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Instant Pot Jamaican Oxtail
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Instant Pot Jamaican OxtailInstant Pot Jamaican Oxtail | Photo: Credit: littlesunnykitchen

by Venesha Johnson | Associate Writer

Oxtail is a traditional favourite, despite being awfully expensive. When done right it is sweet, savoury, spicy and just fall off the bone delicious. However, it does take quite some time to prepare.

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It is mostly prepared using the same method, browning the meat and then covering it with water to cook until tender.

But, as times have changed and many of us now have a kitchen full of different gadgets and utensils, one new method of preparing oxtail has emerged, and it might be perfect for those who don’t have much time on their hands.

The appliance we are using today is the instant crock pot. And here are the reasons why it might be a better option for you:

You get to decide how long you spend preparing your dish. Or rather how long you have to dedicate to it. The crock pot has different time and temperature settings.

This means you can turn your crockpot on, leave it to attend to other things, or even go to work. Once it has reached the set time it will turn off automatically and go to the warm setting, which will prevent it from burning and also keep it warm for when you get home.

Using a crockpot may make your oxtail a lot more flavourful, unlike using the traditional stove top, where you may be required to add water to the pot multiple times during the cooking process, using a crockpot you simply fill the pot with water once, ultimately retaining more flavour.

How do you make Oxtail using your instant pot or crockpot?

On the stovetop, you are going to brown your oxtail, basically frying on both sides in shallow oil for about 6 minutes. This will help to lock in the flavour and juices of the oxtail.

Transfer to your crockpot set your timer and temperature then cover with water. In general, it takes around 3 to 4 hours on high to cook and around 8 hours on slow. The slow option is highly recommended if you want the fall off the bone texture.

Here's the full recipe for instant pot Jamaican Oxtail.

Instant Pot Jamaican Oxtail Recipe


  • 3lbs oxtail- chopped
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 6 cloves of garlic- minced
  • 1 large onion- chopped
  • Handful pimento seeds
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • Vegetable oil
  • 1 bunch escallions- chopped
  • 2 medium carrots- chopped
  • 1 Scotch bonnet pepper-cut into pieces, seeds removed
  • 2 to 3 cups beef broth or water
  • 1 tbsp Browning
  • 1 small root of ginger- scraped and chopped
  • Maggi or Goya adobo all-purpose seasoning
  • 2 small Irish potatoes- chopped


  1. Wash oxtail with a mixture of water and vinegar then add all your seasonings, vegetables and herbs.

  2. In a Dutch pot or even a frying pan, add enough to cover the bottom of the pot. Add the brown sugar to the oil and allow it to start caramelizing.
    Brown each piece of oxtail for 5 minutes on each side then set aside. You may have to do these in batches.

  3. Time to grab your crock pot. Add all your ingredients to your crockpot at once. Set your desired timer and temperature. 4 hours for high and 8 hours for low.

Once your oxtail is finished, serve with plain rice or rice and peas, fried ripe plantain and vegetable salad, for the perfect traditional Jamaican effect.

Things You Can Do Differently

  1. Browning the sides of your oxtail does make a little difference but it is quite consuming and completely optional.

  2. Using brown sugar while browning the oxtail also helps to add flavour but is also optional as you will already be using browning on the meat.

  3. Some people enjoy their oxtail with broad beans, you can add a tin when there is about an hour of cook time left. If you add them in the beginning they will be too soft.

  4. Experiment with your seasoning. You can add a variety of other seasonings and sauces such as garlic and onion powder, paprika, Worcestershire and soya sauce, ketchup and so much more.

  5. If your gravy isn't as thick as you like it, you can add cornstarch as a thickening agent towards the end of your cook time.

Don’t have a crockpot? Go here to try our traditional stovetop method for cooking oxtail.

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References & Sources For Instant Pot Jamaican Oxtail

  1. Slow Cooker Oxtail, Rich and Flavorful - Healthy Recipes Blog,,to%20get%20the%20best%20results.

Instant Pot Jamaican Oxtail | Written: July 27th, 2022

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