Jerk Marinade

A jerk marinade is a flavorful and aromatic mixture used in Caribbean cuisine to season and tenderize meat, particularly chicken and pork but it can also be used on seafood. The taste of jerk from a blend of spices like allspice, thyme, and scallions combined with fiery Scotch bonnet peppers for a spicy kick. The marinade includes ingredients like garlic, ginger, and citrus juices, adding layers of complexity to the overall flavor profile. Traditionally, jerk marinade is applied to the meat before grilling, smoking, or slow-cooking, resulting in a deliciously bold and smoky dish with roots deeply embedded in the culinary traditions of Jamaica. The term “jerk” refers to the marinade and the cooking method, as it involves slow cooking over an open flame or hot coals.

Where is “Jerk” from?

Jerk seasoning’s unique and special flavors have their roots in Jamaica, a country famous for packing bold and thrilling tastes into their cuisine.

Why everyone loves this Jerk Marinade recipe

  • It’s so flavorful- This is one of the best marinades I’ve ever made! I use it on almost everything! It is a wet marinade that can easily be incorporated into chicken, fish, and shrimp!
  • It’s perfect for meal prep- I love the jerk flavor because it consists of clean ingredients, which makes it ideal for meal prep and healthy eating. You can prepare the jerk seasoning, keep it in the fridge, and use it to make your meals.
  • It’s easy to make- Combining all of the ingredients for this recipe is the most time-consuming part. After that, you blend everything together, and your delicious jerk marinade is finished! 

Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Scotch Bonnet Peppers or Habanero Peppers
  • Scallions
  • Onion
  • Ginger
  • Brown Sugar
  • Browning
  • Spices
  • All Spice Berries
  • Orange
  • Lime
  • Soy Sauce
  • Oil
  • White Vinegar

What can I use the Jerk Marinade for?

Chicken- I love making grilled chicken, baked chicken or even stewed chicken with the jerk marinade. Season the meat generously and cook it according to your preference.

Salmon- Jerk Salmon is one of my favorite dishes of all time. Served with rice and peas, cabbage and plantains, this is a perfect dinner! Use the jerk seasoning after patting your salmon dry and sear it on two sides for 4-5 minutes.

Shrimp- Shrimp tastes amazing with the spices in Jerk!

FAQ to make this recipe

  1. How do I mix the ingredients?

You can use a food processor or blender to combine all of the ingredients.

2. I can’t find a scotch bonnet pepper, what should I use?

If you can’t find a scotch bonnet pepper, you can also use a habanero pepper!

3. How do I store the marinade?

Store the marinade in an airtight container. I like to use these mason jars!

4. How long does the jerk marinade last in the fridge?

The Jerk marinade will remain fresh In the fridge for up to a few weeks!

Jerk Marinade

Course Side Dish
Cuisine jamacian
Servings 2


  • 1 blender or food processor


  • 1 bunch scallions
  • 1/2 white onion
  • 8 garlic gloves
  • 2 tbsp chopped ginger
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbsps oil
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • scotch bonnet peppers to taste. The more you use the spicier they will be. I use 2-3 orange scotch bonnets for the perfect medium spicy flavor
  • 1/2 juice orange
  • 1/2 juice lime
  • 1/8 cup browning


  • 2 tbsps all spice berries
  • 2 tsps kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger


  • Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

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