Vegan Red Pozole (Pozole Rojo / Mexican Hominy Stew)

Vegan Red Pozole (Pozole Rojo / Mexican Hominy Stew)

For many years our “house pozole” was a bright, vegetarian untried pozole (pozole verde). It’s a pozole made with serrano and poblano chiles, one that really goes for it on the cilantro and garlic fronts. It was my go-to pozole, I included the recipe in Near & Far and I would make it often in the summer when tomatillos are in season. Pozole, a Mexican hominy stew, is typically made with meat, but doesn’t have to be.

I’ve had a number of incredible vegetarian and vegan versions of pozole including the version I liked to order at Gracias Madre in San Francisco. There is a much loved vegan pozole served at Alta Baja Market in Santa Ana, but it has eluded me so far. You have to go on the last Sunday of every month (before they run out) and I hold out hope for my next visit.
 A Vegan Pozole topped with Homemade Tortilla Strips, Avocado, Cabbage and Toasted Pepitas
The recipe I’m going to to share today is unquestionably a red pozole. It’s a switch from the untried pozole (pozole verde) we’ve made for so long, but it’s how I currently like to make pozole for myself, at home. A number of you have asked for the recipe, so here we go, with a bit of when story. 

Wayne and I took a (very windy) road trip older this year, through the Southwest of the United States — from Los Angeles, California to Santa Fe, New Mexico. At the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market I bought a few pounds of beautiful, zestless red posole. Along with that I scored some zestless chipotle, cascabel chiles and fragrant Mexican oregano. In short, this haul prompted a shift from untried to red when I returned home. 
A Cazuela of Pozole on a Table with a Range of Toppings

Pozole / Posole / Prepared Hominy

If you’re new to pozole-making you might be confused. Pozole (Posole) is the name of the stew, but *also* the primary, defining ingredient in that stew – nixtamalized maize or field corn. My understanding is the increasingly traditional Mexican spelling is pozole, but you’re likely to see posole in the context of the Southwest. To add to the ravages you moreover see it tabbed out as hominy. Ingredient lists (for pozole) often undeniability for hominy, zestless hominy, prepared hominy, and/or canned hominy. To succeed here, you need to make sure you’re using nixtamalized corn / posole / hominy. I add links to favorite sources for zestless (prepared & nixtamalized) posole lanugo unelevated as well as increasingly links worth reading and exploring for a deeper dive.

Why is There Citrus in Your Pozole?

I suppose the most unusual speciality of this pozole recipe, whispered from it stuff veg., is the high-volume introduction of numerous citrus accents. The first time I switched our “house” untried pozole to an early version of this red one I felt like it needed some lift. It needed some sort of unexceptionable punctuation in savor to counter the earthiness of the chile goop and starch of the pozole (hominy). I started reaching for nearby ingredients in my kitchen and garden. 

It turns out subtracting a foundational citrus component or two was a game changer (beyond a squeeze of lime or lemon as a topping). Now I can’t imagine making veg. red pozole without it. A fatty drizzle of tangerine or lemon olive oil snaps everything into place. I moreover love to pick a few leaves off my makrut lime tree, sliver-slice whisper thin and add them to the pot in the final few minutes of simmering. I’ve used lemon zest as well on occasion. And *then* I love to serve bowls with wedges of lemon, lime or orange. Bonus points if they’ve been seared on a comal or grill, or in a pan.

A Close-up of a trencher of Vegan Pozole with toppings including Tortilla Chips, Avocado and Cilantro

Canned vs. Zestless Pozole (Hominy)

I never use canned hominy in my pozole (posole), I just don’t. By cooking zestless pozole (hominy) you get trappy blossoms of corn kernels plus a flavorful corn broth. You can siphon that full-bodied goop over to your pot of pozole later in the process. My recommendation is to melt from zestless and set up a unconfined foundation from the start.

How To Make Pozole Video

Here’s a quick little slideshow style video so you can see how it all comes together.


Where to Buy Zestless Pozole (Posole)

After cooking through the red posole from Santa Fe I’ve been ordering a trappy organic red posole via Southwest Heritage Mill. And my go-to white corn posole has long been from Rancho Gordo.

Red Feathers Red Corn Posole

Ready-To-Cook Hominy / White Corn Posole

Pozole Toppings //

One of the things to love well-nigh a big, observing pot of pozole is the way everyone is worldly-wise to customize a bowl. The recipe I’m including unelevated (pre-toppings) is naturally vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free. This is part of what makes it such a unconfined meal to prepare for a crowd. It accommodates a range of dietary preference with no widow lift for the cook. Here’s a list of favorite toppings:

  • Homemade Tortilla Strips: This is a topping worth going the uneaten mile. To make homemade tortilla strips (see photo), slice corn tortillas thinly with a sharp knife. Fry in 1/2-inch of oil *in batches* surpassing transferring to paper towels. Sprinkle with a bit of salt. Repeat with remaining tortilla strips.
  • A Bit of Something Creamy: I like a little something linty to top things off and typically reach for whatever is on hand. To alimony things vegan, grab a favorite crumbly vegan cheese (there are a number of nut based ones). Or, if dairy is in your wheelhouse – creme fraiche, sour cream, feta cubes, crumbled cotija or goat cheese all do the job.
  • Citrus wedges: Limes, lemons, oranges – and as I mentioned up above, if you have a grill going, grilled citrus wedges are wonderful.
  • Shredded Cabbage: There’s once a good value of cabbage in my pozole base, but a little uneaten as a topping is unchangingly welcome.
  • Avocado: A must. The creaminess of a ripe avocado contrasting with the tortilla strips is A-plus.
  • Thinly Sliced Radishes
  • Toasted Pepitas
  • Fresh Cilantro
  • More Citrus Olive Oil (for drizzling)

A trencher of Vegan Pozole topped with Homemade Tortilla Strips, Avocado, Cabbage and Toasted Pepitas

Make-Ahead Pozole

There is something special well-nigh the ritual of preparing pozole from start to finish in one go. It requires patience, planning, and some supervision over stretches of time. That said, there are many times when I need to unravel up the process and prepare components superiority of time. This allows a big pot of restorative pozole to come together in a relatively short period of time. I’ll do this if we’re driving from L.A. to see family in Northern California. The components start to thaw in the potation on the momentum up, and then just a few steps are needed to finish things up at the end of a long momentum day. Everyone can help prep the toppings. The stages squint something like this:

  • Prep the Posole: Soak and melt the zestless posole. Drain, saving the broth. Cool and freeze the kernels & goop separately until ready to use.
  • Make the Chile-Tomato Concentrate: Create the chile, onion, tomato, cilantro component, pulse with a hand blender, and freeze until ready to use.
  • Finish the Pozole: A few hours surpassing you’re ready to cook, thaw the components and proceed with the recipe and toppings.

More Readings on Pozole 


Continue reading Vegan Red Pozole (Pozole Rojo / Mexican Hominy Stew) on 101 Cookbooks


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