Honey Jerk Grilled Chicken Thighs

published Jun 18, 2022
Juneteenth
Honey Jerk Grilled Chicken Recipe

This honey jerk chicken is packed with flavor and grilled to perfection.

Serves4 to 6

Prep30 minutes

Cook20 minutes to 40 minutes

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Credit: Photo: Julia Gartland; Food Styling: Duncan Fitzpatrick

This honey jerk chicken is packed with flavor and grilled to perfection, making it the ultimate recipe for celebrating one of my favorite holidays: Juneteenth. Juneteenth marks the date in 1865 when Union troops arrived in Galveston and announced that the more than 250,000 enslaved people in the state of Texas were free. For years, this holiday has been celebrated with festivals, parades, and, of course, lots of delicious foods like this grilled honey jerk chicken!  

This chicken has the perfect amount of heat, thanks to the jerk seasoning, which is a traditional Jamaican blend of herbs and spices such as thyme, allspice, nutmeg, and scotch bonnet peppers. Jerk seasoning can be found in the international aisle of most grocery stores and it can be used in a variety of different recipes. My preferred brand is Walkerswood Traditional Jamaican Jerk Seasoning.

Garlic, honey, and balsamic vinegar are mixed with the jerk seasoning to make the easy marinade. To make sure the chicken absorbs the flavor, let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes or stick it in the fridge overnight. If you’ve got plans to break out the grill this Juneteenth, this recipe is sure to be a winner.

Credit: Photo: Julia Gartland; Food Styling: Duncan Fitzpatrick

Honey Jerk Grilled Chicken Recipe

This honey jerk chicken is packed with flavor and grilled to perfection.

Prep time 30 minutes

Cook time 20 minutes to 40 minutes

Serves 4 to 6

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • 2

    cloves garlic

  • 1/3 cup

    balsamic vinegar

  • 2 tablespoons

    mild jerk seasoning with salt, such as Walkerswood (see Recipe Note)

  • 2 tablespoons

    honey

  • 1/4 teaspoon

    ground ginger

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1/8 teaspoon

    freshly ground black pepper

  • 6

    bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs

  • Vegetable oil, for the grill grates

  • Chopped fresh parsley leaves, for garnish (optional)

Instructions

  1. Mince 2 garlic cloves and place in a large bowl. Add 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar, 2 tablespoons mild jerk seasoning, 2 tablespoons honey, 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper, and whisk to combine.

  2. Add 6 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs and toss to combine. Cover and let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes or refrigerate overnight. Meanwhile, heat an outdoor grill for direct, medium-high heat.

  3. Scrape the grill grates if needed, then brush with a paper towel dipped in vegetable oil. Place the chicken on the grill skin side-down and discard the remaining marinade. Cover and grill until the skin is browned, about 10 minutes. Flip the chicken. Cover and grill until the chicken is cooked through and registers at least 165ºF in the thickest part not touching bone, about 10 minutes more. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley leaves if desired.

Recipe Notes

Jerk seasoning: If using a salt-free jerk seasoning, increase the kosher salt amount to 1 teaspoon.

Roasting instructions: To cook the chicken in the oven, place the chicken thighs skin-side up in a broiler-safe baking dish and cover with aluminum foil. Bake in a 350°F oven until the chicken is cooked through, 35 to 40 minutes. Uncover and broil on high until the skin is browned, 2 to 3 minutes.

Storage: Leftover chicken can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 4 days. Reheat in a 350ºF oven until warmed through, 10 to 20 minutes.