Is Hominy Gluten Free? (+ a yummy soup recipe)

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Green Chicken Posole (Green Soup)

I have been gluten free for a few years due to endometriosis and my little one was just diagnosed with Celiac Disease. Because of this I am always on the hunt for yummy and quick gluten-free dinner ideas. My husband and I were also raised eating posole and I wondered if I could make a healthful version of this childhood favorite that my kids would eat. I knew hominy was a relative of corn, but is hominy gluten free? Let’s take a closer look! 

What is Hominy?

Hominy

Hominy has a long history and has been a part of various Indigenous American diets for centuries. The process of creating hominy, known as nixtamalization, dates back to ancient Mesoamerican civilizations. The Aztecs and the Maya were processing hominy as early as 1500–1200 BCE! This traditional method of treating dried corn kernels with an alkaline solution was used to soften the corn and increase its nutritional value by making the nutrients more bioavailable … I’d love to know if they knew that’s what they were doing! 

The use of hominy has since spread beyond the Americas, becoming a staple in various cuisines around the world. It has been an important food source for many cultures, both historically and in current times.

Hominy can be found in different forms, including whole kernels (used in our “green soup” below), ground into masa, or further processed into grits. Just like corn, it comes in yellow and white variations. It is commonly used in various dishes in Latin American and Southern United States cuisines. We refer to hominy as “big corn” in our household.

Is Hominy Gluten Free?

YES! I was thrilled to know that hominy is generally considered gluten-free, as it is made from corn. However, you should always be cautious when purchasing processed hominy products, such as canned or packaged hominy. These products may be processed in facilities that also handle gluten-containing products or they may contain additives. To ensure that a specific hominy product is gluten-free, check the label for any gluten-containing ingredients. You can also look for gluten-free certification on the packaging. If you have specific gluten-related dietary concerns, it is always best to consult a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian for personalized guidance.

Is Hominy Nutritious?

Not only is hominy gluten free, but hominy is also a nutritious food that is often overlooked. Because it is primarily composed of corn, it provides essential nutrients such as carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Some of the nutritional benefits of hominy include:

  1. Carbohydrates: Hominy is a good source of carbohydrates, which are the body’s primary energy source.
  2. Fiber: Hominy contains a significant amount of dietary fiber, which can promote digestive health, help prevent constipation, and promote feelings of fullness.
  3. Vitamins: It contains various vitamins, including niacin (vitamin B3), which is essential for energy production, and folate (vitamin B9), which is crucial for cell growth and metabolism.
  4. Minerals: Hominy also provides essential minerals such as phosphorus and magnesium, which are necessary for bone health and various physiological processes in the body.

While hominy offers several nutritional benefits, it is always recommended to consume it as part of a balanced diet. Our soup recipe below provides a good balance of carbohydrates, protein and dietary fat – plus it is perfect to enjoy during the fall and winter months! And if you follow a gluten free diet like my daughter and I, you will be happy to know that hominy is gluten free!

Is Hominy Good for Picky Eaters?

Hominy

Hominy can be a good option for picky eaters. Its texture and flavor is different from regular corn, but it is consistent. Picky eaters love consistent tastes and textures! Some selective eaters may prefer the softer, chewier texture of hominy compared to other corn products. I also know that feeding our little ones can get tricky when they have a limited quantity of foods that they like. Hominy is great option because you can use it in so many ways and this can assist in food chaining. (Food chaining is a technique to help introduce new foods, flavors, and/or textures for selective eaters. Click the hyperlink to learn more)

You can explore different recipes, seasonings and cooking methods to find the most appealing way to prepare hominy for your kids!

Looking for more healthful recipes? Check out our Recipes page!

Recipe

Green Chicken Posole (Green Soup)

Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time8 hours
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Green Chicken Posole, Is Hominy Gluten Free?, Posole Verde de Pollo
Servings: 6

Equipment

  • Crock Pot
  • ladle

Ingredients

  • 1-1.5 lbs chicken (we use chicken breast, but you can use any chicken as long as it is deboned and skinned)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 30 oz hominy, rinsed and drained
  • 11-15 oz green sauce (I use a jar of HEB "That Green Sauce" and it is AMAZING! You can also use a can of green enchilada sauce or your favorite green salsa)
  • 2.5 tbsp chicken broth paste
  • 7 cups water
  • 4 limes (for serving)
  • shredded cabbage (for serving)
  • radishes, sliced (for serving)
  • tostadas (for serving)
  • sour cream (for serving)

Instructions

  • Place chicken in the bottom of your Crock Pot.
  • Chop the onion and add to the Crock Pot.
  • Add the rinsed and drained hominy to the Crock Pot.
  • Add your green sauce, chicken broth paste and water.
  • Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or high for 3-4 hours.
  • When done, add 4 limes to the entire Crock Pot of soup and top your bowl with desired cabbage and/or radishes. It is traditional to eat with tostadas covered in sour cream and salt if you desire.

About the Author

Dru Rosales

Dru Rosales, MS, RD, LD is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian. She specializes in children and adolescents with a focus on eating disorders, weight management, and sports nutrition. Dru received her Bachelor’s Degree in Kinesiology from the University of Southern California and her Master’s Degree in Nutritional Science from California State University, Los Angeles.

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