Jamaican Brown Stew Chicken

Jamaican Brown Stew Chicken is a popular and tasty dish that represents the bold flavors and spices of Jamaica. The chicken is marinated in a mix of spices before being slow-cooked in a savory sauce made with tomatoes, peppers, onions, and other aromatic ingredients. The dish has a complex flavor profile, with the sweetness of brown sugar complementing the tanginess of vinegar and the spiciness of scotch bonnet pepper. It’s relatively easy to prepare and is perfect for any occasion. Try it out to experience the unique and delicious flavors of Jamaican cuisine.

If you like this recipe and enjoy Authentic Jamaican recipes, try my Curry Chicken or my Jamaican Beef Patty recipe!

What does Jamaican Brown stew chicken taste like?

Jamaican Brown Stew Chicken is a delicious combination of sweet, tangy, and spicy flavors. The chicken is tender and juicy, while the sauce is thick and hearty, full of flavor. The sweetness of brown sugar and ketchup combined with the spiciness of scotch bonnet pepper adds just the right amount of heat.

Ingredients You’ll Need (Full Recipe Below)

Bone-In Chicken Pieces- Boneless skinless chicken pieces are the best
Spices- You need a ton of spices for this recipe! It is well worth it!
Burnt Sugar or Browning will give your chicken a nice deep brown color!
Vegetables- Peppers, onions, garlic (all the good stuff)
Ketchup- This will add tomato flavor and sweetness
Brown Sugar- Perfect for additional sweetness
Scotch Bonnet Pepper- This will add spice

What is the best pot to cook Brown Stew chicken in?

A heavy-bottomed Dutch oven or a cast-iron pot is ideal for Jamaican Brown Stew chicken. They distribute heat evenly, prevent burning and sticking, and keep the chicken moist and tender.

How do I control the spice level of this dish?

The scotch bonnet peppers are what give the Brown Stew Chicken its heat.

Green Scotch Bonnet Peppers will give your dish a mild heat level.

Orange or Yellow Scotch Bonnet Peppers- will give your dish a medium heat level.

Red Scotch Bonnet peppers—These are the hottest peppers and will give your dish a high heat level.

Let’s make Authentic Jamaican Brown Stew Chicken with @themoodyfoody

@themoodyfoody Full recipe!👇Jamaican brown stew chicken is a MUST to master if you want to level up in the kitchen. Cheap, easy, and just delicious. #jamaica #jamaicanfood ♬ Praise Jah In The Moonlight – YG Marley

FAQ for this Recipe

Can I substitute scotch bonnet pepper with another type of pepper?

Yes, you can substitute scotch bonnet pepper with habanero or jalapeno pepper.

Can I use boneless chicken for Jamaican Brown Stew Chicken?

Yes, you can use boneless chicken for this recipe, but using bone-in chicken adds extra flavor and richness to the dish.

Jamaican Brown Stew Chicken

Jamacian Brown Stew Chicken

Toni Chapman
Authentic Jamaican Brown Stew Chicken
Prep Time 8 hours
Course dinner
Cuisine American, Caribbean, jamacian
Servings 4
Calories 595 kcal


For the chicken marinade

  • 5-8 pieces of bone-in skinless chicken I love using thighs and legs
  • 2 tsps kosher salt taste as you go!! add more or less depending on your prefrence
  • 2 tbsps browning or burnt sugar
  • 2 tsps maggi or chicken bouillon
  • 2 tsps ground allspice
  • 2 tsps ginger powder
  • 2 tsps onion powder
  • 2 tsps garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 tsps dried thyme
  • tbsp brown sugar
  • 4 allspice berries
  • 1/4 cup fresh giner minced
  • 1/4 cup scallions minced
  • 1/4 cup yellow onion sliced
  • 1/4 cup red bell pepper minced
  • 1/4 cup green bell pepper minced
  • 8 garlic gloves minced
  • 1/2 scotch bonnet pepper sliced thin

For the Stew Chicken

  • 2 tbsps vegetable oil
  • 1 scotch bonnet, 2 garlic cloves, 1 scallion, 1 piece of ginger chopped
  • 2 plum tomatoes diced
  • 3 cups water or low sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk optional
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 3 springs thyme


  • Begin by preparing your ingredients and chopping onions, scallions, ginger, garlic, scotch bonnet pepper.
  • In a large bowl, take cleaned chicken pieces and marinate with all the spices and veggies. Refrigerate for up to 6 hours, or overnight for best results.
  • In a hot caldero or Dutch oven, fry 1 scotch bonnet, 2 cloves of garlic, 1 scallion, and ginger to infuse the oil. Set aside.
  • To prepare your chicken, start by searing the pieces on both sides until they develop a nice sear. Once done, remove them from the pot. In the same pot, add the remaining marinade juices and simmer. Next, put the chicken back into the pot, add water, coconut milk, ketchup, thyme, and the scotch bonnet you set aside earlier. Taste the mixture and adjust the seasoning as per your preference, keeping in mind that Caribbean cooking is all about cooking from the soul. Add more salt if needed, or a little extra ketchup for added flavor.
  • Cook on high heat for 3-4 minutes, then reduce the heat and simmer until chicken is tender, or at low heat for 45 minutes.
Keyword brown stew chicken, stew chicken

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