Pozole Rojo de Puerco (Red Pozole With Pork)

Pozole Rojo de Puerco (red pozole with pork) is packed with hearty flavors, rich, super delicious, and perfect to celebrate the holidays and special occasions. Learn how to make it at home and enjoy garnished with lettuce, onion, lime juice, and your favorite hot salsa!

Pozole rojo de puerco served in bowls and topped with lettuce, radishes, and onions. Various bowls with toppings scattered around.

About

Pozole Rojo is a Mexican traditional stew made with hominy, pork meat, and chili sauce. It’s usually served with various toppings like shredded cabbage or lettuce, onions, radishes, lime juice, and hot salsa.

Pozole or posole comes from the Nahuatl word pozollitlapozonalli and means hervido (boiled) – espumoso (foamy) this is because the dish is prepared with a specific type of corn called cacahuazintle which is a large white grain that once cooked will open and resemble the foam.

There are several types of pozole that depend on the region in Mexico. The most common are red pozole (pozole rojo), white pozole, and pozole verde.

Although other less popular ones such as pozolillo (made with fresh corn) and pozole negro (made with black beans) are also appreciated in the country.

This red pozole is made in a red broth (hence the name). This sauce is always made from dried red chili peppers, the most common being guajillo, although it is also common practice to add ancho chili or pasilla chili.

Mexican red pozole, also known as pozole rojo de puerco served in a bowl with toppings and lime wedges on the side.

Ingredients

  • MEAT: To make red pozole with pork you can use the most flavored cuts such as belly, ribs, pork shoulder, and even pork rind. Lean cuts such as loin are also ideal, especially if you want to cut down the calories without compromising too much the flavor.
  • HOMINY: I’ve made this recipe using dried cacahuazintle corn which first needs to be soaked overnight and then cooked. You can cut down on this long preparation by using canned hominy. Both types of corn can be found in Mexican or Latin-American grocery stores, local or online. If you want to make it with dried corn and can’t find cacahuazintle, you can use Peruvian mote corn which is similar.

For the red chile sauce:

  • CHILIES: Guajillo chile is the most used to make this recipe, those are dried peppers popular in Mexican cuisine. You can substitute them with guajillo paste or guajillo powder, or with ancho chiles. Anaheim dried peppers are also a good substitute.
  • ONION: Any type of onion you prefer.
  • SPICES & SEASONINGS: A whole garlic head, oregano, cumin seeds, bay leaves, black peppercorns, and salt.

How To Make Red Pozole With Pork

Note: If you want to use canned hominy, you can just rinse it with cold water and start the recipe with the chile sauce preparation.

Soak the corn:

Before going to bed, place the corn into a large bowl and cover it with plenty of water. The next day you will notice that the corn has softened a bit. Discard the soaking water and wash the corn thoroughly with cold water.

hominy soaking overnight to make pozole rojo

Discard the little “heads” on the corn.  If you want the kernels to bloom then you need to “de-head” the kernels. De-heading means picking off those little tips with your fingers.

Close-up of hominy pozole corn cleaned and ready to make pozole.

This is a time-consuming step since you have to do it to every single kernel. But you can also skip this step, it won’t compromise the flavor but only a little bit of the texture.

Place soaked hominy corn in a large pot and cover it with 2-inches (5cm) of water.

Cacahuazintle corn in a pot to make pozole hominy.

Cook over medium heat for about 3 hours or until the grains are slightly tender.

After three hours the corn will start to “bloom” and you will notice because most of the kernels will be popping and the broth will have a thick consistency.

Bloomed pozole corn kernels taken with a wooden spoon.

Make the sauce:

While the hominy is cooking, clean the dried chiles and place them in a bowl, cover them with hot water and allow them to soak for about 20 minutes or until they are nicely soft.

Guajillo chilies soaking in hot water.

Drain the chilies and place them in a blender along with onions, garlic, oregano, cumin, bay leaves, and pepper.

Ingredients for the chile sauce for pozole rojo in a blender.

Pour one and a half cups of water and blend until you’ll get a smooth sauce. Strain the sauce into the pot.

Adding the chili sauce into the pot.

Add the pork meat and enough water to cover all the ingredients and mix well. Season with salt and bring to a simmer.

Cook from 2 to 2 1/2 hours over medium-high heat, making sure the meat is always covered with broth. Once the meat and kernels are very tender, adjust with salt and turn off the heat.

Pozole rojo de puerco boiling in a pot.

Pozole rojo de puerco is ready, serve with onions, lettuce, radishes, and any of your favorite garnishes. Read below for more suggestions on how to serve this traditional dish.

Notes

  • De-heading the corn kernels is the most tedious part of this pozole rojo de puerco recipe. I usually do it while watching something on television so I don’t get bored.
  • If you don’t want the stew to be a bit spicy, you can discard the veins and seeds of the guajillo chilies.
  • Or, for a spicy kick, you can add some arbol chiles.
  • Take in mind you’ll need a large stockpot to make pozole rojo de puerco, if you don’t have one you can use two pots instead.
  • If you notice that the meat is well cooked but the kernels are not, take out the meat and place it in a bowl; then keep cooking hominy until is very soft.
Close-up of Pozole Rojo de Puerco, also known as red pozole with pork.

