Hatch Green Chili Colorado Style features roasted pork shoulder and plenty of warming spices. This chili is comfort food at its best and one of our favorite Hatch green chili recipes. An award winning recipe.
Every August when chiles are roasting in our markets, I make a couple of large batches of Green Chili to pack away in freezer containers to keep us warm until Spring.
A nod to our neighbors to the South, no surprise that the dish originated in New Mexico.
Traditional New Mexico Hatch Green Chili is a simple sauce or soup with seasonings and roasted Hatch Green Chile peppers. Heading North, it transforms into a thicker soup or stew with the addition of pork.
Which is the only way I’ve ever made it… for over 30 years.
Why All The Fuss Over New Mexico Hatch Chiles?
Of course you can roast and use Anaheim or Big Jim Chiles to make a pot of Green Chile Stew. But if you can get your hands on Chile Peppers from the Hatch Valley, they’re meatier, they’re larger and they’re superior in flavor.
A great balance of heat and sweetness. New Mexico terroir, the long hot days and cool nights, the climate is perfect for producing excellent peppers for your Southwestern recipes.
I would compare the Hatch Valley and Chile Peppers to Napa Valley and wine.
There’s really not a variety of pepper called Hatch Chile. These famous peppers are of various varieties and grown in the Hatch Valley of New Mexico. They are wildly popular here in the West.
Each Fall, we celebrate the arrival of Chile peppers from the Hatch Valley. Parking lot and roadside stands fire up their chile roasting drums and the aromas of New Mexico fill the air.
We evangelize and we obsess. We talk constantly about them and we add Hatch chile peppers to almost everything. We clear out our freezers to make room for as many packages of roasted chile peppers as we can possibly squeeze in.
A Winter stash is a cache to cherish.
New Mexico Chiles – Red or Green?
Most New Mexico chile peppers are picked while they’re green to be used in salsas, sauces, enchiladas and so many other dishes.
But many chiles are left to ripen on the plant. Once they’re picked they turn red. They too can be roasted and used in your favorite Southwestern recipes.
Most red chile peppers are dried and strung into ristras or dried and made into chile powders.
A Stash Of Hatch Chile Is A Beautiful Thing
I always purchase a large amount of roasted chile. When I get home, divide them into individual packages, eight per package and then seal and freeze them after using my beloved vacuum food sealer machine.
Popped into the freezer they keep for months and retain their flavor beautifully. To use, just thaw, cut off the tops, remove seeds and most of the charred skin.
I like to leave a few small chunks of that smoky skin for extra flavor.
Don’t need to use 8 chiles at a time? Just put the 8-pack of chile in the microwave for 1 minute. After 1 minute, pull out the amount of chiles that you need and put the rest back in the freezer.
TIP: When cleaning roasted Hatch Chile Peppers, don’t run them under water to remove the charred skin.
Doing so will wash away most of that smoky flavor from the roasting process. Simply remove the burnt skin with your hands.
Where to Buy Hatch Chile Peppers
If you simply can’t find Hatch Chiles in your area, you can always order them delivered to your doorstep. And they’re already roasted! Yes please! During harvest season, which starts in late August, you can also order fresh chiles.
Chili vs. Chile:
Please note that this green chili recipe uses both Chile Powder and Chili Seasoning. Chile Powder with an “e” is a single ground chile powder.
Chili (with an “i”) Seasoning is a blend of seasonings that routinely consists of cumin, chile powder, Mexican Oregano, garlic, etc., used to season Chili soup.
I urge you to always buy quality Chili Seasoning. For the single blend of Chile Powder, I used New Mexico Chimayo Red Chile powder. Ancho would also work for this. If you use Chipotle Chile Powder, you’ll get a smokier flavor.
Chile with an “e” refers to a chile pepper. Chili with an “i” refers to a stew.
Back in 1979 I had my first introduction to this incredible Southwestern treat when a coworker, petite, blond and Polish brought a crock pot full to an office pot luck.
I hounded her for at least a year for her recipe but she would never give it to me. All I knew was that it was full of pork and green chiles. Keep in mind this was before computers and the wealth of resource we have at our fingertips.
With all that said, this recipe has developed into my own, with countless tweaks since 1979. And has turned into an award winning Hatch Green Chili Recipe. This post contains affiliate links for your convenience.
Method To Make Hatch Green Chili Colorado Style
- I recommend using a pork shoulder roast or pork BUTT. More fat = tender and moist. If you use a pork tenderloin or pork loin roast, the meat will be dryer.
