Skip to content

Sweet and Spicy Jerk Shrimp

Sweet and Spicy Jerk Shrimp

Are you a fan of bold flavors and crave a little kick in your meals? Look no further than sweet and spicy jerk shrimp! This mouthwatering dish is a fusion of Caribbean and African flavors that will tantalize your taste buds and leave you wanting more. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or simply looking to spice up your weeknight dinner routine, sweet and spicy jerk shrimp is a must-try. In this article, we will explore the origins of jerk seasoning, the key ingredients that make this dish so flavorful, and some tips for cooking the perfect jerk shrimp. Get ready for a flavor explosion!

The Origins of Jerk Seasoning

Before we dive into the deliciousness of sweet and spicy jerk shrimp, let’s take a moment to appreciate the history behind jerk seasoning. The term “jerk” refers to a cooking method that originated in Jamaica. It involves marinating meat, typically pork or chicken, in a spicy blend of herbs and spices. The main ingredient in jerk seasoning is scotch bonnet peppers, which are known for their fiery heat. The flavors of jerk seasoning are bold, complex, and truly unique.

The Key Ingredients

Now that we understand the roots of jerk seasoning, let’s talk about the key ingredients that make sweet and spicy jerk shrimp so irresistible. The star of the show is, of course, the shrimp. Opt for large, succulent shrimp that will soak up all the flavors of the marinade. In addition to the shrimp, you will need a medley of spices such as allspice, thyme, cinnamon, and nutmeg. These spices add warmth and depth to the dish. To balance out the heat, we’ll add a touch of sweetness with brown sugar or honey. And don’t forget the scotch bonnet peppers for that signature jerk flavor!

Cooking Tips

Now that we have our ingredients ready, let’s talk about some tips for cooking the perfect sweet and spicy jerk shrimp. First, make sure to marinate the shrimp for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to penetrate. You can also marinate the shrimp overnight for an even more intense flavor. When it comes to cooking the shrimp, a hot grill or a sizzling skillet are both excellent options. The high heat will give the shrimp a beautiful char and enhance the flavors of the jerk marinade. Finally, be sure not to overcook the shrimp. They should be tender and juicy, not rubbery.

Final Thoughts

Sweet and spicy jerk shrimp is a culinary adventure that will transport you to the vibrant streets of Jamaica. The combination of heat, sweetness, and aromatic spices creates a symphony of flavors that is simply irresistible. So why not take a break from your usual go-to recipes and give sweet and spicy jerk shrimp a try? Your taste buds will thank you!

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I use chicken instead of shrimp?

Absolutely! While this article focuses on shrimp, you can certainly use chicken as a substitute. The marinade and cooking instructions remain the same. Adjust the cooking time accordingly to ensure the chicken is fully cooked.

2. How spicy is jerk seasoning?

Jerk seasoning can be quite spicy, especially if you include scotch bonnet peppers. However, you can adjust the level of heat to your preference by adding more or less peppers. If you prefer a milder flavor, you can also substitute jalapeno peppers.

3. Can I make jerk shrimp without a grill?

Definitely! While grilling adds a lovely smoky flavor, you can achieve delicious results using a skillet or even the oven. Simply cook the marinated shrimp on high heat until they are cooked through and slightly charred.

4. How long should I marinate the shrimp?

For optimal flavor, marinate the shrimp for at least 30 minutes. However, if you have the time, marinating them overnight will intensify the flavors even more.

5. Can I freeze jerk shrimp?

Yes, you can freeze jerk shrimp. Once cooked, allow the shrimp to cool completely before transferring them to an airtight container or freezer bag. They will keep well in the freezer for up to 3 months.

6. What can I serve with sweet and spicy jerk shrimp?

Jerk shrimp pairs well with a variety of side dishes. Consider serving it with coconut rice, grilled vegetables, or a fresh green salad. The vibrant flavors of the shrimp will complement these dishes beautifully.

7. Can I make jerk shrimp in advance?

While jerk shrimp is best enjoyed fresh, you can prepare the marinade in advance and marinate the shrimp overnight. This will save you time when it comes to cooking the shrimp. Just make sure to cook them right before serving for the best texture.

8. Can I use frozen shrimp for this recipe?

Yes, you can use frozen shrimp for this recipe. Thaw the shrimp thoroughly before marinating and cooking. This can be done by placing the shrimp in the refrigerator overnight or running them under cold water until they are completely thawed.

Sweet and Spicy Jerk Shrimp compressed image1

Sweet and Spicy Jerk Shrimp

No ratings yet
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course dinner
Cuisine American
Servings 4


  • 1 ½ pounds of large shrimp , with shells removed
  • 1 can (20 ounces) of pineapple slices , drained and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 red bell peppers , thinly sliced
  • 1 large red onion , sliced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper , halved lengthwise, seeds removed, and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of Jamaican jerk seasoning
  • ½ cup of freshly chopped cilantro
  • 2 cups of cooked brown rice (hot)
  • 1 lime , cut into wedges


  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
  • Line two 10x15-inch baking pans with foil.
  • Peel and devein the shrimp, leaving the tails intact if desired.
  • Rinse the shrimp and pat them dry.
  • In a large bowl, gently toss the shrimp together with the pineapple, bell peppers, red onion, jalapeno, oil, and jerk seasoning.
  • Divide the mixture between the prepared pans.
  • Roast in the preheated oven for about 15 minutes, or until the shrimp are opaque.
  • Sprinkle the dish with cilantro.
  • Serve with brown rice and lime wedges.
  • If using frozen shrimp, make sure to thaw them before using.
Keyword Bell, Canned, dinner, Dishes, Food, Fruit, Fruits, Ideas, Jerk, Main, Meal, More, Peppers, Pineapples, Red, Seafood, Shrimp, Spice
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Hi, I am April & Welcome to my food blog!

Thank you for visiting my blog. We share delicious recipes to make your meals nourishing and fun. Experimenting in the kitchen and cooking is my joy!


Recent Recipes

Never Miss A Recipe!

Join thousands of subscribers and get our best recipes delivered each week!

Table of Contents