Slow Cooker Posole
This hearty slow cooker posole is rich in flavor and simple in preparation! Pork, hominy and a few simple pantry ingredients make perfect posole!
Today is a good day. Because it’s slow cooker posole day.
I’ve been promising you this recipe forever, and I’m finally making good on that.
If you aren’t familiar with posole, it’s a Mexican stew made with pork and hominy and served with all sorts of delicious toppings, like avocado, shredded cabbage, cilantro, limes, etc.
There are a lot of different recipes and variations out there.
This slow cooker posole recipe is a fantastic way to get your posole fix with hardly any work. We’re letting pantry staples and slow cookers do the work for us.
If you’re looking for a true blue through and through, authentic, start-with-dried-chiles posole recipe, might I suggest a quick google search for a recipe befitting those standards?
This slow cooker posole recipe is amazingly delicious. But it’s easy.
And we’re using some canned goods to help us along.
- enchilada sauce (green or red; I always use green)
- salsa verde (regular or thick ‘n chunky)
- green chiles (mild or medium)
- white hominy (soaked, puffy corn – it’s so good)
While you can see specific brands pictured here, I’ve made this posole with various different brands, and it’s been delicious every time, so just use the brands you love and have readily available.
Pork for Posole
Posole is traditionally made with pork.
I use either a pork sirloin roast or pork tenderloin. I find those to be the most tender in this recipe.
But you can try using pork loin (usually very lean) or pork shoulder (can be a bit fatty).
Brown the pork in a little oil (flavor!) and transfer to a slow cooker. Followed by everything else (except the cilantro)!
The slow cooker posole gently cooks until the meat is fall-apart tender, about 6-7 hours on high or 8-9 hours on low.
Warning: Your house is going to smell amazing.
The flavors will concentrate while cooking – and taste even better the next day, FYI.
The consistency of posole is thick like stew, but you can thin it with additional broth after cooking to make it more soup-like.
Posole is really delicious on its own. Hearty and comforting, the simple flavors don’t need much elaboration.
So yes, you can ladle it in a bowl, squeeze a lime wedge on top, and go to town.
But if you want the full posole experience, try serving it with:
- shredded cabbage
- sliced or diced avocado
- lime wedges
- thinly sliced radishes
We also throw shredded cheese or crumbled queso fresco in with ours…and tortilla chips on the side.
Slow cooker posole is an experience. And it’s magnificent.
I’ve made this recipe dozens of times; it’s versatile, delicious, and family-friendly (I mean, hello, HOMINY).
My kids love it. And I’m left sneaking around as The Leftover Hoarder once again so that nobody gets any big ideas about taking posole in their lunch the next day.
There are a million ways to make, eat and experience posole. This slow cooker posole is just one of them, but it has quickly become our favorite!
FAQs for Posole:
Traditionally posole is made with white hominy, but you can experiment using (sweeter) yellow hominy – it should work just fine.
Yes! Feel free to experiment using either. Chicken will benefit from a shorter cooking time than pork or beef.
It should work quite well; I’ve included Instant Pot/pressure cooker suggestions below in the recipe notes.
Slow Cooker Posole
- 1-2 tablespoons canola, vegetable or avocado oil
- 2-3 pounds pork roast cut into 1-inch cubes (see note)
- 1 yellow onion, sliced thinly
- 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 1 can (19-ounces) red or green enchilada sauce (see note)
- 1 jar (16-ounces) salsa verde, regular or thick 'n chunky
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 can (4-ounces) green chiles
- 2 cans (15.5 ounces each) white hominy, drained
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, more or less to taste
- ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
- Heat the oil in a 10- or 12-inch skillet or saucepan over medium heat. Season the pork pieces lightly with salt and pepper. Add the pork in a single layer and brown on all sides (may need to do this in batches so the pan doesn’t get crowded – otherwise the meat steams instead of browning nicely). Transfer the meat to a 6- or 8-quart slow cooker.
- To the skillet, add the onions and cook on medium-low or medium heat until the onions start to soften, 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another minute or so. Transfer the onions and garlic to the slow cooker.
- Add the enchilada sauce, salsa verde, broth, green chiles, drained hominy, oregano, salt, and cayenne pepper. Give the mixture a good stir.
- Cover and cook on high for 6-7 hours (or low for 8-9 hours) until the pork is fall apart tender. Thin with broth, if desired, and heat through.
- Stir in the cilantro. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper, to taste. Serve with shredded cabbage, sliced avocado, fresh lime wedges, tortilla chips, shredded cheese, etc.
