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Exactly How To Reheat Jerk Chicken – I Test 5 Methods [Pics]

Jerk chicken is a delicious treat. 

But can you reheat your jerk chicken without drying it out or ending up with soggy skin?

I did an experiment to find out (and yes, you can!)

I’ve also included a few tips on how to store and freeze jerk chicken.

In a rush? Here’s the short answer.

The best way to reheat jerk chicken is in the oven. Preheat your oven to 350°F (180° C). Wrap the chicken in foil and add a tablespoon of water or stock inside before closing it. Reheat the jerk chicken for 10-15 minutes and then uncover it for the last 2-3 minutes.

A note on my experiment

I refrigerated my jerk chicken leftovers overnight and then set about trying out the following reheating methods:

  • In the oven (moist chicken, just a bit slow)
  • In the microwave (not good if you want crispy skin)
  • In a skillet (good if you have flat chicken pieces)
  • In the air fryer (great for crispy skin)
  • Reheating shredded jerk chicken in a skillet

My preferred method of reheating jerk chicken was in the oven. 

Even though it’s a bit slow, I think you get the best result. 

And if the skin isn’t crisping to your liking, you can always turn on the broiler.

Reheating jerk chicken in the oven

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180° C). Wrap the chicken in foil and add a tablespoon of water or stock inside before closing it. Heat the jerk chicken for 10-15 minutes and then uncover it for the last 2-3 minutes. Use the broiler to get any skin crispy.

How to reheat jerk chicken in the oven:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (180° C).
  2. To prevent the chicken from drying out, wrap it in some foil and splash a tablespoon of water or stock over it before sealing the package.
  3. Heat the jerk chicken for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Uncover the chicken and broil for 2-3 minutes at the end to crisp any skin.

The foil keeps the chicken moist, but the skin will get soggy from the build-up of steam, so you need to rectify that at the end.

Releasing the steam and allowing the broiler to crisp the skin returns the jerk chicken to the way it was when it first came out of the oven… Delicious!

My verdict

This method was the most consistent.

My chicken was moist and tasty.

However, one downside is that it’s a bit slow.

Also, despite using the broiler function, I found that the other methods were better if your priority is having crispy skin.

Reheating jerk chicken in the microwave

To reheat jerk chicken in the microwave, place the chicken on a microwave-safe dish. Cover it with a damp paper towel and heat in 30-second intervals until piping hot. Allow the hot chicken to rest for 30 seconds before serving.

How to reheat jerk chicken in the microwave:

  1. Place the jerk chicken on a microwave-safe dish.
  2. Cover the dish with a damp paper towel.
  3. Reheat at 30-second intervals until piping hot.
  4. Allow the chicken to rest for 30 seconds before serving.

Avoid trying to heat too much jerk chicken at any one time.

Stick to one or a maximum of two portions at a time. Otherwise, the chicken heats unevenly, and you’ll have cold spots.

The short time intervals help ensure that you don’t overcook your chicken.

Pop the chicken under the broiler for a few minutes if you want to crisp the skin after microwaving.

My verdict

The microwave worked okay, and the meat was fine to eat, but it didn’t have the crunch you normally get from a jerk seasoned piece of meat.

It’s quick and convenient to heat a portion for yourself, although I wouldn’t serve it to guests.

Reheating jerk chicken in a skillet

To reheat jerk chicken in a skillet, add some butter to a pan or oil it with some cooking spray. Heat the pan on medium heat and add the chicken, together with 2-3 tablespoons of stock or water. Cover the skillet with a lid and heat for 6-7 minutes until hot. Flip every few minutes to ensure even heating.

To crisp the skin, turn the heat up to high once the pan is dry.

How to reheat jerk chicken in a skillet:

  1. Add a little butter to a pan or oil it with some cooking spray.
  2. Heat the skillet on medium heat.
  3. Add the jerk chicken and 2-3 tablespoons of chicken stock or water.
  4. Cover the pan with a lid and heat the jerk chicken for 6-7 minutes.
  5. Flip the chicken halfway through or more often if the chicken pieces are round (like drumsticks).

When the pan is dry, turn the heat up to high and fry each side for 30 seconds to get some extra crisp.

The water or stock will create some steam in the pan, which will help keep the chicken moist. 

But don’t add too much, or you’ll end up with soggy seasoning.

My verdict

This method worked okay, but I found it was slightly inconsistent, and the heating was uneven.

Some bits of the chicken ended up overcooked, but the skin was nice and crispy.

(I’m nitpicking a bit here – overall, the chicken was good).

