In my opinion, you can never have too many recipes for soups and stews. One of my favorites on my current menu rotation is pozole verde. This Mexican vegetarian stew hits all the right notes and is ready in just over half an hour. Get ready to fall in love with my pozole verde recipe.
What Is Pozole Verde?
Have you heard of pozole verde before? It’s not as common at Mexican restaurants as, say, tacos. But it’s become a new favorite at my house.
Pozole likely originated in the Mexican state of Guerrero, though it’s eaten throughout the country. You’ll often find it at large family gatherings, since you can make a big ole pot of it and serve a lot of people. It’s pronounced “po-sol-e,” and the name gives you a clue as to what the dish is — pozole is the Aztec word for hominy.
While there are many variations of pozole, the one thing that never changes is that hominy is a main ingredient. If you’ve never eaten or cooked with hominy before, you’re in for a treat. Hominy is essentially whole corn kernels that have been soaked in an alkaline solution to get rid of the hull and sometimes the germ.
The soaking process causes hominy to swell in size — it’s much larger than a normal corn kernel — and really dials up the flavor. Rather than detract from hominy’s nutritional value, nixtamalization, as the soaking process is called, actually improves hominy’s nutritional value by making it easier for the body to absorb the vitamins. (1)
Once the hominy’s soaked, it can be ground up, either to make grits or masa for tortillas. It can also be dried, similar to beans, or cooked and canned. If you purchase dried hominy, you can prepare it the same way you would dried beans.
Hominy really makes pozole, but the color of the stew changes depending on what ingredients are in it. Most contain pork along with the hominy, but some use chicken. In veggie versions like this pozole verde recipe, beans are substituted for the meat. Pozole verde, or “green hominy,” gets its hue from the tomatillos, jalapeños and spinach we’ll add in, but there are also red and white variations of the stew. Pozole blanco eliminates red and green salsas and chilies, while pozole rojo uses strong red ones.
Traditional toppings included hot sauce, cilantro, avocado, sour cream, corn chips and, of course, a squeeze of fresh lime over it all. It’s basically a taco bowl in the form of a stew!
So let’s talk about this particular pozole verde recipe. To make things quicker, I’ve opted for a 25-ounce can of hominy to make this an easy weeknight recipe, but if preparing dried hominy tickles your fancy, you can do that. Fava beans will take the place of the pork traditionally used in pozole verde.
We’re also going to add in poblano peppers, tomatillos, jalapeño and cabbage, which are all going to add some serious flavor to our vegetable broth. I’ve listed some options for garnishes, but this pozole is begging for a condiments station where each person can customize their bowl to their liking.
As far as nutrition goes, here’s how a serving of pozole verde stacks up:
- 122 calories
- 3.59 grams protein
- 2.83 grams fat
- 7.45 grams sugar
- 4.6 grams fiber
- 22.32 grams carbohydrates
- 1,907 IUs vitamin A (82 percent DV)
- 67 micrograms vitamin K (74 percent DV)
- 53.8 milligrams vitamin C (72 percent DV)
- 0.191 milligrams vitamin B6 (15 percent DV)
- 0.106 milligrams vitamin B2 (10 percent DV)
- 1.12 milligrams vitamin B3 (8 percent DV)
- 0.073 milligrams vitamin B1 (7 percent DV)
How to Make Pozole Verde
Enough reading about this pozole verde; let’s get cooking.
First, make sure all of your veggies are chopped. This will help streamline the process.
Start by sautéing the garlic, tomatillos, jalapeño, cumin, salt and pepper in the avocado oil until the veggies are soft, about 10–15 minutes.
Add this mixture to a food processor.
Blend it up until smooth.
Add the processed mixture back into the pot, along with the remaining ingredients (except for the garnishes).
Crank up the heat to high and bring the mixture to a boil, then simmer on low heat for another 10–15 minutes, until the cabbage is soft.
Serve the poloze verde warm with your choice of garnishes.
- 8 cups vegetable stock
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil
- One 25-ounce can of hominy
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- ¼ sweet onion, sliced
- 1 cup fava beans
- 2 cups red cabbage, shredded
- 2 poblano peppers, sliced and deseeded
- 5 tomatillos, chopped
- 1 jalapeño, sliced and deseeded
- 3 cups spinach
- cilantro for garnish
- lime for garnish
- radishes, sliced for garnish
- pumpkin seeds for garnish
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- In a large pot over medium heat, sauté avocado oil, garlic, tomatillos, jalapeño, poblanos, cumin, salt and pepper until veggies are soft, about 10–15 minutes.
- Pour contents into a food processor and blend until smooth.
- Pour mixture back into the pot and add remaining ingredients, except the garnishing ingredients.
- Bring mixture to a boil over high heat and then simmer on low for 10–15 minutes, or until cabbage is soft.
- Top with garnishes and serve warm.