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Jamaican Short Ribs Stew

Jamaican Short Ribs Stew

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 hours 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


This rich and meaty one-pot short rib stew brings together all the authentic flavours of Jamaica: allspice, cinnamon, thyme and Scotch bonnet peppers. The tender short ribs are cooked to perfection, easily falling away from the bone. Make it a meal by serving over rice or polenta.



1 tbsp (15 mL) canola oil
1.5 lb (0.7 kg) Ontario beef short ribs on the bone, cut between the bones (English cut)
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 large carrots, cut into ½ inch (1.3 cm) slices
1 small Scotch bonnet pepper, seeded and minced
1 large red bell pepper, julienned
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups (500 mL) sodium-reduced beef broth
1 can (14.5 oz/398 mL) fire-roasted diced tomatoes
1 tbsp (15 mL) Worcestershire
1 tbsp (15 mL) brown sugar
½ tsp (2.5 mL) allspice
¼ tsp (1 mL) cinnamon
4 sprigs fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
Salt and fresh cracked black pepper
4 green onions, chopped


Preheat oven to 325°F (165°C).

In a 5 qt (4.7 L) Dutch oven or large oven-safe pot, heat oil over medium-high. Add beef short ribs and sear, about 2-3 minutes. Work in batches if needed; do not crowd the pot. Remove ribs and set aside.

Reduce heat to medium. Add onion, carrot and Scotch bonnet pepper; cook 5 minutes or until softened. Add red pepper and garlic; cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add broth, tomatoes, Worcestershire, brown sugar, allspice, cinnamon, thyme and bay leaf, and return the seared ribs to the pot; stir until combined.

Increase heat to medium-high; bring mixture to a boil. Cover and transfer to preheated oven; cook for 2 hours. After 1 hour ensure enough liquid remains to just cover the meat; add water if needed, stir. At 2-hour mark, short ribs should easily pull away from the bone. Remove from oven and let stand uncovered for 10 minutes.

Remove thyme sprigs and bay leaf. Season with salt and pepper. Serve over cooked rice or polenta. Garnish with chopped green onions.

Slow Cooker Option: Follow steps 2 through 4 before transferring to a slow cooker. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Resume step 5.


  • Scotch bonnet peppers are an authentic Jamaican ingredient, but sometimes they can be hard to find or too spicy for some. Try substituting 1 habanero pepper or significantly reduce the spiciness by simply adding 1 tsp (5 mL) of your favourite hot sauce instead.
  • The Scotch bonnet pepper is one of the world’s hottest peppers, and it’s important to wear gloves when preparing. Ensure you promptly wash anything that has come in contact with the pepper (gloves, knives, cutting boards) in cold water.
  • 1.5 lb (0.7 kg) is about 3-4 beef short ribs. If you don’t have the proper tools or knives to cut them apart, request that your butcher cut them “English style.” Alternatively, you can use boneless short ribs.


  • Calories: 409
  • Sodium: 603 mg
  • Fat: 26.6 g
  • Carbohydrates: 19.6 g
  • Fiber: 3.7 g
  • Protein: 25.4 g
  • Cholesterol: 93 mg