One of my favorite foods in the world is Back-A-Yard’s Jamaican jerk chicken. I will never be able to make jerk sauce like that restaurant does and that’s okay with me. Sometimes it’s good to have a food you can only get in one place so you really appreciate it. That said, I do hate living so far away from Back-A-Yard, which is located in Menlo Park and San Jose. The other day I was having a serious hankering for some Back-A-Yard and decided to finally try making my own jerk.
The one and only problem with jerk is that it is just too spicy for my kids, so I wanted to figure out a way to make a kid-friendly jerk that still delighted my taste buds. The marinade/sauce I created and have made several times now is wonderful, although nothing at all like Back-A-Yard’s. It’s much sweeter with just a hint of heat. The kids devoured their chicken, as did Nate and I!
Will I ever be able to replicate the pure culinary joy that is Back-A-Yard’s Jamaican jerk? Nope. But I’m okay with that, and I ended up with this scrumptious recipe instead!
Note #1: While I was editing this post and getting the link for Back-A-Yard, I discovered that Back-A-Yard is going to start selling sauces and rubs. I AM SO HAPPY! I will be able to get their sauce in my own kitchen! I’ll be sure to include a link in my Friday Show and Tell post when their online store opens.
Note #2: I forgot to photograph the sauce. It’s brown and tastes delicious. There you go.
Note #3: You can find the recipe for the potatoes in the background of the first photo by clicking here. They’re amazing. Thought you should know.
- Juice from 1 lime
- ½ cup olive oil or canola oil
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 6 cloves fresh garlic
- 6 green onions, very roughly chopped
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon jerk seasoning
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 10-15 pieces bone-in chicken (I prefer legs and thighs)
- Combine all ingredients (except the chicken) in a blender. Blend until a sauce consistency.
- Reserve ½ cup of the sauce to serve with the chicken later.
- Place chicken pieces in a ziploc bag then pour sauce into the bag. Close bag, pushing air out, and marinate in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
- Grill chicken as usual over moderate heat, cooking until inside temperature reaches 160-165º F.
- Heat reserved sauce on the stovetop or in the microwave until warmed. Serve with grilled chicken.