Copycat Recipes

Santiago’s Green Chili Recipe

A tangy twist on classic southwestern chili!

Elen Rustick By Updated August 24, 2023

Seared pork cuts are covered in a spicy and flavorful green chile sauce with tomatoes and spices. Top with fresh cilantro, shredded cheese, and sour cream. And serve with white rice, guacamole, and tortilla chips for the perfect Mexican night!

This Santiago’s green chili is the best way to make flavorful seared pork cuts, smothered in a spicy, fruity sauce. I assure you that every single bite of pork will disappear!

Plus, this stew recipe is real proof that you can make wonders in the kitchen with a few simple ingredients.

Make sure to read my tips and the best cuts to use to make the perfect green chili!

What is Santiago’s Green Chili?

This green chili recipe is a dish from the Santiago’s mexican restaurant chain of Denver in Colorado. Unlike traditional chili, the recipe contains a combination of green chilies, onions, garlic, tomatoes and various spices.

Best Cuts of Pork To Use For Green Chili

  • Pork shoulder or butt

  • Pork shoulder is the best cut for this recipe as the shoulder fat melts as it cooks and adds more flavor to the sauce.
  • Pork loin

  • Pork loin can also be used. But since it’s a leaner cut, it can get dry if cooked for a long time.
  • Boneless Pork Chops

  • These will work as well. But just like pork loin, the cut is lean (the leanest actually) so it tends to dry. Since this recipe cooks the pork in a liquid sauce, the risk of having dry meat is mitigated.

Santiago’s Green Chili Sauce Recipe

  • Prep Time20 min
  • Cook Time1 hour
  • Total Time1h20 min
  • Servings10
  • Yield10 cups

Level: Easy


For the pork and sauce

For garnish


How to Make It

Set a pot over medium heat and heat the vegetable oil. Add diced pork and stir the pork until it’s browned evenly. Transfer the pork meat to a bowl.

Deglaze the pot with ½ cup of chicken broth. Scrap the brown bits from the bottom of the pot.

In the same pot, add the diced onion until soft (3-4 minutes). Add the minced garlic cloves and sauté for 1-2 minutes.

Add the cooked pork to the pot and incorporate the green chili, diced tomatoes, and hot sauce. Stir well to combine.

Add the rest of the chicken broth and the spices (cumin, oregano, salt, and black pepper). Stir well to combine.

Turn the heat down to low and place the lid on the pot. Slow-cook the chili for an hour or until the pork is tender.

Serve hot with chopped cilantro, sour cream, and shredded cheese.

Top Tips

  • To thicken the sauce, you can add a roux to the sauce (roux = flour & butter mixture). To do so, mix equal parts of flour and butter, let’s say 1 tablespoon of each. Add it to the sauce 5 minutes before the end of the cooking time and stir. I personally prefer not to thicken the sauce as I enjoy a lighter, watery consistency, but this technique is excellent for creating a subtly creamy sauce.

  • Add canned jalapeños to spice things up. My husband enjoys hot and spicy dishes but not my children. The good compromise is to add 1 tablespoon of hot sauce, but canned jalapeños may be closer to the original recipe and more authentic in terms of spiciness.

  • I also like to marinate green chili for a minimum of two hours before serving. Then I reheat the dish over low heat on the stove for 5 minutes. This helps the vegetables and meat tenderize and develop more flavors.

What to Serve with Santiago’s Green Chili

  • For classical pairing, I suggest serving this dish with white rice, boiled potatoes, or beans recipes such as refried beans or this grandma browns baked beans recipe!

  • But since this recipe uses traditional Mexican ingredients, it goes with nearly any Mexican food like guacamole, enchiladas, or tacos, with tortilla chips, or in burritos.

  • I also like to eat it with garlic bread or cornbread.

Storage Instructions

Store this green chili in the refrigerator for up to five days. For long-term storage, keep this chili in the freezer for a maximum of three months.

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Nutrition Facts (per serving)
  • 476Calories
  • 29.8g Fat
  • 12.6g Carbs
  • 38.2gProtein
Show Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Amount per serving
Calories 476
% Daily Value*
Total Fat29.8g 38%
Saturated Fat12.8g 64%
Cholesterol146mg 49%
Sodium823mg 36%
Total Carbohydrate12.6g 5%
Dietary Fiber2g 7%
Total Sugars5.4g
Vitamin C6mcg 32%
Calcium58mg 4%
Iron4mg 20%
Potassium886mg 19%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.