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Authentic Caribbean chicken stew recipe

Authentic Caribbean chicken stew recipe

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  • Recipes
  • Ingredients
  • Meat and poultry
  • Poultry
  • Chicken
  • Marinades for chicken

This is my favourite Caribbean dish which is very well seasoned (a trademark of Caribbean food) and have always enjoyed it as a child. There are many varieties of this dish and is always best served with rice and peas and West Indian pepper sauce.

London, England, UK

338 people made this

IngredientsServes: 4

  • 1 whole chicken, cut into pieces
  • For seasoning the chicken
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon all purpose seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme (could you fresh if you want)
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon chicken seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon allspice or mixed spice
  • 1 teaspoon paprika (optional)
  • 1 pinch of nutmeg
  • salt and coarse black pepper to season
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce (optional)
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped or minced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 small piece of ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 red pepper, cut into small pieces
  • For the stew
  • 2 teaspoons oil
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 to 3 tomatoes, cut into small pieces
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons tomato puree
  • 800ml to 1 litre of water
  • 1 piece of coconut creme block (approx 1/6 of the whole block)
  • 1 stock cube (I prefer oxo)
  • 1 Scotch bonnet chilli

MethodPrep:15min ›Cook:1hr30min ›Ready in:1hr45min

  1. First, cut the chicken into pieces and pierce the meat so that the seasoning can penetrate the meat.
  2. Season the chicken with the ingredients mentioned in a bowl and leave over night in the fridge.
  3. Now heat about 2 teaspoons of oil and add 2 teaspoons of sugar and let it brown. This is called the browning which gives the chicken a nice colour and flavour. Add the chicken only (do not add the seasoning from the bowl) and allow to brown for about 3-4 minutes on each side.
  4. Now add the seasoning from the bowl and cook for a further 3 minutes.
  5. Add the tomatoes and tomato puree and cook for about 3-5 minutes until the tomatoes soften.
  6. Add water, coconut block, stock cube and whole Scotch bonnet chilli.
  7. Bring to the boil and then simmer on low to medium heat for approximately 1 hour.
  8. Keep tasting the stew and adjust seasoning with salt and black pepper if needed.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(30)

Reviews in English (34)

Altered ingredient amounts.Used tin of chopped tomatoes instead of fresh, 2/3 tin of reduced fat coconut milk instead of coconut creme (used rest to cook rice) and omitted the water, adding a knorr stock pot directly to the pan. Used about 10 chicken thighs in place of whole chicken. Turned out delicious!-19 Jun 2011

used chicken breasts cut up....marrinated overnight...made extra spice mix and added it to the chicken as it cooked..used coconut milk so no need to add water, yummi yummi!!!-13 Mar 2011

Made it vegetarian.I used quorn chicken pieces and veg oxo for my daughters it was still lovely-14 Nov 2009

Traditional Caribbean Chicken Foot Soup Recipe.

It’s one of those soups you really have to try before passing judgement. Like so many traditional dishes from the Caribbean (and globally), you’ll find people will be cautious and at times have negative comments, even though they fail to give it a try. You’ll notice that in the Caribbean we tend to use most of the animal with great success. Feet/trotters, tails, snout.. yea, not all that appetizing or so you’d think.

After a few years of not having chicken foot soup, I must admit that I had to coax myself to come to terms about eating ‘feet”. But one spoonful and it took me back to my days on the islands where this would be a big part of “Soup Saturdays”.

1 lb chicken feet (cleaned and trimmed)
2 chicken stock cubes
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
4 green cooking bananas
5 small eddoes
2 medium sweet potatoes
2 potatoes
1 tablespoon veg oil
1 large onion
4 cloves garlic
1 scallion
4 sprigs thyme
1 scallion
2 cups diced pumpkin
salt (taste and adjust accordingly)
1 scotch bonnet pepper
2 medium carrots

* You can add flour dumplings, yams, cassava, dasheen and other ingredients to personalize this chicken foot soup. If you’re making this gluten free, do pay attention to the ingredients listed, especially if you’re adding dumplings.

We need to prep all the ingredients.. make sure your butcher clean and trim the chicken feet (remove the yellow skin and cut off the sort of toes) and prepare the vegetables. Peel, cut into big pieces (same size if possible) and wash. Set the prepared vegetables (and ground provisions) in a bowl covered with water to prevent them from going discolored.

