June 28, 2017

cameraWatch our step-by-step video for this recipe below

Chicken Pumpkin Soup is a classic Jamaican recipe that I’ve been making for years. The ingredients are exactly the same ones used to make Jamaican Beef Soup. Literally all you have to do is substitute the chicken in this recipe for 1 lb of stewing beef, though it does take longer to cook the beef til tender.

I think this recipe will bring everyone lots  joy. That’s because I got email requests from two people named Joy for my chicken and beef soup recipes! Ladies, thank you for your requests. I think Joy x 2 is a really good thing. So, here’s another hearty recipe for your Saturday Jamaican soup repertoire.  I hope you all enjoy this versatile recipe as much as I do!

8 cups Water
4-5 medium skinless Chicken legs (thighs and drumstick)
3 cups diced Jamaican Pumpkin, or buttercup or butternut squash
2 Carrots, chopped (1-inch piece)
3 stalks Celery, chopped (1-inch pieces)
2 Chocho (chayote), peeled and sliced into 16 pieces
1 lb Yellow Yam, cut into large cubes
1/2 cup each red and green Bell Pepper, chopped
1 large Onion, chopped
1 10-oz can condensed Chicken Noodle Soup
2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Black Pepper
1 sprig Thyme
1 Scotch Bonnet Pepper
1 cup flour
1/3 cup water
1/2 tsp salt
Mix together to make stiff dough. Form into 7 to 8 flat, round dumplings

1. Bring water to a boil and add chicken and diced pumpkin
2. Cook (rolling boil) for 10 to 15 minutes or until the pumpkin is very soft and dissolving
3. Add celery, carrot and chocho and cook on for 10 minutes
4. Remove chicken and set aside to cool before removing the bones
5. Add yellow yam and dumplings (see recipe below) and cook/boil for 15 minutes
6. Add bell peppers, onion and chicken soup to pot
7. Add salt and pepper, and thyme
8. Place whole scotch bonnet pepper on top of soup, cover and cook (rolling boil) for 5 minutes
9. Remove scotch bonnet pepper, thyme, and if necessary remove some dumplings to make room for the chicken
10. Stir in chicken meat and turn off stove and serve.

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I’ve been cooking Jamaican food for my family for more than 50 years! Now I'm teaching my daughter Angela and you how to cook my treasured family recipes! I'm happy to be of service and love hearing from you so don't forget to leave a comment below.



  • Reply
    September 3, 2012

    Thanks for sharing this wonderfull and harty Chicken Soup recipe. I have been making this soup for years and I sometimes use Pimento Seeds, Maggie’s Chicken Soup Mix, and Chicken foot to thicken it up.

  • Reply
    September 14, 2012

    Love this recipe! My 4 year old could not get enough and my husband and I really enjoyed it! I did not add the pepper to the pot, just some pepper sauce to my own bowl. Thank you so much for posting this recipe 🙂 Can you please post a recipe for festival?

  • Reply
    A. Little
    September 17, 2012

    Hello . I would love to make this soup, however where we live, the stores don’t sell the Yam. What can I use instead. Thanks for you comment. God Bless

    • Reply
      September 30, 2014

      Hi there,

      you do not have to add yam to the soup it will still be just as good. If you want you can use Potatoes not as an actual substitute but I don’t eat yam so I use potatoes and the soup is still yummy.

  • Reply
    September 23, 2012

    Can you use regular pumpkin as opposed to squash?

    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      September 25, 2012

      Hi Ernie,
      I wouldn’t recommend using harvest pumpkin. Butternut, buttercup or acorn squash are all good substitute for Caribbean pumpkin. Blessings, Fay

      • Reply
        Jemma Marisol
        March 21, 2015

        In the US, West Indian pumpkin is called calabaza squash. If using butternut squash, as it is more dense and rich, you can use a bit less or the soup might be too sweet and rich.