Recipe Source: adapted from this recipe at AllRecipes, after a reader, Jessica, emailed me about it – also inspired by a dish of chili verde my friend, Teri, brought me
86 Comments on “Slow Cooker Posole”
Both of my sons and my daughter in law served their missions among the Latino culture and loved posole. They have talked about how it was a traditional dish served around Christmas, so we decided to add it to our Christmas tradition. I used this recipe, and they all 3 said it was delicious! Our whole family loved this! My boys said they also served it with tostadas with sour cream or refried beans on them and dipped in the posole. Thanks for the amazing recipe!
Mel, this was SO GOOD! I used a pork sirloin as suggested–first time I’ve used one in the slow cooker–and it was soooo tender and delicious, but still held in nice chunks. Wasn’t sure how the family would like the hominy, but even my pickiest eater got seconds and I was told unanimously that I should make it again. Success!! Thank you!
Made Posole for dinner tonight and everyone loved it! My daughter served a mission in Mexico and Posole was her favorite dish. She was so excited to have it for dinner and LOVED it! We will add this to our family favorites. Whenever I am making a new recipe and tell my family it is a Melskitchencafe recipe we all know it is going to be really flavorful and delicious! Thanks for making dinner time something we look forward to!
This was delicious! I used boneless, skinless chicken thighs instead of pork and used High for 4 hours but other than that I followed the recipe. Great flavors, very nice heat – really delicious. Just so you know, my family says “well, if it’s Mel then it will be swell”. Corny but very true!
I am not the best cook and usually recipes never turn out well. I decided to try this posole as it is my favorite dish. I took the one readers suggestion and browned the pork in larger chunks and then shredded later. This posole was to die for! It turned out amazing and my whole family loved it. Thank you!
We love this dinner! Today I didn’t get it in the crock pot early enough so I decided to try it in my instant pot. I got the dreaded “burn” message twice before it even got up to pressure. I guess that thick broth isn’t brothy enough as is. I ended up just simmering it on sauté while stirring for about half an hour. The pork wasn’t super tender but I was out of time. I suggest skipping the pressure cooking unless you add more broth.
We are making this every other week right now – we love it. Thank you, Mel!
I’m so happy to hear that – thank you for letting me know, Rachel!
This was completely delicious and pretty easy. I cooked it on low for 10 hours on my slow-cooker setting on instapot, but was surprised when I opened it up that the pork was still somewhat tough. I then turned it on medium for another 1-1.5 hours and the pork got more tender. The flavor and combo with the hominy is fantastic. We loved the addition of lime, and avocado. But found we didn’t want any sourcream as it diluted the flavor. Instead we wish we had used queso fresco (fresh Mexican cheese). Will make again.
I have made this recipe as-written probably about 5-6 times now. I say that because today I very much did NOT and I want to be clear that I have a point of comparison when I say what I am about to say next.
First, I flipping LOVE this recipe as written. The flavors are amazing, my house smells fantastic, and the end result tastes like it took WAY more effort than it did. We love it with lime wedges, Monterey Jack cheese and avocado on top.
But today, I was having something of an existential crisis as it relates to cooking. It’s just my husband and me (bless all of you who have been raising children during a pandemic, seriously), but I’ve been cooking SO MUCH for the last year. And while I love cooking, I miss restaurants and it’s been a long year, man.
Anyway, groceries got delivered and I had this on my meal plan. We love it, and I’m a fan of any recipe that allows me to walk away for a long time and come back to a hot meal. But I was moping about even the idea of cutting the raw pork into cubes and then browning it in a separate pan. Like… I’ve gone running with less angst, and I hate running.
Right as I was about to shove the pork into the fridge and procrastinate this recipe into another day, an idea hit me. What if I just…didn’t…cut up the pork. And what if I didn’t brown it, either?! It seemed scandalous, but I live my life on the edge. I figured – what the heck, the worst that would happen is that I’d know not to skip it next time. It’d still be tasty.
I plopped my pork loin into the slow cooker fresh from the package. I did decide to cut the pork into three big chunks just to help it cook more evenly (and faster), but I did that right in the crock. Then I added the rest of the ingredients on top, punching up the garlic and oregano a bit, gave it a quick stir, and turned on my slow cooker.
I had it on high for the first two hours, then low for another five. During the last 30 minutes, I took out and quickly shredded the pork chunks with two forks – the meat literally fell apart. I put the pork back in the slow cooker, stirred, and let sit for the last 30 minutes.
It was PHENOMENAL. The shredded pork really soaks up the flavors, which is just an added bonus to the fact that I didn’t have to cut a massive piece of pork into small pieces. I will say that there’s a slight flavor loss to not browning the pork, but I think adding extra oregano and garlic helped compensate for it. And in any case, the flavor loss is small enough that if browning the pork is the determining factor between you making this recipe vs not, go on and skip it.
