How To Make Chorizo Mexicano

Learn how to make chorizo Mexicano at home with this authentic recipe. Our easy guide includes a video to show you how easy is the process so you can enjoy Mexican chorizo whenever you want!

Mexican chorizo piled on a white plate.

What Is Mexican Chorizo?

Mexican chorizo ​​is a popular and tasty sausage prepared with pork, chilies, spices, and vinegar. Sometimes is also prepared with other types of meats such as beef, chicken, or turkey.

Chorizo has an intense smoky flavor, with hints of hearty spices, and a slightly sour, and mildly spicy taste (depending on the chilies used). It also has a distinct and wonderful fragrance.

Despite its name, Mexican chorizo is different from Spanish chorizo which is a cured meat that can be eaten sliced without cooking, while Mexican pork sausage needs to be cooked before consumption.

Chorizo Mexicano is widely used to prepare many recipes in Mexican cuisine, such as huevos con chorizo, below you’ll find a selection of recipes to use this flavorful sausage.

Homemade Mexican chorizo on a rectangle white plate seen from above.

Being a fresh product (think of Italian sausages), is difficult to find it in other countries, but making chorizo at home is really easy and if you like Mexican cuisine, you should definitely give a try to this homemade recipe.

To prepare this chorizo recipe, few ingredients are needed, perhaps the most difficult to find are chili peppers, but they are now easily available online through Amazon or Mexican food stores.

Ingredients Needed

  • GROUND MEAT: You can use the meat you prefer, the most common is pork but without a doubt, this recipe can be prepared with beef, chicken, or turkey. Normally a cut with fat is used, but if you want to save on calories you can also use only lean cuts.
  • PORK BELLY: If you want, you can ask your butcher to grind it or you can also grind it yourself using a food processor or a knife. Personally, I like to add it finely chopped because it gives a better texture to the sausage. You can also replace pork belly with bacon, pancetta, or half a cup of pork lard.
Minced pork and pork belly displayed on a supermarket package.

CHILIES: The Mexican chilies that are traditionally used are: pasilla, guajillo, chile de árbol and ancho chili. In some regions, other types of chilies are also used, like morita, mulato, mirasol, etc.

Mexican dried chilies to make chorizo labeled with names and placed on a kitchen countertop.

SPICES: Garlic, pepper, whole cloves, bay leaves, oregano, thyme, marjoram, cumin, paprika powder, ginger, and cinnamon.

You can adjust the amounts to your liking or leave out any spice you don’t have or like. This mix of spices will result in an amazing, aromatic, chorizo seasoning.

VINEGAR: Vinegar gives a special and particular touch to Mexican chorizo, in addition to helping to preserve the meat for longer. You can use white vinegar or apple cider vinegar.

How To Make Chorizo Mexicano

Clean the chilies and discard the stem, seeds, and veins. Place them in a bowl and cover them with boiling water. Let them soak for 10 minutes or until they will be nicely soft.

A collage with two photos of cleaning and soaking Mexican chilies to make chorizo Mexicano.

Remove the chilies from the water with a slotted spoon and place them in a blender along with all the spices, salt, and vinegar.

Blend for 2 or 3 minutes at high until you will have a paste.

Place ground pork meat and pork belly in a bowl, make sure you use a glass bowl as a plastic container will stain with the chorizo seasoning.

Ground pork meat in a glass bowl ready to make chorizo.

Add the chili paste and mix perfectly with a spoon for 3 or 4 minutes. You can also do it with your hands, but in that case, I recommend wearing gloves to avoid staining and irritation.

Combined ground pork meat with chile and spices sauce in a bowl.

To know if the chorizo ​​is seasoned to your taste you can take a small amount and lightly fry it in a pan then taste it. If you think it need more seasoning just add more spices.

Place chorizo meat on a strainer and put the strainer over a bowl. Cover with cling film and allow to rest overnight.

Chorizo meat placed on a strainer over a bowl.

This step allows the mixture to deep infuse with all flavors and also helps to discard the extra juices.

Next day, discard the juices the meat has released and proceed to prepare the sausages:

  • Place a piece of cling film on a working surface, and add 2 or 3 tablespoons of the meat mixture in the center.
  • Wrap them into a small cylinder, like a sausage, twisting the ends to secure them well.
  • You can also distribute the mixture in zip-lock bags in small portions.
A collage with four photos showing how to wrap chorizo into sausages.

Chorizo Mexicano is now ready to be cooked or to be stored as suggested below.

Homemade chorizo Mexicano piled on a plate.

How To Cook

Now that you know how to make chorizo recipe, let’s see how to quickly cook it to make tacos or quesadillas:

  • Heat a little bit of oil in a pan or skillet over medium heat.
  • Add chorizo and crumble it with the back of a spoon.
  • Cook for 8 minutes stirring constantly so the meat won’t burn.
  • You will notice chorizo is cooked when it changes its color to a darker hue and the meat starts to crisp, like when you cook ground beef.
Fried chorizo on an iron-cast skillet.

