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Jerk Pork Jamaican Recipe

Carolee is a passionate writer with a love for learning and teaching. She is a published author, poet, blogger, and content creator.


Jerk Pork Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

15 min

1 hour

1 hour 15 min

2 - 6 depending on your appetite!

Jerk Pork Recipe Ingredients

  • 2 - 3 lbs pork, (roast, tenderloin, shoulder or any part of the pig you prefer)
  • 2 tablespoons whole pimento seeds
  • 4 - 6 pimento leaves
  • 2 stalks scallion
  • 1/2 large brown onion
  • 4 - 6 garlic cloves
  • 1 large branch fresh thyme
  • 1 inch ginger
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder, (optional)
  • 1 small scotch bonnet pepper
  • salt to taste


  1. Rinse and pat dry your pork. Pork should not be cut up but can be slit to get seasoning in between. Have your butcher cut the slab into no more than 3- 4 inch thickness.
  2. Now for the spice..................
  3. In a mortar or metal bowl use a pestle to grind pimento seeds. I find that wetting them makes it easier.
  4. To the bowl add the leaves and pound as well. See photo.
  5. Add garlic and crush to a paste.
  6. Grate ginger and add to bowl.
  7. Add scallion stalks and pound to a pulp.
  8. Add pepper and pound to a pulp
  9. Shred onion into bowl.
  10. Pound everything together to combine.
  11. Add nutmeg, cinnamon (optional) and salt. Your eyes should be watering by
  12. Hold thyme with both hand rub together to release some of the juices. Rub of extra thyme juice from your hands unto pork (waste nothing).
  13. Give one last pound to all your seasoning. Using hands make sure everything is combined and add salt. You can taste your seasoning and salt to your preference.
  14. Using fingers rub you pork thoroughly making sure to get some into the slits you have made.
  15. Marinate your pork until you are ready to grill or roast in the oven. You may do this 24 hours in advance.

Cooking your jerk pork

Authentically, the pork was roasted over a fire pit but as modern ways of cooking came along it was roasted on a grill and more recently in the oven.

If you use the traditional spice to flavor your meat, cooking it in the oven will give you the same taste.

Here is how to get the authentic taste from the oven.:

  • Preheat oven at 350 - 400 degrees
  • You can use a grill pan or flat baking tray. Line with aluminium foil and preheat the tray in the oven for 5 minutes.
  • Remove pan and place meat on it, you should hear it sizzle similar to placing it on a grill.
  • Place a couple pieces of pimento wood on the bottom of the oven. You should open the windows. The wood may start to smoke. To prepare the wood you need to strip their bark and pre-soak them in water.
  • Cook your pork for 20 minutes in the middle of the oven.
  • Turn the meat and cook for another ten minutes.
  • Then cover with aluminum foil and continue to cook another 20 minutes.
  • The meat should be tender by now so turn the oven to broil and cook until nice and brown.

Jerk spice origin

The spices used in this jerk pork recipe are the exact spices originally used in the traditional jerk or pit roasted pork. The main ingredients used are the pimento seeds and leaves.

Originally the pork was seasoned with pimento leaves, seeds, pepper and salt, then stored in a wooden or plastic barrel. This method of preserving meat was due to the lack or refrigerators in those days. Our grandfathers would take from the barrel whatever they needed to cook for each day but within a week the meat would start going bad so a new method was developed by placing the seasoned meat in mesh wire over the fireplace. This mesh wire was known as "kreng-kreng". This would smoke and slow cook the meat and so it would last longer.

Subsequently the spices were used to season pork and placed on pimento sticks over a pit fire. Other seasonings had been added to spice up the pork. These spices included nutmeg, cinnamon, garlic, thyme, onion and scallion. Some persons would also add cloves to this combination as well.

The modern jerk spice does not have the pimento leaves and have added a few other spices that are not quite original.

Comments on February 20, 2019:

I really enjoy your menue its the best.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on June 16, 2015:

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Hello Colin, this recipe is delicious. I hope you get a chance to try it.

Colin Garrow from Inverbervie, Scotland on June 16, 2015:

I don't eat a lot of meat these days, but this sounds just delicious. Great Hub, thanks for sharing.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on January 20, 2015:

Hello Capncrunch, thank you! I love jerk pork and chicken. We have even found ways of jerking other kinds of food such as fish, lobster, shrimp, goat and beef!

capncrunch from New Orleans on January 19, 2015:

I just recently tried Jerk Chicken at a restaurant. It was great! I would love to prepare the whole meal traditionally one day. When I think back to some of the traditions that changed in growing up, it brings me back to my earliest memories of childhood and it's wonderful to see you share your culture with us with something so yummy! Thank you

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on January 31, 2013:

Hello Newusedcarssacram, prok is quite delicious I must agree. Thanks for reading and commenting.

newusedcarssacram from Sacramento, CA, U.S.A on January 31, 2013:

