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Best of Toronto

The Best Jerk Chicken in Toronto

Posted by Erinn Beth Langille / July 28, 2014

jerk chicken torontoThe best jerk chicken in Toronto is a formidable list of the best-spiced and most tender chicken on the block. It goes without saying that a big drum BBQ with plumes of nose-itching smoke outside the joint is a good sign of great taste, as it's not just the spice mixture that you create but that open-air grilling that really makes jerk chicken out of this world.

Here is the best jerk chicken in Toronto.

See also:

The Best Caribbean Restaurants in Toronto
The Best Jamaican Patties in Toronto

Allwyn's Bakery

Allwyn's Bakery

Follow your nose to Underhill Drive near Lawrence and the DVP where you'll find Toronto's best jerk chicken at Allwyn's Bakery. Caribbean food lovers from all over the city will want to make the trek for their perfectly spiced and delicious chicken. Their specialty is the jerk chicken sandwich with slaw. The heat of the moist jerk chicken, the creamy slaw and amazing coco bun - yum! It's super cheap, too. More »

Rasta Pasta

Rasta Pasta

What a great joy it is to see the BBQ smoking on the Kensington sidewalk outside Rasta Pasta. They make the most fabulous jerk chicken, tender and flavourful, and the owners chat amiably with all the market visitors. Their homemade jerk sauce brings the heat, and their hot sauce takes it to the next level. More »

Jerk Joint

Jerk Joint

Jerk chicken is the specialty of The Jerk Joint, and you can have it tons of ways - in a wrap, between coco buns, as wings, or a whole bird. They even jerk their fries. The chicken is juicy, wth great heat and spice levels that surprise you with a lingering bite. The Jerk has legions of fans. Don't be intimidated by the lineup - it's fast moving, they're friendly and you won't regret it once you sink your teeth into a spicy hunk of meat. More »

Rap's

Rap's

Owned by Horace "Rap" Rose and serving the Eglinton West neighbourhood since 1982, Rap's offers the authentic spirit of Jamaican jerk chicken. Smoked and jerked outside on the big BBQ drum, especially at night, the results perfume the neighbourhood and are downright heavenly. Make sure to get the homemade jerk sauce, and hot sauce as well! More »

Spence's Bakery

Spence's Bakery

Another Eglinton West staple, Spence's Bakery has some fine jerk chicken. A hint of sweetness, and not too salty, with that scotch bonnet and pimento spice to get your eyes and mouth watering. More »

Mona's Roti

Mona's Roti

Sheppard East is treated to Mona's Roti, a 25 year Trinidadian family business. The assembly-line style food prep looks daunting, and there is little in the way of seating (just do take-out), but you'll put all those kinks behind you when you take a bite of the deliciously spiced jerk chicken. More »

Mr. Jerk

Mr. Jerk

Mr. Jerk grew from a tiny counter in the Peanut Plaza in 1979 to the Toronto's foremost Caribbean food chain, with six locations across the GTA, so they must be doing something right. Each is individually owned so there are some small differences (the Don Mills and Markham locations are known to be the best), but they all follow that same jerk recipe, so why not try them all and decide for yourself? More »

Albert's Real Jamaican

Albert's Real Jamaican

Jerk chicken tender enough to shred with a fork, well spiced and crispy skin- Albert's Real Jamaican has become a tried and true favourite for many Torontonians. Others complain of bad service, inconsistent product, and steep prices since they moved to the bigger location, nostalgic for the old ways and tastes. More »

Ritz Caribbean

Ritz Caribbean

Of the three locations - all within a few blocks of each other on Yonge Street - the Ritz Caribbean location at Queen and Shuter gets the most accolades for its jerk chicken. Tender, well spiced and falling off the bone, those in the know, know where to go. More »

