Popular Jamaican Soups and the Restaurants that Sell Them
Popular Jamaican Soups and the Restaurants that Sell Them (Worldwide) - blog post cover pic


There are many popular Jamaican soups for the taking. We share a quick guide to some of them below.

Soups are an important part of the Jamaican culinary landscape and culture. So much so, that Saturdays have often been reserved for soup dinners. Yes, Saturdays are popularly known as ‘Soup Day’ (that’s a true story lol). This is hardly surprising. Certainly, it is not a bad thing. After all, there is a variety of soups available at different restaurants across Jamaica. In this edition of the visuEats Food Guide, we take a closer look at all the available options in that regard. Importantly, these are listed in no particular order. Also, this list is by no means exhaustive.

01. Beef Soup

Beef soup is a ‘Soup Day’ favourite in Jamaica. It is a hearty mix of cho cho (chayote), pumpkin, carrots, yam, beef, and flour dumplings. Like many of the popular Jamaican soups on this list, beef soup is flavourful and delicious. The broth is similar to that of chicken soup, but the flavour is instead beefy. This option is also very filling and is considered a ‘beef-stew’ in many circles.

02. Fish Tea

Of all the soups on this list, this option is the most broth-like. Ground provisions like green bananas and cassava are cut into small pieces and cooked until soft. Also, fish is cooked until it forms part of the base of this very light broth. Finally, herbs, spices, and coconut milk are added to flavour.

03. Chicken Soup and Chicken Foot Soup

Chicken soup is popular in many parts of the world. Jamaica is no different. In Jamaica, Chicken soup is made using a flavourful pumpkin-based broth. After that, vegetables, dumplings, ground provisions, and chicken complete the ingredients. Chicken breast and back are the chicken parts that are most popularly used.

Chicken foot soup is a special variation of chicken soup in Jamaica. It is argulably the most popular soup on the island. Instead of chicken breast and back, chicken foot soup is made with the chicken’s feet. It is just as flavourful, spicy, and made with small elongated dumplings known as ‘spinners.’ This soup, like manish water is popular at celebrations and gatherings. Additionally, it is a popular soup option at roadside food vendors.

04. Pepperpot Soup

Pepperpot soup is known for its slightly green colour and spicy flavours. It is made with callaloo, coconut milk, hot chili peppers, okra, onions, and garlic. Sometimes, meat like salted beef or pig’s tails is added. When no meat is added, Pepperpot is considered a lovely vegetarian soup option. Flour dumplings are also added to give the soup more body. Finally, scotch bonnet peppers are minced and use to garnish. Of course, the added pepper further adds spice and colour.

05. Manish Water

Manish Water is a popular soup enjoyed at Jamaican parties, get-togethers, and celebratory gatherings of various kinds. This soup is also known as ‘ram goat’ soup as it is made with the tripe and other organs from male goats. Other ingredients are dumplings, green bananas, carrots, spices, herbs, and meat content are among the other ingredients. Sometimes, a splash of white rum is added for extra flavour.

Popular Jamaican Soups and the Restaurants that Serve Them

Many restaurants across Jamaica offer soups as a part of their menu. Soups are sometimes served as a complete main course meal, an appetizer, or both. The option available depends on the restaurant. Usually, the choice between appetizers or main course meals is differentiated by size. For example, a cup of soup is generally an appetizer-sized option. On the other hand, a medium or large soup is considered a main course serving. Importantly, some restaurants offer both dining options, while others offer either or.

Restaurants that offer popular Jamaican soups you will love, include:

  • Cellar 8 (Kingston, Jamaica) – offers a soup of the day appetizer option that diners enjoy. The soups served to diners include Jamaican and International options alike.
  • Uncorked (Kingston and Montego Bay, Jamaica) – offers two soup of the day options. Firstly, there is the Vegan Soup of the Day. Secondly, there is the Chef’s Soup of the Day. In a similar vein to Cellar 8, Uncorked offers a variety of international and Jamaican options.
  • Julie Mango Restaurant (Kingston, Jamaica) – this restaurant offers different popular Jamaican soups on different days of the week.

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