Jerk sauce is a versatile and flavorful sauce that works great in both a sauté and braise. There are many types and recipes for jerk sauce and we're making a Habanero Jerk Sauce with Shrimp. Habanero is bringing the heat but we're not stopping there. This sauce is full of spices, citrus, soy sauce, garlic, onions, and more! Let's get into it.
Habanero Jerk Sauce Ingredients
Okay, hold on tight. We have a lot of ingredients here but it'll be worth it. We'll need:
- soy sauce
- white onion
- green onion
- fresh thyme
- habanero peppers
- fresh ginger
- cloves, ground
- allspice, ground
- black pepper
- lime juice
- orange juice
- canola oil
Putting the sauce together
Time to break out the blender, it's going to make the process quick and painless, and will get us to the slightly chunky consistency we're looking for.
Start by adding in half the chopped green onion and all the diced white onion. Even though the onion is going into the blender it's important to dice it up, we'll get a more even consistency and the onion won't turn bitter. Now add in the soy sauce, orange juice, lime juice, habaneros, garlic, and ginger. We're going to blend a couple time but this first blend will get our more substantive ingredients to a more liquid consistency.
After our first blend we can add in all of our ground and fresh spices, the rest of the green onion, and our segmented orange. Blend it up again!
Lastly we're going to add a little oil into our sauce.
Chef Tip: If you were using this as a marinade, don't add the salt. The soy sauce is fine but adding the additional salt will pull the moisture out of what you are marinating. If you're using in a sauté like we are, you can add the salt immediately.
Sauté the shrimp
Start by adding some oil to a hot pan. How much oil? Just enough to coat the bottom of the pan. Now we can then add in our shrimp. Only add in enough shrimp to cover the bottom of the pan, we don't want to overcrowd the pan.
Now just let it cook, we don't need to add salt and pepper yet because we have salt in our sauce. Once we get a little bit of color on the shrimp we can add in a some of the jerk sauce. Arrange the shrimp in a singer layer on the pan and let them cook. Flip after the first side cooks a bit.
The shrimp will tell you when it is fully cooked. The tail turns pink and the shrimp are no longer translucent. The sauce remains nice and chunky making sure each bite will have lots of flavor.
Serve it up
Right before plating you can add a little chopped parsley to the shrimp to bring in some vibrant color and freshness.
We're serving this up on top of a bed of lentils and squash. But there are many ways you could serve this jerk shrimp, they'd go great with some white rice or boiled potatoes as well.
Watch how to make the Recipe!
This versatile jerk sauce works great for both sautéing and braising. We're using it with some sautéed shrimp but it would also work well with chicken, goat, or other sea foods.
- ½ cup low sodium soy sauce
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 orange, segmented
- 12 sprigs fresh thyme
- 6 green onions, sliced
- 8 garlic cloves
- 2 habanero peppers
- 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- 3 tablespoons ground allspice
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- ½ cup freshly squeezed lime (or lemon) juice
- ½ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- ¼ cup canola oil
For the Jerk Sauce:
- This can be as simple as putting all of the ingredients into a blender and mixing. But for a thicker sauce it is best to blend in stages.
- Start by adding in half of the green onions, the white onion, soy sauce, lime juice, orange juice, both habaneros, garlic, and ginger into the blender and mix.
- Now, add in the sugar, salt, nutmeg, allspice, clove, cinnamon, black pepper, fresh thyme, segmented orange, and the rest of the green onion and mix again.
- Finally, with the blender on low remove the center lid and add in the canola oil.
For the shrimp:
- Add oil to a hot pan, enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan. Add the shrimp into the pan. Enough to make a single layer, do not overcrowd the pan.
- As the shrimp starts to get a little color, add in ¼-1/2 cup of the jerk sauce. Incorporate to into the shrimp.
- Arrange shrimp in one layer on the pan an allow to cook, then flip and cook the other side.
- We're serving this with some lentils and squash but it would also go really well with some white rice or boiled potatoes.
The shrimp will tell you when it is done cooking. The tail will turn pink and the shrimp will no longer be translucent.
- Prep Time: 15
- Cook Time: 15