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  • Writer's pictureMolly

Easy Vegan Pozole Verde

Updated: Sep 7, 2021

vegan pozole verde

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I love green things. The green version of a recipe is always my favorite version. Give me the green curry, the green salsa, green shakshuka, the green eggs and ham - I love everything green! So when I came to Mexico to start learning about the cuisine, pozole verde really caught my attention.

Green pozole is traditionally made with chicken, from what I hear from local people, menus and recipes online. But I like to veganize things, especially soups, so I had it in my mind that I could make a lovely version using the chickpea broth that I refuse to stop talking about. I looked around the internet for more traditional recipes so I could make sure I had all the essential elements in my version. I ended up going with a version I found on the Latina Mama Tips blog and used their recipe for Green Pozole with Chicken as my main resource. The recipe is really simple and made of super fresh ingredients - as is typical of Mexican cuisine. It starts with a simple aromatic chicken stock, and then a fresh blended salsa is added to the soup. It's finished with lost of tasty crunchy and fatty toppings.

When I set out to develop my vegan version, the first thing I knew I would do was to borrow from the essential flavor base of Thai cuisine, "sam glur." This is a flavor base I've mentioned before. It's quite neutral and lends itself well to nearly any cuisine, but it particularly makes sense in the Mexican context because it's made of ingredients common in Mexican cuisine - garlic, cilantro (roots if you can find them) and white pepper. The reason I'm so fond of the Thai flavor base is that it's really concentrated in flavor and aroma, so a small amount of it added to soup recipes delivers a really great foundation. For this recipe, we pound up a sam glur and sauté it in our soup pot like a sofrito, before adding in our stock ingredients.

The other change I made was, obviously, not adding meat. My favorite base for a veggie soup is chickpea stock, which I use in many recipes. For this version, I do the entire recipe in one pot, no need to strain out chickpeas and reserve the water. We're doing it all at once! It's a lovely little flavor base and the chickpeas work really nicely with the hominy.

Notes on special ingredients

Tomatillos and hominy might be tricky to find in your average American or Western grocery store. However if you have access to a Latin market, they should be available.

Tomatillos look like unripe tomatoes. You may see them with their outer skins attached, or they may be sold already peeled, as shown in the photos below. While they look unripe, they are actually fully ripe in their green state. They are more sour than tomatoes and slightly less waters. They blend up beautifully in this soup, and if you have leftovers, you can whip up a lovely salsa verde in about 2 minutes!

Hominy is a whole nixtamalized corn kernel. Before corn is used to make tortillas, it is processed in an alkali solution often consisting of water and lye. This process breaks down the corn, causing it to become more digestible and nutritious for human consumption. To make a tortilla masa, corn is nixtamalized and then ground into a fine paste. Hominy is the whole kernels of corn before they're ground to masa. The texture of hominy is soft, offering a top notch toothsinkability.

Easy Vegan Pozole Verde

Serves 4-6

Stock Ingredients

1/2 lb dry chickpeas, soaked in salted water overnight

1/2 lb cooked hominy (one can, you want roughly an equal amount to your chickpeas)

1 - 2 quarts water

5 cloves of garlic