Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

Here’s a new to me soup that you might like, too. Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not. You might be familiar with Taco Soup or Sopa de Lima. They’re kind of relatives & share some of the same qualities and ingredients.

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

This soup has a rich, garlicky chili leaning broth, spiked with lime, tender chunks of pork, and surprise – carrots and potatoes. Ok, so I added the potatoes (and made a few other changeups) to this dish inspired by Chef Tia Harrison via Food & Wine! Those potatoes are delish in this. If you’d rather, omit the potatoes and serve this stew over rice for a more traditional take, but trust me, the potatoes are the way to go. They pick up so much flavor from that gorgeous broth.

About Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not:

I’m showing you two ways to make this soup-like stew. One’s a slowly braised version Traditional Recipe done on the stovetop or in the Instant Pot. The other is a Shortcut Recipe using leftover pork, and it can done on the stovetop or in the Instant Pot, too. Well, technically, that’s four versions, so don’t be scared about how long the printable recipe looks! It’s easy, but the recipe includes instructions for all.

Yucatan Pork is super simple, and it’s a bit surprising how flavorful it is – but not hot. It only has Ancho chiles, which are dried poblanos, and very mild. What they bring to the table is a rich color, taste, and complexity. You might pick up deep fruity raisiny and mild coffee flavors. With the chili flavors and a pinch of clove, lots of garlic and a good hit of lime, you’re going to be in for a taste sensation.

Garnishing the Stew:

A fun garnish of fried tortilla chips takes this over the top, but plain old heated tortillas aren’t out of place either. Either way, corn tortillas work best with the flavor of your Yucatan Stew.

  • To fry the strips, just cut tortillas into thin strips and heat up about a half an inch of oil in a pan. Heat to 350 degrees (a tortilla strip will bubble when dipped in) add the strips and stir around so they “tangle up” a little. Remove when golden and drain.
  • To prepare the tortillas just heat them in a pan or on your burner if you have a gas stove until slightly browned or charred on the edges, wrap in a clean towel to keep warm and serve.
Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

Let’s Talk about the Pork:

Before we get into the recipe for this stew, let’s talk about the pork. I call for either pork shoulder or pork rib trimmings. In the full Traditional Recipe, whether making in the Instant Pot or on the stove, you’ll be starting with the uncooked pork and in the Shortcut Recipes both in the IP or on the stove you use already cooked pork, ie., leftovers!

Pork Shoulder is a no brainer, easily available and cheap, and ideal for this recipe. For this quantity, it’s probably going to be boneless.

  • For the Traditional Recipe, boneless pork shoulder is a fabulous option and bonus for easy;  just cut into chunks and you’re ready to cook.
  • The Shortcut Recipe is a marvelous and super fun spin up for a different way to use already cooked pork if you have a quantity of leftover braised or smoked pork shoulder. Just drop in at the end and heat through.
  • The downside of the shoulder is that being boneless, your stew will be delish, but will have just slightly less of the unctuousness than if you’re starting with bones. That’s true with any recipe, but no worries. With everything else going on, it’s not something that you or anyone you serve it to will even notice!

Pork trimmings are something that you might not just have hanging around. I get that, but if you barbecue or make spareribs, you know just what I’m talking about! Unless you buy your ribs already trimmed and cut, it’s likely you have to trim them to get a St. Louis style rack of ribs. What’s left is a significant amount of scrappy pork pieces that include the rib tips and maybe a few odd ribs.

Most people I know are always looking for ways to deal with those scraps. Usually, they either cook them along with the ribs as a kind of cook’s snack, toss them in the freezer until they can figure out what to do with those trimmings, or *gasp* discard them. This stew is a fabulous way to spin them into something significant and different. Flip over to my post Competition Ribs, Smoker, Oven or Instant Pot if you want to read more.

  • For the longer Traditional Recipe version, cut those trimmings into as reasonable sized chunks as you can and use them. When cooked through until tender, you’ll need to sort through them and remove any cartilage and bones before proceeding with the recipe.
  • When making the shortcut version, you probably would have had to plan ahead and cook those trimmings along with your ribs. Then after they’re cooked, just sort and save for this soup.
  • The downside of using the pork trimmings is the availability; and yes, it’s more work! That pork, though cooked with the bones does add a little sumpin’ sumpin’ to this stew and makes a glorious broth.

You might want to note that if you’re using leftover cooked pork of any kind for the shortcut recipe, it’s dropped into the stew towards the end to just heat through. If your leftover pork has hardened over time in the fridge, drop it in a little earlier so it can soften and get all luscious again. Keep in mind that if your leftover pork shoulder is shredded, you stew will have that texture; think of it as kind of a Yucatan Brunswick Stew, and if it’s been smoked, your stew will have more of a barbecue flavor.

