Pozole

Total Time

Prep: 15 min. + standing Cook: 65 min.

Makes

8 servings (2-1/2 quarts)

Updated: Jun. 21, 2023
This spicy stew-like soup is traditionally served in New Mexico at holiday time to celebrate life's blessings, but pozole is good any time of year. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
Pozole Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Ingredients

  • 4 dried ancho chiles
  • 4 dried guajillo or pasilla chiles
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
  • 1-1/2 cups boiling water
  • 2 pounds boneless pork, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cans (29 ounces each) hominy, rinsed and drained
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons dried Mexican oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Optional toppings: Lime wedges, sliced radishes, diced avocado and sliced red onion

Directions

  1. In a Dutch oven, saute chiles in 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat until heated through, 1-2 minutes, pressing with a spatula (do not brown). Using a slotted spoon, transfer chiles to a bowl; add the boiling water. Soak until softened, about 20 minutes. Remove stems and seeds, reserving water.
  2. In the Dutch oven, brown pork in remaining 1 tablespoon oil in batches, sauteing onion and garlic with the last batch of pork. Return all pork to pan and add broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until meat is tender, about 30 minutes.
  3. Transfer chiles and soaking liquid to a blender; cover and process until smooth. Strain through a fine strainer, reserving pulp and discarding skins. Add pulp to pork mixture. Stir in hominy, oregano and salt. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Serve with toppings as desired.
Pozole Tips

Is it spelled pozole or posole?

In Mexico, where the dish originates, the name is pozole. It comes from the Aztec word pozilli. Much like other traditional Mexican dishes (such as mole), specific recipes for pozole vary from region to region. You’ll find the spelling posole used mostly outside of Mexico, and especially in the U.S. So, in Mexico, it's pozole; and in New Mexico, it's posole!

Do you have to use Mexican oregano to make pozole?

Mexican oregano is preferred for the most authentic flavor. Oregano from the Mediterranean, which is most common in the U.S., and Mexican oregano are actually completely different plants, so their flavors are quite different. Instead of the minty flavors of Mediterranean oregano, Mexican oregano tastes of citrus, pepper and licorice. It can be hard to find outside of online outlets and specialty spice shops, so if you’re looking for a substitute, marjoram with a bit of coriander is your best bet.

What other toppings can you put on pozole?

Add crunch to your pozole with shredded cabbage, chopped green onions or crushed tortilla chips. Dollop with sour cream for rich texture. Fresh cilantro is never a bad idea (unless you’re someone who thinks cilantro tastes like soap).

When do you serve pozole?

Pozole is a special occasion meal. Although our recipe takes a little over an hour, traditional pozole can take up to two days to prepare, so it’s perfect for celebrations like Christmas, birthdays and other holidays. Pozole is often served with corn tortillas to soak up the liquid. If you like, you can make them from scratch by following our guide to how to make corn tortillas.

How should you store leftover pozole?

Cool the pozole completely. Then refrigerate, covered, for up to 5 days. You can freeze it for up to 3 months. Learn how to freeze soup like a pro.

Can you make pozole ahead of time?

Yes. Gently reheat it on the stovetop, stirring occasionally, or in the microwave. If you froze the pozole, thaw it overnight in the refrigerator. Wait to add toppings until right before serving.

Christine Rukavena, Taste of Home Senior Book Editor, and Hazel Wheaton, Taste of Home Book Editor

Nutrition Facts

1-1/4 cups: 333 calories, 11g fat (3g saturated fat), 68mg cholesterol, 1588mg sodium, 29g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 8g fiber), 27g protein.

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