Slow-Cooked Chile Verde Recipe (Pork or Chicken in Green Sauce)

Chile Verde
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  • 4 hrs 45 mins
  • Prep: 45 mins,
  • Cook: 4 hrs
  • Yield: 6 servings
Ratings (11)

This hearty stew, warming because of the chilies and tangy because of the tomatillos, is as beloved in the American Southwest (where it is called chile verde or chili verde) as it is south of the border (where it is more commonly known as puerco/pollo en salsa verde). As happens with all iconic traditional dishes, each cook interprets the basic preparation into his or her own delicious rendition. Follow that lead and use this recipe as a jumping off point for the development of your personalized version.

What You'll Need

  • 2 pounds fresh green chilies (mild Hatch, Anaheim, or poblano chilies work well)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar (white wine or apple cider)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons pork lard or vegetable oil (for frying)
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken or pork (cut into 2-inch cubes)
  • 2 cups tomatillos (husked and coarsely chopped)
  • 2 cups chicken or pork broth
  • 2 roasted green chilies (seeded and diced; roast extras in step 1 and reserve, or use canned fire-roasted green chilies)
  • 4 cloves garlic (peeled and diced)
  • 1 medium onion (peeled and diced)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Optional: 1/2 teaspoon sugar

How to Make It

  1. Roast the fresh green chilies on a grill or under the broiler until the skin looks blackened and bubbly. Let the chilies cool enough to handle, then cut off the stem, peel off the skin, and scrape out the seeds. Discard the stem, seeds, and skin.

  2. Blend the chilies with the water, vinegar, and 1 teaspoon salt until smooth. Set aside.

  3. Heat the lard or oil in a large skillet over high heat until shimmering. Cook the chicken or pork chunks, in the lard or oil, turning them as necessary to brown all sides. Drain the meat on a paper towel or brown paper bag.

  1. Combine the browned chicken or pork, green sauce, and tomatillos in the insert of a slow cooker or a large sauce pot or Dutch oven on the stove. Simmer for 2 hours, covered, on low.

  2. Add the remaining ingredients and simmer for an additional 2 hours. Check every 30 minutes and add hot water as necessary to keep the meat submerged.

  3. Serve chile verde with hot tortillas and rice and beans.

Variations on Chile Verde

  • Substitute canned green chilies for fresh to save time and effort.

  • Cook whole chicken breasts or a pork shoulder roast in step 4 until fork tender, then shred the meat, return it to the pot, and continue with the recipe. Serve shredded chile verde as a main entree or use it to fill burritos, enchiladas, or tortas, or to top tostadas.

  • Add cubed potatoes (approximately the same size as the meat cubes) with the broth and other ingredients in step 4. Potatoes pair wonderfully with the flavors in this dish, reduce the intensity of the chilies, and stretch the portions. Another option: Ladle chile verde over mashed potatoes.

Edited by Robin Grose