Jamaican Chicken Soup Recipe

Jamaican Chicken Soup Recipe is a hearty and flavorful dish that reflects the vibrant culinary culture of Jamaica. This soup, known for its rich flavors and comforting warmth, is a staple in Jamaican households and is enjoyed year-round. Made with a variety of ingredients that pack a punch of taste and nutrition, Jamaican chicken soup is not just a meal but a tradition. Let’s explore how to make this delicious soup step-by-step.

Ingredients for Jamaican Chicken Soup

To make authentic Jamaican chicken soup, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Main Ingredients:

  • Chicken: Use a whole chicken or chicken parts like thighs or breasts for flavor.
  • Water: For the soup base.
  • Salt: To season the chicken and soup.
  • Black pepper: Adds a bit of heat and flavor.


  • Yellow yam: Provides a starchy element.
  • Irish potatoes: Adds body to the soup.
  • Dumplings: Made from flour and water, adds texture.
  • Carrots: Sweetness and color.
  • Scotch bonnet pepper: Provides heat (adjust to taste).
  • Thyme: Aromatic flavor.
  • Green onions: Freshness and flavor.
  • Garlic: Adds depth of flavor.
  • Onion: A foundational flavor in the soup.

Additional Flavorings:

  • Allspice berries: A key spice in Jamaican cuisine.
  • Pimento seeds: Another name for allspice berries.
  • Scotch bonnet pepper sauce: Optional, for extra heat.
  • Coconut milk: Adds richness (optional).

Steps to Prepare Jamaican Chicken Soup

  1. Prepare the Chicken:
    • Clean and cut the chicken into pieces. Season with salt, black pepper, and any other desired seasonings.
  2. Boil the Chicken:
    • In a large pot, bring water to a boil. Add the chicken pieces and cook until tender, skimming any foam that rises to the surface.
  3. Add Vegetables:
    • Once the chicken is partly cooked, add chopped vegetables like yellow yam, Irish potatoes, carrots, and dumplings.
  4. Season the Soup:
    • Add thyme, chopped green onions, garlic, onion, allspice berries, and pimento seeds to the pot. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Simmer Until Cooked:
    • Let the soup simmer gently until all ingredients are cooked through and flavors are well combined. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking.
  6. Finish with Coconut Milk (optional):
    • For a creamy texture, add coconut milk towards the end of cooking. This step is optional but adds richness to the soup.
  7. Adjust Seasoning:
    • Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Some may prefer to add a dash of Scotch bonnet pepper sauce for extra heat.
  8. Serve Hot:
    • Serve the Jamaican chicken soup hot, garnished with fresh thyme leaves or chopped green onions. It pairs well with Jamaican hard dough bread or rice and peas.


Jamaican chicken soup is not just a dish; it’s a celebration of flavors and traditions. With its hearty ingredients and aromatic spices, this soup brings warmth and comfort to any table. Whether enjoyed on a cool evening or as a remedy for a cold, Jamaican chicken soup nourishes both body and soul. Try making this recipe at home to experience the essence of Jamaican culinary heritage firsthand.

For more ideas, recipes, and cooking tips and tricks, please visit us at Waco Symphony Council.

FAQs about Jamaican Chicken Soup Recipe

How spicy is Jamaican chicken soup?

Jamaican chicken soup can vary in spiciness depending on the amount of Scotch bonnet pepper used. Adjust the spice level to suit your taste preferences.

Can I make Jamaican chicken soup without coconut milk?

Yes, coconut milk is optional in Jamaican chicken soup. It adds a creamy texture but can be omitted if desired.

What can I serve with Jamaican chicken soup?

Jamaican chicken soup pairs well with Jamaican hard dough bread, rice and peas, or simply enjoyed on its own as a hearty meal.

How long does it take to cook Jamaican chicken soup?

Typically, Jamaican chicken soup takes about 1.5 to 2 hours to cook, including preparation time for chopping vegetables and simmering the soup.

Can I use boneless chicken for Jamaican chicken soup?

Yes, boneless chicken can be used for convenience. Adjust cooking times accordingly to ensure the chicken is fully cooked.

This comprehensive guide to Jamaican chicken soup ensures you can recreate this beloved dish with all its traditional flavors and warmth right in your own kitchen. Enjoy the culinary journey!