Competition Barbecue Spare Ribs, Oven, Instant Pot or Smoked

Trimming a Rack of Ribs; these trimmings and the very small ribs from the end went in my Feijoada

Making Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not:

I mentioned this soup is super simple, whether you are making the Traditional Recipe starting with uncooked pork or the Shortcut version using already cooked pork, and it is! I love that it’s chunky and there’s no fine dicing to worry about; it really comes together quickly and is ready for the actual cooking with any of the versions in no time at all.

As far as how much time to allow for after the ingredients are readied (including the chiles):

  • When you’re making the longer cooking Traditional Recipe on the stovetop, after all the ingredients are prepped and ready to go and the pork has been browned, it takes about 3 1/2 hours for the slow-simmered goodness on the stovetop and in the IP about an hour and 15 minutes.
  • With the Shortcut Recipe, you’ll spend a little extra time sauteing the onions and chili peppers, but once the rest of the ingredients are added, it’s going to be about 35 minutes on the stovetop and in the IP, allowing time for the pressure to build and release, about 25 minutes.

There are variations to each of the four methods, both in the ingredients, the amounts and the order in which they are used. You’ll want to pay close attention to the instructions.

Heads up:

  • In the Traditional Recipe, if you cook in the Instant Pot, you’ll use slightly less stock than if cooking on the stovetop. You won’t lose as much liquid in the Instant Pot as you will when the stew simmers on the stovetop so the amount in the IP version uses less to start with. If making the Shortcut Recipe, the amount of liquid is the same.
  • In the Shortcut Recipe, since the stew doesn’t simmer for very long, you’ll need to saute the onions and chile strips in a little oil to soften them before proceeding with the recipe, whether you use the Instant Pot or the stovetop method. They need a headstart to be fully softened by the time the recipe is done.

 

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

Saving Money on Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not:

This whole soup-like stew, even from scratch, is dirt cheap to make. It’s even less expensive when you use budget pork shoulder but is a great way to utilize the offcuts from the rib, cuts that might not reach their full potential otherwise.

Because so many of the items in this stew are basic and I’ve talked about them so many times (hello potatoes, carrots; buy them in larger bags and they’ll be less per pound, and as far as stock or broth, buy around holidays when they’re so often on sale) let’s talk about the Chiles. I’ve never seen them on sale at my grocery, but you’ll find them much cheaper at a Mexican or Latin American market.

If you don’t have easy access to a market, check a grocery near areas that have a Latino population. Even in the same chain of stores, you’ll likely find better prices; the price difference where I live is a little shocking between the store that’s .8 miles from me and the other, which is closer to a mile. If any dried chiles are in a flimsy bag, and they probably are, repackage them in something sturdier and they’ll keep for a good long time. Chilis are dried but they should have some flexibility to them, not be “crisp.”

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

Print

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or not has a rich, garlicky chili leaning broth, spiked with lime, tender chunks of pork, and surprise – carrots and potatoes.

  • Total Time: varies
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Soup
  • Cuisine: Mexican or Southwestern
Scale

Ingredients

Ingredients for Traditional Recipe::

  • 3 ancho chiles
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 to 2 pounds trimmed boneless pork shoulder, cut into 2-inch pieces or trimmings from ribs (unless making shortcut method, below)
  • 2 large white onions, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 cups pork or chicken stock (if using Instant Pot five cups)
  • 1 15 ounce can diced tomatoes and the juice
  • pinch of ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper or to taste
  • 1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1” chunks
  • 1 1/2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice (two to four limes)
  • additional lime and cilantro for garnish, optional
  • tortilla strips or tortillas for serving

Instructions

Traditional Recipe:

Prepare the ancho chiles. Add chiles to a hot skillet and toast until they begin to puff, turning as necessary to prevent burning. Remove from heat and let cool until they can be handled. Remove the stems and seeds and cut into 1/4 inch strips. Set aside.

Heat oil in a Dutch oven or in the Instant Pot and brown pork on all sides, working in batches if necessary. Add the onions, garlic, pork or chicken stock (six cups for the stovetop method, five for the Instant Pot), tomatoes and their juice. cloves, salt, pepper, and the reserved chile strips. Continue with the Traditional Stovetop Method or Traditional Instant Pot Method.

Traditional Stovetop Method:

If making on the stove, bring to a simmer. Cover partially with a lid and simmer until pork is tender about 3 hours. If using the pork trimmings, you’ll want to pull out the peices, remove any bones and or any other unsavory pieces and be certain no bones are remaning in the stew. Add the pork back in and proceed. If using the boneless pork shoulder, skip that process. Add carrots, potatoes and lime juice and continue to simmer until vegetables are tender, about 25 to 30 minutes longer. Serve with additional lime and cilantro as garnish, sprinkle with tortilla strips or serve with tortillas if desired.

Traditional Instant Pot Method:

Seal the Instant Pot and set to High Pressure, 25 minutes. When finished, allow to go to the Keep Warm function and after 20 minutes, release any remaining pressure. If using the pork trimmings, you’ll want to pull out the peices, remove any bones and or any other unsavory pieces and be certain no bones are remaning in the stew. Add the pork back in and proceed. Add the carrots, potatoes and lime juice, reseal and set at High Pressure for 8 minutes. Allow to go to Keep Warm function and release any remaining pressure after 10 minutes. Serve with additional lime and cilantro as garnish, sprinkle with tortilla strips or serve with tortillas if desired.

