if you like. Be sure to adjust the cooking time to ensure they are fully cooked, as they typically take less time to cook than bone-in pieces.
Absolutely! You can prepare the chicken, coat them with flour in advance, and store it in the fridge until you're ready to fry. This allows for easy and quick cooking when you're ready to serve.
Absolutely! You can totally freeze those Jamaican fried chicken leftovers! Just make sure they're fully cooled before you pop them in the freezer, and don't forget to label the container with the freezing date. When you're ready to enjoy them again, consider reheating them in the oven or air fryer for that crispy goodness!
In a Dinner Rut?
Please rate this Jamaican Fried Chicken recipe
We hope you love this Jamaican Fried Chicken recipe! If you make it, be sure to leave a rating so we know how you liked it!
More Recipes You'll Love
Looking for other easy and delicious recipes? Try these:
- 2 pounds chicken pieces with skin & bones
- 1 teaspoon chicken seasoning
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- ⅓ cup small onion, cut into strips
- ½ cup bell pepper, cut into strips
- 4 sprigs sprigs thyme
- 2 green onions
- 1 seeded habanero, or tablespoon hot sauce
Coating for Chicken:
- 1 cup flour
- 2 teaspoons chicken seasoning
- 2 teaspoons curry powder
- 1 tablespoon baking powder (for extra crispiness)
- Vegetable oil
- 1 cups Vegetable oil
- Trim the extra fat from the chicken pieces and rinse them with lemon juice or vinegar. Pat them dry and place them in a large bowl.
- Add chicken seasoning, paprika, onion powder, salt, black pepper, minced garlic, sliced onion, bell pepper strips, thyme, green onions, and habanero to the chicken.
- Combine the ingredients, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or ideally overnight for a more flavorful outcome.
- In a shallow bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, chicken seasoning, salt, curry powder, and 1-2 tablespoons of baking powder for extra crispiness.
- Remove the marinated chicken from the fridge and then dip each chicken piece into the seasoned flour mixture, ensuring an even coating.
- Dip the coated chicken in a bowl of water and coat it again in the seasoned flour. This double coating creates a thicker and crispier crust. Shake off excess flour.
- In a large pan or deep fryer over medium heat, heat the vegetable oil to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Carefully place the coated chicken pieces into the hot oil, ensuring that you don't overcrowd the pan. Fry the chicken for 10-20 minutes or until the skin turns golden brown and the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F (74 degrees C).
- Once the chicken is cooked, place it on a paper towel to absorb excess oil. Serve the Jamaican fried chicken hot, garnished with additional green onions or a wedge of lime. Pair with traditional Jamaican sides like rice and peas, coleslaw, plantains, or a fresh tropical salsa for a complete and delightful meal.