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This article is about Pozole, the soup. For the drink, see Pozol.
Type Soup
Place of origin Mexico
Main ingredients Hominy, meat (usually pork), chile peppers, seasonings
Cookbook: Pozole  Media: Pozole

Pozole (Nahuatl: pozolli About this sound po'solːi , var: pozolé, pozolli, or posole ),[1][2] which means "hominy", is a traditional soup or stew from Mexico, which once had ritual significance. It is made from hominy,[1] with meat (typically pork), and can be seasoned and garnished with chile peppers, cabbage, salsa and limes and/or lemons.[3]

Pozole was mentioned in Fray Bernardino de Sahagún's "General History of the Things of New Spain" c. 1500. After colonization by the Spaniards, the ingredients of pozole changed, but the staple maize remained.

It is a typical dish in various states such as Sinaloa, Michoacán, Guerrero, Zacatecas, Jalisco, Morelos, State of Mexico and Distrito Federal. Pozole is served in Mexican restaurants worldwide.

Ritual significance[edit]

This drawing from page 22 of the Codex f Magliabechiano depicts pozole.[4]

Since maize was a sacred plant for the Aztecs and other inhabitants of Mesoamerica, pozole was made to be consumed on special occasions. The conjunction of maize (usually whole hominy kernels) and meat in a single dish is of particular interest to scholars because the ancient Americans believed the gods made humans out of masa (cornmeal dough). According to research by the National Institute of Anthropology and History and the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, on these special occasions, the meat used in the pozole was human.[5] After the prisoners were killed by having their hearts torn out in a ritual sacrifice, the rest of the body was chopped and cooked with maize. The meal was shared among the whole community as an act of religious communion. After the Conquest, when cannibalism was banned, pork became the staple meat as it "tasted very similar", according to a Spanish priest.[5]

Pozole is frequently served as a celebratory dish throughout both New Mexico and Mexico, including quinceañeras, weddings, birthdays and New Year's celebrations.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Clark, Melissa (17 February 2010). "Save the Pig’s Head for Later". New York Times. Retrieved 13 May 2010. 
  2. ^ Campbell, Cathie. "Stir Crazy: It's not too late for nice, hot soup". Madera Tribune. Retrieved 15 May 2010. 
  3. ^ Duggan, Tara (27 December 2009). "Pozole: Streamlined and budget friendly". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 15 May 2010. 
  4. ^ Pozolli. (n.d.). Nahuatl dictionary. Retrieved 28 August 2012, from http://whp.uoregon.edu/dictionaries/nahuatl/index.lasso
  5. ^ a b "Los mexicanos prehispánicos comían pozole con carne humana – La Crónica de Hoy / Lunes 13 de Dic., 2010". Cronica.com.mx. Retrieved 13 December 2010. 


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