  • Reply
    [email protected]
    September 29, 2012

    Hi Fay, Emily from the UK here, ive just made this and its soooo lovley. my 2 year old ate it all up, i used pumpkin and butternut squash and replaced yam with irish potato. delicious!!
    Thank you so much for sharing. a true taste of the carribean
    emily and family. uk

  • Reply
    November 5, 2012

    I live in Chicago and I can’t find the yellow yam. Do you think I would find it at a Latin market? Would it be called a yellow yam?


    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      November 6, 2012

      Are there no Jamaican restaurants in Chicago? If so, call one and find our where they purchase their tropical yams. Otherwise a Puerto Rican or African grocery may have it. Good luck!

  • Reply
    January 7, 2013

    of jamaican heritage so what better way to gain more cooking tips since my mommy doesn’t live in atlanta. thank you your site is God send!!!!!

  • Reply
    March 25, 2013

    Hello Fay,
    I have followed your video for this soup and the family loves, loves, loves it! I have made it twice, the only thing I added was corn on the cob. Thanks so much for your site. I visit often. I’ve also made the stewed chicken! I’m not Jamacian but love the food! Thanks so much!!!! You are wonderful!!

  • Reply
    April 5, 2013

    This recipe was soo good. My family and I are not Jamaican but man this soup was delicious, except instead of chicken noodle soup, I used Grace Cock Soup Mix and I added Grace Coconut milk. Thanks for sharing your recipe, it was amazing!

  • Reply
    April 12, 2013

    *This is the BEST chicken soup I’ve ever had! My mother-inlaw makes this and your recipe reminds me of her. My children really love it too! Thank you for sharing!

  • Reply
    May 30, 2013

    How do you think this would go in a slow cooker? …or any of your soups would go really?

    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      Cook Like A Jamaican
      June 11, 2013

      I haven’t tried any of them in a slower cooker yet, but I think they chicken soup would be a good one to try. Please let me know how it goes. Blessings

      • Reply
        June 15, 2013

        Will do. I’m making the chicken curry tonight so I’ll post pics to Facebook later. Cheers!

  • Reply
    Delilah montalvo
    July 17, 2013

    Can I use chicken breast instead of the leg

    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      Cook Like A Jamaican
      July 19, 2013

      Yes Delilah, no problem

  • Reply
    September 8, 2013


    Ive always wanted to be able to make a good jamaican chicken soup but my mum died before she could teach me si im very grateful for your site. I was wondering if you could tell me if i can use the powder cock soup or pumpkin soup mixes instead of the chicken noodle soup?



    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      Cook Like A Jamaican
      September 23, 2013

      Hi Debs,
      I believe in being creative in the kitchen and a soup mix should work fine as a substitute. Enjoy!

  • Reply
    September 19, 2013

    Hello! I love your website and recipes. It actually helped me more authenticate my dishes!

    Question: can I add pimento or will it be too much for this recipe?

    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      Cook Like A Jamaican
      September 23, 2013

      Hi Natalie,
      Pimento berries will be fine to add to the soup. I would add about 5 to 10 and remove them when serving. Fay

  • Reply
    October 29, 2013

    Hi Fay
    Loving your recipes – am Jamaican and LOVE to cook. One thing I wanted to let you know, we don’t eat pork at all and whenever the recipes call for pigs tail or salt pork or bacon I substitute smoked turkey wings or necks for the pigs tail and I substitute turkey bacon for salt pork or bacon. I also use a little extra salt beef in stewed peas or red peas soup not too much.
    Also no alcohol for us so when I see a recipe where rum is optional I just leave it out, but for carrot juice I add a little pineapple juice.

    Thanks again
    Peace and Blessings

  • Reply
    November 23, 2013

    I’ve tried at least 4 of your recipes and they were all rave. Thank you much. I have a question about the soup. do I have to use chocho in this soup if so is there something I can substitute? Thank you for these beautiful recipes.

