Jamaican Beef Patty Recipe

As the name implies, Jamaican beef patties originated in Jamaica. See our guide for more facts and information…

The Jamaican beef patty is a turnover type of pastry, filled with beef and flavored with Jamaican spices. It may look like a turnover, but is much more savory. The beef patty is the Jamaican form of fast food.

Where Jamaican Beef Patties Are Eaten

The patties not only are eaten in Jamaica, but all over the Caribbean area. With recent migration of Jamaicans north to the U.S., you might also find them in areas with a large Jamaican population. You may find the patties frozen at some ethnic stores, and if you would like to make your own, the ingredients may also be found in these stores.

Recipe for Jamaican Beef Patties:


Pastry:2 cups Flour
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1/2 tablespoon curry powder
1/4 cup Solid shortening
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) margarine
1/3 cup Cold water
Sift the flour, curry powder and salt into a large bowl. Cut in the shortening and margarine until crumbly. Add the cold water to make a stiff dough. Lightly flour a wooden cutting board and roll out the dough until about 1/8-inch thick. Cut out 8-inch circles. Cover with wax paper or damp cloth until ready to use. You can place the dough in the refrigerator overnight. If you do refrigerate, remove the dough at least 15 minutes before using.

Meat filling: 2 tablespoon oil
1 Small white onion, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon Chopped Scotch Bonnet pepper
1/2 lb. Lean ground beef
1/2 teaspoon Salt 1/2 teaspoon Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon Curry powder
1/2 teaspoon Dried thyme
1/4 cup Breadcrumbs
1/4 cup Beef or chicken stock
1 Egg, beaten
1/4 cup Water

In a heavy skillet, melt the margarine and sauté the onion and Scotch Bonnet Pepper until they become limp. Add the ground beef, salt, pepper, curry powder and thyme and mix well. Brown the meat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add the breadcrumbs and stock and combine all the ingredients well. Cover the skillet and simmer for about 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. When all the liquids have been absorbed, the filling is ready. It should be moist but not watery. Remove the skillet from the stove and preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Uncover the dough circles and place 2 to 3 tablespoons of filling on half of each. Moisten the edges of the dough with water and fold the dough circle over the meat filling. Pinch the edges closed with a fork. Lightly brush the pastry with a mixture of the egg and water. Bake on a lightly greased baking sheet for 30 to 40 minutes or until the pastry are golden brown.
Serves: 10 Patties

Try this recipe for a real taste of Jamaica. It can be eaten as a full meal or with complimentary dishes.

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