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When in Jamaica; Saturdays Are For Soup

In Jamaican culture, Saturday soup is a beloved tradition that brings families and communities together. This hearty and soul-warming dish is packed with a medley of flavors and a variety of ingredients that make it a true delight. Saturday Soup ingredients tends to vary from household to household - from beef, chicken (neck and/or foot sometimes), goat innards (mannish wata), vegetables, fish etc. Not matter what kind of soup is made, the consensus is the same, Saturdays are for soup.

Join us as we take you on a culinary adventure and share an authentic Jamaican Saturday soup recipe that will transport you to the heart of Jamaica.


1 pound beef stew meat, cubed

1 pound chicken pieces (legs and thighs)

1 pound pork shoulder, cubed

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 large onion, diced

3 cloves of garlic, minced

2 carrots, peeled and chopped

2 potatoes, peeled and chopped

1 sweet potato, peeled and chopped

2 chocho (chayote), peeled and chopped

1 yam, peeled and chopped

1 plantain, peeled and sliced

1/2 cup yellow split peas, soaked overnight

1/2 cup red kidney beans, soaked overnight

1 sprig of fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)

2 scallions, chopped

1 scotch bonnet pepper (whole or pierced)

8 cups water

Salt and pepper to taste


Step 1: Preparing the Meats

In a large pot, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the beef, chicken, and pork pieces, and brown them on all sides. This process adds depth and richness to the soup's flavors. Once browned, remove the meats from the pot and set them aside.

Step 2: Sautéing the Aromatics

In the same pot, add the diced onion and minced garlic. Sauté them until the onions become translucent and fragrant. This creates a flavorful base for the soup.

Step 3: Building the Soup Base

Return the browned meats to the pot with the sautéed aromatics. Add the soaked yellow split peas, red kidney beans, thyme sprig, and scotch bonnet pepper. Pour in the water, ensuring that the ingredients are well-covered. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and cover the pot.

Step 4: Simmering and Skimming

Allow the soup to simmer gently for about 1 to 2 hours, skimming off any impurities or foam that may rise to the surface. This step ensures a clear and flavorful broth.

Step 5: Adding the Vegetables

Once the meats are tender, add the chopped carrots, potatoes, sweet potato, chocho (chayote), yam, and plantain to the pot. Stir gently to combine the ingredients. Continue to simmer the soup for an additional 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together and the vegetables to become tender.

Step 6: Adjusting the Seasoning

Taste the soup and season with salt and pepper according to your preference. Remember, the scotch bonnet pepper can add heat, so adjust the spiciness by removing it or leaving it in the soup.

Step 7: Serving

Ladle the flavorful Jamaican Saturday soup into bowls, ensuring that each portion has a generous amount of meats, vegetables, and broth. Garnish with chopped scallions for a pop of freshness. This hearty soup is perfect for sharing with family and friends.

Step 8: Enjoying the Warmth of Jamaican Cuisine

Take a moment to savor the rich flavors and comforting aroma of the Jamaican Saturday soup. Let it warm your soul and transport you to the vibrant and hospitable atmosphere of Jamaica.


You've successfully mastered the art of cooking authentic Jamaican Saturday soup. This beloved dish captures the essence of Jamaican cuisine with its hearty combination of meats, vegetables, and aromatic spices. So gather your loved ones, share a bowl of this flavorful soup, and create lasting memories as you embrace the spirit of Jamaican culinary traditions.



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