Heat the oil on a medium flame in a soup pot and go in with the chopped scallion, onion, garlic and thyme. Turn the heat down to low and let that gently cook for about 4-5 minutes. Then add the washed (and trimmed) chicken feet to the pot. Turn up the heat to med-high.

Add about 4-6 cups of hot water to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a rolling boil and let that go (partly covered) for about 25-30 minutes.

Now add all the other ingredients, bring back to a boil and let cook for another 25 minutes or so (add more water if necessary so everything is covered). You’ll notice that I didn’t give a specific amount of salt as the stock cubes will be heavy in sodium. Taste for salt and adjust according near the end of cooking. During the cooking process you may need to skim off any sort of residue you see at the top of the soup.

The goal is to have the chicken feet very tender and the vegetables/ground provisions must also be tender to the point where they’re starting to dissolve. This will also thicken the soup nicely.. as with traditional Caribbean type soups.

I had the scotch bonnet pepper in the soup ‘whole’ and I tried not to break it. We want the flavor of the pepper and not the raw heat.. well, unless you love that raw Caribbean sunshine! This must be served HOT and (you will) if you have leftovers, you can freeze it for dinner another day. Simply thaw (on your counter) and heat on the stove top on a very low heat. I rather this method than in the microwave.

Chef Sian’s Caribbean Chicken Stew

I first concocted this Chicken Stew recipe one day as I was cleaning out the fridge. A few pieces of chicken and pumpkin and a serving of leftover callallo and the next thing you know I was sipping sweet. , and It looked and tasted so good, I shared the photo on Facebook. The response was so overwhelming I made it a few days later so I could capture the pictures you see here and write a recipe. The stew gets its rich flavor and thickness from the combination of chicken and pumpkin (calabaza) cooked down in coconut milk. After the pumpkin melts away potatoes, carrots, callaloo and herbs are added to give the stew some body. Serve chicken stew with a chunk of hearty fresh-baked bread for delicious meal.

1 LB boneless skinless chicken, cubed
½ tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
1 small onion, diced small
½ LB pumpkin (Calabaza squash)
1- 15oz can coconut milk
1 large potato, diced
2 small carrots, thinly sliced
2 tsp. tomato paste
1 stalk scallion
1 sprig thyme
1 tsp ground ginger, or a few slivers fresh, thinly sliced
1 C. cooked callaloo, can use 6 – 19 oz can
Salt and black pepper to taste
Hot pepper, optional


***Substitute spinach for callallo

***Substitute butternut squash and 2 tsp tomato paste for pumpkin

Look for the reddest/ deepest colored pumpkin you can find when buying pumpkin for this dish.

Make sure to precook the callaloo before adding to the pot. Canned callaloo is already cooked.

It is ok to substitute spinach for the callaloo.

Season chicken with salt, black pepper and onion. Cover and let marinate in the refrigerator for 3 to 24 hours. When ready to cook. In a medium saucepan sauté the chicken with pumpkin and carrot for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. After 5 minutes, slowly stir in the coconut milk. When pot begin to boil cover and let simmer over medium heat for 30 minutes. Stir every 5 minutes to prevent burning. After 30, stir pot well to ‘mash out’ pumpkin. Soup should turn light to dark yellow.

Add tomato paste 1 tsp at a time until soup is a deep red color. Stir in remaining ingredients. Taste for flavor. Add salt, black pepper and hot pepper as desired. Add ½ cup water if soup is too thick. Cover pot and let soup cook and additional 15 minutes. Stir every 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and serve with a thick chewy bread, like Hardough Bread.


