new mexican red pork chili carne adovada

New Mexican red pork chili, or carne adovada, is slow food. It’s good food. Do it right and it’s great food.

Tons of chile and roasted onion flavour. Big, big tastes. And the best part? Use cheaper cuts of pork. Shoulder or country style ribs work well.

Expensive parts dry out. This is a braise. You wouldn’t make stew with beef tenderloin. Pork is no different.

I’m cheating a bit though. Adovada means marinated and that’s a step I skip. I do not believe in marinades.

I’ve read quite a bit on it and the consensus among the food scientists seems to that marination is a surface phenomenon. 

Salt penetrates. Everything else just sits there doing not a lot of anything. Except making a mess maybe. Taking up room in the fridge. Stinking it up.

There are three things that are key in this recipe.

Brown the meat well. Lots of flavour comes from browning meat. It’s called the Maillard reaction and it’s food magic.

Use pork shoulder or country style ribs. Not just because they make better stew. Because you can cook the New Mexican red pork chili longer. That gives the chile powder time to cook fully. To mellow. To reach it’s potential.

Last, fry the chile onion puree. This is huge. I learned it originally from Mark Miiller’s Coyote Cafe cookbook. I’ve seen Rick Bayless do it as well.

I don’t know why it works but it does. It just brings all the flavours together. It rounds out all those sharp chile flavours.

Do this every time you are making a sauce based on dried chilies or chile powder. Try it once. You will convert.

New Mexican red pork chili or carne avovado is all about big flavours. Unapologetically porky. Absolutely delicious.

New Mexican red pork chili or carne adovado brims with chile and pork flavour.
New Mexican red pork chili or carne adovado brims with chile and pork flavour.
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4.84 from 6 votes

new mexican red pork chili carne adovada

New Mexican pork red pork chili or carne adovada is absolutely loaded with pork and chili flavour. It’s even better the next day so it makes a great make ahead dinner party main course. Make sure you use a pure, mild chili powder (e.g. New Mexican Red). This is not a good place to use grocery store mystery chili powder!
Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 30 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 344kcal
Author romain | glebekitchen


  • 4 lbs pork stew – e.g. pork shoulder or riblets, cut into fairly large (one inch plus) chunks
  • 1 large white onion
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 3/4 cup New Mexican red chili powder
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp mexican oregano (optional)
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 3 Tbsp rendered pork lard or vegetable oil
  • salt to taste – start with one tsp and go from there


  • Pre-heat your oven to 350F.
  • Slice the onion into 3/4 inch slices.
  • Peel the garlic.
  • Place the onion and garlic in a dry comal or cast iron frying pan and cook until the garlic and onion brown. Watch the garlic closely.
  • Coarsely chop the onion and combine it with the chili powder, mexican oregano if using and 2 1/2 cups chicken stock in a blender. Puree completely. Set aside.
  • In a high sided pot large enough hold all the pork melt two Tbsp of lard or vegetable oil and brown the meat in batches. Brown it thoroughly. Take the time. It’s worth it.
  • Remove meat from the pan and add a third Tbsp of lard or oil. Transfer the chili mixture to the pan and fry, stirring constantly for 4-5 minutes. The mix will bump so don’t wear nice clothes when you make this.
  • When the oil starts to separate (or after 5 minutes) return the pork to the pot and add enough chicken stock to cover the pork – about another 1 1/2 cups. Stir thoroughly.
  • Add a tsp of salt and bring to a simmer on the stove.
  • Cover and place the preheated oven.
  • Start testing for tenderness after the first hour. It will likely take around 90 minutes but results vary. You are done when the pork is tender.
  • Adjust salt.
  • Serve with pinto beans, tortillas and garnishes of your choice.


Serving: 8servings | Calories: 344kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 93mg | Sodium: 506mg | Potassium: 1051mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 6596IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 113mg | Iron: 6mg

8 thoughts on “new mexican red pork chili carne adovada”

  1. Hi, just to clarify… The New Mexican chile powder is powdered New Mexican chiles, not ancho or pasilla chile powder? Or would you recommend using a blend of dried powdered chiles? If so, what proportions would you use?
    Many thanks, Alyssa

    • I use pure powdered New Mexican chilies. I stock ancho as well but I really do like the taste of the pure NM Red.

  2. Buy chili powder and other ingredients from a place in New Mexico. Make this recipe often and my New Hampshire relatives and friends are forever begging me to make more. They all say they have never had Mexican food this good. Cooked it in a big old cast iron Dutch oven that seems to make the Carne Adobada even better.
    Been making Chili Con Carne con frijoles using ground beef with this recipe. A chili cook-off winner!

    • Thanks for saying. I’ve slaughtered competition at a few chili cook-offs myself with this one and the chili Colorado recipe on the blog. Once you have the techniques down there’s not stopping you!

  3. 5 stars
    This was a fantastic recipe! I used boneless country style ribs and used my instant pot for 35 minutes. Perfect New Mexico style meal. This will be my go-to recipe from now on!

    • Thank you for saying. I’m so glad you liked it! I’ve never tried it in an Instant Pot so that’s great feedback.

  4. 5 stars
    This is a great recipe! Very authentic New Mexico red chili flavor. I used an instant pot and it was amazing. I cooked it in the instant pot for 30 min and next time would let it cook for 45 minute to increase the tenderness. Thanks for the great recipe!!


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