Get the Skinny in the Kitchen: Jamaican Jerk Chicken

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Jamaican Jerk Chicken  

By Ben McLauchlin of Swerve Sweetener


Sweet & spicy BBQ chicken that’s legitimately good for you!  Serve it up on a whole grain bun, pair it with black beans, brown rice, and a dollop of guacamole, or just enjoy it straight from the grill.  Or make a batch of Ben’s Jamaican Jerk Chicken ahead of time for healthy lunches and dinners in a pinch!

Jamaican Jerk Chicken

Makes 16 servings


  • 3 tablespoons dark rum
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 cup malt vinegar
  • 10 green onions, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons dried thyme
  • 2 Scotch bonnet chiles or habanero chiles with seeds, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 4 teaspoons ground allspice
  • 4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 5 tablespoons dark brown Swerve
  • 1 cup no sugar added ketchup
  • 3 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
  • 6 pounds chicken thighs and breasts, boneless and skinless; rinsed and patted dry
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice


Boil rum and two tablespoons water in small saucepan for 3 minutes. Transfer rum mixture to blender; add vinegar and next 13 ingredients (malt vinegar through Swerve) and blend until almost smooth.

Transfer two to five tablespoons jerk seasoning to small bowl; mix in ketchup and soy sauce to make sauce. (Jerk seasoning and sauce can be made a day ahead; cover separately and refrigerate.)

Arrange chicken in large roasting pan or baking dish. Pour lime juice over; turn to coat. Spoon the jerk seasoning over chicken and rub in. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours, turning occasionally. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Keep refrigerated.)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees or prepare grill (medium heat). Remove chicken from jerk seasoning marinade; sprinkle with salt and pepper. If roasting chicken in oven, arrange chicken on rimmed baking sheet.

Roast until chicken is cooked through and juices run clear when thickest part is pierced with fork, about 25-30 minutes. If grilling chicken, place chicken on grill rack, cover, and grill until chicken is cooked through, turning occasionally and adjusting heat if browning too quickly, about 25-30 minutes. Serve topped with jerk sauce, or sauce on the side for dipping.

Per serving:  250 calories, 7 grams fat, 3 grams saturated fat, 540 mg sodium, 12 grams carbohydrates (8 grams net carbohydrates), 1 gram fiber, 5 grams sugar, 34 grams protein


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