Can there be anything more delicious than pork. There is no excuse for not trying this dish.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 27, 2012:

Hello FullOfLoveSites, I really hope you like it,let me know how it is for you. Thanks for stopping by.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 27, 2012:

Glad to hear you are okay Epi. Bob's music is

Love and hugs~~

FullOfLoveSites from United States on December 27, 2012:

I love pork! I know that I will love this dish. Thanks for sharing. Voted up and awesome. :)

epigramman on December 26, 2012:

..feeling good right now sweet Carolee - listening to the classic Bob Marley album 'Legend' - greatest hits here on Boxing day night 11:54pm Irie.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 26, 2012:

Hi Epi, just checking in a saw your wonderful comment. How was your Christmas day? I was so busy cooking for family I didn't even check my hub pages. I hope the season treats you well and that the new year will bring much prosperity and peace.

Warm wishes from the sunny island and lots of hugs to you.


epigramman on December 26, 2012:

...when you mentioned the original authentic Jamaican recipe - I just knew I had to read this righteous hub presentation from an authentic hub superstar and an authentic Jamaican beauty.

I will try this one day and let you know the results sweet Carolee but in the meantime I sit here on boxing day morning at 8:54am lake erie time canada and send you warm holiday wishes and continued health, happiness and prosperity for you and your family in the new year

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 05, 2012:

Hi Teaches, yes I think it is definitely worth the effort. I assure you it's nothing like you have ever had before. The spices are a unique blend that makes the meat really tasty.

Dianna Mendez on December 05, 2012:

Cardisa, the opening photo has me drooling. I have heard of jerk pork but never tried it. You have convinced me it is worth the effort!

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 03, 2012:

Hi Ruby,, try searching your local supermarket, they are pretty famous and export to the US. You can also ask for the dry jerk spice bu the wet spice is better, closer to the real thing. I hope you find it.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on December 03, 2012:

I love pork about any way. I prefer baking. I wonder where i can find walkerswood seasoning outside the internet? I guess i will Google. This looks delicious and not too difficult to do. Thank you..

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 03, 2012:

Hi Carol, do you have an Asian food store near you? If not you can get them from eBay or

carol stanley from Arizona on December 03, 2012:

I love this different and yet authentic way ...Now I just have to find pimento seeds.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 03, 2012:

LOL, Multiculturalsoul, you can pretend your sandwich is a roast pork sandwich!

JJ Murray from Roanoke, Virginia on December 03, 2012:

I should not have read this at lunchtime. My wimpy sandwich looks so tasteless right now.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 03, 2012:

Thanks Mhatter, so you are a pork lover too I see.

Martin Kloess from San Francisco on December 02, 2012:

Mmm Mmm... I'm there! Thank you

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 02, 2012:

Thanks Faith, I know a lot of people like our jerk recipes, so decided to share my Sunday dinner.

Faith Reaper from southern USA on December 02, 2012:

Woo, looks amazingly delicious. Thanks for the recipe and the added history behind the Jerk spice origin.

Voted up and sharing

In His love, Faith Reaper

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 02, 2012:

Hi Wtaylorjr2001, I would be happy to cook for you for free....I am such a showoff, the sheer pleasure of you enjoying my cooking and telling everyone about me would be

William H Taylor from Binghamton NY on December 02, 2012:

I am so hungry right now you can't imagine. Doctors have machines for tele-surgery, I wish there were machines for tele-cooking, I'd definitely hire you no matter the price.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 02, 2012:

You are most welcome my friend.

Susan Zutautas from Ontario, Canada on December 02, 2012:

Thanks Cardisa!

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 02, 2012:

Hi Susan, yes you can just put it in the I am trying to figure out what herb you have that taste similar. But the closest taste is clove so I suggest grinding about 8 - 12 cloves to go with the spices.

Susan Zutautas from Ontario, Canada on December 02, 2012:

Just put a pork roast in the oven .... darn :( Next time I'll try your recipe minus the pimento leaves.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 02, 2012:

Hey there Sunshine, you can use the wet spice from the bottle and try it. The pimento leaves might be a little hard to come by.

Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on December 02, 2012:

This looks yummilicious! I love Jerk, we had Jerked Chicken tonight, but our marinade is from the bottle...yours is authentic. I'll attempt it, one day. Thanks for sharing!

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 02, 2012:

Insightful Tiger, I made this today and my fiancé ate the whole You must try this. You can buy the jerk spice in the supermarket or online. It may be difficult to the the fresh pimento leaves or seed.

Insightful Tiger on December 02, 2012:

This looks delicious. I just had Jerk chicken yesterday. My Jamaican friend made it. Although I love pork, so I have to try this:)

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on December 02, 2012:

Hi Billy, I hope you can get the spices, if not just buy the pre-made jerk seasoning.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on December 02, 2012:

I am a big pork fan and this looks delicious. Count me in!

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