When my husband asked for Chicken Foot Soup he was very specific – he wanted his mother’s soup.  I wasn’t offended, I’m a good cook but I know the connection between food and memories and nothing can compete with that.  He clearly had fond memories of his mom’s soup so I called her up and asked how she made her chicken foot soup.   I was glad that I decided to call her rather than make it on my own because my soup would have been a bit different and he would have been disappointed.   She gave me clear instructions and I followed them, it’s safe to say this is her chicken foot soup recipe and not my own.  This chicken foot soup is a Jamaican version and is full of goodness.  There’s chayote, pumpkin, potatoes and a savory chicken noodle soup; lots of garlic, thyme and pepper gives it a clearly Caribbean flavor and Jamaican spinners (firm dumplings) are the icing on the cake.  I’m not a huge chicken foot fan and I enjoyed this soup! 




  • 1 lb chicken foot, toenails removed
  • 10 sprigs thyme
  • 1 hot pepper, wiri wiri pepper, scotch bonnet
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • ½ tsp oil
  • 1 small chayote, chopped
  • 1 small Idaho potato, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 scallion, finely chopped
  • 1 ½ cups pumpkin
  • 1 chicken flavored soup mix with noodles, I used Grace brand
  • Pinch black pepper
  • 10 cups water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Spinners:
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • ¼ cup water


  • Place oil in a large pot, when oil is hot sauté thyme, pepper, garlic and thyme for just about a minute. Add chicken foot and cook for about 2 minutes.
  • Add water and bring to a boil. Cook for 30 minutes then add chayote, potato, scallion, pumpkin, chicken soup mix and black pepper. Cover and let cook for about 10 minutes.
  • To make spinners place flour, salt and water in a bowl and mix to form a stiff dough then pinch off small pieces of dough and roll between palms to form an elongated spinner.
  • Add spinners to soup, then cook for an additional 10 minutes or until vegetables are soft.
  • Serve warm.
Author: Jehan Powell