Authentic Sancocho Recipe

Authentic Sancocho Recipe
By The Cooking World, Editorial Staff
November 17, 2023

World Central Kitchen Sancocho Recipe

Welcome to another delightful culinary adventure! Today, in our series of We Cook Books, we are thrilled to bring an authentic Sancocho Recipe from The World Central Kitchen Cookbook.

This classic Latin American stew is a beloved staple, renowned for its hearty and comforting qualities. A symphony of flavors, Sancocho brings together tender meats, robust vegetables, and a rich, aromatic broth.

Each ingredient weaves a story of tradition and home cooking, making it a perfect dish for family gatherings or a comforting meal to enjoy at home. Discover this timeless recipe with us, a culinary gem that celebrates the simplicity and richness of flavors in every spoonful.

20 minutes
1 hour 20 minutes


48 g (¼ cup) extra-virgin olive oil
1 large sweet onion, such as Maui or Vidalis. roughly chopped
4 scallions, cut into 0.6 cm (¼-inch) pieces
3 medium garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained, or 6 plum tomatoes, blanched, peeled, and diced
7 g (1 tablespoon) achiote powder or sweet paprika
2 green or half-ripe (closer to yellow) plantains, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 pounds yuca, peeled and cut into 2.5 cm (1-inch) pieces
2 ears corn, shucked and cut into thirds
4 bone-in, skinless chicken thighs
450 g (1 pound) boneless pork shoulder, cut into 3 cm (1½-inch) chunks
2 cups chopped fresh cilantro (including stems) or culantro, plus more for garnish
22 g (1½ tablespoons) kosher salt, plus more to taste
4 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 2.5 cm (1-inch) pieces
Cooked white rice, for serving
2 avocados, sliced
2 limes, quartered

Special Equipment

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  1. In a large Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and scallions and cook until softened and golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes, stirring regularly so they don't burn. Add the garlic and cook until softened and fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook until the tomatoes have broken down, the liquid is reduced, and they are beginning to stick to the bottom of the pot, 8 to 10 minutes.
  2. Stir in the achiote and cook for 1 to 2 minutes to combine. Add the plantains, yuca, corn, chicken, pork, 1 cup of the cilantro, and the salt. Add enough water to cover and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook, uncovered, until the meat is tender and cooked through, about 30 minutes.
  3. With a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken to a plate. Check the pork and if it's tender, add it to the chicken. Otherwise, leave it in while you cook the potatoes. Add the potatoes to the pot and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, when the chicken is cool enough to handle, pull the meat from the bones. Chop the meat into small pieces or shred it with your fingers.
  5. Return the meat to the pot and stir in the remaining 1 cup cilantro. Cook for 3 minutes more, giving it a good stir so everything blends together. Taste and add salt if needed.
  6. Serve the stew hot with the rice, avocado, cilantro, limes, and hot sauce.
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