How to Cook Jamaican Chicken Foot Soup

Carolee is a passionate writer with a love for learning and teaching. She is a published author, poet, blogger, and content creator.

Learn how to make the traditional Jamaican chicken foot soup.

Learn how to make the traditional Jamaican chicken foot soup.

I don't know how many people actually use chicken feet in their cuisine, but many of my people do. The only way I will eat it is if it is in a soup. There are other methods of cooking chicken feet, but I must admit I don't like them much at all. Some people curry the feet, stew them, or add them to stewed peas—but not me.

In my household, we only make this dish once in a while, maybe every four to six months or so. The only reason why we use it is because it adds a nice richness to the soup, and it does taste like chicken.

Making This Soup

The only difference with making the chicken foot soup (as it's called in Jamaica) and making the beloved dish is that you cook the foot first by boiling it for a while. You use the same water it was cooked in to make the soup.

You have two choice for making the soup:

  1. Partially cook the chicken feet, then add veggies, and let it finish cooking.
  2. Cook the feet until it's very soft and falls apart, then remove the bones. Use stock to cook the soup.

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

20 min

1 hour

1 hour 20 min

4 to 6 servings


  • 1 1/2 pounds chicken feet, cleaned and trimmed
  • 1 pound pumpkin, cut into chunks
  • 2 medium, chopped
  • 2 large white potatoes, cut into chunks
  • 1 medium chayote, cut into chunks
  • 1 pound yellow yam, cut into chunks
  • 1 green Scotch bonnet pepper
  • 2 stalks scallion
  • 1 bunch fresh thyme
  • 1 packet of soup flavoring/soup mix
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon pimento seed
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Water
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour, for dumplings
  • 1 cup plain flour, for dumplings


You can reduce cooking time by using a pressure cooker for your chicken feet, but before you start, you have to decide on your approach. If you are using the pressure cooker, it will cut your cooking time in half, but you would need to prepare your vegetables beforehand.

You don't need to peel the pumpkin or the potatoes. Leaving the skin on will add more nutrients to the dish. So just use a soft bristle brush (I sometimes use a Scotch-Brite pad) to scrub the potato. You can rinse the pumpkin skin thoroughly before cutting.

Chop and cut your veggies and set aside. Let's start cooking!


  1. In your favorite stock/soup pot, place 8 cups of water with your pimento seeds and smashed garlic cloves. If you are opting for the pressure cooker, use 4 cups water and pressure for 10 minutes.
  2. Bring water to a boil, then add chicken feet that have been cleaned and prepped. If you're using a pressure cooker, after pressuring, add 4 more cups water and bring to a boil.
  3. When chicken feet are tender, add pumpkin and cook for 15 minutes or until the soup starts to turn the color of the pumpkin.
  4. Add your other vegetables and dumplings and cook on medium, covered, for 20 minutes.
  5. Add soup mix, scallion and green Scotch bonnet pepper (this will not be spicy). Add salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Cover and let simmer on medium-low until soup starts to thicken and all vegetables are cooked.

Make the Dumplings

  1. Combine both flours and add a pinch of salt. Add water a little at a time and use your fingers to form the dough.
  2. When the dough is formed, use the heel of your palm to knead for two minutes. The dough should not be too sticky or dry.
  3. To make dumplings, pinch off a golf-ball-sized amount and make a ball with your hands. Slightly flatten the balls with your fingers, and add them to your soup!

Rate This Chicken Feet Recipe

© 2012 Carolee Samuda


Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on March 05, 2015:

Hello Lucey, yes you can use whatever soup mix is available. Please let me know how it turns out. Good luck!

Lucey Andrew on March 05, 2015:

I have never tried chicken foot soup. But its image is endorsing me to cook on coming weekend. I do not know whether my family will like or dislike however, i will be trying.

But i have query can i use knorr Soup mix instead of Maggi Soup mix? because it is not available in my kitchen.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on October 06, 2014:

Hello Diahann, I am glad you liked the chicken foot soup. It's one of my mom's favorites too.