On a day that I’m having less of a crisis about cooking, I might brown the three big chunks of pork just to get some of that tasty Maillard reaction going, but I think I am always going to make this with shredded pork going forward.
Thanks, Mel! Love your recipes – they’ve been one of the only things keeping my cooking game going during this interminable year.
Thank you for posting this, Heather. As I read the recipe and considered making it, I was having similar angst about cubing the pork. That small detail almost made me decide not to try this recipe out, until I read your comment. I’m going to try it your way.
I was so pumped to see this recipe! My kids are Guatemalan and we were first introduced to this dish at a Latin American culture camp years ago. My hubby couldn’t quit raving about it. Will definitely be making it again!! Thanks for your awesome recipes! Don’t listen to the haters.
Thanks so much, Eve!
I made this over Christmas break and it was easy and really good.
My family loved this! So yummy. It was my first time cooking with hominy, and now I want to find more recipes that use it. The avocado topping is, for our family at least, a nonnegotiable topping.
I am so excited to make this! One question…what store/section of the store do you buy Hominy at?
I couldn’t find it today But maybe wasn’t looking in right place for it?
Hi Pam – I find it by the Mexican foods.
I made this for houseguests, and everyone loved this! Thank you so much for all your wonderful recipes. I cook multiple Mel’s Kitchen Cafe dinners every week, and they’re always so so great. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
Thank you so much, Lauren!!
Hey Mel, HaPpy NeW yeaR!!! Thanks a bunch for yet another amazing, unique and easy recipe; it is DELICIOUS and different! We had a late start getting this going and I didn’t make it into the crock pot in time. Therefore, I decided to try it in the Instant Pot and it worked out really well and was super fast- so I thought I’d share. We started on step 2 in the recipe and sautéed the onion and then the garlic in canola oil in the Insta. I then removed the veggies, added a little more oil and went back to step 1 browning the cubes of pork in batches, again on the sauté setting. We used half a loin ~ 3 lbs. which worked really well. After all of the pieces of pork were browned, we reunited them in the pot, topped with the veggies, drained hominy, and the rest of the ingredients. I believe that part of the reason this works (and nothing scalds) is that we did NOT stir it. Leave the meat on the bottom and top with everything else. Otherwise, I think you could very likely end up with a burn warning and scalded hominy stuck to the bottom of your pot. We had a jar of your homemade green enchilada sauce in our deep freeze that went to very good use and kept everything per recipe but added about a teaspoon of cumin and a teaspoon of coriander and a little more chicken stock. Then, we let her rip at 20 minutes, natural releasing for 10 minutes and finally quick releasing. I think with that much meat, the only thing I would change next time would be to add another can or two of hominy, or stick with closer to 2 lbs. of meat with 2 cans of hominy. Although this may not be authentic, it’s simple, hearty, comforting, quick and delish. Perfect for my family on a cold, KC, January night. Thanks a bunch!
Andrea – thank you so much for including your detailed IP instructions. You’re the best!
This was delicious!! I had to make a few minor modifications but love the adaptability of the recipe. It smelled so good all day slow cooking. Thank you for the new, tasty meal – perfect for a winter weekend!
Seriously SO delicious, Mel!! We made this for Christmas Eve and our house smelled divine.
So happy to hear that, Ashley – thank you!
I have this simmering in the crockpot as we speak! Quick question, is the green enchilada sauce supposed to be 1-15 oz can? I’ve never seen a 19oz can.
It’s a 19-ounce can (they are available at my grocery store, but maybe not everywhere?) but a 15-ounce can will probably work with maybe a boost of a bit of water or broth.
This was soooo good! All 4 kids ate it up! I separated it on the little ones plates because they are burnt out on soup which worked great!! So yummy, a great dairy free option! I bought the wrong sized enchilada sauce so I just added an extra cup of chicken broth. We loved it!! Thanks for all your delicious recipes!!
Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment, Erin!
Made this tonight and it was perfect! So good, my family raved about it! Will make this again for sure thanks Mel for all the great recipes!
Have never had posole or hominy before. Why not try something new!! Made recipe as stated — I wish I could say we loved it but maybe we’re too Dutch, lol! I even used all mild ingredients! The meat tasted great but it basically just tasted like pork swimming in spicy warmed salsa with squishy corn puffs! Haha! I could see how some people could like it though. Just not our jam I guess. We did pile on the toppings which was fun. And it did taste good. Just not out of this world amazing. Thanks as always for introducing us to new stuff though!