Discussion

50 Comments

links / July 28, 2014 at 02:04 pm
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I haven't tried any of these places but I will now! Also, a co-worker of mine was from the Caribbean and he would share some of his Mom's amazing jerk chicken with me once in a while. I recently tried Simone's on the Danforth and it is the closest I've tasted to that homemade goodness.
http://www.urbanspoon.com/r/10/1791837/restaurant/Greektown-The-Danforth/Simones-Caribbean-Restaurant-Toronto
A,ex / July 28, 2014 at 03:04 pm
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No Jerk King?!
Wilson / July 28, 2014 at 03:34 pm
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The best Jerk chicken in the city is actually to be found at Mitzi's at Bloor and Islington. In fact, Mitzi's is one of the few redeeming things about the northwest end of the city. I've had Jerk all over the city and there's no question in my mind Mitzi's beats all comers hands down in terms of both quality and price. And, Mitzi is also really nice, which is always a bonus.
HoseA replying to a comment from Wilson / July 28, 2014 at 03:54 pm
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100% agree, Mitzi's is great, also love the stew chicken. One point of disagreement, Bloor and Islington is nowhere near the NORTHwest end of the city. Just west.
Random Reader replying to a comment from Wilson / July 28, 2014 at 03:56 pm
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I'm usually not one to comment on these lists (since they are user generated through voting)... I also rarely suggest a restaurant that isn't in the Toronto core (Etobicoke, Scarborough, etc need not usually apply for my tastes), but I will support Wilson's post.
Mitzi's is the best jerk chicken I've tried yet in the GTA. And they must be doing something right as they are opening a second location in the next month or so (in Scarborough, go figure).
BillyO / July 28, 2014 at 03:59 pm
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Rasta Pasta in Kensington is really good and the lunch special for $5 is a great deal
penny / July 28, 2014 at 04:20 pm
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The best by far is...TWICE AS NICE in scarborough. Make sure too go early if you want dumplings and plantains. Mmmm good
danielle / July 28, 2014 at 04:30 pm
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So how does the Real Jerk stack up? I love their food but as a very white canadian I have no idea if it's considered good by jamaican standards.
jamaica irie / July 28, 2014 at 04:49 pm
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Funny how the best joints have been left off this list. The fact that there are no places in Scarborough should make everyone who reads this list very suspicious.
Lauren / July 28, 2014 at 04:56 pm
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Simones on the danforth.
jane doe / July 28, 2014 at 05:07 pm
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I refuse to go to Albert's(St. Clair) that openly supports the Ontario Liberal party...Stick to food and not politics...
Bacchus has great jerk / July 28, 2014 at 05:10 pm
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Bacchus Roti Shop PARKDALE!
PC / July 28, 2014 at 05:11 pm
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Jerk King, formerly Garvey Jerk on the north side of Bloor just east of Dufferin is some of the best Jerk I've had.

Totally agree that Mitzi's (nothing to do with the Parkdale classic diner) is amazing and among the places on the list in the article, Albert's is the best I've had out of those.
Marcus L / July 28, 2014 at 05:27 pm
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I was hoping to see Island Spice from Pitfield Rd, Scarborough, on the list. The jerk is phenomenal and extremely consistent.
Punji / July 28, 2014 at 05:29 pm
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Here is why this list is silly, why does price have to be involved for a great jerk Chicken. Why not identify what a classic jerk chicken should taste like, and then rank your restaurants. If anyone has eaten at Albert's (Queen St) and then eaten at Ritz. Then one knows that these are two distinctly different Jerk Chickens because of the way they are cooked. I believe the quality Ritz and their meat is better not because its cheap, but because its falls of the bone and doesn't need any oxtail gravy to give me some pop. Albert's that used to be Queen St required you to rip the meat off. Not sure how they made it on this list, though they had great spicy seasoning while Ritz was more sweet.
Anon / July 28, 2014 at 05:43 pm
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Pretty good list. Other places that have nice jerk chicken are Tropical Joe's, Caribbean Queen of Patties (the one time I've tried it there - I've read that the place is inconsistent), and Fahmee Bakery.
Kathryn / July 28, 2014 at 06:45 pm
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Rasta pasta is fantastic. Only thing is they sell out!
AK / July 28, 2014 at 07:20 pm
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Pat's Homestyle on Queen and Bathurst should have made the list. The jerk chicken is actually flavourful and spicy, not bland. Check it out, it's amazing
robert / July 28, 2014 at 08:15 pm
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Alas, they say that to be REAL jerk, the meat has to be cooked over a fire of pimento wood (a la Scotchie's in Montego Bay). In other words, there is a lot of terrible jerk in Toronto -- sweet, pasty, from-a-bottle travesties -- but the ones I have tried on this list are more than worthy. (Well done, in other words!) For a really fragrant/spicy take, try my new favourite, Simone's on the Danforth. Her coleslaw has fresh vanilla, and her callalloo is sauteed w/ fresh thyme.
RB / July 28, 2014 at 08:23 pm
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@PC I like Jerk King. I eat there ALL the time; sometimes 3 times a week. Their chicken is delicious but it is NOT jerk chicken like they say it is. It has more of a BBQ spice to it. Trust me. I am a proud Jamaican.

From these comments including yours, I keep hearing about Mitzi's. I need to check it out - maybe tomorrow! Thanks
joel / July 28, 2014 at 10:08 pm
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You guys should try "Chris Jerk" in Scarborough (Birchmount Rd./between Sheppard and Finch) one of the best Carribean restaurant in scarborough. Don't forget to ask their special hot sauce if you order. Highly recommended.
S / July 28, 2014 at 11:04 pm
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If you go to Alberts, you MUST get the Ginger Beer (not the brand name one, the one that I think they make there).
Dan / July 29, 2014 at 12:29 am
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I have tried most of the places on this list and I have to say to me:

#1. Albert's
#2. closely behind - Mitzi's Jerk.

I find Mitzi's just slightly more greasy than Albert's and the portions are smaller, but they are both filling and delicious.

Anything else on this list doesn't come close to these two
Guest / July 29, 2014 at 12:45 am
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Nice list here. Some places not on this list I might mention are Tropical Joe's (in the Gerrard Square Mall), Fehmee's Bakery, and Caribbean Queen of Patties.
Chuckie / July 29, 2014 at 12:56 am
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Caribbean queen at Weston rd. And finch should be on this list hands down they top 5 in Toronto
Stilez / July 29, 2014 at 04:15 am
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Anyone who is really & truly from Toronto knows that very few Jerk Chicken places downtown can compare to the authentic Jamaican restaurants in any of the old municipalities outside of the downtown core, where the real Jamaican communities are. The ones downtown tend to 'Canadianize' their dishes to better suit the demographic, whereas they can't get away doing that in Rexdale, Eglinton W., Jane & Finch, or Scarbs.
Loops / July 29, 2014 at 09:56 am
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I'm quite surprised that JerkSpot (Baldwin/Spadina) is not on this list =(

Good jerk chicken, and even better jerk pork! Add the best oxtail gravy in town, and you have yourself the best plate of Jamaican cuisine in tdot. Ya dun know! lol.
TN / July 29, 2014 at 10:16 am
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The Real Jerk (now at Gerrard and Carlaw) and Hummingbird Cafe on Queen Street East both deserve a mention here. The Real Jerk's wings are perfection.
Jumanji / July 29, 2014 at 10:27 am
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Seen seen Loops!

I've tried most of these places on this list except for Ritz and Allwyn (place is too far yo).
JerkSpot has the best oxtail gravy and best errthing. Brap! lol.
S / July 29, 2014 at 10:28 am
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No Real Jerk? You Guys Are JERKS LOL
dupe / July 29, 2014 at 10:50 am
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I never comment on lists like this on the net but I've gotta tell everyone about Nun Such Jerk on Kennedy road in Scarborough.

