Make Ahead

Caribbean Jerk Chicken Chili with Black Beans

February  2, 2012
6 Ratings
  • Serves 4-6
Author Notes

This is my go-to recipe for chili cook-off contests. It's unique flavors set it apart from traditional chilis, without straying light years away from what people expect when they dig into a bowl of something called "chili." An added bonus: you cook it in your slow cooker (I have made it on the stove top, but it's flavors don't develop as deeply) so your house smells amazing all day.

This recipe came about via my husband's suggestion. The Joy Of Cooking has a recipe for Caribbean Black Bean chili that is quite good, but he (rightly) said it would be great with the inclusion of my mother's Caribbean Jerk Chicken. The recipes were fused, and this chili was born!

I hope you enjoy it as much as we do. —d_ribbens

What You'll Need
  • Chili
  • 2 can black beans
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 1/8 cup minced garlic
  • 1 minced habanero pepper (HOT, please wear gloves)
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 3 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1.5 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • zest of one orange
  • zest of one lime
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 tablespoon dried leaf thyme
  • 3/4 tablespoon cayanne pepper
  • 3/4 tablespoon ground sage
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • juice of two oranges
  • juice of one lime
  • 28 ounces crushed tomatoes
  • 2-3 cups water
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • Toppings
  • sour cream
  • shredded mexican cheese
  • chopped cilantro
  • chopped green onions
  • lime wedges
  • cooked rice
  1. Make the spice mix. Add chili powder, cumin, sugar, salt, black pepper, allspice, thyme, cayenne pepper, sage, nutmeg, and cinnamon together in a bowl and stir until well combined.
  2. Turn on a medium sized slow cooker and set to high. Add the diced onions, habanero, and garlic to the slow cooker. If you are choosing to cook on the stove top, cook 5-10 minutes in 1/4 c of olive oil. *Note: Habanero peppers are very spicy. Please take care to use gloves when mincing. Removal of seeds will help attenuate the heat. Alternatively you may use jalapeno peppers if you do not like spicy food.
  3. Add the spice mix to the slow cooker. Zest the orange and the lime and add. Juice the oranges and lime and add. Stir to incorporate.
  4. Add the black beans, crushed tomatoes, water, and chicken breasts to the slow cooker. Cook, covered, 3-4 hours on high (or 7-8 hours on low). Check liquid levels and adjust with more water if necessary.
  5. When chili has cooked 3-4 hours, remove the chicken breasts and shred before returning to chili.
  6. Serve over rice if desired, garnished with sour cream, cheese, cilantro, green onions, and lime wedges.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • d_ribbens
  • Andrew Misiak
    Andrew Misiak

3 Reviews

Andrew M. August 14, 2018
July 27, 2018 will remain as a successfully award winning day for me and my team from work. In Bonnyville, Alberta we entered our adapted recipe to 28 times and served up approximately 43 litres of this chili 🌶 to the judges and public for the town’s Annual Chili Cookoff. This recipe won the following trophies 🏆 from a field of 16 business competitors:
* Tastiest
* People’s Choice
* Sense-Sational, BEST OVERALL!

The Bonnyville Nouvelle newspaper reported on the event, and published the whole Chili Cookoff Story in the 31 July edition of the newspaper.

What a great chili! I was so thrilled, and honoured to have entered this recipe ❤️
d_ribbens February 3, 2012
Also, please use 3/4 teaspoon of cayanne pepper and sage, not tablespoons. Another typo. That will teach me to input recipes right before I go to bed!
d_ribbens February 2, 2012
For some reason, the recipe page is not reflecting my edits. Please do not use 4 c of black beans. Use 2.5 c instead. Consequently, adjust your water to 4-5 c. Thanks!