A huge variety of delicious & authentic Caribbean, Jamaican, Cayman Islands dishes, all in traditional Caribbean style recipes. Choose from one of these local Caymanian or Jamaican Caribbean home-made dishes:



Mango Avocado Tomato Cucumber Salad


Cayman Style Marinated Conch

COCONUT RECIPES: Cayman Style Marinated Coconut

CARIBBEAN FISH RECIPES: Cayman Fried Barracuda

Cayman Shellfish (aka Boxfish/Cowfish) Cake

Jamaican Fry Fish Escovitch

Jamaican Saltfish w/Ackee or Saltfish w/Callaloo


Jerk Whole Lobster or Tails

Cayman Lobster Mac and Cheese

SHRIMP RECIPES: Cayman Style Shrimp



RABBIT (AGOUTI) RECIPES: Cayman Style Rabbit Stew

LAND CRAB RECIPES: Baked Stuffed Crab Back

Cayman Style Crab Rundown


Jamaican Style Oxtail / Butter Beans

Cayman “Cowboy” Baked Mash Potato Meatloaf

Jamaican Jerk Mayo Burger

Cayman BBQ or Baked Beef Ribs

Jamaican Corned Beef (Bully Beef)

Liver and Onions Brown Stew


CARIBBEAN PORK RECIPES: Cayman Style Christmas Ham

Spicy Honey Garlic Pork Chops

Chicharron (Fried Pork Belly)


as well as Caribbean Breakfast, Sauces, and Sides

Rice and Beans
Fried Ripe Plantain (Platanos Maduros)
Tostones (Green Plantain)
Baked Mac n Cheese
Fried Breadfruit or Roast Breadfruit
Breadfruit Salad or Potato Salad
Johnny Cakes or Cayman Fried Fritters
Jamaican Jerk Sauce

* All prices are in CI$ (Cayman)
“Where to eat on Little Cayman”
Order online through this website which is partnered with Cook Food “Little Cayman”
Call: +1 (345) 322-0208 for food delivery


If you don&rsquot have browning sauce you can make your own by burning sugar in the skillet. To do this you cook brown sugar in a skillet until it melts to almost like a syrup consistency. Add boiling water (slowly) after it&rsquos melted and constantly stir to a thinner sauce consistency.

Cut the pieces into smaller pieces. This makes for a faster cook and makes it easier to brown all parts of the chicken.

Habanero can be substituted for scotch bonnet. You can dice the chili and add to the marinade. Alternatively you can cut slits into the sides of a whole chili and place in the skillet during cooking.

Wash the chicken in something acidic like lime juice or cider vinegar.

For a quicker easy weeknight version try this instant pot brown stew chicken recipe.

12. Coquito

You know it&rsquos Christmas time in Puerto Rico when glasses of Coquito are served on the table. This drink is similar to eggnog with rum, but is coconut-based.

It is sweet and creamy, and yes, you can get drunk! You&rsquoll want to give this drink a good flavor, so don&rsquot forget to add in some cinnamon sticks.

Note: Take your coquito to the fridge. The longer it sits there, the more it becomes delicious. So don&rsquot hesitate to make it a few days before the party!

Healthier Than Frying Chicken

Yes, my version is!! As you already know, being healthy is my middle name, so expect a few adjustments to this traditional recipe.

For instance, I roasted the chicken instead of frying it in a large quantity of oil which is what I did when making my Creamy Coconut Curry Chicken .

My philosophy is to avoid deep fat frying where possible. If there's a healthier alternative, Charla will gladly pursue that root!

Comments (21)

posted by Jobeth M on January 2, 2014

This was really good. Made a side of plantains with it and had a nice Paleo dinner. Kids asked for seconds. Thanks for sharing

posted by fifi on January 2, 2014

This is a very versatile, cheap, and delicious meal. The beauty of this dish is, if you’re missing an ingredient, you can substitute something else, or omit it altogether, and it will still be great! I’ve made this dish several times at pot lucks, and people always rave about it. This is definitely a staple in my family.

posted by FAFA1210 on January 2, 2014


posted by diane on August 14, 2014

This recipe was ALMOST spot on to the wonderful chicken I’ve had from the hatian women I work with will definitly do it again until I get it perfect…the girls in work just have a special twist that I just don’t have..but I got major approval from my first try.. I’d love the authentic liver and plaintain breakfast recipe

posted by Guerdy on August 23, 2014

You might want to try making what we Haitians call “Epice(s)”. In a food processor or blender, blend some garlic, scallions, thyme, parsley, and bell pepper to almost a paste-like consistency. You can use this to marinate your chicken, along with the Maggi and a little lime juice. You’ll have plenty left over, so you can add a bit to your sauce along with the onions and peppers to add an extra infusion of flavor.