    • Reply Fay & Angela
      Fay & Angela
      May 26, 2014

      Hi Tonya,
      If you can’t get your hands on chocho just omit it. You’ll find it is still excellent without it. Fay

  • Reply
    January 26, 2014

    Hi there Fay, I absolutely love your site and have been following your recipes for some time. I LOVE your stew chicken recipe as does my son. Anywhoo I was just wondering how long this would take without the chicken? Could I add fish instead? My partner only eats fish so trying to adapt this for him 🙂
    Very grateful for any advice!
    Lucy..London, UK.

  • Reply
    May 10, 2014

    Absolutely love this recipe and the instructions were easy to follow. I substituted yam for sweet potatoes, I did use a can of Campbell’s condensed chicken soup but I also used a chicken soup noodle mix packet. The end results, were to die for…Thanks so much for inspiring me to cook; the wifey appreciates it as well lol.

  • Reply
    September 23, 2014

    I didn’t request this, but I did a google search for Caribbean chicken soup recipe and this came up. My name happens to be Joy too, so I found it hilarious that two other ‘Joy’s’ had already requested this. I will try this tonight….3 times the Joy!

  • Reply
    October 14, 2014

    I am from Newfoundland, Canada and my husband is from Jamaica, I just made this soup for dinner tonight and I LOVE IT. Did not change a thing.. It is delicious!!!

    Thank you so much for the recipe!!!

  • Reply
    Marie Graham
    October 28, 2014

    Yummy, I could smell the soup through the video, lol. Looks awesome!!

  • Reply
    November 2, 2014

    I missed my grandma’s soup so bad since I moved to the west coast. Needless to say with under 10% of afriacn american population in my area. I cross my fingers to find ingredients in local supermarkets – Like savers, Fred myers I was one of those kids who was to busy tasting and not watching.Somethings that my grandma used were : 1 Liptons dry chicken noodle soup in the packet. I used a 2lb rotisserie chicken (cheated) so I cooked it less in the beginningThe kind of white yam covered in waxy film (Fay correct me if its another veggie) I also removed the celery- but added in a half a medium radish, and green onion (Scallion) and potatoes. Also big tip don’t let the Harbonero peppa burst in the soup

    • Reply
      November 2, 2014

      this saved me!

  • Reply
    November 22, 2014

    Thank you! Home alone on Saturday and left with the task of cooking dinner. This helped me out big time! I really enjoyed it and feel inspired to cook more often! Xx

  • Reply
    Claire Carty
    December 16, 2014

    I made this last night, it was delicious!
    Fay, you are amazing – please don’t ever stop teaching us how you cook! x

  • Reply
    January 24, 2015

    Fantastic!! So floral and rich. I absolutely love it and it’s very easy to prepare. I am definitely adding this to my routine! Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful recipe and filling our house with your love of food.

  • Reply
    April 24, 2015

    That was soooooo blessssss!!!!

  • Reply
    May 14, 2015

    Hi I love your site and Caribbean food. I went to Ocho Rios last year and have been trying to recreate this soup I had. I believe it mulligatawny. My son loved it bringing him closer with his roots. Just wondering if you have a recipe for that I’d be very grateful. It looks a lot like your pumpkin soup. Thanks 🙂 Irie

    • Reply Fay & Angela
      Fay & Angela
      May 20, 2015

      Hi Ashley,
      Sorry, I don’t have a recipe for Mulligatawny, which I don’t know to be a popular Jamaican soup. I do however guarantee that all the soup recipes on this site are delicious… give one a try. Blessings, Fay

  • Reply
    July 1, 2015

    So how long should you boil the dumplings for to make sure there cooked in the middle, and how do I alter this ingredients to feed 70 people .

    • Reply Fay & Angela
      Fay & Angela
      July 9, 2015

      Hi Cer,
      The dumplings will take no time to cook. When they float to the top you know they’re done. You can also make them small if you want them to cook faster. I’m sorry m’dear I am not good at altering my recipes to catering sizes. Wish I could help. Blessings, Fay

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