Easy Fresh Mexican Chorizo Recipe

Fresh chorizo is the perfect sausage for tacos, chilies, enchiladas, nachos, and much more.

Photographs: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt

This recipe makes a pound and a half of bulk fresh Mexican chorizo-style sausage to be used as a base ingredient for tacos, chilies, enchiladas, nachos, and many other Mexican preparations.

Recipe Facts

Active: 15 mins
Total: 8 hrs
Makes: 1 1/2 pounds

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  • 1 1/2 pounds pork shoulder, cut into 1-inch cubes (see note)
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon ancho chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground achiote (optional, see note)
  • 3 medium cloves garlic, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried Mexicano oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander seed
  • Pinch ground cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons red wine or distilled white vinegar


  1. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and toss until homogenous. Let rest for at least 4 hours and up to overnight. When ready to grind, grind through a chilled meat grinder fitted with a 1/4-inch plate. Alternatively, working in 1/4-pound batches, pulse in a food processor until finely chopped. Knead chopped meat by hand in a large bowl, or with the paddle attachment in the stand mixer until slightly tacky. Cook as desired. Chorizo can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Special equipment

Meat grinder or food processor (see note)


You can make the homemade chorizo with store-bought ground pork if you don't have a meat grinder or food processor. To make with store-bought ground pork, combine pork with chorizo seasonings as directed in step 1 and mix well until tacky. Let rest at least 4 hours and up to 3 days before cooking as desired.The achiote gives the meat a deep red color, but it is totally optional.