Caribbean Mutton Soup

Nothing beats a big bowl of hearty, warming soup. In the Caribbean soup is traditionally served on Saturday’s (Saturday Soup). So, as I happen to be in the mood for it today, here’s my version of a Jamaican classic – mutton soup.

A bit about a few of the ingredients 

From top left across to bottom right:
Pumpkin – TIP: seeds can be roasted and eaten as a snack or for a topping
on salads. 
Scotch bonnet pepper – is one of the hottest in the world. It has a distinct flavour that packs a punch, POW.
Yam – used in a similar way to potatoes, this variety is know as a hard yam and holds its shape well when cooking. 
Dried soup mix – can be made without, but this mix helps give a better depth
of flavour.
 Cho cho – looks like a pear with a texture and taste of cucumber. 
Pimento seeds (also known as allspice) – looks like peppercorns and similar in flavour to cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg.


Caribbean Mutton Soup

November 12, 2011
: 4
: 30 min
: 2 hr 30 min
: 3 hr
: easy

Taste of the Caribbean


  • 3lbs mutton (shoulder is best or another cut on-the-bone)
small handful of pimento seeds

  • 500gm of yam

  • 1 packet of pumpkin soup mix

  • 1 large onion

  • 1 potato

  • 1 cho cho

  • 1 large carrot

  • a few sprigs of thyme

  • 2 tomatoes

  • 2 bayleaves
1 scotch bonnet pepper
2 cloves of garlic

  • 1 tsp tomato puree

  • 1 heaped tsp salt

  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • Step 1 Peel the skins off the yam, cho cho, carrots, onions, potato chop and set aside (once chopped put the potato in a bowl of salted water till ready to use otherwise they will go brown). Chop mutton into bite-size pieces, add to a large saucepan and fill with enough water to cover the meat plus a bit extra. Bring to the boil, scum will now surface, remove this with a spoon.  Add scotch bonnet pepper, pimento seeds and soup mix, reduce heat to a simmer, cover and cook for 2 and a half hours or until the meat is falling of the bone.
  • Step 2 In the final half hour of cooking add the chopped veg and all the other ingredients. Once done soup should be a thickish consistency, if not, take the lid off and whack the heat up and reduce until so. Serve. This recipe also works well with beef, goat, lamb neck and chicken.

41 thoughts on “Caribbean Mutton Soup”

  • I cooked the Caribbean Mutton Soup (substituting the mutton with lamb) I was very surprised how well I did, I really enjoyed it. The scotch bonnet pepper be warned has a mighty kick.

    Thankyou Tash I feel more confident now to make my own homemade soup.

    Glen really enjoyed it.

  • yey thank you, after all these years of eating it im finally gonna hav a go of making it ill let u no how i get on thank you

  • I made this yesterday. It is exactly like the one I used to get from KD’s West Indian takeaway in Willesden. Now that I live in Suffolk I have missed it so much…..until now. So thanks very much for a big bowl of Caribbean heaven.

  • Well Tash, I started my soup late this evening and I’ve only just finished but let me tell you it was worth it. Little accident as my scotch bonnet split so the flavour is packing a punch but I made a big pot so it diluted the POW! Thank goodness. 🙂 Anyway I can’t wait for the family to try this tomorrow as it tastes amazing, even better than any caribbean takeaways I’ve had. Thank u so much for sharing this recipe. PS: cho cho – would always see them in the Asian/Caribbean food stores never knew what to do with them,now I do, lovin it. Thanks again 😉

    • Hi Evie,

      Yay, really happy to hear you rescued the dish. I can take to heat, but you could also take the pepper out a bit earlier so it doesn’t burst. Hope it went down well with the family. And thanks for leaving such a lovely comment 🙂

  • Nothing like a big bowl of soup! Love the recipe Tash. A tip for the scotch bonnet – I put it in whole, that way I can fish it out once the heat hits a level that is acceptable to my taste buds! Also get cuts of mutton or lamb with bone, adding it to the pot first to brown, then add water and keep on a low heat to ensure that intense flavour. A favourite of mine is adding dumplings mmmm alongside green banana & sweet potato. The choice is endless!

  • Trying this now and the house is smelling great like when I was growing up. I have added dumplings in the soup and looking forward to tasting the finished product. Thank you.

    • Hi Winston – dumplings/spinners are often added to this soup, but I’m not a fan, so left it out. But that’s the beauty – so long as you have the basics you can’t go wrong. Enjoy!

  • Thanks for this lovely recipe. I cooked the lamb neck stew for my husband who is from jamaican descent. He enjoyed it so much. Also praised me for cooking it so well, moreso because I’m from West Africa. I said to him, the thanks largely goes to you for being a very good teacher and I followed your instructions carefully.I am cooking it again today!

  • Hi I’m about to start to cook my mutton soup when I add the mutton also the mix do I add onion and black pepper at that time.

  • House smelt old school as I was cooking it .I been ill & was craving nourishment. I used dasheen rather than yam .
    Excellent result.

  • Absolutely beautiful. I have been using your recipe for years and never told you how beautiful it was ( she says with two pots on the stove in honour of hubby’s earthday ) Happy new year, I will look forward to more goodness from you xx

    • Hi Michelle

      Your comment has made my day! Thanks for taking the time to drop me a line, very much appreciated. Happy new year to you too! And I will indeed get on the case of creating more recipes. x

  • Better than the jamican shop who said white man can’t cook.
    My sweet dumplings are lush .
    Just got learn how to do curry goat.
    Excellent thank richard London

  • Hi tash thank you brilliant but scotch bonnet I went mad lol.
    Nice kick to it and sweating lol.
    Will try curry goat next
    Thank you richard

  • Hi Tash, I’ve just put a very large pot of lamb vegetables and half a scotch bonnet. I sliced it on half seeds included and chopped finely.
    There are plenty of vegetables to a sorbet the chili. My question is, do you think I’ve put too much chili in?

  • Tried this recipe today! Tasted absolutely beautiful just like my Grandma used to cook it and so easy to follow I also added dumplings to it! Now I have family members asking for a taster so I’ve had to tub some up lol

    • Hi Katie

      Yay! I don’t have a slow cooker, so not tried. If you’ve cooked soup in one before then I don’t see why not, but it might turn out a bit too watery.

  • Wow!
    I am a can’t cook, won’t cook girl but even I can make this soup! Thank you soooo much my family are going to loveeeee it
    Will try with dumplings in the future x

  • Hi thanks so much for this recipe and especially the method. This is my second attempt first using your method. My partner loves soup and it will make things much easier for me. I love this soup too when my mum makes it.

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