Asado De Puerco: The Traditional Mexican Pork Stew Recipe

Asado De Puerco: The Traditional Mexican Pork Stew Recipe

Asado De Puerco dates back to colonial times and remains a staple in Northern Mexican cuisine. Influenced by Spanish settlers, this dish brings together indigenous ingredients and European cooking techniques. Regional variations have emerged, but the core concept of marinated pork simmered in a rich, spicy sauce has stayed constant.

Key Ingredients and Flavors

Traditional Asado De Puerco features specific ingredients and bold flavors. The primary components include pork shoulder or pork butt, dried chilies (ancho, guajillo, and pasilla), tomatoes, garlic, and spices like cumin and oregano. Each ingredient builds layers of flavors, resulting in a complex and savory stew.

  • Pork Shoulder: Provides tender, succulent meat after slow cooking.
  • Dried Chilies: Impart smoky, spicy notes.
  • Tomatoes: Add acidity and balance to the sauce.
  • Garlic: Enhances the overall taste with its aromatic quality.
  • Spices: Cumin and oregano bring depth and a hint of earthiness.

Combining these elements ensures an authentic and hearty Mexican pork stew that excites the palate.

How to Make Asado De Puerco

Step-by-Step Guide

To make Asado De Puerco, assemble all ingredients and prepare them as described.

  1. Preparation: Cube 2 lbs of pork shoulder, ensuring even pieces. Remove seeds from 4 dried guajillo chilies and soak them in hot water for 20 minutes. Peel 4 cloves of garlic, chop 2 tomatoes, and measure out 1 teaspoon each of cumin, oregano, and salt.
  2. Blend Sauce: Combine soaked chilies, garlic, tomatoes, cumin, oregano, and salt in a blender. Mix until smooth. If the blend is too thick, add some soaked chili water to achieve a sauce-like consistency.
  3. Marinate Pork: Pour the blended sauce over the cubed pork. Ensure pork is well-coated. Let it marinate for at least 30 minutes, preferably 2 hours for deeper flavor.
  4. Cook Pork: Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add marinated pork and cook until browned on all sides.
  5. Simmer Stew: Add 2 cups of water to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Cover and let it simmer for 1.5 to 2 hours. Stir occasionally, ensuring pork becomes tender and sauce thickens.
  6. Adjust Seasoning: Taste the stew and adjust salt and spices if needed, considering personal preference.
  1. Selecting Pork: Choose pork shoulder for its fat content, ensuring tender and juicy meat.
  2. Hydrating Chilies: Use warm water to hydrate chilies efficiently, enhancing their flavor.
  3. Blending Consistency: Blend sauce ingredients thoroughly, avoiding chunkiness for a smooth texture.
  4. Marination Time: Marinate pork longer for richer flavors, ideally refrigerate overnight.
  5. Cooking Heat: Brown pork evenly at medium heat, developing flavorful caramelization.
  6. Simmering Duration: Let the stew simmer slowly, ensuring meat tenderness and sauce thickness.
  7. Consistent Stirring: Stir occasionally during simmering to prevent sticking and ensure even cooking.

Serving and Pairing Ideas

Best Side Dishes for Asado De Puerco

Corn tortillas, rice, and beans make excellent sides for Asado De Puerco. Corn tortillas can be used to scoop the stew, enhancing the traditional dining experience. Mexican rice, flavored with tomatoes and spices, complements the rich, saucy pork. Refried beans, known for their creamy texture, provide a perfect balance. Additionally, a fresh pico de gallo, with diced tomatoes, onions, cilantro, and lime juice, adds a refreshing contrast. Any of these side dishes elevate the depth of flavors in the stew.

Pair Asado De Puerco with traditional Mexican drinks for the best experience. A cold cerveza (beer) like Corona or Modelo enhances the savory notes of the pork. For a non-alcoholic option, agua fresca, especially flavors like horchata (cinnamon rice milk) or tamarind, offers a sweet and cooling balance. For a more festive occasion, consider serving a glass of tequila or mezcal to complement the bold, smoky flavors of the stew. Each drink option enhances the authentic taste of the meal.

Health and Nutrition Aspects

Nutritional Content

Asado De Puerco offers a rich profile of nutrients essential for a balanced diet. A single serving provides a significant amount of protein, crucial for muscle growth and repair. Each 100g portion of pork contains approximately 27g of protein and 0g of carbohydrates. The stew also includes vegetables like tomatoes, onions, and peppers, offering vitamins A and C and a variety of antioxidants. These vitamins support immune function and skin health. The use of spices such as cumin, oregano, and chili powder not only enhances flavor but may also have anti-inflammatory properties, as suggested by research in the Journal of Ethnic Foods.

Dietary Considerations

When considering dietary restrictions, Asado De Puerco is versatile. For those monitoring their sodium intake, adjusting the amount of added salt or opting for low-sodium broth can make the dish more heart-friendly. Gluten-sensitive individuals can enjoy the stew, provided they ensure all ingredient labels confirm gluten-free status. Additionally, the dish can be modified for lower fat content by choosing leaner cuts of pork or trimming excess fat before cooking. Nutritional adjustments make Asado De Puerco accessible to a wider range of dietary needs, maintaining flavor while promoting health.


Asado De Puerco isn’t just a meal; it’s a celebration of culture and history. By mastering this traditional Mexican pork stew, you’ll bring a piece of Mexico’s rich culinary heritage into your kitchen. Whether you’re enjoying it with classic sides or pairing it with traditional drinks, Asado De Puerco promises a flavorful and nourishing experience. Embrace the opportunity to experiment with ingredients and techniques to make this dish your own while catering to your dietary needs. Dive into the world of Asado De Puerco and savor every bite of this timeless Mexican treasure.

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