This dish is my ode to Jamaica. A bright, flavorful curry chicken stew with chicken thighs, butternut squash and carrots, simmered in coconut milk and curry spices, with rum mango. This is a stew I love to make all year round.
Imagine you are floating in the crystal clear waters of the Caribbean, relaxing to the rhythm of Reggae music and sipping an ice cold fruity rum drink. The whole beautiful day lies ahead of you, with nothing to do but enjoy your surroundings – the turquoise sea, swaying palm trees, a good book, something bright and spicy for dinner… That’s how I would describe Jamaica. It’s one of my family’s favorite vacation destinations.
Food has its own special way of transporting us to far away places, and this curried chicken stew with rum and mango takes me right to Jamaica.
In Jamaica you’re more likely to find curry goat on the menu than curry chicken. It’s one of the most popular dishes on the island. In fact, when I was searching through cookbooks for ideas, it was a tempting curry goat with rum and mango that inspired this curry chicken stew recipe. Goats are I wasn’t sure goat would be readily available to all of my followers so I decided to go more mainstream and make it with chicken thighs.
All the ingredients in this dish are readily available year-round. So when you want a little Island flavor on your table, this curry chicken stew will do the trick. in my opinion we can always use a little flavor of the Caribbean in our lives!
HOW TO MAKE JAMAICAN CURRY CHICKEN STEW
The flavor base for the stew is created by sautéing a generous amount of aromatic vegetables: onion, garlic and ginger, along with one hot and fruity Scotch Bonnet Chili.
STEP ONE: Season boneless, skinless chicken thighs with salt and pepper and brown them in the same pot you’ll use for the stew. Set the thighs aside and brown the aromatic vegetables: onions, garlic, ginger and chili pepper.
STEP TWO: Return the chicken to the pot with the aromatics. Add carrots, squash, chicken broth, coconut milk, rum, dry spices and fresh thyme. Your prep work is done. Set the pot in a preheated 350º oven for 35 minutes.
STEP THREE: When the stew comes out of the oven, shred the chicken and return it to the pot and stir in the fresh cubed mango.
STEP FOUR: Serve your curry chicken stew with fluffy rice to soak up all the delicious juices. Have fun with the toppings. I suggest including plenty of chopped scallions and crushed peanuts. And you can’t go wrong with adding toasted coconut flakes.
Other Delicious Chicken Stews to Try
- Guatemalan Green Chicken Stew
- Peanut Stew with Chicken from Ghana
- Korean Chicken Stew with Gochujang Sauce
- Moroccan Chicken Stew with Sweet Potatoes
- Easy Curried Butternut Squash
- Lentil and Chicken Stew
Here’s the Jamaican Curry Chicken Stew recipe. If you try this recipe I hope you’ll come back to leave a star rating and a comment. I’d love to know what you think.Print
Jamaican Curry Chicken Stew with Rum and Mango
Delicious curry chicken stew with lots of veggies and a curry-coconut-rum broth. A fantastic one pot dinner.
Adapted from a recipe in Caribbean Potluck
- Prep Time: 30 mins
- Cook Time: 1 hour
- Total Time: 1 hour 30 mins
- Yield: 6-8 1x
- Category: Stew
- Method: braise
- Cuisine: Jamaican
- 12–14 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 3 pounds)
- Coarse salt and fresh ground black pepper
- Olive oil for sautéing
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 2 1/2 tablespoons finely minced garlic (about 8 large cloves)
- 2 tablespoons peeled and finely minced ginger root (about a 2 inch piece)
- 1 Scotch bonnet chili, seeds removed (unless you love a lot of fire) and finely chopped (or substitute 1 Habanero Chili or a jalapeño, if you can find the other two)
- 2 tablespoons curry powder
- 1 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 14-ounce can coconut milk
- 1/4 cup white rum
- 4 cups low salt chicken broth (I recommend Swanson’s)
- 4 cups 1-inch cubes of butternut squash (from 1/2 large squash or 1 small squash)
- 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 4–5 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 cups diced fresh mango (1 large mango or two small – if you have left over mango you can sprinkle it on top as a garnish)
- Garnish and Accompaniment Ideas:
- 3/4 cup peanuts, roughly chopped
- Chopped mango
- 1 bunch scallions (6-7), trimmed and thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup toasted coconut flakes
Heat oven to 350ºF.
- Sprinkle chicken generously with salt and pepper on both sides. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat, in a large, oven-ready pot or dutch oven, with a lid. Brown chicken in batches, 3-4 minutes per side. Transfer pieces to a plate as they are browned.
- Add another tablespoon of oil to the pot and sauté the onion, stirring occasionally, until it starts to brown, 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger and chili pepper. Cook, stirring, for a minute or so, until they become fragrant. Add the curry powder and allspice. Cook, stirring, for 30 seconds or so to toast the spices. Add the coconut milk and rum. Cook for a minute or so, stirring, to loosen any browned bits stuck to the bottom of the pot. Add the chicken back to the pot, along with the 4 cups broth, squash, carrots, thyme sprigs and 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to a simmer. Turn off heat. Cover pot and transfer to the preheated oven. Cook for 35 minutes.
- Final Prep: Remove stew from the oven. Pull out the chicken pieces a few at a time – transferring them to a plate and shredding them by pulling them apart with two forks. Return shredded chicken to the pot. Add the cubed mango. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Serve with rice and your choice of toppings.
Keywords: one-pot curried chicken stew with butternut squash and mango
[First published Oct 2014. Updated Jan 2019 with added nutritional information and tweaks to the written post]