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Chile Verde with Chicken

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Let’s cut to the chase—this Chile Verde with Chicken is outstanding.  I loved it, it’s going in my recipe hall of fame, and as far as I’m concerned, it won the gold medal.  Just wanted to get that out of the way first.

I love the color green.  And sometimes I just like to amass as many shades of green as I can in a dish.  These emerald green heirloom tomatoes inspired this chile.

And then these tomatillos, they’re such a pretty softer green, they give the chile a really nice tart tanginess.

The tomatoes and tomatillos get char-broiled for really great roasted flavor.  Just halve them and put them under the broiler for about 15 minutes until they get a little blackened.

Chile Verde is often made with pork, but I think the chicken, corn and white beans makes this a really delicious variation.

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Chile Verde with Chicken


  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts or about 3 cups of leftover chicken, shredded
  • about 5 tomatillos
  • 6 medium green tomatoes
  • 4 cloves garlic unpeeled
  • olive oil
  • 1 medium Spanish onion chopped
  • 1 large jalapeno pepper sliced, seeds and all
  • 1 poblano pepper chopped
  • 1 10- oz can green chile enchilada sauce
  • 1 7- oz bottle of Corona beer
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 ear of white corn kernels removed
  • 1 14- oz can of white beans drained and rinsed
  • 4 Tbsp masa harina dissolved in 1/4 cup water
  • 1 large handful fresh cilantro chopped
  • juice of 1 lime


  • Put the chicken breasts in a small saucepan and just cover with water. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, and let them simmer for a few minutes. Then turn off the heat, cover, and let the pan sit for 20 minutes.
  • Halve the tomatoes and tomatillos and place on a baking sheet. Add the unpeeled garlic, and put under the broiler for about 15 minutes, checking regularly, until they just begin to char.
  • Put the tomatoes and tomatillos in a food processor. Squeeze out the cloves of roasted garlic, and put them in too. Process until blended, and set aside
  • Cover the bottom of a large, heavy bottomed pot with olive oil. Saute the onion for about 10 minutes, then add the peppers and saute for another 10 minutes.
  • Add in the enchilada sauce, beer, water, cumin and salt. Bring up to a simmer and simmer for about 10 minutes.
  • Shred the cooked chicken with two forks, pulling the meat apart along the grain. Add to the chile, along with the corn and beans. Simmer for another 10 minutes.
  • Stir in the masa harina/water mixture into the chile. The chile will thicken. Add more masa harina mixed with water if it’s not as thick as you like it. Simmer for a few more minutes, then add the cilantro and lime.
  • Taste it to check the seasoning and then serve it up hot in bowls, with Masa Harina Biscuits, recipe below.


  • This chile was perfect, and I wouldn’t change a thing.  The flavors are bright and fresh, the chicken is tender, and the corn lends a little crispness to the stew.  The chile is quick cooking, so the peppers aren’t simmered into oblivion.  The last minute douse of cilantro and lime finishes it off so well.  I’m going to dub this the perfect summertime chile, partly because it’s so light fresh, but also because I think you need the fresh tomatoes and tomatillos to pull it off.  Love love love, hope you try it!
  • Oh, and don’t forget the biscuits, they are my absolute favorite for chilis of all kinds.  The delicate masa harina flour makes them almost creamy inside, they are really great.
  • Oh, and if I had some green chile powder, I might have used it, but I didn’t.  It’s rather hard to find, but if and when I do, I will try adding it.


Masa Harina Biscuits
oven to 425

1 1/4 cup cold buttermilk
1 Tbsp honey

  • Mix the buttermilk and honey and set aside.

2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup Masa Harina
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt

  • Put the dry ingredients in the bowl of the food processor and pulse to combine.

 12 Tbsp (1 and 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter cut in pieces

  • Pulse in the cold butter, about 10-15 pulses, to combine and create a coarse crumbly mixture.
  • Slowly add in the buttermilk, while pulsing, until the dough comes together.  You might not need all the buttermilk.
  • Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and bring the dough together, adding a little flour if it’s too wet. Pat into a 9 inch round and cut into biscuits.  I used a 2 3/4 inch round biscuit cutter.  You’ll get 6 to 8 biscuits.  I like them big!
  • Place them on parchment paper or a Silpat liner and bake at 425 for about 15 minutes.  They don’t get brown, so don’t overcook waiting for them to take on color.
  • Cool on a rack, or eat hot out of the oven.

Chile Verde with Chicken and Masa Harina Biscuits



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    Leave a Reply

  • Reply
    August 28, 2012 at 4:46 pm

    I came across tomatillos at the farmers’ market on Friday and instantly thought of trying this recipe. I managed to buy all of the fresh vegetables required at the market so had the freshest ingredients possible – which was fantastic.

    Both my husband and I loved this recipe, and found that it mellowed slightly when we enjoyed leftovers last night.

    Thank you very much for the recipe!

  • Reply
    July 30, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    look at all that green goodness! i would eat bowl after bowl of this–awesome, sue!

  • Reply
    Ellen B Cookery
    July 29, 2012 at 1:15 am

    I cannot wait to try this. It’s perfect for the summer!

  • Reply
    Bites from life with the barking lot
    July 29, 2012 at 12:56 am

    Ummm, this looks really good. Love to try soon and will try the biscuits probably sooner! Great idea with the masa.

  • Reply
    Lea Ann (Cooking on the Ranch)
    July 28, 2012 at 9:05 pm

    I just HAVE to try this soon. It looks beautiful. And with the addition of poblano, beer and tomatilla, which I’ve never put in my chicken chili verde, it sounds wonderful. I can only hope to find those tomatoes.

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      July 28, 2012 at 9:28 pm

      I’m going to hop over and check your recipe out, I’ve been adding beer to everything lately, must be the weather!
      If you can’t find the tomatoes you could leave them out and use more tomatillos. You could probably use yellow heirloom tomatoes, too, although I’d go easy on them, you don’t want to end up with a sickly color 😉

  • Reply
    Gerlinde in Dallas
    July 28, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    I often see tomatillos at the market, but I never know what to do with them. I had no idea they were tart. Your chili looks really intriguing; I may give it a try!

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      July 28, 2012 at 9:25 pm

      I hope you do Gerlinde. I’m always adding lemon and lime to so many things I cook, and these have that same kind of kick to them, I’m going to use them more often.