Authentic Jamaican Patties from Jamaican Patty Co.

Jamaican Patty Co. serves authentic Jamaican patties—handheld meat pies.

by Megan Dollar and Tessa Cooper

Feb 2024

Spread of food from Jamaican Patty Company
Photo by Leah StiefermannPatties and sodas galore at Jamaican Patty Co. Purchase Photo

What’s not to like about a handheld lunch? It’s why our go-to is so often sandwiches, but it’s time to change up that routine. Jamaican Patty Co. (3439 S. Campbell Ave., Springfield) serves handheld patties in a variety of savory flavors that combine the countries colonial history. The Jamaican patty most closely resembles the British pasty—a handheld pie stuffed with hot, savory filling. But the Jamaican variant is tinted yellow in color, from turmeric, and the filling more closely resembles Indian, West African and Jamaican flavors. On my visit, I tried one traditional beef patty and one chicken curry.

It’s hard to say which was my favorite, but the chicken curry probably pulled slightly ahead due to my curry bias. Both patties were packed full with savory spices—not so much that they were spicy, but just generously and well-seasoned. I washed it down with a pineapple and ginger soda (the label said it was Jamaican soda, but also noted that the product was made in Queens); the sweetness contrasted the savory pies wonderfully. The restaurant also serves oxtail and Jamaican Jerk chicken, but only on weekends. After feeling so satisfied by those patties, I think I’ll need to make a weekend trip to try more flavorful Jamaican cuisine.—Megan Dollar

There’s one extra incentive to visit the local business’s newest location at 301 Park Central West: its jerk burger. While you can acquire dishes like the eatery’s handheld meat pies, shrimp alfredo and curry chicken meal from either location, the jerk burger with fries is exclusive to the downtown joint. This hearty sandwich features Jerk chicken that’s a tad sweet and spicy, but I have a feeling that it’s the house-made ranch that makes this dish one of the best sellers on the menu. From noon to 3 p.m., you can order a generous lunch-sized portion of any of the meal combos. On my visit, I tried the BBQ Jerk Chicken meal. Personally, I found the spice level to be just right, but if you’re a bit sensitive to spice you may want to have a chilled drink on hand, like one of the Ting Jamaican sodas they serve. The chicken was juicy and tender, and it slid right off the bone beautifully. The soft rice with beans mixed in didn’t try to compete at all with the spices in the chicken, and the tangy slaw added a nice acidic flavor to round it all out. Of course, I couldn’t leave without a curry chicken patty, and let’s just say I regretted that I promised to save half of it for my husband. He only ended up getting about a third of it. Oops.—Tessa Cooper