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Delicious Jamaican Beef Curry
The Simple Recipe

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Jamaican Beef Curry | (Photo Credit: Thatgirlcookshealthy)Jamaican Beef Curry | (Photo Credit: Thatgirlcookshealthy)

by Venesha Johnson | Associate Writer

I know by now you have had the world-famous Jamaican curried goat or, at the very least youโ€™ve heard of it. It is a well-loved dish here in Jamaica. Unfortunately, with the soaring prices of local goat (which is always preferred over the imported), it is reserved for those special occasions and celebratory dinners.
So, of course, a substitute is available and that is the delicious curried beef or beef curry as some would rather call it.

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You see, curried beef provides a similar taste and texture to the curried goat, appearance too. If you were to see a plate of curried goat and curried beef side by side you would probably not notice the difference.

I even dare say unless you are a curried goat connoisseur, if you tasted both plates done right, you may not be able to tell the difference then either. 

When preparing curried beef it's most common for Jamaicans to just head to the meat shop and purchase cuts of beef that we call โ€œstewโ€. This is beef that has been cut into small, a little larger than bite-size, pieces. If this isnโ€™t available where you are just get your favourite cut of beef and cut it into small pieces.

Now, letโ€™s jump into this recipe for Jamaican beef curry.

Jamaican Beef Curry Recipe


  • 2 pounds beef- cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 tablespoon curry powder (preferably Betapak if you can get your hands on it)
  • 1 large sweet pepper (chopped)
  • 1 large onion (chopped)
  • 2 scotch bonnet pepper (chopped)
  • 1 large Irish potato (peeled and cut into cubes)
  • Scallion and thyme
  • Garlic
  • Large carrot (chopped)
  • All-purpose seasoning
  • Meat seasoning
  • Ginger
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Coconut milk (optional)
  • Hot water
  • Vegetable oil
  • Pimento seeds


  1. The first thing to do of course is to prepare your beef. To do this wash the meat with a mixture of lime juice and water or vinegar and water.

  2. Once that is done dry your meat as much as possible and add all your herbs and seasonings. At this time, only add 1 tablespoon of the curry to the beef, along with a small amount of oil.
    This will help to massage all the herbs and seasoning into the meat. Set aside, you can choose to marinate for a few hours or even overnight.

  3. In a pot, preferably a dutch pot, add a small amount of oil. Once the oil has heated up, add the remaining curry and stir until it becomes a dark orange brownish colour. We canโ€™t say exactly why, but burning the curry adds significant flavour and you can tell the difference in your curry dish.

  4. Add the beef to the pot and stir. Fill the dutch pot with hot water and cover. Leaving the beef to cook. You should know that some beef cuts are more โ€œtoughโ€ than others and you might need to repeat adding water to the pot multiple times before the beef is cooked.

  5. Another option is to skip the dutch pot altogether and use a pressure cooker, this will significantly reduce the cooking time.

  6. Once the beef is soft and tender, add the carrots, Irish potatoes, and coconut milk to the pot. At this point, you can also add additional seasonings. Add more scallion and thyme, sweet pepper and all-purpose seasoning if you desire.

  7. Reduce the fire and allow the Irish potatoes and carrots to cook until soft and the sauce has been reduced to a thick gravy.

  8. Jamaican beef curry is best served with plain white rice, pumpkin rice or gungo peas and rice. Fried ripe plantains, steamed cabbage and carrots or some Jamaican coleslaw also make a wonderful addition to the dish.

Combine this with a glass of traditional Jamaican carrot juice and you have the perfect meal. 

This hearty, warm and tasty dish is the perfect comfort dish for those days that you need a little pick me up, or on the cold days when you need something other than soup to keep you warm. So donโ€™t be selfish, share it with all your friends and family members too.

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