Mexican Posole

by Dorothy Reinhold on February 28, 2013

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I had a wonderful bowl of posole the other day, and I must share it with you! This was hearty but not heavy, spicy but not blow-your-head-off-hot, and really just hit the spot.

It was made by Chef Johnny Prep, visiting from Detroit to speak about soups to Los Angeles food bloggers, and to teach healthy eating in local schools here.

Mexican Posole on Shockingly DeliciousWhat is posole (aka pozole)? It is a traditional soup or stew from Mexico, made with hominy, chili peppers, and other aromatics, and served at celebrations or major events. Historically, it was a ritual meal that celebrated the creation of mankind from corn. At a later point, the Aztec recipe called for hominy and (take a big breath…are you ready for this?) the chopped up bodies of prisoners who had their hearts torn out in ritual sacrifice. Thankfully, cannibalism was eventually banned and pork was substituted. (Insert “the other white meat” joke here.)

Dorothy Reinhold shooting a bowl of Mexican Posole, shot by Cathy ArkleNowadays, you’ll find posole widely served in the American Southwest, and like many traditional dishes, each home cook has his or her own version. Hopefully with pork and not some other white meat, unless we are talking about chicken.  

But back to the bowl of posole in front of us. You know when a bowl of soup just makes you happy to eat it?

That’s this one!

Recipe: Chef Johhny Prep’s Mexican Posole

Summary: Hearty, tasty, traditional Mexican hominy and pork soup (or stew), spiced with chili, cumin, garlic and onion.


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 4 pounds country style pork spare ribs, bones removed and trimmed of excess fat
  • 1 large Spanish onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 2 teaspooons oregano
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 2 whole chipotle peppers, in adobe sauce, chopped
  • 1 medium Guajillo chili, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 medium Ancho chili, seeded and finely chopped
  • 3 (15-ounce) cans white hominy
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 cups chicken broth or stock, at least enough to cover meat by 1 inch
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Garnish: Lime wedges, tortilla chips


  1. Preheat Dutch oven or large pot to high heat. Place oil in pan and brown batches of pork until thoroughly browned. Do not crowd pan with meat or it won’t brown. Do in batches if necessary. Remove meat from pan and set aside.
  2. Turn heat on pan down to medium and add onions. Sauté for 2 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for additional minute. Turn heat back to medium high.
  3. Clear an area in the middle of the pan with a wooden spoon and add tomato paste. Let paste cook for 2 minutes before stirring, so that it caramelizes in bottom of pan. Stir all ingredients in pan together and let cook for another 2 minutes.
  4. Add oregano, cumin, coriander, chipotles, Guajillo and Ancho chiles to pan and sauté for 2 minutes. Add hominy and bay leaf and stir. Add chicken broth to cover all ingredients.
  5. Reduce pot to a simmer for 2 hours, covered. If liquid dries up too much add an additional cup of water during the cooking time.
  6. Turn off heat and break up meat chunks with potato masher or try a few pulses of a stick blender. Add water if necessary to achieve chile-type thickness. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (If you like a more soupy version, add additional water or broth until you get your desired consistency.)
  7. Garnish with fresh tortilla chips and lime. Squeeze lime over Posole just prior to eating.
  8. Serves 6-8.


The Five Star Casual Entertaining Cookbook on Shockingly DeliciousFrom “The Five Star Casual Entertaining Cookbook,” by Chef Johnny Prep.

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 2 1/2 hours
Number of servings (yield): 6-8
Culinary tradition: Mexican

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Karen (Back Road Journal) March 2, 2013 at 12:36 pm

Your pozole looks delicious. I love pozole and make both a red and green version.


familyfoodie February 28, 2013 at 1:30 pm

I love this recipe… the photography is beautiful and I can’t wait to try it!


Dorothy February 28, 2013 at 2:39 pm

You will love it!


jill February 28, 2013 at 11:05 am

I wish that peppers in recipes could be illustrated somehow. When I see a recipe like this, that sounds like I’d like to make it, I give up because I have no idea what peppers you’re talking about and the markets don’t really identify them. If there’s any tutorial you could publish, with photos???


Dorothy February 28, 2013 at 11:35 am

I sympathize! I don’t happen to have a tutorial on my site (yet!), but here are a few helpful places for you:
Guajillo chili is dried, and you can see it here
Chipotle peppers come in a can in red adobo sauce, and will be with the other Mexican items in your grocery store.
Ancho is a dried poblano, and you can get a look at it here:
Hope that helps!


Cathy @ She Paused 4 Thought February 28, 2013 at 10:07 am

This was so yummy!


Shelby | Diabetic Foodie February 28, 2013 at 6:31 am

I love posole. I don’t think I’ve ever made it with ribs before – interesting idea.


Leslie @ La Cocina de Leslie February 28, 2013 at 6:05 am

I LOVE Mexican Pozole! Pork, chicken, red or green, it’s all good to me. This version looks so hearty and I love that you also added chipotles. Will have to try this recipe soon. 🙂


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