Pozole Rojo {Slow Cooker}

Pozole Rojo

Pozole is a classic Mexican soup made with pork; big, fat kernels of corn (hominy); and traditional Mexican seasonings.  All that having been said, I make no guarantees that this recipe is “authentic”, but I do guarantee that it tastes delicious.  It adapts well to a slow cooker, pressure cooker, or a standard large soup pot or dutch oven.

In a hurry?  Use the pressure cooker to tenderize the meat.  Planned ahead for a busy day?  Use the slow cooker; just put your ingredients into the slow cooker, set it for high (6 hours cooking time) or low (10 hours cooking time) and get on with your day.  Dinner will be ready at the magic moment when everyone converges on the kitchen with “Mom, I’m starving.  What’s for dinner?”

Traditional pozole generally uses a homemade chile sauce, but I have opted for the use of red enchilada sauce.  Why?  Mostly because my eyes start to glaze over and my brain goes numb when I think about the multiple steps involved with an authentic chile sauce.  I’ll have to get braver one of these days and make the real thing.  One of these days.

There are three types or colors of pozole: red, green, and white–the colors of the Mexican flag.  Obviously, from the picture at the top of this post, I have opted for the red pozole in this recipe.  If you want it green instead, then use green chile sauce or green enchilada sauce.

The amount of heat in the sauce is up to you.  The heat in this recipe comes from the addition of chipotle peppers in adobo.  I used only two peppers with seeds and found that it was all the heat I wanted.  Everyone’s heat appreciation level is different, so start with one pepper if you are not certain about how hot you want the pozole.  If heat is generally a problem for your palate, then be sure to leave out the seeds from the chipotle peppers.  Seeds = increased heat.

Hominy brings an interesting texture to the soup, dense and somewhat potato-like, which offsets the heat of the peppers.  Although this is corn, forget about it being like the standard sweet little nuggets you may be used to seeing and eating.  Hominy is big and starchy, offering a meaty texture.  It comes in white or yellow.  I prefer the flavor of the yellow hominy, but either color is just fine for pozole.

Most of the ingredients for this soup can be found in the Mexican foods isle at the grocery store.  Walmart keeps an especially well-stocked Mexican food section.

As for the pork in this recipe, pork shoulder is often the cut of choice for pozole.  However, I used pork that was labeled by my grocery store as being good for carnitas.  In the past I have also used precut pork cubes.  These look similar to the beef cubes used for beef stew…except, of course, they are pork.  The pork for carnitas came in thick, rough-cut slices, similar in looks to boneless pork chops.  I cut them into bite sized pieces, cutting away the fat.  Pork for pozole needs less fat than is required for Carnitas.

Hopefully, in the interest of providing taste and texture education I haven’t scared you away from making pozole. This recipe is very easy to make and would be a great accompaniment or main dish for many types of Mexican style meals.  Traditional toppings for pozole include shredded cabbage, sliced radishes, and cilantro.  Very Springy, in season types of veggies and herbs!  Radishes and raw cabbage may sound a bit odd, but they really bring a nice flavor to the pozole.

Note: The following recipe instructions are for making pozole in a slow cooker.  The main goal for the cooking time on pozole is to allow the pork to become tender.  Please see “Alternate Cooking Methods” at the end of the recipe for using a pressure cooker, large stock pot, or dutch oven.

Pozole Rojo



Pozole Rojo {Slow Cooker}

Prep Time: 10 minutes | Cook Time: up to 10 hours | Total Time: up to 10 hours

Yield: about 4 quarts (eight 2-cup servings)

Pork, hominy and the flavors of Mexico come together in your crock pot for a slow cooked stew worthy of hearty appetites. Be sure to use the traditional garnishes of shredded cabbage, sliced radishes and fresh cilantro when serving. They add great textural interest and compliment the overall flavors of the soup.


  • 1 1/2 pounds pork cubes (or 1 1/2 pounds pork shoulder cut into bite-sized cubes)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion, medium dice
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 (28 ounce) can red enchilada sauce
  • 2 (28 ounce) cans hominy
  • 2 (4 ounce) cans diced green chiles
  • 1-2 chipotle chiles in adobo
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon Mexican oregano, crushed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Lime wedges
  • Suggested garnishes: shredded cabbage, sliced radishes, chopped cilantro


  1. Season pork cubes with salt and pepper.
  2. Over high heat, heat a Dutch oven or frying pan. Add 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, then the pork cubes. Stir and cook for about 2 minutes until lightly browned.
  3. Lower the heat to medium and add the onion and garlic. Stir to distribute the onion and garlic with the meat. Continue to cook, stirring as needed, until the onions are translucent. Be careful not to allow the onions or garlic to burn. Adjust heat as necessary.
  4. Transfer the pork/onion/garlic mixture to a slow cooker. Add the remainder of the ingredients (except lime wedges) and stir to combine.
  5. Cook for about 6 hours on high or up to 10 hours on low.
  6. To serve: squeeze the juice from one or more lime wedge(s) (to taste) into the bottom of each serving bowl.  Add soup, then top with shredded cabbage, sliced radishes, and chopped cilantro. Avocado chunks or slices can also be used.


Alternate Cooking Methods:

Here are a few simple instructions for using a pressure cooker or a Dutch oven (soup/stock pot).

Pressure cooker. Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper to taste. Brown the pork cubes in 2 tablespoons vegetable oil for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add onions and garlic and cook, stirring as needed, until onions are translucent. Add 2 cups chicken broth, put lid and pressure regulator on pot. Bring up to heat until pressure regulator starts rocking, then cook for 10 minutes at 10 pounds pressure. Cool pressure quickly, open and add remainder of ingredients. Simmer for 30-45 minutes and flavors are well blended.

