Puerco en Chile Colorado



Puerco en Chile Colorado
(pork in red chile sauce)


5 dried New Mexican chiles
4 dried chiles de Arbol
2 dried Ancho chiles
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 pounds boneless pork shoulder, cut into 1 to 1 1/2-inch pieces
Kosher salt and pepper
1 to 1 1/2 cups beef broth
1 small white onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon Mexican oregano
1 tablespoon cumin
1/2 tablespoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper


Bring a small pot of water to boil. Cut the heads off the chiles and shake out all the seeds. Cut the chiles up with a pair of scissors or rip them by hand into small pieces. Place the chiles into a non-reactive bowl and pour enough boiling water into the bowl to cover the chiles. Place a lid or plastic wrap over the bowl and allow to sit for at least 30 minutes to soften the chiles.

Transfer the chiles to a blender and add 3/4 cup of the soaking water. Blend until very smooth, 1 to 2 minutes. Set aside.

Heat the olive oil in heavy pot or large skillet over medium high heat. Sprinkle the pork generously with Kosher salt and black pepper. Add the meat to the pot and brown well on all sides. Don’t overcrowd the pan; cook it in batches, if necessary. Add another tablespoon of olive oil if the pan starts to get too dry.

Once all the pork is browned, place it back in the pot and add enough beef broth until meat is just covered. Stir, cover and simmer on low for 30 minutes.

Add the chile puree, onion, garlic, Mexican oregano, cumin, 1/2 tablespoon Kosher salt and 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper and mix well. Cover and simmer until the pork is very tender, about 1 hour more.

Serve with Spanish riceΒ and corn tortillas.


You thought the one with beef was good? Yeah, I did, too. I do. But the pork… oh my goodness, the pork.

I can’t explain it, but the difference was so astounding, we already decided I am not making this with beef again for a very, very long time. Steve’s best guess was that the pork fat melted into the sauce and made it more velvety, more savory, more “round.” Probably. Whatever it was, the pork made the dish so mind-blowingly wonderful, we nearly wept with joy. I’m barely exaggerating.

Ridiculously, blissfully good, hearty and filling, spicy in the right way, that “warm heat in your chest” kind of way, stores and reheats well. I don’t know what else to say other than what the heck are you waiting for? Go make this!


22 thoughts on “Puerco en Chile Colorado

  1. “…Steve's best guess was that the pork fat melted into the sauce and made it more velvety, more savory, more “round.” – tell me he's not a foodie! Love him.

    And p.s. there's the cumin again. I think it's possibly my favorite spice.


  2. Melissa,
    For some time now, my wife and I. have been trying out -cautiously I might add- some of your featured recipes. Puerco con Chile Colorado being one of our favorites.
    Thanks for sharing!!!


  3. Hi Melissa,
    We're featuring this very dish for our Cinco de Mayo gathering later today.
    Truly a winner!!! Can't emphasize that enough!
    (Being transplants from Southern California to CT we rather enjoy dishes such as this, thanks for sharing)


  4. As a slight variation, I rubbed the pork in chili and smoked it several hours with hickory ntil tender. Then combined the pork and chili sauce and simmered. Served with fresh made tortillas and poblano coleslaw as a taco.


  5. Just stopped by to say thank you. I've made this a few times and I've just finished trimming up the better part of a pig (two shoulders plus some cushion) for enormous batch tomorrow. Your recipe calls for the perfect blend of chiles. I only wish I had time to make tortillas to go with it! Thanks again.


  6. Hey, I had your Spanish rice recipe from your old blog saved in my favourites for years and it was the bomb! I can’t find it on your new site though – the link in this recipe goes to the same broken link I have saved – could you repost it? Thanks so much for the delicious inspiration always!


    • Hey Alex. Thanks for bringing the bad link to my attention. I have now deleted the hyperlink in all my posts that mention Spanish rice. Unfortunately, when I transferred everything over, I decided to clean house and delete all the posts that I was not quite happy with for whatever reason; the Spanish rice was one of them. I simply couldn’t leave it as is because – and believe me, I do NOT understand why – it has not worked properly for me on my new stove for over three years now. It’s been one of the most upsetting and frustrating experiences of my cooking life. And I have still not found a recipe to replace it, one that I feel provides absolute consistency. Until I do, I will not post a new one.

      If you really want the old one, I will provide it for you in email. Just shoot me a message at alosha7777@gmail.com. Sorry, and thanks!


      • would it be ok if i emailed you for the old recipe ive tried others and they arnt as good.


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