Chicken Souse Recipe – Home made Chicken Souse Recipe


Chicken Souse Recipe

Chicken souse recipe is a flavorful and comforting dish that hails from the Caribbean. This traditional recipe combines tender chicken with a zesty marinade to create a dish that’s both soothing and savory. In this article, we’ll guide you through the steps to make your own homemade chicken souse, allowing you to savor a taste of the Caribbean in your own kitchen.

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Chicken Souse Recipe

Rohini Deekonda
Chicken souse is a delicious and vibrant dish that's full of Caribbean flavors. It's a wonderful way to enjoy chicken in a tangy and spicy preparation.
Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 1 hour
20 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 20 minutes
Course Soup
Cuisine Chinese
Servings 4


  • 3-4 pounds of chicken pieces (legs, thighs, and wings work well)
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Scotch bonnet pepper, seeds removed and minced (adjust for desired spice level)
  • 1 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 2-3 sprigs fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2-3 large potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 6-8 cups water
  • 1-2 cucumbers, thinly sliced
  • Fresh cilantro or parsley for garnish


  • Marinate the Chicken:
    In a large bowl, combine the chicken pieces, lime juice, 1 teaspoon of salt, and black pepper. Let it marinate for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
  • Prepare the Broth:
    In a large pot, heat some oil over medium-high heat. Add the sliced onions and sauté until they become translucent.
  • Add Aromatics:
    Add the minced garlic, Scotch bonnet pepper, green bell pepper, fresh thyme, and bay leaves to the pot. Sauté for a few minutes until fragrant.
  • Brown the Chicken:
    Remove the chicken pieces from the marinade and add them to the pot. Brown the chicken on all sides for a few minutes.
  • Add Water:
    Pour in enough water to cover the chicken, usually about 6-8 cups. Bring the mixture to a boil.
  • Simmer:
    Reduce the heat to low, cover the pot, and let the chicken simmer for about 30-40 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked and tender.
  • Potatoes and Cucumbers:
    Add the potato chunks to the pot and continue to simmer until they are tender, about 10-15 minutes.Stir in the remaining 1 teaspoon of salt.
  • Serve:
    Remove the bay leaves and thyme sprigs.Serve the chicken souse hot, garnished with thinly sliced cucumbers and fresh cilantro or parsley.


Chicken souse is often enjoyed with bread or a side of rice. It's a comforting and tangy dish with a hint of heat from the Scotch bonnet pepper. Adjust the level of spiciness to your preference, and enjoy this Caribbean classic!
Keyword Chicken Broth, Chicken Broth Recipe, Chicken Soup,, Chicken Souse Recipe

Tips and Tricks:

  1. Marinating Chicken: For maximum flavor, marinate the chicken for at least 30 minutes or overnight in the refrigerator. You can also marinate it with additional seasonings like paprika, allspice, or ginger for extra depth of flavor.
  2. Adjusting Spice Level: The heat in chicken souse comes from the Scotch bonnet pepper. Adjust the spiciness to your liking by adding more or fewer seeds and membrane from the pepper. Be cautious, as Scotch bonnet peppers can be extremely hot.
  3. Bone-In Chicken: Using bone-in chicken pieces adds more flavor to the broth. Thighs, drumsticks, and wings work particularly well because they stay tender during simmering.
  4. Fresh Herbs: If you can’t find fresh thyme, dried thyme can be used as a substitute. However, fresh thyme adds a more vibrant flavor.
  5. Slicing Onions: Thinly slice the onions for a milder and sweeter flavor. You can also soak the sliced onions in cold water for a few minutes to reduce their sharpness.
  6. Crispy Skin: If you like crispy chicken skin, you can briefly broil the chicken pieces in the oven after simmering. This step is optional but adds a nice texture contrast.


  • Can I use boneless chicken breast?

    While bone-in chicken pieces are traditional for souse, you can use boneless chicken breast if you prefer. Just be mindful of cooking time as breast meat cooks faster and can become dry if overcooked.

  • Can I make chicken souse in advance?

    Yes, chicken souse can be made in advance and reheated. The flavors often deepen when allowed to sit, making it even tastier the next day.

  • How do I store leftover chicken souse?

    Store leftover chicken souse in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Reheat it on the stovetop or in the microwave.

  • Is chicken souse spicy?

    The level of spiciness in chicken souse can vary depending on the amount of Scotch bonnet pepper used. It can range from mildly spicy to very hot, so adjust the pepper to your taste.

Chicken souse is a beloved Caribbean dish that beautifully balances flavors of citrus, spice, and herbs. Whether enjoyed as a refreshing appetizer or a satisfying main course, this homemade recipe allows you to savor the taste of the Caribbean from your own kitchen.

So, gather your ingredients, prepare the zesty marinade, and create a batch of chicken souse that’s bursting with Caribbean flair. With each bite, you’ll experience the warmth and comfort of this delightful culinary tradition.


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