How To Make Chorizo

How to Make Chorizo: A Spicy Sausage Delight

Chorizo is a flavorful and spicy sausage that originates from Spain and Portugal. It has since spread to various cuisines around the world due to its unique taste. Chorizo can be enjoyed in a variety of ways, from simply grilling or frying it to cooking it in stews and soups. Making your own chorizo at home is a rewarding experience that allows you to personalize the ingredients and flavor to your liking. In this article, we will guide you through the process of making chorizo from scratch.

– 2 pounds of ground pork shoulder
– 1/2 pound of ground pork fat
– 2 tablespoons of sweet paprika
– 1 tablespoon of smoked paprika
– 1 tablespoon of chili powder
– 1 tablespoon of kosher salt
– 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
– 1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin
– 1/2 teaspoon of dried oregano
– 1/4 teaspoon of ground black pepper
– 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper (optional)
– 1/4 cup of red wine vinegar
– Natural hog casings (for casing the sausages)

Step 1: Prepare the casing
If you decide to use natural hog casings, soak them in warm water for about 30 minutes to soften them up. Rinse them thoroughly before using.

Step 2: Mix the ingredients
In a large mixing bowl, combine the ground pork shoulder, ground pork fat, sweet paprika, smoked paprika, chili powder, kosher salt, garlic powder, ground cumin, dried oregano, ground black pepper, and cayenne pepper. Mix everything together thoroughly using your hands or a spoon.

Step 3: Add the vinegar
Pour the red wine vinegar into the mixture and mix it in until well incorporated. The vinegar not only adds a tangy flavor but also helps to preserve the sausages.

Step 4: Stuff the sausages
Attach a sausage stuffer attachment to a meat grinder or use a standalone sausage stuffer. Load the chorizo mixture into the stuffer and fill the casings, leaving enough space for twisting into individual sausages. Twist the sausages at regular intervals to separate them.

Step 5: Let it rest
Allow the chorizo sausages to rest in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours. This resting period allows the flavors to meld together and gives a chance for the vinegar to further marinate the sausages.

Step 6: Cooking options
Chorizo can be cooked in various ways. It can be grilled, fried, baked, or even added to stews and soups. When cooking, be sure to cook the chorizo thoroughly to an internal temperature of 160°F (71°C) to ensure it is safe to eat.


Q: Can I use different types of meat for chorizo?
A: Yes, you can try using chicken, turkey, or even beef as a substitute for pork. However, keep in mind that the taste and texture of the chorizo may vary.

Q: Can I adjust the spiciness of the chorizo?
A: Absolutely! Chorizo is known for its spicy kick, but you can reduce or increase the amount of chili powder and cayenne pepper according to your preference.

Q: How long can I store homemade chorizo?
A: If properly stored in airtight packaging or vacuum-sealed, homemade chorizo can last in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 weeks. You can also freeze it for up to 3 months.

Q: Are there any alternative casings I can use?
A: Yes, you can use collagen casings or even make smaller chorizo patties instead of stuffing them into casings.

Q: Can I use pre-ground spices instead of whole spices?
A: Yes, you can use pre-ground spices if you don’t have whole spices or if you prefer convenience. However, the flavors may not be as intense as freshly ground spices.

In conclusion, making your own chorizo at home allows you to enjoy a customized version of this spicy sausage. With just a few ingredients and some patience, you can create a delightful and flavorful chorizo that can be savored in a variety of dishes. So, don your chef’s hat and embark on this culinary adventure to create a homemade chorizo that will surely impress your taste buds and guests alike.

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