Chipotle Turkey Pozole

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Every Thanksgiving, after our grand roast turkey dinner, we fill up a huge stock pot with the turkey carcass and water, and make several quarts of turkey stock for soup. Usually turkey soup is a pretty standard affair, but if you are looking for a soup that might pack a little more punch, I recommend this pozole. It’s made with turkey stock, leftover turkey, a little tomato, lots of hominy, and seasoned with smokey chipotle chile peppers in adobo. I’ve written about pozole before. It’s hard to resist this soup, essentially “taco night” in a bowl (but not as messy!). Perfect for a crowd, which can be useful if your family is like mine—lots of siblings and friends who like to stick around because they know the food is good. Pozole is all about the toppings. Just set them out and let people add what they want to their soup.

Happy Thanksgiving!

P.S. Check out our other turkey leftover ideas!


Chipotle Turkey Pozole Recipe

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 12

You can prepare the toppings while the soup simmers to save prep time. This recipe serves a crowd, you can easily halve the amounts for a smaller batch.


  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup minced chipotles in adobo (to taste)
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 15-ounce can crushed or diced tomatoes
  • Salt
  • 4 to 5 cups leftover cooked turkey meat, shredded
  • 1 large (108 ounce, 6 lb 12 oz, 3 kg) can white hominy, rinsed and drained
  • 4 quarts of turkey stock or chicken stock
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 Tbsp dried oregano (Mexican if available)
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon


  • 1/2 head green cabbage, sliced thin
  • 3 avocados, diced
  • 1 bunch red radishes, sliced thin
  • 8 ounces Cotija cheese, crumbled
  • 1 large bunch cilantro, chopped (stems included)
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 4 limes, cut into wedges
  • A couple dozen tostada shells (can use tortilla chips or fried corn tortillas as well)


1 Heat olive oil on medium high heat in a large (12 quart) stockpot. Add the chopped onion and cook until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic. Add the minced chipotles in adobo (start with 1/4 cup and add more later to desired heat). Cook for another 3 minutes.

2 Add the tomatoes and cooked turkey meat to the pot, stirring to combine. Add the rinsed and drained hominy. Add the stock. Taste and add salt (at least a tablespoon if you are using unsalted stock) to taste. Add the bay leaves, oregano, ground cloves, and cinnamon. Add more water if the soup is too thick with hominy for your preference. Bring to a simmer. Taste and add more salt, herbs, or chipotle to taste. You may need more salt than you expect, if you are using homemade, unsalted stock. Simmer for 45 minutes.

3 Set the table with toppings arranged in separate serving dishes. Spoon out the soup into bowls. Let people add the toppings they want to the soup.

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Chipotle Turkey Pozole

Showing 4 of 11 Comments

  • Sherrill

    I made this after thanksgiving with a leftover ham and people said mmmmm after every bite and went back for seconda and thirds as well. I marinated the shredded ham in 5he adobe sauce while I was prepping the other ingredients. I now use this recipe whenever I want to please a crowd. It’s always a hit!

  • Tilla

    Love this recipe! We made it last night with frozen turkey stock we’d made from our Thanksgiving turkey. I used chicken breast instead of turkey meat – just sautéed it briefly in some of the chopped chipotle in adobo, then shredded it and put it in the soup. I also use fresh roma tomatoes instead of canned.

  • MaryAlecia

    Thanks for the awesome recipe! I don’t eat pork, which seems to be the traditional meat this is made with. Left over turkey, look out, you’ve got a new lease on life with this one! PS: I use a whole cinnamon stick instead of ground!

  • Shirin Escobedo

    I celebrated Thanksgiving with friends in Israel this year. That went fabulous and I used one of your turkey recipes.

    Day two of turkey leftovers:POZOLE CON PAVO

    This recipe turned out amazing!! I had some close friends over for this after the big turkey day and pretty much everyone went back for seconds (and thirds)!! It is that good!!

    Thanks for the inspiration.

  • Carrie

    The turkey enchiladas from this site are already a staple after Thanksgiving here – this is going to be a new addition I think. I made a gigantic bird this year and ended up with massive amounts of stock, so after our obligatory turkey/veg/rice soup this will be an excellent changeup. I know I should freeze the stock and save it for later but I just can’t help myself. I have a serious love for hominy and don’t find an excuse to cook with it much.

    PS: Like a previous poster, I’m also a big fan of your pate brisee pie crust recipe. I used it for my pumpkin and pecan pies and also for my leftover turkey pot pie. Can’t beat it.

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