Also the people getting triggered because this recipe isn’t authentic enough… classic
Thanks for adding your review, Susan!
This was delicious! Thanks for another great recipe! I made it in our instapot with great success!!!
Yay, Jenny! Thanks for letting me know!
This is delicious Mel. One of the things I love about America is the “melting pot” of flavors from all different cuisines. Sure, probably most cultural recipes we make as Americans aren’t authentic. But does that really matter? What matters is that we can try different flavors and expand our tastes while providing food for our family.
I’m glad that you provide a large variety of foods on your blog that can make just about everyone happy!
Thank you, Danielle!
This was a nice change from our usual soup/chili options. I made mine on the stovetop and added the hominy after letting the meat simmer for a couple of hours, and then let it continue to simmer for about another hour. I also ended up adding about two extra cups of broth so it didn’t get too thick. It was so good with the radishes, cabbage and avocados! My kids (who normally dislike soup) each had two bowls. It was an early Christmas miracle!
Yay, Nicole! It’s always such a blessed victory when the kids eat happily and willingly! Merry Christmas.
I did not have good success with the instant pot. My pot failed to come to pressure and gave me the “burn” warning. The hominy sank and scorched on the bottom. I emptied the pot, scrubbed the liner, added an extra glug of chicken broth, and tried it again only to have the same thing happen. Transferred the stew to the crock pot (and scrubbed the scorched bottom of the instant pot liner a second time). If I try to make it in the instant pot again on another day, I’ll wait to add the hominy with the cilantro. After cooking all day in the crock pot, the meat was tender and the posole very tasty, but also quite spicy! It was very tasty and the meat was tender after cooking all day in the crock pot, but also quite spicy! I think I used a medium heat salsa verde. I might try mild next time.
Absolutely delicious! Don’t know if it is authentic or not, but either way it is fantastic!!! Thank you for this recipe, it is going in my rotation for sure
This was great! As I was making it I wasn’t sure we would like it, but it was a hit. Our teenage grandsons who were having dinner with us loved it. I didn’t make any changes, followed the recipe exactly. I will be making it again.
Thank you, Betsy! Glad you enjoyed it and thanks for letting me know!
Will you give a sodium content and serving size for the pazole .
We had this tonight on a snowy night in New England. This was my very first posole! So fabulous. Great flavor. Meat was tender and all the toppings were great. Husband going for seconds now. Thanks Mel!
Thanks, Kathryn! Very happy you and your husband loved it!
From the damn moment Ina and Rachel decided to insult the Mexican food I hadn’t seen something more far from the reality of the dish. We should go back to the ancient practice of pozole and invite uncultivated people to be the main part of the dish.
Maybe you should stop following this blog since 99.9 percent of us love Mel’s Mexican recipes! No one is forcing you to read or cook anything on this blog! Now, I’m headed to the store to buy ingredients for this Posole for tonight’s meal! Happy Holiday!
Couldn’t agree more, Vanessa. Nobody should make anything other than their ancestral cuisine, with no variation. Russian? Beets for you, kind sir. For eternity.
While we are at it, kids should only go to schools with kids from their own countries and cultures. Oh, and we should build big walls to divide us from others so that our cultures never mix!
You are on to something.
Sarcasm aside, I happen to be a Spanish speaker. When I speak with Mexican friends whose Spanish has been influenced by their Northern neighbors, I don’t think to chastise them for being inauthentic.
When I see an artist do a variation of Impressionism I don’t chastise them for varying from the classics. Evolution is natural and beautiful.
When I go to an “authentic Mexican” restaurant and they serve flour tortillas, I don’t lecture them about how flour was introduced by the conquistadors and isn’t remotely “authentic.” Instead, I’m glad they took something and made it their own.
There are not rules to cuisine. It evolves with us. What does this recipe show? It shows an amalgamation of beautiful cultures and a sharing of tastes.
Nothing is stopping you from authentic food. But as someone who has had it, to be honest, the variations often taste as good or better. Different, yes, but still valuable. Let’s celebrate efforts to respect other cultures, if we want others to to respect our own.
I love you, J.S.
Could this be made in a dutch oven? Any idea how much I would need to adjust the cooking time?
Yes, I think so! I’d suggest covered at 275 degrees for 3-4 hours and then take a peek to see how it’s looking and add time, if needed.
Thank you – going to give it a try!
As a Mexican American I can say this isn’t Mexican at all this is caucasians version of what pasole is no different from what Racheal ray did on her show this is what you call “cultural appropriation” rather then authentic Mexican cuisine.