posted by HaitianCooking on August 23, 2014

I agree. You can find our version of it here. Haitian Seasoning Base (Epis)

posted by Lauri on December 23, 2014

Three questions: When do you use the 1/2 cup of vinegar? And how much water do you use to make the marinade or do you use the vinegar for that? Do you reuse the marinade? Thank you!

posted by Austin Birch on May 22, 2016

Maybe I’m missing something but I’d suggest re-reading Step 1

posted by HaitianCooking on June 8, 2016

posted by Moira on April 11, 2015

This was really good except a whole scotch bonnet pepper was way too hot for my family. We toned it down with yogurt.

posted by Bridget Lucas on September 8, 2016

Can’t wait making this tonight. All I have is chicken thighs which I hope will be alright. My high school boyfriend use to make me this he was from Haiti. It was one of my favorites. Actually Haitian food is just delicious. Thanks for sharing.

posted by Jon on December 10, 2016

Great post! Love it! But I noticed that oil or a butter used. Is this how it is or was it left out by mistake?

posted by Saundra on March 20, 2017

As a child my friends who lived down the streer from us were Haitian. The Mother of the house (whom I considered a second Mother) taught me this recipe when I was about 12 years old. I am now 45 and still enjoy cooking this for my family. It is great comfort food.

posted by Joel on February 18, 2018

Made this for my Haitian neighbors as a surprise “thank you” as they have been so kind and generous.
I couldn’t find the bonnet peppers and substituted with Serrano peppers, I tasted this prior to gifting and it was so delicious and sent a beautiful aroma through my whole home.
I’m not much of a “pepper person” and the presence of the Serrano peppers was more than enough heat for me. I can only imagine the heat using Scotch bonnet peppers!
Aside from the heat the Adobo will be cut back next time as I felt it ws too salty…but Oh My Goodness the flavor! Delicious!

posted by Jen on March 25, 2019

Ive been using this site for a good time for my go to haitian recipes. My child is part Haitian and when i met her father his mom alwayysssss cooked for me, i was inlove with the food, the flavors.. mmm! This recipe is great for someone who never cooked haitian food! I cant make it lile his mama but this def will do! Yummy!

posted by bandardepoxito.Com on November 17, 2019

I’ve learn several excellent stuff here. Certainly price
bookmarking for revisiting. I surprise how much attempt you put to make such a great informative website.

posted by on November 27, 2019

I am truly grateful to the holder of this web site who has shared this great post at

posted by Siobhan Jean-Charles on May 24, 2020

My family loved it! Your website has been so helpful for me to get in touch with my roots throughout this quarantine.

posted by Carolyn Pierre on July 5, 2020

Ugh i tried to triple this recipe and it was too tomato pastey… I’ll try it again


    • 1 cup dry or 1 (12-ounce) can pigeon peas, pinto beans, or black-eyed peas
    • 2 cups long-grain rice
    • 3 tablespoons canola oil
    • 3/4 cup sugar (white or brown)
    • 1 (3-pound) chicken, cut into 8 pieces, skin removed
    • 1 small onion, chopped
    • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
    • 1 cup coconut milk
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 2 teaspoons Green Seasoning
    • 1/2 cup chopped parsley
    • 1 sprig thyme
    • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
    • 5 scallions, chopped (white and green parts)
    • Kosher salt
    • 2 cups cubed fresh calabaza or butternut squash
    • 1 small whole Scotch bonnet pepper
    • 1/2 cup ketchup
    • 1 tablespoon butter

Recipe Summary

  • 1 (4 pound) whole chicken, cut into pieces
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped green onion
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup canned coconut milk (Optional)
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (Optional)
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon butter

Place chicken on a plate. Sprinkle the green onion, cilantro, garlic, onion, salt and pepper over it. Cover, and marinate for 30 minutes.

Heat the vegetable oil in a deep pot over medium heat. Stir in the sugar, and cook until the sugar has melted into a nice golden brown syrup. Add the chicken pieces, and brown quickly while turning continuously. Cover the pot, and let it cook for 2 minutes.

Pour in 1 cup of water, coconut milk and pepper flakes. Replace the lid, and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes. Stir in the ketchup and butter. Continue cooking until chicken is fork tender, 20 to 30 minutes. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if needed. Serve chicken with the sauce in the pot as a gravy.


  1. Mikakora

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  3. Mazuhn

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