Jerk Chicken Pasta – Let your tastebuds take you to the beautiful Caribbean islands with my chicken pasta recipe bearing the iconic flavors of Bahama Breeze Jerk Chicken Pasta. Including the complex flavors from homemade Jerk seasoning, aromatics, and bell peppers. Incredibly creamy and cheesy, too, for the perfect comfort food indulgence.
Are you currently craving Bahama Breeze’s Jerk Chicken Pasta? Because I am! So it’s good I still had some homemade Jerk seasoning left to recreate this Jamaican-inspired pasta recipe. And boy, it was so good! Better than the restaurant, too.
So, it’s your time to recreate this pasta recipe to satisfy your comfort food craving. Be sure to read everything because I will be including detailed instructions, ingredients substitutes, tips, and many more. 😘
The Beauty of Jerk Seasoning
This jerk chicken pasta delivers a Caribbean fusion of flavors reflected in its creamy sauce infused with Jerk Seasoning. The variety of colors from bell peppers and fresh herbs make it more than aesthetically appealing; it’s also incredibly mouthwatering.
This dish is inspired by rasta pasta, the creation of international chef Lorraine Washington back in 1986. The pasta dish was made with colorful bell peppers and tagliatelle, prompting them to name it “Rasta” because of its close resemblance to the Rastafarians and their dreadlocks.
Besides Jerk Seasoning, all the other ingredients are within your arm’s reach. So, it’s pretty straightforward to cook this dish again and again. Oh yes!
- Pasta – It doesn’t matter what pasta you use; you can use whatever you have on hand, like penne, rotini, spaghetti, etc.
- Chicken – Slice it thinly and pound it to absorb flavors more quickly. You can use any piece of the chicken you like, but boneless is preferred.
- Jerk Seasoning – It’s the key ingredient to our pasta recipe, so don’t skip it. It gives our dish its iconic Jamaican flavor.
- Aromatics – Any dish tastes much better with sauteed onion, garlic, and thyme. Well, they are called aromatics for a reason.
- Bell Peppers – I used different colors of bell peppers to make our dish more enticing and inviting.
- The Sauce – Worchestershire sauce, heavy cream, chicken stock, and cheese make the pasta sauce extra flavorful with its rich umami flavors.
How to Make Jerk Chicken Pasta
Make the Pasta and Chicken
- Cook the Pasta – Cook pasta in a large pot, according to box instructions. Salt according to taste, drain, and set aside.
- Season the Chicken – Place chicken thighs in a medium bowl, then generously season the chicken with salt and jerk seasoning, ensuring all sides of the chicken are covered with the spice. (Photo 1)
- Marinate – Cover chicken with a transparent plastic wrap and let it marinate for about 30 minutes or up to 24 hours.
- Sear the Chicken Heat a heavy cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add olive oil. Using tongs, add the chicken and sear both sides until golden or until fully cooked and the juice from the chicken runs clear, about 7-10 minutes on each side, depending on the chicken breasts’ thickness. Remove from the pan, place on a plate, and set aside. (Photo 2)
Make the Sauce
- Saute – Add onions, garlic, thyme, and peppers to the pan, stirring for about 2-3 minutes, occasionally. (Photos 3-5)
- Add Seasoning – Season with jerk season and Worcestershire and continue stirring for about 1 minute.
- Simmer – Pour in heavy cream and chicken stock, bring it to a boil, then simmer for about 3-4 minutes. Add parmesan cheese and cooked pasta. Toss and cook for another minute. Slice prepared chicken and set aside. (Photo 6)
- Serve – Finally, add sliced chicken to the pasta, then garnish with parsley and serve.
- Meat Options – Aside from chicken and shrimp, you can also try it with turkey, pork, beef, and other seafood like mussels, scallops, crab, and squid.
- Jerk Seasoning Substitute – If you have Creole seasoning at home, just add allspice, cayenne, and cinnamon to it, and it’ll do the trick. However, expect the taste will be a little different.
- Tomato-Based Sauce – If you want to shake things a bit, you’ll want to try it with some tomato sauce to give it a little kick of tang.
- Vegetarian Jerk Pasta – Switch the meat out for tofu, mushrooms, or another vegetarian substitute. For a vegan version, sub coconut milk and vegan cheese for the dairy.
Tips and Tricks
- Instead of making chicken from scratch, you can repurpose your leftover roasted chicken or grilled meats to add to your jerk pasta.
- Don’t overcook your pasta. Your best bet is to follow the instructions written in the package for al dente because you’ll be reheating it in the final stretch.
- Add more cayenne or pepper flakes to make the jerk pasta spicier.
- You can’t go wrong with more cheese.