Is it cultural appropriation for Mexicans to use flour tortillas since flour was introduced by Europeans? Asking for a friend.
Just because you call something cultural appropriation does not make it so. That’s not how that phrase works. Mel isn’t passing off Mexican food as part of her heritage. Your comment divides, needlessly.
Mel – I won’t speak for my entire culture, but I appreciate the variation on a theme!
Please, it’s pozole*
Pozole! Thank you! I cringed the numerous times I saw “posole” on the page.
The spelling differs regionally. Mel, thanks for posting another great recipe and all of the hard work that goes into each of your posts.
Both spellings are acceptable and correct. In New Mexico, where I am from, the majority of us spell it as posole.
I am so excited to make this! One question…what store/section of the store do you buy Hominy at?
I couldn’t find it today But maybe wasn’t looking in right place for it?
I’m in AZ and it’s posole.
I have to agree, when I make recipes that use a “z” instead of an “s,” I find that they are often too bland. I will pass until I find a recipe spelled pozole. Which is too bad since this looked good.
Might I suggest you just move on without the snarky comments?
His/her comment was a sarcastic response (with a good point) to the original comment 🙂
This looks delicious, can’t wait to order pick up items from the grocery store and give it a try. I love menudo, so this is right up my alley. Thanks so much. I’ll let you know how it turns out.
I made this for dinner tonight and it was delicious! This was my first time eating hominy. I was nervous about it because it’s the only food my father in law hates. I think he just ate it too much growing up because it is delightful. Thanks for a great recipe Mel! Next time I will search for mild green enchilada sauce because the medium made it too spicy for my youngest 2 kids and I only used a tiny sprinkle of cayenne pepper.
I’m happy you tried this so quickly, Melissa! Thanks for the review – I’m really happy you guys liked it (despite the extra spiciness!)
Looking forward to making this over the weekend. One thing I know I’ll be adding is a good dose of cumin.
I’ll rate it after I make it which I have a feeling is going to be high stars.
I love posole! Thanks for the recipe. I had all the ingredients on hand, but since my pork was frozen solid and wouldn’t be thawed in time to use the slow cooker, I used the instapot. The flavor was amazing, but it was too soupy for my taste. I ended up setting my pressure cooker on the sauté setting after I opened it, and let it boil down so it was thicker. I’m thinking perhaps forgo the chicken broth?
Hi Lynn, if it’s too soupy, then yes, you might want to eliminate the broth (the slow cooker evaporates more of the liquid than the pressure cooker so it’s likely it’ll be a bit soupier in the instant pot)
Oh I’m so excited to try this! We have tried different posole recipes to have with tamales on Christmas Eve the last few years and this one looks really good!
I am not seeing enchilada sauce in a 19oz can? Is it possible that you meant a different size? The larger size 28 oz?
I noticed if you Google it some retailers do offer it in the 19 oz size. If your grocery store doesn’t you might have to go to a Mexican grocery store.
Hi Jill, my grocery store carries the 19-ounce cans, but if you can’t find that size, you can use two 10-ounce cans.
Sorry, I doubted you! Thank you for the clarification. Shoot! I feel bad about the criticism that is being shared. A good recipe is a good recipe. And you share plenty of those! In the spirit of the season, I hope you Have a Merry Christmas!
Thanks, Jill! Merry Christmas to you, too!
I love a good pozole recipe and can’t wait to try this one. Thank you!
Hallo, ich bin die Katrin. 50jährige Mutter von drei schon fast erwachsenen Kindern. Zwei Töchter und 1 Sohn. Ich liebe es zu kochen und zu backen. Gruß, Katrin
Thank you for posting this recipe! We are going to try it this weekend. We spent Christmas in Mexico City two years ago and loved eating posole so much that we ate it several times. I’ve been intimidated by most of the recipes I’ve seen, but yours looks attainable! I’ll let you know how it turns out.
Good luck, Maria! I hope you enjoy it – it’s really adaptable so you’ll probably be able to play around with the recipe to get it just how you like it.
This turned out GREAT! One of my daughter commented while eating it, “I feel sorry for people who don’t get to try foods like this!”
I only made a couple of adjustments: I added an additional cup of broth and an extra can of hominy. Next time I will add two cups of broth and use red enchilada sauce. We topped our pozole with shredded cabbage, sliced radishes, oregano, and lime wedges. Yum! Thank you for the recipe!
Thanks so much for the review, Maria!
We have been loving chili verde over here for months. It looks like this is chili verde on steroids!! I am so excited to try this out after the holidays!!
I was inspired by the tupperware of goodness you brought me all those months ago, Teri!