Reheating jerk chicken in the air fryer

Preheat the air fryer to 350°F (180°C). Arrange the chicken in the air fryer basket leaving room for air to circulate. Heat for 5-7 minutes, or until the jerk chicken heats all the way through. The air fryer works best with smaller pieces of chicken, so the middle doesn’t take too long to heat. 

How to reheat jerk chicken in the air fryer:

  1. Preheat your air fryer to 350°F (180°C).
  2. Spritz a little oil on the chicken to help crisp any skin and add a protective layer so the chicken doesn’t dry out too much.
  3. Arrange the jerk chicken in the air fryer basket, ensuring it’s not overcrowded.
  4. Heat the jerk chicken for 5-7 minutes until it’s heated through.

For the best results, spread the chicken out in a single layer with space between each piece. 

You need good air circulation to crisp the chicken effectively. 

If you have larger chicken pieces, wrap them in foil with a bit of added water or stock to stop them from drying out too much. 

My verdict

The air fryer was great for crisping the skin, but I found the end meat a tiny bit dry (despite the oil).

My air fryer is one of my favorite appliances, but it can be too harsh for reheating chicken (especially if it’s already overcooked).

Reheating shredded jerk chicken

Another option for reheating jerk chicken is to shred it before heating it. 

Once it’s shredded, you can heat it in the microwave with a splash of water or heat it over a low heat on the stove with some stock. This is a good method if your chicken is dry and overcooked because you can add some moisture back in.

Read More: How To Reheat Shredded Chicken

How to store jerk chicken

To store jerk chicken, allow it to cool to room temperature before placing it in an airtight container. Jerk chicken lasts for 3-4 days stored in the fridge. You may find that the chicken lasts longer than that, but smell it first and check the feel of it before eating it.

Throw out if you detect any funky smells or a slimy surface.

Cooling the chicken before sealing it in a container helps prevent condensation that might otherwise make the jerk marinade soggy or cause it to drip off.

You can also store any leftover marinade in the fridge and use it on the chicken when you reheat it.

Can you freeze jerk chicken?

Jerk chicken freezes well. You can freeze chicken for up to 6 months. Wrap the chicken tightly to avoid any freezer burn taste. You can also freeze the chicken raw but mixed in with the marinade, then all you need to do is pop the chicken in the oven to cook.

How to freeze jerk chicken:

  1. Allow the jerk chicken to cool in the fridge so it’s as cold as possible before going into the freezer.
  2. Wrap individual pieces on chicken in plastic wrap, followed by a layer of foil.
  3. Return the chicken to the freezer for up to 6 months, but use it as soon as possible for the best quality.

To ensure the chicken freezes as fast as possible, place it in the middle of the freezer near the back. 

This is the coldest part of the freezer.

The faster the chicken freezes, the less textural changes you will notice when you thaw it.

If you don’t want to use foil, you can place the plastic-wrapped chicken in a freezer bag and remove the air.

The plastic wrap will stop the chicken pieces from sticking together, so you can easily take a few out at a time instead of having to defrost the whole lot.

Separating frozen chicken is a nightmare!

To freeze raw jerk chicken, place it in a freezer bag along with the jerk marinade and squeeze all the air out.

How to thaw and reheat frozen jerk chicken

Always thaw jerk chicken before reheating it. 

Otherwise, the chicken will be dry out on the outside by the time it is fully reheated.

It’s best to thaw the jerk chicken in the fridge as it thaws evenly with the least damage to the fibers.

You can also thaw the chicken in the microwave if you have to, but it’s not recommended.

 Once the chicken is thawed, reheat it using any of the methods I mentioned above.

Exactly How To Reheat Jerk Chicken

In this short recipe, I show you the best way to revive and reheat your leftover jerk chicken.
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Caribbean
Keyword: jerk chicken, reheat jerk chicken
Prep Time: 0 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 233kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 portion jerk chicken
  • 1 tbsp stock or water

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (180° C).
  • To prevent the chicken from drying out, wrap it in some foil and splash a tablespoon of water or stock over it before sealing the package.
  • Reheat the jerk chicken for 10-15 minutes.
  • Uncover the chicken and broil for 2-3 minutes at the end to crisp any skin.

Notes

The foil keeps the chicken moist, but the skin will get soggy from the build-up of steam, so you need to rectify that at the end.
Releasing the steam and allowing the broiler to crisp the skin returns the jerk chicken to the way it was when it first came out of the oven… Delicious!
 

Nutrition

Serving: 100g | Calories: 233kcal

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