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Pork and Squash Stew

Pork and Squash Stew Recipe

Servings 4 servings
Author Brandon Matzek


  • 3 pounds boneless pork shoulder excess fat trimmed
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chile powder*
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon oregano, preferably Mexican
  • 1 delicata squash, seeds removed, cut into 1/2 inch-thick slices
  • 1 pound peeled and cubed squash, I used red kuri here
  • 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar, plus more to taste
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 cup lime juice (from 2 – 3 limes)

Roasted and salted pepitas, for serving

Cilantro leaves, for serving


  1. Cut pork shoulder into 1 1/2 to 2-inch cubes. Season generously with kosher salt and black pepper. Warm oil in a large cast-iron pot over medium-high heat.. Brown pork in batches, making sure you don't crowd the pan. Browning just 2 sides is sufficient, and transfer to a plate when finished. This should take 8 to 10 minutes per batch.
  2. Add onion and garlic to the hot oil with a pinch of salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and fragrant (4 to 5 minutes). Stir in chile powder, cumin, coriander and red pepper flakes, and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the water, oregano, 2 teaspoons salt, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and browned pork. Bring the mixture to a boil, then take off the heat and transfer the contents to a slow cooker. Cook on low for 4 hours. Stir in the squash and red wine vinegar, and continue cooking until both the pork and the squash are tender (about 2 hours longer). Season to taste with additional salt and red wine vinegar.
  3. While the stew is cooking, add red onion, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt and lime juice to a medium bowl, stirring to combine. Let sit for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cover and store in the refrigerator until ready to use.

To serve, ladle soup into a bowl, then top with pickled onions, pepitas and cilantro leaves.

Recipe Notes

* I used 1 tablespoon of ground New Mexican chile and 1 tablespoon ground ancho chile here, but use whatever you've got on hand.