Cheesy Jerk Sliders are made with saucy seasoned ground beef, bursting with jerk flavour and sandwiched between buttery bread with melted mozzarella and provolone cheese. Serve these Jamaican jerk sliders at your next party or gathering as a delicious snack, appetizer, or finger food.
Cheesy Jerk Sliders
Sliders are ultimately one of my favourite game day eats, or simple appetizers/finger foods to serve at functions along with chicken wings (of course). They are usually, very easy to make, tasty and filling – literally the perfect combo for when serving guests!
This Jamaican twist on traditional cheeseburger sliders is absolutely irresistible! Jerk sliders are tender, juicy, bite-sized sandwiches stuffed with well seasoned ground beef and plenty of gooey, melty cheese. The scotch bonnet pepper brings the heat while the honey tames it. All of these flavours come together to make mouthwatering jerk burger sliders.
Here’s Why You’ll Love this Jerk Sliders Recipe
- Perfect for Parties – whether you are hosting a barbeque, game night or a Super Bowl watch party, these sliders are a great appetizer!
- Easy to Prepare – simply grill your seasoned beef, assemble your sliders, and set them to bake in the oven! These are ready in just 35 minutes.
- Fun Family Dinner – these mini Caribbean jerk sliders are a tasty departure from standard burgers. Make these once and the whole family will be requesting them again!
What is Jamaican Jerk?
Jerk refers to a style of cooking. Jerk is a hot and spicy dry-rub or wet marinated blend of herbs and spices used on all types of meats and seafood. Traditionally, jerked foods would be cooked over a small open coal or pimento wood fire. Jerk has a spicy, woodsy, smoky flavour.
Jamaican Jerk History
The origins date back to the Taínos people (who were apart of the Caribbean indigenous population) and the Maroons (descendants of Africans who formed settlements away from slavery in the Western world).
It’s said that they merged their cooking techniques of using aromatic pimento wood and what you can call smokeless pits to create what we know today as Jerk.
Jerk has been a part of Jamaican culinary traditions for centuries, and has now evolved into various unique dishes.
Why is it Called Jerk?
The name “jerk”, is said to come from charqui or ch’arki, a Spanish term for dried meat, or dried strips of meat similar to what we know now as “jerky”.
What is Jerk Seasoning Made Of?
The main components of jerk seasoning are allspice (pimento berries), a hot pepper (usually scotch bonnet) and dried thyme.
What You Need to Make this Jerk Sliders Recipe
- Large Sauté Pan – to cook the beef in.
- Wooden Spoon – to incorporate the seasoning into the ground beef.
- Oven Proof Casserole Dish – to bake the sliders in.
- Grater – to grater the mozzarella cheese.
Ingredients and Ingredient Notes
* INGREDIENTS, MEASUREMENTS AND INSTRUCTIONS ARE LISTED IN THE RECIPE CARD AT BOTTOM OF PAGE *
- Ground Beef – use whichever kind you prefer for jerk sliders. Lean ground beef will yield a less greasy filling, however if you use one with a higher fat percentage you can also drain off the excess oil.
- Aromatics – use finely chopped onion, finely chopped green onion and minced garlic, the perfect trinity.
- Fresh Thyme – roughly chopped, you can add them with whole or roughly chopped. Just be sure to remove them before adding to the sliders.
- Scotch Bonnet Pepper – with or without seeds, as desired.
- Wet Jerk Marinade – this delicious spice blend is bold, spicy, fresh, and the main flavour component in this recipe. Try my easy homemade jerk marinade recipe or purchase your favourite store-bought brand – some recommendations are below.
- Beef Bouillon – this enhances the beefy taste and adds a salty, umami flavour.
- Water – this makes the jerk beef filling more of a saucy consistency.
- Honey – this optional ingredient can be used as desired to round out flavours.
- Browning – this optional ingredient will enhance the colour of the beef filling.
- Seasoning – I keep it simple with salt and pepper.
- Olive Oil – to cook the beef in.
Garlic Herb Butter
- Garlic – minced, use as much or a little as you like. I prefer mine to be super garlicky!
- Fresh Parsley – use this or a fresh herb of choice.
- Salted Butter – melted.
- Slider Buns – sweet Hawaiian rolls and brioche rolls are soft, sweet, and doughy, and would compliment the savoury, spiciness of the jerk sauce. But you can use whatever kind of bread you prefer, just make sure to cut them in half.
- Provolone Cheese – sliced.
- Mozzarella Cheese – shredded.
How to Make Jerk Sliders
Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C) and lightly grease a large enough casserole dish with butter and set aside.
Add a drizzle of olive oil to a large skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef and cook, breaking up any larger pieces and stirring occasionally, until browned. Drain excess fat if necessary. Create space in the middle of pan and add onions, green onion, garlic, thyme and scotch bonnet pepper, jerk marinade, beef bouillon, salt, pepper, honey, browning then sauté and incorporate into the ground beef.
Add 1 1/2 cups water then bring the mixture to a boil then lower heat and let simmer until the liquid has reduced to a thick sauce. Remove from heat and set aside until you are ready to assemble the jerk sliders.
Garlic Herb Butter
To a bowl, add melted butter, chopped parsley and minced garlic. Stir until combined and set aside in a warm place.
