Smoked Chile Verde

October 10, 2019

This Smoked Chile Verde is incredibly simple to make and off the charts delicious. Eat it straight off the bone, or serve it in tacos, burritos, on nachos and so much more. Save this recipe for later, it’s a keeper.

smoked chile verde pork in a wooden bowl with cilantro, tortillas, and diced red onions

What is Chile Verde?

In it’s most basic state, chile verde is a stew of tender pork or beef in a savory green sauce. The sauce is made from tomatillos and green chile peppers. The heat of the chile verde can be adjusted to be mild to medium to hot, and the meat can be prepared in a number of ways.

If you search for chile verde, you’ll often see it spelled chile or chili. The first part of the name “chili” indicates that this is a stew-type soup made with meat and beans. “Verde” is Spanish for green, meaning chili verde is basically a green chili. In chili (or chile!) verde, we often omit the beans from the stew, and the green sauce and tender meat take center stage. When spelled “chile,” you often get the same recipe, the name is just indicating that it is a green sauce made with chiles.

Recipes for chile verde vary greatly by location with Mexican varieties differing from recipes in the states (and each state in the West having their own preferences and ingredients). No matter where you go or what recipe you follow, you’ll know you’re likely to get a stew with a flavorful meat and some variation of tasty green chiles and sauces.

Pulled Pork Chile Verde

Today’s recipe for smoked chile verde is a pulled pork chile verde. The secret to making this delicious pulled pork chile verde is in braising the pulled pork (smoked from a pork shoulder) in a tasty chile verde sauce while it’s on the smoker. This meat can be eaten in traditional stew form right off the grill, or you can use the meat in just about any way possible.

This pulled pork chile verde is incredible in tacos, burritos, enchiladas, nachos, and sandwiches. I like to eat mine with a squeeze of lime, a side tortilla, fresh chopped red onions, sour cream, and cilantro. There’s no judgement here on how you choose to enjoy this smoked chile verde. The sky really is the limit.

Chile Verde Sauce

This smoked chile verde pulled pork uses a combination of three sauces as a braising liquid to braise the pork after it’s had its initial smoke. These three Here’s what you’ll need to make this sauce:

  • 28-oz can of Green Chile Enchilada Sauce
  • 4-oz can of Fire Roasted Diced Green Chiles (choose your heat level)
  • 12-oz can of Salsa Verde Green Tomatillo Sauce (I used Trader Joe’s brand)

How to Make Smoked Chile Verde

With only 5 ingredients, this smoked chile verde is simple to make and requires little more than seasoning your meat, watching your smoker temp, and giving it a little bit of time.

Begin by seasoning the pork shoulder with my Signature Beef Seasoning. You can purchase this seasoning online from Patio Provisions, or you can use a simple seasoning of equal parts salt, pepper, and garlic powder (I like to mix these in a small bowl before sprinkling on the meat).

With your smoker preheated to 225 degrees, smoke the pork for 8 hours straight on the grill grates. You’re aiming for the internal temp of the meat to reach 160-165 degrees F. Make sure you have a reliable meat thermometer on hand so you get an accurate reading.

Once your meat is between 160-165 degrees F, remove it from the smoker and place in a disposable aluminum pan. Dump the three cans of chile verde sauce goodness right over the meat. Using a large sheet of heavy duty aluminum foil, tightly cover the pan. You want to create an airtight seal, allowing the meat to braise inside the foil.

Return the meat to the smoker for an additional 2-3 hours. Remove the meat when the internal temp reads 195-203 degrees F. Allow the meat to rest for 30 minutes to 1 hour before shredding and serving. Taste the pork and add additional salt, as needed.

More Mexican-Inspired BBQ Recipes

I love some good Tex-mex or Mexican-inspired BBQ. Sometimes you just can’t beat the spicy, sweet flavors of these recipes. Check out more BBQ recipes from Hey Grill Hey when you’re wanting a kick of great flavor.

Chorizo Breakfast Burrito
Elote (Mexican Street Corn)
Grilled Shrimp Tacos with Pineapple Salsa

Smoked Chile Verde Recipe

Watch the video below, and let’s make something delicious! I’m all about helping you make better BBQ, feed the people you love, and become a BBQ hero Check out more Hey Grill Hey behind the scenes action on InstagramFacebook, and YouTube!

