Your Guide to Chorizo + How to Enjoy It (4 Chorizo Recipes Included)

What is chorizo made out of?

Usually ground or roughly chopped pork. 

Highly seasoned, typically spicy.

High fat content.

Often sold wrapped in a casing, like a sausage, or as a ground meat.

What does chorizo taste like?

It’s on the spicy side, but still considered a bearable spice by most (not “melt your face off” type of spice, typically a kick of heat). The spice comes from hot pepper seasonings. Mexican chorizo is typically seasoned with vinegar and chile peppers. Spanish chorizo contains garlic and paprika, which is why it usually has a deeper red color, although both types air on the side of a rich red color.

Spanish and Mexican chorizo?

Spanish chorizo is produced as a dried meat and sold as a cured sausage in a casing, like salami. Sometimes they are smoked and often spicy but occasionally sweet. Like most cured meats, refrigeration is suggested but it’s definitely the better option for a picnic as it can withstand non-refrigerated temps for a longer time than raw meats. It will have a longer shelf life regardless.

Mexican chorizo is the ground meat style sausage that is fresh and uncooked. You’ll find it loose or in a casing and you do not want to be as flexible with pre-cooked temperatures here as you may be with Spanish chorizo. Just like any uncooked meat, keep it refrigerated as much as possible until you’re ready to prepare it. Treat it just like any other fresh sausage, cased or ground meat.

How to cook chorizo?

Depending on whether your recipe calls for Spanish or Mexican chorizo. Mexican must typically be removed from its casing (or packaging) and treated like any ground meat. You can break it up in a pan with your spatula if you’re sauteing or maybe pack it together as some sort of patty. Many brands sell it pre-cased as a sausage and you simply need to cook through, either by stove-top, oven, or maybe the grill. Spanish chorizo is typically sliced (versus ground up), but kept in its original casing.

Easy chorizo recipes?

Chorizo is great in many breakfast recipes and as a taco filling, or on its own with your favorite, well balanced sides, like vegetables or a starch. Here are a few recipes that caught our attention. Give them a try! What do you think?

Kale and White Bean Soup


1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 small onion, chopped

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

2 ounces cured Spanish chorizo, casing removed if needed, thinly sliced

1 small bunch Tuscan kale, center ribs and stems removed, leaves coarsely chopped

1 14.5-oz can cannellini (white kidney) beans, drained

4 cups low-sodium chicken broth

Kosher salt, fresh ground pepper

1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

Lemon wedges (for serving)

Sauteed Potatoes with Chorizo


1 tablespoon vegetable oil

10 ounces Mexican pork chorizo, casings removed 1 small onion, diced

1 pound red skinned new potatoes, cut into small (1/4-inch) dice, and boiled

Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper

Chorizo Breakfast Hash


1 lb baby red potatoes 

2 Tbsp cooking oil 

1/2 lb Mexican chorizo 

1 yellow onion 

1 green bell pepper 

Pinch of salt and pepper 

1/2 tsp chili powder 

3 green onions, sliced 

4 large eggs, fried (optional) 

4 Tbsp sour cream (optional) 

4 Tbsp salsa 

Easy Chorizo Street Tacos


1 chorizo sausage link, casing removed and meat crumbled

2 tablespoons chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

4 corn tortillas

2 tablespoons chopped onion, or to taste

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, or to taste (optional)

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