December 10, 2023

Salt mackerel served with all the fixings – boiled green banana, boiled dumplings and fried plantain – is a favourite Jamaican breakfast that can be eaten for lunch or dinner too! Salted mackerel is another name for pickled mackerel, which is preserved in a salty brine. However, part of the deliciousness of this dish is the saltiness. Still, the fish needs to be prepared by removing a lot of the salt – first by soaking it overnight, then by boiling it for about 20 minutes to prepare it.

Jamaicans also love Mackerel Rundown. The main difference between the two dishes is that Rundown uses coconut milk and Salt Mackerel does not. And yes, I do use tomato ketchup in this dish (it’s my secret weapon) but if you’re Jamaican and that’s sacrilege to you just don’t use it. But my policy it to give something new a try, you may just love it!

Salt Mackerel Recipe


3 (about 1lb) Salted or Pickled Mackerel
4 Tbsp Cooking Oil
1 medium onion, sliced
1 large tomato, chopped
1 Tbsp Tomato ketchup
1 tsp Hot Sauce
½ tsp black pepper


1. Soak mackerel overnight in cold water
2. Rinse fish and place in pot with fresh water and bring to a simmering boil.
3. After 20 minutes remove pot from stove.Rinse fish and place in a bowl to cool
4. When cool, flake the flesh off the fish bone in small pieces and set aside
5. Pour cooking oil in large pan and turn heat to med-high
6. Place onions and tomatoes in pan and sautee until onions are transparent
7. Stir in ketchup, hot sauce and ¼ tsp black pepper
8. Fold mackerel into seasonings with 3 Tbsp water, sprinkle with remaining black pepper and simmer for 5 minutes
Serve with Boiled Dumplings, Boiled Green Bananas and Fried Plantain
Serves 6 to 8

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In our family cooking is a loving gesture. Our mission is to spread that love around the world by sharing our beloved family recipes. Our Jamaican recipes have been passed down for generations, are easy to prepare and very authentic! We know you'll love them. Enjoy!

Fay & Angela

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