Smoked Chile Verde

This Smoked Chile Verde is incredibly simple to make and off the charts delicious. Eat it straight off the bone, or serve it in tacos, burritos, on nachos and so much more. This is one pulled pork that you'll keep coming back to again and again.
5 from 9 votes



Braising Liquid

  • 1 28-oz can green chile enchilada sauce (choose mild or spicy based on your flavor preferences)
  • 1 4-oz can fire roasted diced green chiles (choose mild or spicy based on your flavor preferences)
  • 1 12-oz can salsa verde salsa


  • Preheat your smoker to 225 degrees F. For a bold smoke flavor, go with mesquite wood, for a milder flavor, I recommend using alder or hickory.
  • Using a paper towel, wipe down your pork shoulder to remove any excess liquid from the packaging or bone fragments from the meat.
  • Season on all sides with my Signature Beef Seasoning or equal amounts of salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
  • Place your seasoned pork shoulder directly on the grill grates. Close the lid, and smoke for 8 hours or until the internal temperature of your meat reaches 160-165 degrees F.
  • Remove the pork from the smoker and place in disposable aluminum pan. Pour all ingredients for the braising liquid over the pork. Cover tightly with a large sheet of heavy duty aluminum foil and seal all edges.
  • Increase the heat on your smoker to 350 degrees F.
  • Place the pork shoulder back on the smoker for 2-3 hours. Cook until the internal temperature of the pork reaches 195-203 degrees F.
  • Remove the pork from the smoker and allow to rest for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Remove the aluminum foil, and shred the pork straight into the liquid, removing the bone and any gristle or excess fat. Taste and season with additional salt, as needed. This meat is versatile and can be eaten like a stew, served in burritos, tacos, on nachos however you like.
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20 thoughts on “Smoked Chile Verde

  1. In the recipe it says to smoke it for the first 8 hours in a disposable pan but then in the video it looked like you placed it directly on the grate. I am literally making this as I type this reply and went with my gut and am smoking it without the pan for the first stage. Just hoping I didn’t miss a critical step.

    1. I saw the same so I put it on a rack in the pan. Figured it would keep some juice and let the whole thing absorb smoke. ????

  2. It was kismet. We were in Flagstaff, Az. a couple of days ago and I had a pork chili verde omlette (the first time) for dinner at MartAnne’s Burrito Factory. It was amazing. I remembered this posting from “The BBQ Beat” email and had to try it. Also, our local grocery had pork butt on sale for $1.29 per pound. The only change I made was the rub. I used olive oil and “Jeff’s Texas Rub”. ( This was unquestionably the BEST pulled pork I have ever made! My 12 year old boy said he has never had a better street taco. Thanks Susie!

  3. Great recipe! I made it just as in the video – pork on the smoker for first portion of time, then in a disposable pan with sauces for remainder. The only thing I changed was to cover the pork with a small piece of parchment under the foil because I have a thing about foil directly on food. My husband, originally from Albuquerque, tasted it and said, “Holy (something I won’t say online), that’s fantastic!” Well done, Susie, thanks for our new go to pulled pork.

  4. Rubbed with the equal parts pepper, salt and garlic powder. My sister brought me some fresh roasted and then frozen Hatch Chili’s when she visited from Phoenix this summer. Substituted the Hatch Chili’s in the recipe along with the enchilada sauce and Salsa Verde. Instead of putting the wrapped and sealed pan back in the smoker, I used the oven and cooked it up to 195 degrees. It was a pleasure to pull and the flavor was awesome!

  5. Made this last weekend and this was Amazing. The next day I simmered the meat and sauce in a Wok to reheat it and it was twice as good.

    Day 3 of leftovers I added the pork to a 3 bean stew and it was gone it minutes.

    Day 4 my Wife says as I give some to a friend “Don’t give anymore away, it’s too good to give it all away”

    Looks like this one will be made again soon.

  6. i have done this recipe with pork, without change, came out wonderful.

    I then tried it with pork cushion, small adjustments for the difference in fat, came out wonderful.

    Now i tried it with chuck roast. Since it is thinner, it took less time. I went to 195, since this is the temp for pulled chuck roast. it came out wonderful.

    i think you should do a video with chuck roast or tri tip with this same recipe.


  7. Flew down to Phoenix from the frozen tundra for my brother’s 70th birthday party. He tasked my brother in law
    and I with the main entree for the open house party. We chose this Chili Verde Pulled Pork and it was a hit. Made it the day before and then warmed it in a crock pot. Passed on the link for the recipe at least 4 times since the party.

  8. Tried this on Sunday and it turned out fabulous! I started the shoulder on the Big Green Egg then transferred it to a foil pan and finished the process in the oven. (The foil pan was too large for my BGE.) I used a homemade green enchilada sauce instead of canned, just to ensure there was no potential gluten or tree nut exposure.

    My picky grandchildren have devoured the pork and decided this is how I should do pork shoulder from now on. That’s a win and I gladly accept their recommendation!

    Thanks Susie!

  9. This is a new favorite, Susie! Not sure any of our HGH Smoked Chile Verde from this week is actually gonna make it to the freezer as originally planned!!

  10. Can you do this in a crock pot? I don’t have a smoker and it’s too hot, don’t want to use oven….Thanks!

  11. Tried this out for the first time…
    AND WOW! The flavor, braise and tenderness of this was incredible. Just became a new staple in our home! Great recipe!

  12. entered this recipe into my work chili cookoff. didn’t receive one vote. apparently no one classified it as a chili. perhaps that was my mistake but oddly enough I had none left to take home. whatever this chili is god

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