Best oxtail curry recipe! How to cook oxtail to tender with a ton of flavor with Jamaican spices. Great served on a bed of rice or as is in a bowl like a stew. Make it spicy with peppers or leave it mild for a hearty dinner your whole family will enjoy.
You can cook oxtails on the stove this way over medium heat in a Dutch oven or pot of your choice. Shred beef easily off the bone this way.
If you love Jamaican flavors you are going to love this oxtail curry dish. Kind of like an oxtail soup, a bit closer to the thickness of a stew with some fresh tomatoes and Caribbean seasonings. Let’s just say it is all the things in one bowl y’all. (affiliate links present)
If you are new to cooking this cut of beef there is a trick to it. In order to get the connective tissues to break down and your meat to fall off the bones and cartilage you do need to boil them essentially. What I mean by this is submerging them into water or broth, boiling them to tenderize the protein is key.
You can’t be in a hurry to do this, you’ll need a few hours to get it just right. Keep that in mind when you cook Ox Tail period, no matter what you are going to do with them later. With that said, pulled off the bone and seasoned right it is pretty incredible. Adding that into a sauce or soup is even better if you ask me.
Cooking Ox Tails
You for sure want to add spices to the outside, it does have a strong flavor without anything. I came up with this basic oxtail seasoning mix you can use. In this case it is curry focused and those measurements are below.
You can call it soup or gravy. I guess that depends on how you want to serve it up. If it is going to be spooned over something like a bed of rice or with Naan bread then the meat would be more of the star. In a bowl with more of the liquid would be more of a soup.
- 4 large oxtails
- Onion diced
- Olive oil
- Minced garlic and ginger
- Water or beef broth
- Pepper of your choice, or roasted jalapeno – optional for heat, leave whole
- Salt and black pepper
- Curry powder
- 1 tbsp caribbean seasoning for a Jamaican oxtails recipe flair
Oxtails with Gravy
If you want to add some freshness to the dish you can dice up a fresh tomato and add that to the top. This is nice if you are serving and scooping this meal up with roti flatbread or something. Kinda’ makes it like a taco of sorts. 😉
You will want to start off with your pieces thawed or fresh from the butcher. Many times you will have to buy them frozen but ideally they should be defrosted first before preparing them. Then you will want to trim just a bit of the fat from the outsides, only the main excess but leave some on. Rinse them and pat dry with paper towels so the spices will stick nicely.
- Cover the outsides with seasoning: your salt, allspice, thyme, curry, bottled or homemade Caribbean seasoning and set aside.
- Chop onions and mince garlic if it isn’t already.
- Heat olive or vegetable oil on medium to high heat, when hot add your diced onions, add the garlic garlic and add the oxtails.
- Turn pieces as they cook to brown oxtails on all sides.
- Add enough water or broth to cover them completely in your pot.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer, cover with a lid and boil for 2 hours.
- Chop celery and tomato, set aside.
- Mince your ginger and set aside.
- Remove lid, and add celery, minced ginger, ketchup, and hot pepper
- (be careful not to break the pepper through the cooking process).
- Turn the temperature to medium high heat and cook until the liquid becomes a thick gravy
- this will take approximately 1-2 hours cooking time.
- **If you are pressed for time you can thicken the gravy with cornstarch or flour instead.
- Remove the hot pepper(s) and ox tail.
Taste and add additional salt and pepper or garlic powder if you feel it needs it (likely not). Discard your hot pepper in there. Remove your pieces and allow to cool slightly. Use forks to gently tear meat off of the bone and enjoy as you wish.
Of course you need ground curry powder as the base but you will want others mixed together with that to coat the outside. This is basically what we used. If you wanted to make spicy, add red pepper flakes. If at the end you find it is too intense you can add coconut milk into the gravy to tone it down. That will add a bit of sweetness and is dairy free too.
- Curry powder
- Caribbean seasoning
If all of this sounds too time consuming but you still are craving it you can use the same ingredients but follow our pressure cooker style Instant Pot oxtail recipe timing. This really is a complete meal and I don’t think you need anything on the side, but others might disagree and need something more. Here are a few suggestions;
If you wanted to integrate a vegetable I would highly suggest our cauliflower curry you see right here. With some of the same flavors but on the veggie realm it surely will be a hit. If you want to make something cool to serve on the side I would make our Indian cabbage which is great warm or cool in the fridge and enjoy cold.
What is the Difference Between Jamaican and Indian Curry?
I mean that flavor is kinda’ synonymous with both right? I don’t feel like you need to categorize them either way but in case you’re curious as to what the difference would be is that in Jamaica they use it in powder form. Indian uses more of a curry based sauce. SO I guess this would be a cross between the two. A fusion of sorts I guess.
If you have leftovers it saves quite well. Wait until it cools completely first and then store in a sealed bowl in the fridge. To reheat pour into a pot on low-medium heat until bubbling and warm or in the microwave. The latter would take closer to 1.5 minutes or so stirring halfway thru.
Want to see a few of my favorite things that I am totally obsessed with?? Take a peek and see how many you might already have…twinsies!
Looking for more easy family recipes and tips? LIKE The Typical Mom Facebook page?
Then sign up for my free newsletter, and follow me on Pinterest! 😉
***** If you LOVED this recipe give it 5 Stars below and let everyone know what you thought about it. 😉
- 1 dutch oven or large pot with a lid
- 4 large oxtails
- 1 onion diced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 5 tbsp minced garlic
- 3-4 c water
- 1 c celery
- 1 pepper optional for heat, leave whole
- 1 tbsp ketchup
- 1 tsp minced ginger
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp curry powder
- 1 tbsp caribbean seasoning
- 1/2 tsp allspice
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1 tomato
- Trim fat from oxtails. Wash and pat dry. Cover oxtails with seasoning: salt, allspice, thyme, curry, caribbean seasoning and set aside. Chop onions and mince garlic if it isn't already.
- Heat oil on medium-high heat, add onions, garlic and oxtails. Turn oxtails as they cook to brown all sides. Add water, enough to cover the oxtails in the pot. Bring to boil, reduce to simmer, cover and boil for 2 hours.
- Chop celery and tomato, set aside. Mince ginger, set aside. Remove lid, and add celery, minced ginger, ketchup, and hot pepper (be careful not to break the pepper through the cooking process).
- Turn temp to medium-high heat and cook until liquid is a thick gravy, approximately 1-2 hours. **If you are pressed for time, you can thicken the gravy with cornstarch or flour. Remove hot pepper and oxtail first.
- Taste and add additional salt if needed. Discard hot pepper. Remove oxtail to cool slightly and tear meat off of the bone. To assemble: place curry gravy in a bowl, add meat, top with fresh tomatoes and cilantro.