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Brown Stew Chicken

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This Jamaican Brown Stew Chicken is full of Caribbean flavor and a perfect main dish for any day of the week. It’s the perfect stewed chicken dish when you want to have a taste of the islands.

brown stew chicken in pot with blue towel behind it

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We had brown stewed chicken quite often growing up and it quickly became one of my favorite stew recipes. It was on a weekly rotation in our house and we would have it more often than we had these amazing oxtails

Brown stew chicken takes a little more time than most traditional stew recipes you will find. The meat is washed and then marinated in “seasoning” which includes chopped aromatics and a few dry seasonings. The meat is then lightly browned on the stovetop or in the oven, and then stewed for about 30-40 minutes until the meat is fall off the bone tender. 

I’ve ventured from my parent’s recipe by using boneless and skinless chicken, mainly because I’m not a fan of chicken skin in stew. You could use chicken with skin and bone on it, just expect to cook it longer. 

How to Make Brown Stew Chicken

First, rinse your chicken with some vinegar and water. I’m sure some will wonder why. This is just a rule from my mom and almost anyone from the Caribbean. So I do it. No questions asked. 

Place your chicken pieces in a bowl along with the brown sugar, browning, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, paprika, dried thyme, black pepper, allspice, garlic cloves, ginger, onions, and peppers. That’s a lot, but oh so necessary if you want those deep flavors. Mix ingredients, making sure the chicken is fully covered. Cover and place in the fridge and allow the meat to marinate for at least 1 hour. If you can, allow it to marinate overnight. 

raw chicken with peppers, onions, and other seasonings in glass bowl

When ready to cook, remove the onions, peppers, garlic, and ginger from the chicken and place in a separate bowl.

two glass bowls, one with peppers and onions and the other with raw chicken

Heat a large skillet over medium heat, add oil, and then add chicken pieces and brown on each side, for about 2 minutes. 

chicken being browned in pan

Remove chicken and add reserved seasonings to the pot and sauté until softened, for about 5 minutes.

peppers and onions being browned in pan

Add chicken back to skillet along with chicken broth, water, and ketchup. Bring mixture to a simmer and cover and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove cover and simmer for an additional 10 minutes, to reduce the gravy.

chicken pieces cooking in pot

Serve and enjoy. 

Recipes to serve with:

Other Jamaican Recipes to Try:

or have a look at all my Caribbean inspired recipes.

brown stew chicken in pan
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5 from 2 votes

Brown Stew Chicken

This Jamaican Brown Stew Chicken is full of Caribbean flavor and a perfect main dish for any day of the week. It’s the perfect stewed chicken dish when you want to have a taste of the islands.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Caribbean
Keyword brown stew chicken, jamaican brown stew chicken
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
1 hour
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 6 people
Calories 626kcal
Author Tanya

Ingredients

  • 3 lbs chicken thighs boneless, skinless
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tsp browning
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp salt or to taste
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp allspice
  • 1 yellow onion chopped
  • 3 spring onions chopped
  • ½ green pepper chopped
  • ½ red pepper chopped
  • 1 scotch bonnet seeds removed and chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves chopped
  • 1 inch ginger chopped
  • ¼ cup oil
  • 2 Tbsp ketchup
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • ½ cup water

Instructions

  • Add chicken, brown sugar, browning, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, paprika, dried thyme, black pepper, allspice, onions, green pepper, red pepper, scotch bonnet, garlic cloves, and ginger to a bowl and mix, rubbing seasoning into the chicken. Cover and marinate in the fridge for at least 1 hour or overnight.
  • Remove peppers, onions, garlic, ginger and thyme from chicken and set aside. Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat and add chicken, brown for about 1-2 minutes per side. Remove chicken and add reserved onions and peppers to the skillet and sauté until softened, for about 5 minutes. Add chicken back to skillet along with chicken broth, water, and ketchup.
  • Bring mixture to a simmer and cover and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove cover and simmer for an additional 10 minutes, to reduce the gravy. Serve and enjoy.

Notes

  • Brown stew chicken is traditionally cooked with a whole chicken that has been chopped into smaller pieces. Feel free to skip this by using chicken thighs or legs.
  • With any stew, dark meat works best as chicken breast can overcook and dry out. Dark meat also has more flavor. I generally opt for chicken thighs, chicken legs, and chicken wings when it comes to this recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 626kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 38g | Fat: 47g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 222mg | Sodium: 1154mg | Potassium: 633mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 818IU | Vitamin C: 29mg | Calcium: 39mg | Iron: 2mg
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Recipe Rating




Alicia Bond

Friday 15th of January 2021

Yummm .... I made it in the Dutch oven and it was perfect. There was a year where I lived on Jamaican food truck stew chicken, but this is the first time I’ve tried it at home, and it was just right. Great meal any night of the week! Thank you!

Jcki

Saturday 9th of January 2021

I really want to try this recipe as my husband loves brown stew chicken and absolutely loves your oxtails recipe. However he is not a fan of dark meat. How long would you recommend cooking this recipe if I used bone in chicken breast, wings, and legs (legs for me) without overcooking the meal?

Tanya

Sunday 10th of January 2021

Hi, It should only take about 35-40 minutes to cook the chicken with the bone-on. The breast will be fine, I just prefer not to use them as the dark meat is just more succulent to me.

Veronica

Thursday 31st of December 2020

This recipe is so delicious 🤤. I am Puerto Rican woman married to a JA man. He thought this was slamming! I’ve made it 3 times already with and without the scotch bonnet pepper as my little ones can’t handle the heat yet. Your rice and peas recipe is wonderful too! Just made both for our New Years Eve dinner along with sweet and green plantains. Thank you for sharing and God Bless You! Here’s to a happy and healthy 2021!

Tanya

Thursday 31st of December 2020

Thanks so much for the feedback Veronica :) So glad you all like the recipe and Happy New Year :)

Karen

Saturday 21st of November 2020

This recipe is delicious and simple! A plus is that I had all the ingredients in the house. Thank you

Tanya

Sunday 22nd of November 2020

Thank you Karen! So glad you like the recipe.

Crystal

Friday 20th of November 2020

I've made two of your recipes already and can't stop! They're delicious. I'm curious for this one —can I make this in the Instant Pot? What would you suggest for timing?

Kay

Sunday 22nd of November 2020

@Tanya, so I understand, for skinless/boneless, pressure cook for 10mins then sautéed for 10-15mins. Love this recipe. Cooking now and the smell is everything 😌☺️

Tanya

Saturday 21st of November 2020

Hi Crystal, thank you :) You can make it in the IP but I would suggest letting it sauté after pressure cooking to reduce the sauce. It will release a ton of liquid during pressure cooking and not have the same depth of flavor unless you reduce it after pressure cooking. I would cook boneless thighs for 10 minutes in the IP, bone-in I do for 20. Sauté for 10-15 minutes after pressure cooking to give the sauce some body.