toasted coconut ginger cauliflower rice with grilled jerk chicken

Grilled Jamaican Jerk Chicken (Low Carb, Keto)

A low carb, keto-friendly, and gluten-free version of the classic Jamaican spicy and savory marinated chicken that is cooked over an open flame.

Best Jerk Chicken Marinade Recipe – Keto, Low Carb, Gluten-free, Sugar-free

The first time I had Jerk Chicken was serious business. I purchased a Styrofoam container full of juicy, crispy charred chicken thighs with a side of rice and beans from a man who was grilling in a converted oil drum on the side of the road just outside of Ocho Rios, Jamaica.

My traveling partner looked at me quizzically, like I had lost my mind, as if to say, “You’re really going to eat chicken cooked on the roadside by a stranger with likely no culinary training or license?” Had I a moment to come up for air from stuffing my face with chicken, I just might have ordered him his own plate.

I fell hard for Jerk Chicken in that moment. It’s not been easy to find a match here at home. There’s something about the grilling process that I cannot tame. Pretty sure my neighbors would have me arrested if I started building my own homemade grill in the backyard.

But, I’ve been making this Jerk Chicken recipe for years, and now that it’s been swapped over to a low carb and keto-friendly version, it’s back on the menu again. I couldn’t be happier, but I will always long for my oil drum grilled jerk chicken on the roadside. Serve this with my Toasted Coconut Ginger Cauliflower Rice and you’ll be in low carb Carribbean heaven.

How to Make Low Carb Grilled Jamaican Jerk Chicken

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup white onion, coarsely chopped
  • 4 green onions, roughly chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 2 tsp fresh ginger, roughly chopped
  • 3 habanero chilies, seeded, stemmed, and chopped
  • 1/3 cup lime juice (about 4-5 limes)
  • 3 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tbsp brown erythritol
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 3 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2-2.5 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs

Keto Jerk Chicken Recipe Tips & Tricks

Throw it all into a blender. Yup. Really. It’s not much more complicated than that. However, you’ve got to let it marinate. This is not one of those processes that should be sped up. I let my chicken sit for a full 24 hours. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Jerk Chicken doesn’t get juicy and flavorful in under one either.

Don’t do chicken thighs? Swap it out. I know plenty of people that are turned off by chicken thighs. I’m not sure why–you’re missing out–but, if you can’t stand them, feel free to do chicken breasts or drumsticks. The cut doesn’t matter. It’s all about the process.

Do I have to use a charcoal grill? No,, but man, do those crispy, burnt ends taste good. There is nothing like ’em. If you don’t grill though, this recipe can be made in doors. I recommend a 400 degree oven and putting the marinated chicken on top of a wire baking rack over a foil lined sheet pan. You’ll want to create some airflow underneath the chicken. Flip the chicken after about 20 minutes. You should have some yummy baked jerk chicken in about 40 minutes.

Other Keto Low Carb Chicken Recipes you’ll love

Grilled Jamaican Jerk Chicken
Yield: 8 servings

Grilled Jamaican Jerk Chicken

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Marinate: 1 days
Total Time: 1 days 25 minutes

A low carb, keto-friendly, and gluten-free version of the classic Jamaican spicy and savory marinated chicken that is cooked over an open flame.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup white onion, coarsely chopped
  • 4 green onions, roughly chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 2 tsp fresh ginger, roughly chopped
  • 3 habanero chilies, seeded, stemmed, and chopped
  • 1/3 cup lime juice (about 4-5 limes)
  • 3 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tbsp brown erythritol
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 3 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2-2.5 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients minus the chicken into a blender carafe. Puree until the mixture is thick and smooth with no chunks.
  2. Place chicken into a gallon sized zip top bag. Pour in marinade and massage bag to ensure that all the chicken is coated. Squeeze out any air and seal the bag. Marinate in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
  3. Remove chicken from the refrigerator at least 30 minutes prior to grilling so that it can return to room temperature. Remove from the bag. Dispose of extra marinade.
  4. On a hot grill, arrange the chicken, avoid crowding. Cook for about 20-25 minutes, flipping periodically. Chicken should reach 165 degrees internally. Serve with extra green onions and lime wedges.

Notes

Chicken can be oven roasted if you do not have the capacity to grill. Heat to 400 degrees. Place chicken on a wire baking rack on top of a foil lined baking sheet. Cook for 40 minutes or until 165 degree internal temperature is reached. Flip once midway through cooking process.

Did you make this recipe? Let me know how it turned out! Leave a comment below and make sure to join the @noshinandnumnums community on instagram or facebook and tag me in your cooking pictures! 

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5 Comments

  1. I fell in love with jerk seasoning when I was in Jamaica in the 1970’s. This recipe sounds really delicious!

  2. I’ve never tried jerk chicken but you’ve inspired me to try it! We have an open fireplace in the garden kitchen which we use for grilling. Can’t wait for our next bbq!

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