How To Serve

Pozole rojo de puerco can be served with a large variety of toppings that depends on personal preferences and sometimes traditions, here are some of the most popular:

And if you want to enjoy an authentic eating experience, we recommend pairing your pozole rojo de puerco with any of the following drinks:

How To Store & Reheat

Pozole rojo de puerco leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. I usually store the meat in a separate container but you can store it all together for convenience.

I don’t recommend leaving the leftovers out of the fridge overnight as they can easily spoil, especially in a warm environment.

To reheat first thaw it in the fridge (if frozen), then transfer it to a pot and bring it to a gentle boil. Simmer until is heated through and serve with your favorite toppings.

FAQ

Is red pozole spicy?

Pozole rojo has a mild spicy taste that depends on the types of chilies you use and how many of them you blend into the sauce.

Is pozole or posole?

There’s no difference between pozole and posole regarding preparation method or ingredients, the two words are just a way of spelling the dish name and both are acceptable in Mexico.

What are the 3 types of pozole?

Blanco (white), Rojo (red), and Verde (green).

Can I make it with other types of meat?

Yes, you can use beef or chicken to make pozole, just take in mind that both types of meat will need a different cooking time, so adjust the recipe accordingly.

More Mexican Soups Recipes

Mexican pozole rojo de puerco recipe.

Pozole Rojo de Puerco (Red pozole with pork)

author Maricruz
10 servings
This traditional Mexican pozole de puerco is made with pork meat and a flavorful chile sauce. It is super rich, comforting, and perfect to celebrate special occasions with your family and friends.
prep 1 hour
cook 6 hours
resting time 12 hours
total 19 hours

Equipment

  • 1 7-quart pot

Ingredients 

  • 2.2 lb cacahuazintle corn (or 3 cans of hominy, 15 oz each)
  • 4.5 lb pork meat (pork shoulder, loin, and belly)
  • 1.1 lb pork rind

For the chili sauce:

  • 6 large guajillo chillies (steam and seeds removed)
  • 1 medium white onion (cut into chunks)
  • 1 small garlic head
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp dry oregano

To serve:

  • lettuce (chopped)
  • onions (diced)
  • limes
  • radishes (diced)
  • chile de árbol sauce (see notes)
  • tostadas

Instructions
 

  • Place the dried corn into a large bowl and cover it with plenty of water. Leave to rest overnight.
  • Next day discard the soaking water and wash the corn thoroughly with cold water.
  • Remove the little "heads" of each corn kernel, this is a tedious task that you can skip, but the pozole texture won't be the same.
  • Place soaked and cleaned hominy in a large pot and cover with 2-inches (5cm) of water.
  • Cook over medium heat for about 3 hours or until the grains are al dente.

Make the chili sauce

  • Place guajillo chilies in a bowl and cover them with boiling water. Allow soaking for 20 minutes.
  • Drain guajillo chiles and add them to a blender along with onion, garlic, cumin, pepper, bay leaves, and oregano.
  • Pour one and a half cups of water and blend until smooth. Strain the sauce in a bowl and set aside.

Continue pozole preparation

  • Add the pork meat to the pot and then pour in the chili sauce. Add enough water to cover the ingredients and mix well.
  • Season with salt and bring to a boil. Cook from 2 to 2 ½ hours or until the meat and kernels are nicely cooked through.
  • Make sure the pozole has enough broth, so if needed, add more water to the pot (see notes).
  • Once ready, ladle pozole in a large bowl and add some meat.
  • Garnish with lettuce, onion, and radishes. Serve with a squeeze of lime and your favorite hot sauce as well as tostadas or tortilla chips.

Notes

  • If you using canned pre-cooked hominy, you don’t need to de-head the corn. Just rinse it with cold water and start the recipe by making the chili sauce.
  • De-heading the corn kernels is the most tedious part of this preparation. I usually do it while watching something on television so I don’t get bored.
  • If you notice that the meat is well cooked but the kernels are not, take out the meat and place it in a bowl; then keep cooking hominy until is very soft.
  • Red pozole can be frozen. If you’ve made a lot and have some leftovers, you can place them in containers and store them in the freezer for up 4 months.
  • Check our recipe for chile de árbol sauce.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 391kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 111mg | Sodium: 566mg | Potassium: 599mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 575IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 51mg | Iron: 3mg
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Recipe Rating




5 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This pozole rojo looks so tempting. Just not sure if I can find every ingredient listed in the recipe :(

  2. 5 stars
    I started with your white Pozole recipe when I had some vegetarian friends over for dinner. My mom made a quick version of red Pozole from canned hominy, and it was always my favorite in the winter months. I’m stationed overseas, and ordered the cacahuazintle and made the white Pozole from scratch. This recipe is now my favorite, just don’t tell my mom!