Recipe Notes

  • It is not necessary to use all four types of chilies for the seasoning, you can use only one or two if you want.
  • You can completely skip the chile de arbol peppers as those add more heat.
  • Allow the meat mixture to rest on a strainer as you need that extra moisture to be discarded.
  • Add more garlic, pepper, or any of the spices used in this recipe. Adjust the tasting to your personal preferences!

How To Serve

Now that you know how to make chorizo, is time to check up on those amazing recipes that use this flavorful Mexican sausage.

A chorizo taco made with corn tortilla dipped in the chorizo grease.

How To Store

Once you have finished with all the meat mixture, place the homemade chorizo sausages in the refrigerator where they will last up to a week.

Or you can also freeze it for up to 3 months and then thaw and cook it whenever you want.

FAQ

Can homemade chorizo be eaten raw?

No. Contrary to Spanish chorizo, chorizo Mexicano ​​must be cooked before consumption.

Can be stored outside the fridge?

No. This recipe is not made to store chorizo in the traditional way (hanging at room temperature). We strongly recommend storing it in the fridge or freezer.

How do I know if chorizo is cooked?

Think of ground beef, the meat should be slightly crisp and feel firm when you press it between two fingers.

Watch The Video

Mexican chorizo piled on a plate

How To Make Chorizo Mexicano

author Maricruz
10 casings
Learn how to make chorizo at home with a few ingredients and with our simple and easy step-by-step recipe and VIDEO!
prep 20 minutes
resting time 12 hours
total 12 hours 20 minutes

Ingredients 

  • 1 ¼ lb ground pork meat
  • 5 oz pork belly (roughly minced)
  • 2 guajillo chilies
  • 1 ancho chili
  • 1 pasilla chilies
  • 2 chile de árbol (optional)
  • ½ cup vinegar (white or cider)
  • 2 Tbsp paprika (hot or sweet)
  • 5 garlic cloves (peeled)
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 ½ Tbsp oregano
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp marjoram
  • ½ tsp thyme
  • 2 whole cloves
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ginger
  • 1 Tbsp salt (or more, to taste)

Instructions
 

  • Clean the chilies discarding the seeds and the stem and place them in a bowl.
  • Cover with hot water and let them soak for 10 minutes.
  • Drain the chilies and place them in a blender along with salt and spices.
  • Add the vinegar. Blend for 3-4 minutes on high or until you achieve a paste.
  • Place ground meat and pork belly into a large bowl and add the chili paste.
  • Mix well for 3 or 4 minutes with a spoon or with your hands (use gloves) until you'll have a bright, red mixture.
  • Taste chorizo seasonings by frying a teaspoon of the mixture on a frying pan. If you think it needs more salt or spices, add them accordingly.
  • Cover the bowl with cling film and allow it to rest overnight.

Prepare the chorizos (the next day)

  • Add 2 or 3 tablespoons of the meat mixture to the center of a rectangle of cling film.
  • Wrap them into a small cylinder, like a sausage, twisting the ends to secure them well (check the video).
  • Cook it right away or store it in the fridge for one week or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Notes

  • It is not necessary to use all four types of chilies for the seasoning, you can use only one or two if you want.
  • You can completely skip the chile de arbol peppers as those add more heat.
  • Allow the meat mixture to rest on a strainer as you need that extra moisture to be discarded.
  • Add more garlic, pepper, or any of the spices used in this recipe. Adjust the tasting to your personal preferences!
Nutrition Information
Calories: 240kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 51mg | Sodium: 737mg | Potassium: 266mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 814IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 31mg | Iron: 1mg
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Recipe Rating




17 Comments

  1. This looks great! Quick question… have you tried loading the chorizo mix into sausage skins.

    Thanks

  2. 5 stars
    This homemade chorizo recipe is fantastic. It’s not as hard as I thought it would be and I can control the level of spice.

  3. 5 stars
    I had no idea it was so easy to make your own chorizo right at home. It comes out so flavorful and perfect for all dishes that include chorizo.

  4. 5 stars
    This is such a great post on how to make chorizo. I’ve always wondered but never wanted to attempt it until now. This tutorial will help so much!

  5. 5 stars
    I really appreciate your easy-to-follow directions and video. I am looking forward to making this chorizo. Much easier than I thought.

  6. 5 stars
    This is fantastic! I love chorizo, and I cook with it all the time. I’ve never thought of making my own before.

  7. 5 stars
    I’m so excited to make this! My family and I were just discussing what seasonings are used to make chorizo, so I’m definitely trying this out at home ASAP!`