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Beyond the usual chili or chicken and noodles, it’s nice to have a vegetarian soup in your comfort food collection—and no, generic old vegetable soup isn’t going to cut it. Enter this pozole verde from Spicebox Kitchen by Linda Shiue, M.D. (Yep, she’s a chef and a doctor.)
“There are three main types of this nourishing, soothing, hominy-based soup,” Shiue writes, “the most popular being red, as well as white, and the one I’m presenting here, green. Pozole is a dish of pre-Hispanic origins in Mexico, and a dish reserved for special celebrations and religious ceremonies.”
Shiue’s meat-free version uses pepitas, tomatillos and green chiles for its hue, and calls for roasting the chiles and aromatics in the oven for even more flavor. “The garnishes are definitely not optional,” she continues. “They add even more color, texture and flavor.”
Excerpted from Spicebox Kitchen: Eat Well and Be Healthy with Globally Inspired, Vegetable-Forward Recipes by Linda Shiue, MD. Copyright © 2021. Available from Hachette Go, an imprint of Hachette Book Group, Inc.
1 white onion
2 poblano chiles
3 serrano chiles
4 medium-size tomatillos (about 8 ounces)
6 garlic cloves
½ cup raw hulled pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
½ cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
1 cup leafy greens, such as spinach or kale
8 cups vegetable stock
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
One 29-ounce can white hominy, drained and rinsed
One 15-ounce can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
Kernels from 3 large ears of corn (about 2 cups)
1 chayote, pitted and diced into bite-size pieces (see note)
Olive oil, for drizzling
2 avocados—peeled, pitted and sliced
1 cup finely shredded red cabbage
½ cup sliced serrano chiles
¼ cup dried Mexican oregano
3 limes, cut into quarters
1 watermelon radish, thinly sliced into bite-size wedges
Roughly chopped fresh cilantro
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Cut the onion and chiles in half. Place on a baking sheet with the unpeeled tomatillos and garlic. Roast until soft and beginning to brown, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes.
3. Stem and seed the chiles. Remove the tomatillo husks and peel the garlic and onion. Place the roasted vegetables, pumpkin seeds, cilantro and greens in a blender or food processor and pulse until you have a coarse paste with the texture of relish, about 1 minute.
4. Place the blended pozole paste in a medium saucepan. Add the stock and water, as needed, until you get a stew-like consistency. Season with salt to taste, then add the cumin and oregano. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes.
5. Add the hominy and beans and simmer for another 5 minutes. Add the corn and chayote and simmer until the mixture is heated through, but the chayote remains crunchy, about 2 minutes more.
6. To serve, ladle the pozole into bowls and top with a drizzle of olive oil. Serve with plates of garnishes.