If you’ve visited Colorado, you might have seen green chile on almost every menu in some form or another. Green chile stew trades tomatoes for tomatillos and beef for shredded pork, all slow-simmered and loaded with freshly roasted green chiles. These straightforward ingredients melt into one of the most satisfying, mouthwatering dishes that’s guaranteed to become a family favorite!
Green chile smothered burritos are the unofficial state food of Colorado, as if I needed one more sign that this is my place in the world. Promise me you’ll make this magical stew and smother a giant burrito – not drizzle, not spoon over, but completely smother. ← I would happily eat this every day of my life, for real.
Good pork green chile is a three-part process, and every step is majorly important:
Roast the chiles & tomatillos. We want that fiery charred flavor!
Sear pork with onion, garlic, & spices. Yes, it’s an extra step before you throw it in the slow cooker, but the caramelization across the surface is absolutely worth it – plus the onions soak up all those delicious browned meat bits on the bottom of the skillet.
Cook it all low & slow until the pork falls apart. Chiles, tomatillos, and pork get cozy in the slow cooker until the meat shreds and the broth thickens into a rich, creamy gravy.
(Shortcut: you can skip the most tedious part of prep, peeling the roasted chiles, if you don’t mind the charred chile skins; they add some extra texture that I personally don’t mind at all.)
What I’m saying is that you should absolutely, definitely make as much as you can fit in your slow cooker. It freezes beautifully, it’s so good on top of literally everything (eggs! biscuits! burgers! nachos! BURRITOS ♥), and it’s the perfect dish to welcome fall.
Photos & recipe updated from original March 2016 post.
- 2 lb. fresh green chiles
- 2 lb. tomatillos husked
- 2 lb. pork roast
- salt & pepper
- 1 large onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 T. cumin
- 1 t. oregano
- 2 cups beef broth
- salt to taste
- flour tortillas
Slice chiles in half lengthwise and remove stems, seeds, and veins. Place cut-side-down on a foil-covered baking sheet.
Roast chiles under the broiler for several minutes until the skin is blistered and slightly charred. Seal in a plastic bag to steam for 10-15 minutes, until skins are loosened.
Cut tomatillos in half, remove stem, and place cut-side-down on a foil-covered baking sheet.
Roast tomatillos under the broiler for 10-15 minutes, until skins are charred & slide off easily and insides are mostly liquid. Discard skins and pour tomatillos into a slow cooker.
Remove chile skins and roughly chop chiles, then add to slow cooker.
Cut the pork roast into 2" slices and season generously with salt & pepper on both sides.
Sear pork slices in a large skillet over high heat on both sides, then transfer to slow cooker.
Add onion and garlic to the skillet and cook until soft, scraping the browned bits on the bottom until they melt into the onions. Season with cumin & oregano and cook until fragrant, then add to slow cooker.
Add beef broth to the slow cooker and set on high for 6 hours.
After 6 hours, use a wooden spoon to shred the pork in the slow cooker, then cook for another 1-2 hours. The pork should be completely shredded and the stew slightly thickened.
Season with salt to taste and serve with warm flour tortillas for dipping!
Hatch green chiles are the traditional favorite, but I've also used anaheim & poblano when hatch aren't in season.
Try 1 lb. pinto beans instead of pork for a vegetarian stew.