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close up overhead shot of cooked pork with chopped zucchinis in a red tomato sauce

Pork and Calabacitas Stew in a Chipotle Tomato Sauce Recipe

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  • Author: Mirna Pena
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 Hour (including roasting)
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Mexican


Also known as Caldillo de Puerco con Calabacitas is so flavorful! With just a hint of that smoky chipotle pepper in tomato sauce this makes for a great weekday dinner.


  • 2 pounds pork shoulder or pork loin – cut into small cubes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 2 cloves of garlic – minced
  • ½ of a small onion – chopped
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 2 bay leaves

For the Sauce:

  • ¼ small onion piece
  • 2 cloves of garlic – minced
  • 2 Mexican calabacitas or small regular zucchinis
  • 5 small roma tomatoes
  • 2 chipotle peppers from a can
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ teaspoon salt


Roasting the tomatoes:

  1. Roast your tomatoes by using one of 2 roasting methods. First method is placing them under the broiler on high, turning the tomatoes over after about 5 minutes. Broil until slightly charred. Second method is over a stove charing over the fire. Do this to all 5 tomatoes.

For the sauce:

  1. To a blender you’re going to add your roasted tomatoes, 1/4 of a small onion, 2 cloves of garlic, 2 Chipotle peppers, salt, and half of a cup of water.
  2. Blend well and set it aside. 

For the pork stew:

  1. Cube your pork into bite-size pieces or into 1 inch cubes and remove any excess fat.
  2. Add ¼ cup of water to a pan and toss in your cubed pork. 
  3. To that add a teaspoon of salt and cracked black pepper and two cloves of minced garlic.
  4. Give that a good mix and then cover with a lid and let it simmer until the pork is fully cooked, moving around occasionally.
  5. While the meat cooks, go ahead and prepare the rest of the vegetables.
  6. Chop two medium sized calabacitas (or zucchinis) into bite size pieces and set aside.
  7. After about 15 minutes of cooking the meat, uncover and let the juices evaporate.
  8. Once the juices have evaporated add your chopped onion, oregano and bay leaves.
  9. Cook for about 3-5 minutes
  10. Add the tomato sauce to the pan with your meat.
  11. Cover and cook for about 10 minutes.
  12. After about 10 minutes, add the calabacitas cubes, cover, and cook for another 10 minutes.
  13. Once the calabacitas are tender, taste and add salt as needed. 
  14. Turn off the heat and enjoy.
  15. Goes great with some corn tortillas, rice, and refried beans!