Shortcut Recipe:

Ingredients for Shortcut Recipe:

  • 3 ancho chiles
  • Reserved cooked rib trimmings or leftover cooked Pork Shoulder
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 large onions, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 5 cups total reserved pork drippings if you have them, defatted and/or pork or chicken stock to make five cups
  • 1 15 ounce can diced tomatoes and the juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper or to taste
  • pinch of ground cloves
  • 1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1″ sections
  • 1 1/2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • additional lime and cilantro for garnish, optional
  • tortilla strips or tortillas for serving

Prepare the ancho chiles. Add chiles to a hot skillet and toast until they begin to puff, turning as necessary to prevent burning. Remove from heat and let cool until they can be handled. Remove the stems and seeds and cut into 1/4 inch strips.

If using cooked pork rib trimmings, clean up the reserved, cooked pork by removing excess fat, bones, and cartledge. Cut into 1 1/2 to 2-inch chunks. Set aside. If using cooked shoulder, cut into 1 1/2 to 2 inch chunks, set aside. Continue with the Shortcut Stovetop or Shortcut Instant Pot Methods.

Shortcut Stovetop Method:

In large Dutch oven, add two tablespoons oil over medium high heat. Add onions and Ancho chili strips and saute, stirring as needed until onions have started to soften and are turning transclucent, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute until fragrant. Add the stock and/or the combined drippings and stock, along with tomatoes and their juices and bring to a simmer. Add salt to taste, pepper, and the pinch of clove. Add carrots, potatoes and lime juice. Return to a simmer and simmer until vegetables are tender 25 to 30 minutes. Turn heat off, add the pork and allow to heat through. Serve with additional lime and cilantro as garnish, sprinkle with tortilla strips or serve with tortillas if desired.

Shortcut Instant Pot Method:

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in Instant Pot using the Saute function set at Medium. Add onions and Ancho chili strips and saute, stirring as needed until onions have started to soften and are turning transclucent, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute until fragrant. Add all remaining ingredients except for the reserved pork, garnishes and tortillas to the Instant Pot. Seal and set to High Pressure, 8 minutes. Quick release when finished and turn off Instant Pot. Add the pork and allow let heat through. Serve with additional lime and cilantro as garnish, sprinkle with tortilla strips or serve with tortillas if desired.

Note: if the pork has hardened in the refrigerator it may need a little additional time to soften as it heats through. If necessary, simmer for several minutes.

Keywords: canned tomatoes, Carrots, Chicken Stock, Food & Wine, Hot Peppers, Instant Pot, Lime, Mexican or Southwestern, Pork, Pork Ribs, Pork Shoulder Recipe, Potatoes, ribs, Tomatoes, tortillas, Soup

I’m sharing this recipe at Fiesta Friday #227 cohosted this week by Lizet @ Chipa by the Dozen and Jhuls @ The Not So Creative Cook.

If you like Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not, you might also like:

Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or not has a rich, garlicky chili leaning broth, spiked with lime, tender chunks of pork, and surprise - carrots and potatoes. It's not hot just full of flavor from the mild anchos. #MexicanPorkStew #YucatanPorkStew

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19 thoughts on “Yucatan Pork Stew Instant Pot or Not

  1. Mura Kievman

    So sorry I didn’t see your version before I started cooking the Food & Wine version! I wondered about just de-seeding and slicing the Ancho chiles without preparing them beforehand … because the last time I used Ancho chiles I had to do so! Well, we see how it comes out … but I think in the future I will use YOUR recipe!

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Mura, I’m sure it was wonderful! I know because forgot to link up to FW and they were one of the main inspirations for my post (rectified) although I kind of took things and ran with and made a number of changes. This is truly one of my favorite meals!

      • Mura Kievman

        You’re right, it was delicious. And I did see the closeness to the F&W recipe when I saw yours. I also enjoyed the frijoles I made from scratch for the first time … But your recommended procedure for dealing with the ancho chiles is much easier than what I did, I know!

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Hi Stacy, I’m so excited you made it and so sweet of you to stop back with some feedback! I love the idea of a sturdy green in this = kale might work, too. I will be adding that next time I make it. And of course you can never go wrong with a little more spice.

  2. We’d love this Mollie!! You are such an adventurer with out of the mainstream ingredients! I think I’d make it without the potatoes and put it over rice, like you mentioned. Is it really summer there now?? Have summer plans? hugs from here!

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Oh yeah, we had three days of spring and then hot as hades! And in MN where it’s usually so comfortable in the summer. Well I just can’t be pleased this year, I guess!

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Oh, yeah, it could take a good bit of spiciness and still be excellent. Maybe even better! Sorry for the late repy, internet issues!

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