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jerk marinade in a glass measuring cup

Jamaican Jerk Marinade

This homemade Jamaican Jerk Marinade is made from scratch using ingredients like pineapple juice, lime, allspice, cinnamon, ginger, and more. Use it on Caribbean dishes for chicken, seafood, fish, and shrimp. 
Course spice blend, Spice Rub
Cuisine Caribbean, Jamaican
Keyword Jamaican jerk marinade, jerk chicken marinade, jerk marinade
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 27kcal



  • Add all of the jerk spices, habanero, soy sauce, pineapple juice, lime juice, liquid smoke, and ginger to a blender or food processor. Blend until the mixture is well combined. I typically add the ingredients to a bowl and combine using a hand immersion blender.


  • The marinade makes enough to use for 1 pound of meat or seafood.
  • Avoid touching the marinade with your hands or wear gloves, especially if you have to touch your eyes, wear contact lenses, etc.
  • Jerk does have a kick to it. The dish is traditionally prepared using scotch bonnet peppers (often called Caribbean red peppers). They are almost impossible to find in the United States. Scotch bonnets have a heat rating of 100,000–350,000 Scoville heat units (the measurement of the heat of chili peppers), which is similar to habanero peppers, making it a close substitute.
  • These peppers are hotter than poblano, serrano, and cayenne peppers. If you don’t like spicy dishes, feel free to modify the servings used or substitute for a pepper that is less hot. The recipe calls for 1 habanero, you can always use half, 1/4th, etc. You can make it less hot by omitting the seeds.
  • The recipe has a hint of sweetness from pineapple juice and 1/2 tablespoon of brown sweetener or sugar. If you are looking for sweet shrimp, add additional brown sugar or sweetener to suit your taste.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 27kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 1g