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Chile Verde-Green Chili: A Popular Mexican Dish

Chili Verde: Photo Source: Flicker Steve Wertz

A Brief History

Chili Verde is a green chili or Mexican stew made with pork, green chili's, tomatillos, onion, cilantro, and other spices. In northern Mexico they use pork shoulder or chicken in the stew. The stew prepared a variety of ways is slow cooked and simmered in vegetable or chicken broth.

Cinco De Mayo is May 5th this is a good recipe to make to celebrate the day or for a party. Many companies and families have parties, serve Mexican dishes, and have entertainment and games.

Cinco De Mayo celebrates the Mexican victory over the French in the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. Mexicans were invaded by the French in the Battle of Puebla. The French troops outnumbered the Mexicans by 2 to 1 but the Mexicans still defeated them. In 1866 the US helped Mexicans expel the French army from Mexico City and capture the dictator Maximilian I.

Chile Verde can be used to make tacos, burritos, and tortillas. Some cooks add chili powder or other ground red pepper to give the stew a red appearance. Northern Mexico and the American Southwest add green tomatoes or tomatillos to the stew.

Many chefs roast their vegetables before cooking in a crockpot or Dutch oven. Some regions add lime juice before serving the stew. Fresh tomatillos and green chilis can be found in small or large supermarkets in the produce department. Tomatillos can be found in cans by companies like Goya, La Costena, and Del Sols

History of Chili Verde and Its Ingredients

Tomatillos Green Tomatoes Photo Source 99 Cent Chef Blog

The tomatillo (green tomato) originated with the Aztecs and was part of their diet. Tomatillos grow within a husk and have a sticky substance on their skin. Peel off the husk and throw away. The green chili was brought to US by a Spanish captain that founded Sante Fe New Mexico in 1609. The first green chili was known as the Anaheim pepper.

Anaheim and Jalapeno Hot Peppers Photo Source: Flicker: HA Design ArtbyHeather

The states of New Mexico and Colorado debate which state has the best green chili. They have chili contests and competitions. In New Mexico the chili pepper they use is called hatch and in Colorado pueblo. These chilies are popular because it's spicy enough to be used as a seasoning or condiment and mild enough to use as a vegetable.

Tomatillos have an acidic taste and are available year-round. They are a source of Vitamin A, C, K, niacin, B3,. Tomatillos can be eaten baked, stewed, or fried. In some recipes of chili Verde cooks roast the vegetables before cooking the stew. They can be cut into small pieces or pureed in a blender depending on your preferences.

This is a relatively economical recipe and can feed several people in a family or when entertaining. It can be an excellent dish to bring to a potluck, picnic or buffet.

Ways to Use Leftover Chili Verde

  • Buy hamburger rolls and put the warmed chili Verde on rolls and top with raw onions and coleslaw.

  • Heat tortillas and serve Chile Verde on tortillas with chopped onions, tomatoes, hot pepper, and diced greens.

  • Serve in tacos with chopped onions, tomatoes, avocados and cilantro.

Chili Verde Recipe

Green Chili's Photo Source: Gifgari

Equipment Needed:

You will need a cutting board, knife, crockpot, measuring spoons, colander, measuring cups, baking sheet or roasting pan, tin foil or parchment paper, containers, and spoon to mix ingredients.


2 pounds pork loin center cut boneless

1 or 2 pounds of tomatillos fresh or canned

3 or 4 green jalapeno or Anaheim peppers

1 medium white onion diced

1 bunch of fresh cilantro chopped.

1 tablespoons of fresh or dried oregano

1 teaspoon chopped garlic

1 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 cups or more of vegetable or chicken broth

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon chili powder optional

Lime juice optional


Cut the pork into small bite size pieces and put in a container. Store in the refrigerator until ready to cook the stew. In a bowl of warm water soak the vegetables for about 4 minutes and drain.

Cut the jalapenos or peppers in half and remove seeds and discard. Remove the brown wrapper around the tomatillos and discard. Cut the tomatillos in half. Cut the end off the white onion discard and remove the peel. Cut the onion into chunks. Dice half of the fresh cilantro for roasting.

On a baking sheet use parchment paper or tin foil. Heat the oven to 350 degrees an place cut vegetables on the baking sheet and half the cilantro. Roast in the oven for about 20 to 30 minutes. Take out of the oven and let it cool.

Heat the crockpot on the low setting add 1 tablespoon of oil. Chop the vegetables and spices into bite sized pieces and mix in a bowl. Chop the rest of the fresh cilantro and add this to the vegetables. Add this mixture to the crockpot and stir to mix well.

Add the diced pork to the vegetables and mix with a spoon to distribute ingredients evenly. Let cook for 30 minutes to one hour before adding other ingredients. Stir occasionally to mix meat and other ingredients. Add vegetable or chicken broth to cover the vegetables and meat. Stir. Add chopped garlic, black pepper, and dried oregano.

Cook for another hour or more. Add chili powder at the end if you want the stew to have a reddish color. Serves with white or yellow rice. Serves 4.

Yellow Rice


2 cups of white or brown rice

4 cups of water

2 teaspoons of turmeric

1 tablespoon of olive oil

1 tablespoons butter


In a microwave safe container measure the water rice, oil, turmeric, and oil Cook rice according to package directions. When cooked mix with one tablespoon of butter. Serve with Chile Verde. Serves 4

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