Layer the bottom of the lightly buttered casserole dish with the bottom half of the slider buns and line bread with sliced provolone cheese. Spread the ground beef mixture evenly over the sliced cheese then, cover the ground beef with the shredded mozzarella cheese.
Place the top of the slider buns, cut-side down, over the assembled sliders. Brush tops with garlic herb butter and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until cheese is melted and tops are golden brown. Finally, remove from oven, serve and enjoy jerk sliders!
Recipe Substitutions and Tips
- Protein: This jerk sliders recipe isn’t limited to just ground beef. Cook the jerk sauce with pork, tofu, salmon or chicken.
- Add Coleslaw: For a fresh pop of flavour and crunch, top the baked jerk sliders with creamy coleslaw.
- Pineapples: For a touch of sweetness, add caramelized pineapples to these cheesy jerk sliders.
Serving Suggestions and Tips
Jerk sliders taste great on their own as a light lunch or party appetizer but if you want to make it a meal, here are some delicious sides:
- Plantains – keep with the Caribbean flavours and serve the sliders with fried plantains.
- Fries – cheesy jerk sliders would pair perfectly with french fries. Try my Air-Fryer Greek Fries or these Crispy Baked Sweet Potato Fries as a healthier alternative.
- Salads – for a lighter meal, serve sliders with salad. Try my Tomato Avocado Cucumber Salad.
Recipe Notes and Tips for Success
- Remember to drain excess fat from the skillet so you don’t end up with soggy buns.
- If you have five minutes to spare, let the garlic herb butter soak into the bread before placing the sliders in the oven.
Can I Make this Ahead of Time?
Yes. Prepare the jerk-seasoned beef and garlic herb butter ahead of time. Then store it in the fridge for up to 2 days. When you plan to serve, all you have to do is microwave the butter mixture, assemble the sliders and bake them.
Store leftover cheesy jerk sliders in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
To reheat, place the sliders in the oven at 350°F (177°C) for 5-7 minutes or until warmed through. You may need to add some butter to the top side of the buns if they seem a bit dry.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Jerk sliders take about 12-15 minutes to bake in the oven.
There is no need to cover the sliders with aluminum foil. In fact, if the buns are covered, they may get steamed then you will end up with soggy sliders.
Traditional sliders are miniature hamburgers. The name derived from United States sailors in the 1940s, who would refer to mini burgers as “sliders” due to how greasy they were. The burgers would “slide” right down their throats. Yet another theory is that the term sliders was popularized by White Castle because their burgers would “slide” right out of the package.
Watch My Story Below for Step-by-Step Instructions
Interested in more Jamaican Recipes? Check These Out!
- Jamaican Beef Patty
- Jamaican Pumpkin Soup
- Jamaican Curry Chicken
- Jamaican Steamed Cabbage
- Jamaican Oxtail Recipe
- Jamaican Jerk Chicken Recipe
- Honey Jerk Shrimp
- Jerk Marinade
- Jerk Marinade
- Jerk Chicken Sandwich
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- Large Saute Pan
- Wooden Spoon
- Oven Proof Casserole Dish
- 2 lbs Ground Beef
- 1/2 small Onion finely chopped
- 1 stalk Green Onion finely chopped
- 4 cloves Garlic minced
- 3 sprigs Fresh Thyme roughly chopped
- 1/2 whole Scotch Bonnet Pepper with or without seeds, as desired
- 2 tbsp Jerk Marinade
- 1 whole Beef Bouillon
- 1 1/2 cup Water
- 1-2 tbsp Honey optional, as desired to round out flavours
- 1 tsp Browning optional, to enhance colour
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1/2 tsp Pepper
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil
Garlic Herb Butter
- 2 cloves Garlic minced
- 5 stems Fresh Parsley or fresh herb of choice
- 1/4 cup Salted Butter melted
- 12 Slider Buns halved
- 6 sliced Provolone Cheese sliced
- 3 cups Mozzarella Cheese shredded
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C) and lightly grease a large enough casserole dish with butter and set aside.
- Add a drizzle of olive oil to a large skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef and cook, breaking up any larger pieces and stirring occasionally, until browned. Drain excess fat if necessary. Create space in the middle of pan and add onions, green onion, garlic, thyme and scotch bonnet pepper, jerk marinade, beef bouillon, salt, pepper, honey, browning then sauté and incorporate into the ground beef.
- Add 1 1/2 cups water then bring the mixture to a boil then lower heat and let simmer until the liquid has reduced to a thick sauce. Remove from heat and set aside.
Garlic Herb Butter
- To a bowl, add melted butter, chopped parsley and minced garlic. Stir until combined and set aside in a warm place.
- Layer the bottom of the lightly buttered casserole dish with the bottom half of the slider buns and line bread with sliced provolone cheese. Spread the ground beef mixture evenly over the sliced cheese then, cover the ground beef with the shredded mozzarella cheese.
- Place the top of the slider buns, cut-side down, over the assembled sliders. Brush tops with garlic herb butter and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until cheese is melted and tops are golden brown. Remove from oven, serve and enjoy!
Note, the nutritional information is calculated using a nutrition facts calculator. It is a rough estimate and can vary based on products used.