by the handful

Nutritious culinary and healing recipes collected from the North American garden, orchard, forest, river and ocean

Turkey Pozole

I am always looking for interesting ways to bring that leftover turkey back to life. Pozole is a delicious soup that is probably unlike what you might typically make with Thanksgiving leftovers. The addition of several toppings contrasting in both flavor and texture really make pozole especially delicious. Pozole is made with different meats but most typically slow-cooked pork, which of course renders a delicious broth. Here, we are using already cooked turkey so the addition of chicken stock is necessary but it all comes together in the end.

Turkey Pozole 

1 lb light and dark leftover turkey meat

25 oz can hominy

olive or avocado oil

small onion

1 head of garlic


Mexican oregano

poblano pepper

4 cups chicken stock




cotija cheese

1-2 limes


8-12 corn tortillas

These first 2 steps (poblano & garlic) can be prepped a little ahead, but the rest of this recipe is fairly quick to prepare:

Place oven rack in mid-high position, and set broiler to high. Place poblano pepper on foil or a baking sheet and cook until charred, flipping once. Remove from oven and let cool.

Cut the top off the head of garlic just enough to expose each clove (see pic below). Drizzle a little olive oil on top, using your fingers to evenly spread it over the top of the cloves. Place the garlic on a baking sheet, cover with foil, set on rack in the middle of the oven and roast at 375 for 35 minutes.

Remove garlic from oven and let it cool for a few minutes before squeezing or picking the roasted cloves out with a fork and placing into a small bowl. Add 1/2 tsp each of salt and cumin and a tsp of oregano to the garlic. Next add 2 tbsps of olive oil and create a paste by mashing with the back of a fork.

Chop the turkey pieces roughly into cubes and stir to mix together with the garlic paste.

Mince the onion and add 1 tbsp of oil to a cooking pot or Dutch oven and bring to med-high heat. Add the onion and let cook until it just begins to brown, then reduce heat to medium. Meanwhile, remove stem from poblano and chop.

Add the seasoned turkey to the pot and stir together. Next, drain liquid from hominy and add to cooking pot.

Add 4 cups of chicken stock, 1 tsp salt, poblano and reduce heat to low. Cover and let cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and remove lid to allow the pozole to cool slightly while you prepare the toppings.

Turn on the broiler to high once again. Slice the tortillas into strips and toss in oil on a baking sheet. Add 1 tbsp of oil at a time until you have decent coverage. Cook, watching closely for a few minutes until they look crispy golden.

Thinly slice the radish, chop the limes into 4 slices, dice the tomato and avocado and arrange on a serving platter. Next break apart the cotija and add it to a small bowl.

Laddle up the bowls of pozole and add in the crispy tortillas. Allow your pozole eaters to dish up their own sides as they like because that’s how you eat pozole.


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