Diahann on October 06, 2014:

Hello! When i visited Jamaica last month my boyfriend cooked this for me. He added a few more ingredients though. It was my first time eating the chicken feet. Once i tried it, i was in love. I told him i wanted it for breakfast too, lol.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on March 23, 2014:

Thanks Kevin. People do eat it. There are several recipes for stewed, curried and even fried feet :D

The Examiner-1 on March 23, 2014:

That is what I thought because looking at it, I did not think that it was an edible part. I only saw the photo I will have to check the recipe.


Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on March 23, 2014:

Hey Kevin, some people so eat the feet but I am not a fan. I make the soup for flavor because it tastes somewhat like chicken but has a but more body and flavor.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on March 23, 2014:

Hey Rebecca, then I'll just have to invite you to Jamaican then :)

The Examiner-1 on March 23, 2014:

Tell me the feet were only for flavor. I cannot see eating them.

Rebecca Mealey from Northeastern Georgia, USA on March 23, 2014:

Well, it certainly LOOKS good. I would definitely give it a try if I were visiting while you made it.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on March 15, 2014:

Hi Jane, thanks for sharing your experience...lol. My fiancé hates it as well. He will only have it if I take the feet out. I am not too fond of it either but I crave it once in a while :)

Jane on March 15, 2014:

I am Jamaican, and love chicken foot soup. I make it maybe once a year 'cause no one else in my household will even go near the thing. My husband, who is Jamaican as well, just can't tolerate that kind of thing and the kids think the toes look like fingers! Like I said, I don't cook it often but whenever I do I go all out. Lasts me about 3 days then I don't crave it again for another year or so!

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on March 04, 2013:

Thanks Moonlake. My fiancé hates the feet as well. When I make the soup I have to remove the feet for he wont eat them...lol

moonlake from America on March 04, 2013:

I just ask my husband the other day if he would eat chicken feet. He said he didn't think so. I think I would I see no reason not to we eat all the other parts of a chicken. Your soup and dumplings sound great. Voted up.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on September 02, 2012:

Hi Kelly, that's not chicken foot soup it's chicken soup....lol. Same thing except for the meat. So you learned to make dumplings Jamaican style, you can't have soup without dumplings.

Rastamermaid from Universe on September 02, 2012:

Great hub Cardisa,two thumbs up!!!

This is one of my faves,I do pretty good making it but I don't use the chicken foot,I use usually cut up a breast and use. Now that my dumpling game is tight I've been adding spinners. FIYAH!


Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on August 17, 2012:

Hi Om, I know Chinese love chicken feet...lol...thanks for sharing.

Om Paramapoonya on August 17, 2012:

Chicken feet! Yay! My Thai side of the family doesn't really like chicken feet, but my Chinese relatives love them! When we go to a dim sum restaurant, stewed chicken feet are always one of things my mom orders. I'll share this recipe with her. I'm sure she'll like it.

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on August 17, 2012:

Hey Angela, I hate cow tongue, I have some in my freezer and ain't cooking that....yuk! LOL LOL....I can stomach the chicken feet if it's made into a soup. I told my fiancé to give the cow tongue away.

Angela Blair from Central Texas on August 17, 2012:

Must admit that chicken foot anything is a turn off for me -- but then I don't like calf tongue or anything like that either -- guess it would depend how hungry I got! Loved the Hub -- didn't even know one could cook with chicken feet! Best/Sis

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on August 16, 2012:

Hello Green Lotus, I am so glad you are not "weirded" out by this recipe. I know a lot of people might find it grotesque, but I see a lot of people searching for it on the net...lol

Hillary from Atlanta, GA on August 16, 2012:

Chicken feet, chicken lips, anything chicken will enhance the flavor of mama'a good old fashioned , cure-all chicken soup! Thanks! Rated way up!

Carolee Samuda (author) from Jamaica on August 16, 2012:

Hey Jimmy, I understand. It used to put me off as well. It took me a long time to eat the stuff. That's why I suggested removing the feet and making the soup with the stock. Thanks for stopping by.

Jimmy the jock from Scotland on August 16, 2012:

I think I would use the feet to make stock rather than eat them, the soup looks great but I am afraid to say the chicken foot would put me off eating lol. thanks for sharing.....jimmy

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