The Best Jerk Chicken In Miami guide image


The Best Jerk Chicken In Miami

It’s spicy. It’s smoky. And it’s one of the best things you can eat in Miami.

There are a lot of things you can do to chicken to make it taste good. But very few of those techniques produce a result as wonderful as jerk chicken—the classic Jamaican staple that involves vigorously rubbing a bird down with a small party of herbs, spices, and scotch bonnet peppers before grilling and smoking it. The result is a smoky, spicy, perfectly-charred symphony of tender meat that you can tear apart with your fingers. Thankfully, Miami is a city with a lot of outstanding Jamaican and Caribbean restaurants where jerk chicken is front and center on the menu.


B & M Market And Roti Shop  imageoverride image

B & M Market and Roti Shop


219 NE 79th St, Miami
View WebsiteEarn 3X Points

B&M Market makes some of the best West Indian food Miami has to offer. This place is on 79th Street and is part restaurant/part bodega. The standard jerk chicken here is awesome, but the real move is to order the jerk chicken roti. Do that and you’ll get chunks of B&M’s spicy jerk chicken wrapped inside an unbelievably good roti. The whole thing looks a little like a burrito and is quite simply one of the best things you can eat in Miami.

photo credit: Cleveland Jennings

Clive’s Cafe imageoverride image

Clive's Cafe

Clive’s is one of the best Jamaican restaurants in the city. We hope you know this already, but if you don’t, then make plans to visit the Little Haiti restaurant very soon. And whether it’s your first or 50th visit to Clive’s, you can’t go wrong with the jerk chicken. They nail this dish, as they do with pretty much everything they make. The chicken is smoky and the charred jerk rub holds the perfect amount of spice from the scotch bonnet peppers. The best part, though, is that every single bite is about as juicy and tender as chicken can be.

Sign up for our newsletter.

Be the first to get expert restaurant recommendations for every situation right in your inbox.

By signing up, I agree to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.

This North Miami Beach takeout operation makes an excellent jerk chicken—both a standard version as well as in sandwich form, and shredded in pasta. But their traditional jerk chicken is really good. It’s got a mild heat to it, tender meat that falls right off the bone, and a dark spice rub that goes heavy on the allspice. The sides—like rice and peas and plantains—are on point too. But do yourself a favor and look at the rest of Fatboy's online menu before you check out, because they have other great dishes too, like fried wings and fluffy conch fritters.

Unlike a lot of the more casual options on this guide, Dukunoo is a restaurant where you can sit down, have a few cocktails, chat over loud music, and enjoy some of the best jerk chicken in Miami. Their jerk is really great, with a spice that lingers on your lips and flavorful meat that’s been cut into manageable chunks. Because the cost of operating a restaurant in Wynwood is (we assume) comparable to a trip to Mars, you’ll be paying more here than for most jerk chicken. It’s about $25 for a half chicken, two festivals (slightly sweet fried dough), and some slaw. But it can serve about two and is a top-three jerk chicken in Miami.

On a nice day, if you are even remotely in the mood for Caribbean food, go to Naomi’s. But even if you don’t have time to eat your food in the lovely little courtyard—where there’s a garden, a few roosters, and scattered furniture—this place is still worth the trip, especially if you’re looking for jerk chicken. Naomi’s version is very good, nicely charred, and quite juicy since they only use dark meat. It comes with two sides, and we usually go with a big pile of rice and beans and plantains.

This great little restaurant in North Miami is quite easy to spot thanks to an exterior that sports the unmistakable green and yellow of the Jamaican flag. And as you can probably guess, they do Jamaican food here, and that includes jerk chicken. It’s a really delicious version, served with a big pile of rice and beans and plantains. It's not as spicy as some of the ones on this guide, but Cliff’s should still be on your radar for jerk chicken, ackee and saltfish, oxtail, and more.

In a huge strip mall in northeast Kendall, you’ll find Jamaica Kitchen, a narrow and mostly to-go spot with a few outdoor tables. Jamaica Kitchen is a Chinese-Jamaican restaurant, a delicious and not uncommon pairing in Jamaica, but you’ll still find a classic jerk chicken here. Ours was a little light on spice, but still smoky and tender enough to rip apart with nothing more than our fingers. Grab a peanut punch on your way out and you’ve got yourself a fantastic lunch or dinner.

The majority of Banana Hut is taken up by a huge charcoal pit that runs the length of the small restaurant. And that charcoal pit certainly earns every inch of the real estate it takes up because it’s responsible for some really good jerk chicken. This one hits all the notes we’ve come to expect from a proper jerk: smoky, spicey, juicy—even the chunks of white meat that are tossed in there. Banana Hut is in South Miami, about a half-hour from Downtown, but it deserves to be on your radar whether you live nearby or just happen to be passing through, maybe on the way back from hanging out with flamingos at the nearby Zoo Miami.

King Jerk does not taste like the rest of the jerk chicken on this guide. The chicken coming from this Opa-locka food truck tastes more like Southern barbecue, very smoky and a little sweet. You can taste some whispers of jerk—maybe a little allspice, thyme, and garlic hanging out in the background—but don’t expect a big jerk punch like you might get with other versions. Yet, while we were considering whether or not to call this jerk chicken, we looked down at our plate and realized we ate the whole thing in like 47 seconds. Because whatever you want to call it or not call it, it’s incredibly juicy, flavorful, and just really, really good chicken.

Chase Sapphire Card Ad

Suggested Reading

10 Restaurants Perfect For A Day Trip Outside Miami  guide image
10 Restaurants Perfect For A Day Trip Outside Miami

South Florida spots that are well worth a 45-minute drive.

The Best Dumplings In Miami  guide image

Soup dumplings, shumai, and more delicious little packages of joy.

10 Great Cuban Pizzas To Try Around Miami guide image

Welcome to the wonderful world of Cuban pizza.

5 Great Caribbean-Style Roti Spots In Miami  guide image

There are a lot of great places to get roti in Miami, but these are five of our favorites.

Infatuation Logo
2023 © The Infatuation Inc. All Rights Reserved.


Get it on Google PlayDownload on the App Store