I recommend marinating the chicken a day before to give it more time to absorb the jerk flavors. You can also make the sauce ahead and store it in the fridge, covered. But I suggest cooking the pasta on the day of serving, so it’ll be firm and not mushy.
Serving and Storage Instructions
What could be more satisfying than pairing our fresh-off-the-stove pasta with garlicky bread? They are the best duo ever! You’ll love it with roasted veggies and some salad, too.
You can store your leftover jerk chicken pasta in an airtight container, and it’ll stay fresh for 4 days in the fridge. Although possible, I still don’t recommend freezing the jerk pasta because of its dairy content. It will retain its flavor, but the texture may be grainy after freezing.
Reheat in a pan on a stovetop, occasionally stirring, until warmed through. And if the pasta gets too dry, you may add chicken broth or heavy cream. You can also heat a single pasta serving with jerk sauce in a microwave.
Tip: I highly recommend storing the pasta and the sauce separately to prevent the pasta from getting soggy.
It’s a pasta recipe with chicken, bell peppers, cream, jerk seasoning, pasta, and meat. It’s a colorful dish because it uses different colors of bell peppers.
Jerk seasoning is a spice blend from Jamaica that contains a fantastic mix of herbs and spices, such as chili, cayenne, paprika, thyme, allspice, and cinnamon. So, imagine the incredible blast of flavors once you season our chicken and pasta sauce with this Jamaican seasoning.
Although jerk seasoning contains chili flakes and cayenne, the amount needed in the recipe is not enough to make the whole dish spicy. But if you want spicier, add some diced jalapenos or scotch bonnet peppers to the sauce. A dash of chili flakes or cayenne powder works, too.
What to Serve with Jerk Chicken Pasta
Although our pasta recipe is already a complete meal on its own, you’ll love it with a good side dish to balance out the flavors.
- Sauteed Zucchinis
- Garlic Breadsticks
- Bacon-Wrapped Asparagus
- Roasted Carrots and Potatoes
More Incredible Jerk Recipes to Try
- Jamaican Jerk Chicken
- Caribbean Jerk Barbecue Ribs
- Grilled Jerk Chicken Tacos
- Jerk Shrimp
- Cajun-Stuffed Chicken
You can do so many things with Jerk Seasoning because it suits any meat or veggie. Are you hungry for even more spicy soul-food recipes? Then subscribe to my newsletter to keep up to date. ❤️
Watch How to Make It
Jerk Chicken Pasta
Let your tastebuds take you to a beautiful Caribbean island with my chicken pasta recipe bearing the iconic flavors of Bahama Breeze Jerk Chicken Pasta, including the complex flavors from homemade Jerk seasoning, aromatics, and bell peppers. Incredibly creamy and cheesy, too, for the perfect comfort food indulgence.
Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Total: 1 hr
Cook pasta in a large pot according to box instructions. Salt according to taste, drain, and set aside.
Place chicken thighs in a medium bowl, then generously season them with salt and jerk seasoning, ensuring all sides of the chicken are covered with the spice. Cover chicken with a transparent plastic wrap and let it marinate for about 30 minutes or up to 24 hours.
Heat a heavy cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add olive oil. Using tongs, add the chicken and sear both sides until golden or fully cooked, and the juice from the chicken runs clear, 7-10 minutes on each side, depending on the thickness of the chicken breast. Remove from the pan, place on a plate, and set aside.
Add onions, garlic, thyme, and peppers (and optional spinach if you desire) to the pan, stirring for 2-3 minutes occasionally. Season with jerk season and Worcestershire and continue stirring for about a minute.
Pour in the heavy cream and chicken stock, bring it to a boil, simmer for 3-4 minutes, then add parmesan cheese and cooked pasta. Toss and cook for another minute.
Finally, slice prepared chicken and place on pasta, garnish with parsley and serve.
Tips & Notes:
- Instead of chicken, you can also repurpose your leftover roasted chicken or grilled meats to add to your jerk pasta.
- Don’t overcook your pasta. Your best bet is to follow the instructions written in the package.
- Add more cayenne or pepper flakes to make the jerk pasta spicier.
- You can’t go wrong with adding more cheese.
- Please keep in mind that the nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary significantly based on the products used in the recipe.
Serving: 250g| Calories: 547kcal (27%)| Carbohydrates: 58g (19%)| Protein: 41g (82%)| Fat: 17g (26%)| Saturated Fat: 5g (31%)| Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g| Monounsaturated Fat: 8g| Trans Fat: 1g| Cholesterol: 86mg (29%)| Sodium: 999mg (43%)| Potassium: 1032mg (29%)| Fiber: 6g (25%)| Sugar: 10g (11%)| Vitamin A: 3761IU (75%)| Vitamin C: 107mg (130%)| Calcium: 312mg (31%)| Iron: 3mg (17%)
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