Pozole Verde, a Healthy Take on the Mexican Tradition

Pozole Verde con Pollo, a green twist on the traditional soup made with hominy, or puffed corn. This feel good comfort soup recipe uses chicken, cilantro, green chiles, limes, avocados and mixed vegetables for a healthy take on the Mexican classic!

Three bowls of pozole verde soup on a blue table.

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Hola friends! Today we’re serving a a special feel good Mexican soup recipe that is sure to spark the travel itch for a Mexican food adventure: Pozole Verde con Polla, or green pozole with chicken.

Pozole is a classic Mexican hominy soup traditionally made with pork, vegetables, and peppers. However, pozole is a dish with endless variations!

Because of that we’re whipping up our own healthier version by replacing the traditional pork shoulder (some cultures use a whole hog head!) with chicken and adding in fresh vegetables and peppers for a twist on the classic.

While the variations of pozole are endless, one thing remains the same in each version: hominy. But what is hominy? I’m so glad you asked (because I did a lot of Google research for you)!

Three bowls of pozole verde soup on a blue table.

What is hominy? How do you cook with it?

Hominy refers to the large, chewy corn kernels that are popular in Mexican and Latin American cuisine, but are also consumed throughout the American South and is the ingredient behind the Southern classic grits.

Hominy is made from large corn kernels that are soaked and dried, and are often ground into a flour or can be rehydrated to be used in soups or tamales.

Hominy’s ability to grow in dry climates and its ability to be dried and stored for long periods of time solidified its status as a staple in Mexican cuisine. Today it can be found dried, ground, or sold in cans of water, which is the style of hominy used in Mexican pozole.

Mexican Pozole variations

Pozole is a simple chicken soup recipe that each Mexican region, and even each family, makes differently.

The most popular pozole is typically pozole rojo (or red pozole), which uses red chile peppers to create a soup with a strong red color.

However pozole verde (green pozole) using green chiles and cilantro is also popular, and pozole blanco (or white pozole) made without the addition of color from chiles is also common throughout the country.

While most pozole recipes are made of hominy, a meat or fish, and broth, the real winner of pozole is the toppings.

The topping possibilities are endless, but traditional pozole topping favorites include sliced radishes, avocado, limes, chiles, and cilantro. Of course we went a little wild in this pozole verde recipe with the vegetables and spices and we encourage you to do the same!

A white bowl of pozole verde soup on a blue table.

Pozole Verde con Pollo: Tips, Tricks & Tools

Pozole Verde at its core is a simple chicken soup recipe with hominy and topped with sliced and chopped vegetables and herbs, and it does not require extra equipment or tools.

However, below are a few of my favorite green kitchen staple items to make preparing pozole easier.

  • A sturdy soup pot or dutch oven: You cannot call yourself a soup lover and not have a great soup pot or dutch oven. My dutch oven is a workhorse in the kitchen and I believe every home cook should have (at least) one.
  • Hominy: You will likely be able to find a can of hominy in your local grocery store (I found it near the canned vegetables and beans) but if not hominy is readily available online. Alternatively, you can buy dried hominy and rehydrate by boiling in the same way you would cook dried beans.
A white bowl of pozole verde soup on a blue table.

This Pozole Verde con Pollo recipe is a new favorite soup night recipe! If you love delicious and globally-inspired feel good soups as much as I do, check out my Roasted Tomato Leek Soup or Red Beet Apple Soup for your soup night in.

Did you make this Pozole Verde con Pollo recipe? Leave a comment and rating below to share how it turned out, pin it to your soup Pinterest board, and tag me on Instagram so I can see your pozole creations!

A white bowl of pozole verde soup on a blue table.

Pozole Verde with Chicken

Kristina Todini, RDN
Pozole Verde con Pollo, a green twist on the traditional soup made with hominy, or puffed corn. This feel good soup recipe uses chicken, cilantro, green chiles, limes, avocados and mixed vegetables for a healthy take on the Mexican classic!
4.80 stars (5 ratings)
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Soups + Stews
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 8 servings
Calories 636 kcal


Pozole Verde

  • 1 teaspoon oil
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 pound carrots sliced
  • 4 stalks celery sliced
  • 1 pound chicken breasts or wings
  • 1 28-ounce can hominy drained
  • 2 quarts low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • 1 cup cilantro
  • 2 green chile peppers more or less depending on spice tolerance
  • 1-2 tablespoons water


  • 1 bunch radishes sliced
  • 1 avocado sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper diced
  • 1 cup cilantro chopped


  • Heat oil over medium heat in a large soup pot or dutch oven. Add onion, garlic, carrots, and celery and cook until softened and beginning to brown, about five minutes.
  • Add whole chicken breasts (or wings) and drained hominy to pot with broth. Add salt, pepper, and oregano and bring to a boil, then simmer over medium heat until chicken is cooked throughout, about 20 minutes.
  • In the meantime, add cilantro, peppers, and water to a blender or small mixer and blend until smooth, adding more water if needed.
  • When chicken is cooked throughout, remove chicken breasts from soup pot and let cool. Then use fork to shred cooled chicken and add back to pozole. Add cilantro and pepper liquid to soup and mix well, adding more salt or peppers to taste.
  • Enjoy!


  • Leftovers & Storage: Pozole Verde is like most other soups and gets more delicious a day or two after it is made. Leftover Pozole Verde can be stored in the refrigerator for up to five days, or frozen for up to a few months before being reheated and enjoyed again.
  • Nutrition: This Pozole Verde is a surprisingly healthy dish and a light option for your next soup night. It is high in protein and fiber and low in fat, while providing an array of nutrients from the high amounts of vegetables. The sodium is on the upper end of the recommendations per meal, however reducing the salt used in the recipe will make the sodium levels even lower.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 636kcalCarbohydrates: 15gProtein: 6gFat: 62gSaturated Fat: 18gPolyunsaturated Fat: 13gMonounsaturated Fat: 29gTrans Fat: 0.003gCholesterol: 48mgSodium: 460mgPotassium: 646mgFiber: 5gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 10338IUVitamin C: 30mgCalcium: 52mgIron: 1mg
Keyword healthy pozole, pozole verde with chicken
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  1. Not only didn’t I know what hominy was, but also never had or heard of pozole. It looks like a hearty soup, love your healthier and lighter version, and also love the green color. My husband would love this. And I bet he would have known.

  2. I love that you used chicken as the main meat. The addition of cilantro and chile peppers makes the flavor bright and comforting at the same time. I need this right now.

  3. I love when we take traditional recipes and give them a twist, especially when you can make it a bit more healthy. Love the flavors in this recipe and love how simple, easy yet different this soup is. Can’t wait to try.

  4. Oh this looks sooo amazing. I love how it’s loaded with all the wonderful veggies. And so healthy. I bet my family will love this too. Can’t wait to make this.

  5. Beautiful creative twist on a classic favorite dish. Love that you went verde on this.. perfectly spiced and such a great comfort food!

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