Hands down my #1 favorite jerk spot in the GTA.
M3 / July 29, 2014 at 05:13 pm
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Beryls Pepperpot queen and coxwell. In addition to their delicious jerk, they put a gravy on their rice that is out of this world.
Pat / July 29, 2014 at 06:12 pm
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Allwyn's is THE BEST!! You guys should give it a try!! Worth the drive!!
JerkJuices / July 29, 2014 at 07:03 pm
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Hot Pot on Eglington hands down.
Frank replying to a comment from A,ex / July 30, 2014 at 08:38 am
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Ritz has the WORST customer service EVER. Their chicken had so much bone, I might as well had a bunch of tooth picks for dinner. DO NOT RECOMMEND RITZ AT ALL. TOTAL RIP OFF.
Trish / July 30, 2014 at 10:28 am
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Patois at Dundas and Bathrust hands down!!
Jj / July 30, 2014 at 01:30 pm
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Pjays at Kennedy and finch is rel tasty
nicola / July 31, 2014 at 03:48 pm
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Mr. Spinner makes amazing AMAZING jerk chicken!! He's a very friendly Jamaican man who bops around at different Toronto food markets on different days every week like Thursdays at St. Andrews for lunch and Sundays at Leslieville!

He sells homemade pestos, sauces and ginger beer along with the best jerk chicken sandwiches and curry rotis
Gina / August 1, 2014 at 12:46 pm
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PAT'S, BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
klee replying to a comment from jane doe / August 2, 2014 at 12:15 pm
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congratulations... probably 80% of the places you buy anything from support the Liberals... get a life.

Albert's is awesome so you're missing out.
Marc replying to a comment from danielle / August 7, 2014 at 10:25 am
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No negatives here. Ed and Lilly have worked hard to provide authentic Jamaican dishes, while ensuring a great customer experience, a friendly and social ambiance, service with a smile and most important Great Food. One of the original's and best in the city. Love It.
Julia / August 8, 2014 at 07:51 pm
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What??? Mitzies Jerk isnt on this list?? Wtf????? Shes amazing .. highly recommended. Clean, friendly and tasty environment!!!!!!
elle replying to a comment from AK / August 13, 2014 at 02:01 pm
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Yes! Pat's ftw!!!
kbella / August 13, 2014 at 03:13 pm
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Nicey's Take out counter at Victoria Park and Finch (Morecambe Gate one block north) is the closest I have found in Toronto that can compare to authentic jerk pork from Port Antonio (jerk capital of Jamaica).
Kate / August 13, 2014 at 03:56 pm
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I actually really like the Jerk Chicken, Mac n' Cheese, and Coleslaw from Limonada (just a lemonade hut in David Pecaut Square, surprise! It sells Double, Patties, Sandwiches on Coco Bread, Jerk Chicken, and Mac n' Cheese). It's not the biggest portions for the price, but if you have a craving and are in the entertainment/ financial district it really hits the spot!
Guest / August 17, 2014 at 08:40 am
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After reading some of the comments, I tried Mitzi's Jerk and I wasn't disappointed. It was liberally spiced and super-tender chicken. What was even better though was their curry goat.
ruckustata / August 18, 2014 at 07:19 am
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Y'all be trippin. Alwyns is good but not the best. I agree the chicken is moist but it better be when it came out the oven. The peanut plaza Mr Jerk is good but their rice and peas is hard and not very good. The Mr Jerk at Sherbourne and wellesley tops all the Mr. Jerks.
Alberts is pretty good too but too pricey and seems less good once you try better. I will go and test out Jerk Spot.
Anonymous / August 24, 2014 at 01:01 am
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Charlie's Caribbean Cuisine in Mississauga is amazing (not always the most juicy but super-flavourful). The jerk chicken at Tropical Joe's is also amazing (although it was better back when it was bone-in).
Anon / September 7, 2014 at 07:31 pm
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Tried some jerk chicken at Simone's Caribbean Restaurant on the Danforth. Pretty good stuff although not the most price friendly. Nice environment though.
Gary / September 22, 2014 at 11:33 am
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Mr.Jerk in Malton, ask for Susan... she treat you rite. RESPECT! !

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