- Start by roasting a three to four-pound pork shoulder roast in the oven, 350 degrees for 3 hours. Simply seasoned with salt and pepper, or you can season with pork rub, a sprinkling of chile powder, you choose.
- When the roast is cool enough to handle I remove the fat, shred the meat, and place it into my large Dutch oven.
- I chop the tops off fifteen roasted Hatch Chile Peppers, remove some of the blistered skin and chop. Most of the seeds come out when you chop the top off. If you want to take the time to clean the peppers by removing the veins and all of the seeds, you’ll have to split them open and scrape. I don’t do that, unless they’re too hot. The heat is in the veins and seeds of the pepper. DO NOT rinse the chiles under water to clean. You rinse away that roasted flavor.
- From here I add chicken broth and a can of (or fresh) chopped tomatoes and my lineup of spices. Chimayo Chili Powder is important in my recipe. Or use a good quality red chile powder purchased from a reputable spice shop. I also use Chili Powder in my recipe. Chili powder is a combination of dried chilis with other spices added in. It’s what you use to make Beef and Bean Chili Soup.
- Mexican Oregano is important in this recipe. But what’s the difference between Mexican Oregano and regular Oregano? Mexican has a more peppery flavor and it a bit sweeter. Greek is more savory and Italian is milder. Again, a good quality spice shop will have Mexican Oregano. If you can’t find it, use Greek or Italian to taste.
- I let it simmer on low for at least an hour, and usually 2 – 3 hours.
- Simply serve the green chili with warm flour tortillas for dipping or scooping.
- Side note: Chile with an “e” refers to the vegetable, the chile pepper itself. Chili with an “i” refers to a stew or soup.
I entered my green chili recipe in the South Metro Denver Realtor Association Green Chili contest for nearly 6 years, and it always placed at the top.
How to Make Hatch Green Chili Colorado Style
I hope you give my Hatch Green Chili recipe a try, and If you do, please take the time to come back and give this recipe a rating. It is very valuable to me for future recipe development.
And leave a comment about your experience with the recipe.
Looking for more Southwestern Specialties using Chile Peppers: You won’t want to miss out on this lineup:
More Recipes Using Chile Peppers
Hatch Green Chili with Pork, a Colorado Style Green Chili Recipe.
- 1 tablespoon bacon drippings
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 pound pork shoulder roast Pork BUTT, bone in
- 1 onion chopped
- 3 cloves garlic peeled and minced
- 1 quart chicken broth or more. Depending on how much meat came off the roast.
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 tablespoons coriander dried, ground
- 1 teaspoon cumin ground
- 1 teaspoon hot Chimayo Chile Powder or good quality red chile powder
- 1 teaspoon of your favorite chili powder
- 1 1/2 tablespoons Mexican Oregano
- 14.5 ounces can chopped tomato undrained
- 15 chile peppers roasted, skinned and chopped. 1 1/2 – 2 cups. Depending on the heat level you'd like. Use Hatch, Pueblo or Poblano
- 1 teaspoon sweet smoked paprika
- juice of 1/2 lime
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- Simply season the pork roast with salt and pepper. Place in a large Dutch oven, cover and roast in a 350 degree oven until done. About 3 hours. Remove the roast from the pan and let cool and then shred the meat with two forks. Set aside.
Heat the oil and the bacon drippings in the same Dutch oven. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 10 minutes . Add the garlic and cook until fragrant. About 1 minute.
Add the shredded pork, canned tomatoes, chicken broth, salt, coriander, cumin, oregano, chile powders and chiles. Bring to a boil and then simmer on low for at least 1 hour. Up to 2 hours is good.
- In a bowl combine water and cornstarch and stir until combined. Towards the end, I like to add a little of this to thicken the soup.
- Add a squeeze of lime to each bowl of chili. From here, taste and adjust the seasonings to your taste. Serve with warm flour tortillas.
Pork roasts vary. Some may be fattier. In the end, after cooked, you should have around 2 pounds of shredded meat – give or take a half pound.
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Pin Hatch Green Chili Colorado Recipe For Later:
Now that you’ve got a supply of this Award Winning Hatch Green Chili, you must make a Breakfast Burrito.
A perfect combination of scrambled eggs, potato and bacon smothered with Hatch Green Chili. Take a look at this:
Or a lighter Southwestern Breakfast of Fried Egg and Hatch Green Chili: