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Jamaican Chicken Fricassee

Jerk-seasoned chicken thighs brown, and simmer with vegetables, warm spices, and herbs to make our Jamaican chicken fricassee recipe; the result is juicy chicken thighs served in a flavorful thickened gravy. For more Carribean flavor, try our jerk shrimp tacos next!

A serving plate of Jamaican chicken fricassee topped with chopped scallions.

What is Jamaican Chicken Fricassee?

Jamaican chicken fricassee is a traditional dish that’s similar to brown chicken stew. To prepare the meal, tender chicken thighs brown in the pan before simmering in a flavorful sauce brimming with soy sauce, lime juice, water, and cooked-down vegetables.

Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Jerk Seasoning: I never go wrong with homemade While waiting on the onions to cook, combine the ingredients for Jamaican jerk seasoning, prepared with powders, peppers, and warm spices like allspice and thyme. The spice blend keeps in an airtight jar for two months. For this recipe, you will only need three to four tablespoons. I recommend Coleman’s jerk seasoning as a store-bought option.
  • Chicken Thighs: I use boneless, skinless chicken thighs in this recipe, but many fricassee chicken recipes incorporate broken-down, whole chicken or bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs or legs. Whatever you choose, adjust the cooking time accordingly; the safe temperature for chicken is 165°F (73°C).
  • Avocado Oil: Avocado oil has a high smoke point, making it perfect for browning the chicken.
  • Vegetables: Onion, bell pepper, and scallions saute and become the base for the flavorful sauce.
  • Garlic: I suggest using two cloves, but don’t let my recipe tell you how much garlic to use – measure with your heart.
  • Gochujang: Even though it’s not a staple in Jamaican cuisine, Gochujang provides sweet heat to the dish. The addition of gochujang is perfect for those who are hesitant to create a paste with a more traditional and spicy scotch bonnet!
  • Soy Sauce: Brighten and flavor the gravy with soy sauce.
  • Lime: Lime adds a pop of acid right at the end to balance the flavors.

Additions and Substitutions

I use onions, scallions, and peppers, but feel free to experiment with your vegetables. Add okra, cherry tomatoes, potatoes, or carrot. Traditional scotch bonnets are the perfect way to introduce a heating element common in Jamaican cuisine. Whole bonnets release a sweet heat, whereas sliced Scotch bonnets will increase the spice level of your dish.

How to Make Jamaican Chicken Fricassee

The full recipe with measurements is in the recipe card below.

Step 1: Combine the ingredients for While waiting on the onions to cook, combine the ingredients for Jamaican jerk seasoning. in a mixing bowl and coat the chicken with two tablespoons of the mixture.

Chicken thighs coated in jerk seasoning.

Step 2: Warm oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat. Then, add half of the chicken, top side down, and cook until golden brown, 5-8 minutes.

Chicken thighs browning in a saute pan.

Step 3: Transfer the chicken to a plate. Repeat until all the chicken has had a chance to brown.

Reserved brown chicken on a plate.

Step 4: When the chicken is done cooking and set aside, lower the heat and add onion, bell pepper scallion whites, garlic, gochujang, and two tablespoons of Jerk seasoning to the pan. Cook over medium heat until onions soften.

Onions, scallions, and bell peppers cooking in a saute pan.

Step 5: Stir in soy sauce, lime juice, and 1 ½ cup water. Bring to a simmer, scraping up any brown bits.

Ingredients for the sauce added to the vegetables in a saute pan.

Step 6: Return the chicken to the saute pan, cover, and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for about 12 minutes.

Chicken added back to the pan to stew.

Step 7: Transfer the chicken to a serving platter and cook the liquid over medium-high heat, stirring regularly until the gravy thickens, 7-10 minutes.

Pour the mixture over the chicken and garnish with scallion greens to serve.

A serving plate of Jamaican chicken fricassee topped with chopped scallions.

Expert Tips

  • Use a heavy-bottomed pot like a Dutch oven to help distribute heat and prevent the chicken from sticking to the bottom; this will also help the chicken cook more evenly.
  • Take your time browning the chicken; this renders the fat from the chicken thighs, ensuring your sauce ends up thick and not greasy. 
  • Remove the chicken thighs to thicken the sauce, and cook for another 10 minutes; doing so will help the sauce thicken and deepen the flavor.  

If you enjoy this meal, try one of these chicken recipes!  

A serving dish of Jamaican chicken fricassee topped with chopped scallions and bowl of rice and peas next to it.

Serving Suggestions

Frequently Asked Questions

What is chicken fricassee?

Chicken fricassee is a classic French dish made with chicken that browns, then simmers in a white sauce made from roux. This recipe follows a similar methodology but uses different ingredients.

What does fricassee mean in cooking?

A fricassée is a dish consisting of meat or poultry that has been slowly stewed in a flavorful gravy or sauce.

Why is it called fricassee?

The origin of the term “fricassee” is derived from the French words “frire” which means “to fry” and “casser” which means “to break into pieces.”

In American cooking, the most common technique for preparing a fricassee involves cutting the meat into small pieces, frying them in fat until golden brown, and then simmering them in a flavorful liquid until they are tender and fully cooked. This process helps to develop rich flavors and results in a dish that is both savory and satisfying.

More Chicken Recipes:

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A serving plate of Jamaican chicken fricassee topped with chopped scallions.

Jamaican Chicken Fricassee

Tressa Jamil
Chicken thighs brown, then simmer with vegetables, spices, and herbs for Jamaican chicken fricassee – resulting in juicy chicken with thick gravy.
5 from 6 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Caribbean, Jamaican
Servings 6 Servings
Calories 451 kcal
Ingredients
  
For the Jamaican Jerk Seasoning:
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper,  coarse ground
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
For the Chicken:
  • 4 tablespoon jerk seasoning, divided
  • 3 pounds chicken thighs, boneless and skinless, trimmed and patted dry
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • ½ large green bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced, whites and greens reserved separately
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoon gochujang
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • lime juice, 1-2 limes
  • cups water
Instructions
 
  • Combine the ingredients for Jamaican jerk seasoning in a mixing bowl and coat the chicken with two tablespoons of the mixture.
  • Warm oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat. Then, add half of the chicken, top side down, and cook until golden brown, 5-8 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate. Repeat until all the chicken has had a chance to brown.
  • When the chicken is done cooking and set aside, lower the heat and add onion, bell pepper scallion whites, garlic, gochujang, and two tablespoons of jerk seasoning to the pan. Cook over medium heat until onions soften.
  • Stir in soy sauce, lime juice, and 1 ½ cup water. Bring to a simmer, scraping up any brown bits.
  • Return the chicken to the saute pan, cover, and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for about 12 minutes.
  • Transfer the chicken to a serving platter and cook the liquid over medium-high heat, stirring regularly until the gravy thickens, 7-10 minutes.
  • Pour the mixture over the chicken and garnish with scallion greens to serve.
Notes
Adapted From:
  • The inspiration for this recipe can be found at Milkstreet
Expert Tips: 
  • Use a heavy-bottomed pot like a Dutch oven to help distribute heat and prevent the chicken from sticking to the bottom; this will also help the chicken cook more evenly.
  • Take your time browning the chicken; this renders the fat from the chicken thighs, ensuring your sauce ends up thick and not greasy. 
  • Remove the chicken thighs to thicken the sauce, and cook for another 10 minutes; doing so will help the sauce thicken and deepen the flavor.  
Nutrition Disclosure:
  • The nutritional information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for professional advice.
 
Nutrition
Serving: 2 Thighs | Calories: 451 kcal | Carbohydrates: 9 g | Protein: 64 g | Fat: 16 g | Sodium: 871 mg | Fiber: 1 g | Sugar: 4 g
Did you make this recipe? Let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and follow @thejamilghar or tag #thejamilghar on Instagram!
Recipe Rating




Jason Ramirez

Friday 26th of May 2023

Finger-lickin' good! Juicy chicken with a flavor-packed gravy. Yum!

Samantha Collins

Friday 26th of May 2023

The flavors in this Jamaican Chicken Fricassee are out of this world! Succulent chicken with a rich and savory gravy. A must-try!

Alex

Sunday 26th of June 2022

Really good recipe! Not too much time needs to be put into it, and it’s easy to make.

Tressa Jamil

Sunday 26th of June 2022

I am so glad you and your wife enjoyed this recipe. Thanks for making it and taking the time to leave a comment.

Andrew

Friday 11th of February 2022

This dish looks absolutely delicious

Tressa - Jamil Ghar Team

Friday 11th of February 2022

Wow, thanks for taking the time to leave a comment. You'll have to let us know what you think once you try it.