Stock pot or Dutch oven. Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper to taste. Brown the pork cubes in 2 tablespoons vegetable oil for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add onions and garlic and cook over medium heat, stirring as needed, until onions are translucent. Add chicken broth and simmer for 45 minutes-1 hour. Add remainder of ingredients. Bring pozole back to a simmer and continue to cook for another 1-2 hours until pork is tender.

Recipe by Terri @ that’s some good cookin’. Copyright 2010.

Pozole Rojo

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  1. says

    Hopefully … I haven’t scared you away from making pozole

    To the contrary Terri. Your recipe has given me an incentive to cook this. And even add it into my own collection.

    • says

      Hi William. For a pressure cooker to function appropriately, and even safely, fluid amounts are important. Room must be left in a pressure cooker for the pressure to build correctly. The stated fluid amount in the pressure cooker method is correct. After the pork, along with the onions and garlic, have been pressure cooked for the stated time and the cooker has been opened, the remainder of the ingredients including the remainder of the liquid can be added. I will make a clarification in the pressure cooker instructions to include adding the remainder of the chicken broth.

      Thanks for your question. I had forgotten that I had even included pressure cooking instructions. Here is a link that you may want to read regarding pressure cooking…just in case you’re interested. 😉 http://missvickie.com/howto/cooking101/mistakes.html

  2. Anonymous says

    Thank you cant wait to make it myself..ive seen my inlaws make it for the holidays and i have to admit im kinda scared making this.ill check in with you and tell you how it fame out! Using your recipe thank u;)

  3. Anonymous says

    Terri, No need to worry, I am in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico at this very moment and I just had a bowl of “homemade” Pazole. I also had homemade Pazole on Chirstmas eve from family that made everything fresh, even down to killing the pig. “Muey Buen”. I believe you are spot on with the recipe except for the homemade broth of course. I have tasted this in various forms and I do believe you could also use Clamato Juice as the broth, as this is a lightly flavored juice that is available in WalMart. When it’s all said and done, the most crucial elements are adding the “Cabbage, Raddish and or sprinkle onions on top, Hot Sauce if preferred, and one of the most important and flavorful ingredients is the “Lime; not lemon juice”. As the Lime is used as a topper for so many dishes here, it is truly an awesome touch.

  4. Emily says

    Terri, your recipe is a very good one! I normally do not follow any recipe to a “t” but decided I would on this. I have used your recipe at least four times now and it is always a hit with everyone. Thank you so much for posting!

  5. says

    I make pozole often and make the chili sauce from scratch which IS a pain. I also make it with the “pozole mix” meat from the Mexican grocery which has feet and ears… Which I always pick out before it gets to the table. I’m sick today and wanting to make it for dinner so I’m going to try it with enchilada sauce like you use. Crossing my fingers! Thanks 🙂

    • says

      Sorry you are sick, Maureen. I imagine your regular pozole is outstanding, since you make it with such tender loving care and authentic ingredients. Since you are used to authentic pozole, I am guessing that this recipe will be a bit disappointing, less flavorful. There are definitely no substitutions for a rich broth made with pigs’ feet and ears. I used to eat pickled pigs’ feet when I was little–they were delicious and quite common among the country Southerners (farmers, very simple folk). Oh, and I also used to eat head cheese; loved it. Now, however, I am absolutely certain that I wouldn’t eat either one, even though I know they taste good. At least I think they would still taste good to me.~Terri

  6. Kim says

    Thank you Terri!! Been around Mexican food all my life and can’t ever get enough. My husband’s ex-wife made pozole for our son’s birthday and we all enjoyed it, then wanted more. So, I decided to give it a try myself. Your recipe was great and we all enjoyed it immensely!

  7. Kat says

    I made this last night for my husband and we both loved it. The richness of the sauce and meat versus the earthiness of the “salad” on top really pushed it over the top. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Carol says

    Making it right now as we speak…. can’t wait and it smells so GOOD!! Will let you know how it turns out. 🙂

  9. LauraHS says

    Terri, this recipe is wonderful! Like you, my eyes glaze over when I think about soaking, removing seeds and all that jazz from chiles in a homemade sauce. I was a little nervous though about canned enchilada sauce but I went with it and am so glad I did! Pozole turned out delicious, even my husband (of Mexican descent) loved it and went back for seconds! I will have the rest today for lunch. Thank you!

  10. Jenna says

    I LOVE this recipe! I’ve made it four times in the past 3 months. I live in San Antonio so a lot of people here know their pozole. I made it for a potluck at work and everyone raved about it and was asking just HOW I did it. One co-worker even makes me bring him some when he finds out I’m making it.

    It’s SO easy and inexpensive. I highly recommend anyone with a crockpot to try this recipe. I made it today and it’s perfect for this cold, rainy weekend we are having.

    Thank you so much for this recipe. I will be making it for years to come. 🙂

    • says

      Hi, Amanda. Put the soup in a pot, bring to a low boil and cook until desired consistency. Be sure to stir periodically. As the liquid evaporates, the solids in the soup will settle on the bottom of the pot making the soup look as if it is still very liquidy. Also, the solids may burn while they are hanging out on the bottom.

      This is not a thick, creamy soup and I doubt that it will take much cooking to reduce the liquid. Best wishes. ~Terri

  11. Kelly says


    I am making this today and I need your help. The 1- 2 Chipolte Peppers in Adobo……where do I find that?

  12. Kathy Rickey says

    I just bought a new Slow-Cooker as my old one gave out after about 15 years of service. The first thing I made in the new one was this. It was delicious, but I must say it made a ton of soup! I will half it next time. I did not change anything except I used canned Hatch chiles because that is what I had. I was worried about the canned Colorado sauce but it worked great.

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