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Don’t be a Jerk Soup


  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 large carrot, diced or cut into coins
  • 1-3 Tbsp Jamaican jerk sauce *
  • 6 cups ham or chicken stock
  • ½ lb ham or chicken, diced (or omit if doing this with just veggies)
  • 1 cup corn kernels (fresh if you’re lucky enough to have them, but frozen works fine)
  • 4 cups chopped kale or other hearty green like chard
  • 1 ½ cups black-eyed peas
  • 1 tsp chopped thyme leaves
  • salt & pepper to taste


  • In a large pot, heat olive oil until shimmering. Add onion and cook until onion is translucent and golden, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, one minute or less. Add carrots and jerk seasoning and cook for one minute. Add stock, kale and meat, if using. Add corn and black-eyed peas and simmer for 15-20 minutes to allow flavors to develop. Add thyme and adjust salt and pepper to taste. And you’re done!


*I make my own jerk sauce, using Gourmet (RIP) magazine’s excellent recipe from 2002, available on epicurious.com here. It’s life changing, so I strongly urge you to try it out at least once. If you must though, you can also buy jarred Jamaican jerk sauce in most well-stocked grocery stores.