One of the most iconic Mexican dishes, this “ultimate” Pozole Rojo recipe is PACKED with deliciously bold and robust flavors that will absolutely WOW your taste buds! A great make-ahead dish, the flavors only get better over time!
What is Pozole Rojo?
Pozole in Mexico is like chicken noodle soup in the United States – it’s a dish so engrained in our culture, traditions and way of life that it’s practically indispensable at the family table. Imagining life without it is, well, unimaginable. And on a cold and drizzly day or in the midst of feeling under the weather and needing some nutritious comfort, you just can’t beat a hot bowl pozole rojo.
One of Mexico’s most iconic and popular dishes, pozole (some spell it posole) is served in Mexican restaurants worldwide. This traditional stew is popular in three varieties: Blanco (white) , Verde (green) and Rojo (red). As the names suggest, pozole verde is made with a green sauce (and usually chicken), pozole rojo is made with a red sauce, and pozole blanco is made without either green or red sauce.
Today we’re making a pozole rojo recipe that incorporates a sauce made from roasted red chiles and garlic and has a depth of flavor that is simply unforgettable.
Pozole is the Spanish word for “hominy”. Hominy are dried maize/corn kernels that have gone through a process called nixtamalization in which the dried kernels are soaked in lime to soften the outer hulls. The kernels are then washed and the hulls are removed, leaving them nice and chewy. Hominy has been a staple food throughout Mexico for centuries. In fact, this famous pozole stew dates back to pre-hispanic times to the Aztecs.
How to Serve Pozole Rojo
One of the fun features about this stew is its wide and colorful array of garnishes. Shredded cabbage, sliced red radishes, diced avocados, chopped cilantro and sliced limes are traditional and you can add any other toppings you like such as fried tortilla strips, sliced jalapeños or crema. Pozole Rojo is the king of add-ins!
Why “ultimate”? The flavor of this pozole rojo is especially rich and robust from the addition of the homemade roasted red chile sauce, the smoked paprika and the addition of masa harina for an extra boost of delicious corn flavor that the hominy alone can’t provide. Your taste buds will be WOWED!
An absolute key to making the ultimate pozole roja is making your own authentic red chile sauce. Don’t even think twice about it. Just make it. You’ll be so glad you did.
Grab our recipe for the most incredible authentic Enchilada Sauce.
This prize-worthy stew also deserves the very best chicken broth as its base, which is why we’re using our favorite chicken broth from Aneto, made in Spain. We’ve been fans for years and visited their factory in Barcelona a couple of years ago where we watched the entire broth-making process from start to finish. It was one of the most inspiring things we’ve ever seen.
Aneto selects fresh, free-range chicken and the freshest vegetables and slow-simmer it in gigantic pots for several hours to produce the highest quality broths on the market. No concentrates, powders, artificial ingredients, “natural flavors”, GMO’s, fillers or flavor enhancers of any kind. Just pure, whole, real ingredients. You can read more about why we love Aneto broths so much and what sets them apart HERE.
Pozole Rojo Recipe
Let’s get started!
This recipe makes a large batch on purpose – it’s so good you WILL want seconds. What’s more, you’ll be so happy to have leftovers the next day or two! (And the flavor only gets better with time – win, win!)
Rub the pork down with a little salt and some freshly ground black pepper. Heat the lard/oil over high heat in a heavy stock pot or Dutch oven and sear the pork on all sides until nicely browned. Remove and set aside.
Lower the heat to medium-high and add the onions, cooking until lightly browned. Add the garlic and cumin and cook for another minute.
Return the pork roast and add the chicken broth. Add the homemade Enchilada Sauce along with the bay leaves, salt, pepper, Mexican oregano and smoked paprika.
Simmer covered over low heat for 2-3 hours or until the roast is fork tender and falls apart.
Transfer the roast to a plate and use two forks to shred the meat.
Return the shredded pork to the pot, stir in the masa harina and add the drained hominy.
Simmer covered for another hour. Stir in the cilantro and simmer another 5 minutes. Add more salt and pepper to taste.
Serve garnished with shredded green cabbage, sliced red radishes, diced avocado, sliced limes, chopped cilantro and anything else your heart desires! Want some crunch? Add some toasted tortilla strips.
For more delicious Mexican and Mexican-style recipes be sure to try our:
- Albondigas Soup
- Homemade Mexican Chorizo
- BEST Homemade Chili Powder
- Grilled Steak Fajitas
- Restaurant Style Salsa
- Queso Fresco Chorizo Pizza
- Stuffed Mexican Cornbread
- Mexican Wheat Berry Salad
- Mexican Meatballs
- Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup
- Mexican Grillades and Grits
BEST Pozole Rojo
- 3 pounds pork shoulder, rubbed with salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon lard or oil
- 1 large white onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin (recommended: roast whole cumin seeds then grind them to a powder)
- 4 cups Aneto 100% All Natural Chicken Broth
- 4 cups Homemade Authentic Enchilada/Red Chile Sauce (do not substitute store-bought)
- 2 teaspoons dried Mexican oregano
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 3 large bay leaves
- 3 15 ounce cans white hominy, drained
- 2 tablespoons masa harina
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- For toppings: Shredded green cabbage, sliced red radishes, diced avocados, sliced limes, chopped fresh cilantro, toasted tortilla strips, crema, and anything else your heart desires!
- Rub the pork down with a little salt and some freshly ground black pepper. Heat the lard/oil over high heat in a heavy stock pot or Dutch oven and sear the pork on all sides until nicely browned. Remove and set aside.
- Lower the heat to medium-high and add the onions, cooking until lightly browned. Add the garlic and cumin and cook for another minute.
- Return the pork roast and add the chicken broth. Add the Homemade Authentic Red Chile Sauce along with the bay leaves, salt, pepper, Mexican oregano and smoked paprika.Simmer covered over low heat for 2-3 hours or until the roast is fork tender and falls apart.
- Transfer the roast to a plate and use two forks to shred the meat.Return the shredded pork to the pot, stir in the masa harina and add the drained hominy.Simmer covered for another hour. Stir in the cilantro and simmer another 5 minutes. Add more salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve garnished with shredded green cabbage, sliced red radishes, diced avocado, sliced limes, chopped cilantro, etc. Want some crunch? Add some toasted tortilla strips.
- To Make This In The Slow Cooker:Follow steps 1 and 2 as directed and then transfer everything to a slow cooker in step 3. Cook on LOW for 6-8 hours or on HIGH for 4-6 hours.
Originally published on The Daring Gourmet September 27, 2018