Every Winter we get together with a group of friends to make a big batch of chorizo. It’s loads of fun and not that much work with the many hands on deck. You can never have too much chorizo so when we run out here are my favourite Spanish Chorizo Substitutes…
What is Spanish Chorizo?
Spanish Chorizo is a cured pork sausage flavoured with smoked paprika. It can be mild or spicy and the texture varies from fresh and soft similar to a hot dog to semi dried or even dried like a salami. The the photo above shows our dried home made chorizo.
It’s designed to be sliced and cooked before eating.
What’s the difference between Spanish & Mexican Chorizo?
Mexican Chorizo is fresh ground (minced) pork seasoned with chilli peppers. It can come in a casing but is usually designed to be removed from the skin and crumbled before cooking.
The Best Spanish Chorizo Substitutes
1. Other Sausage
In most cases any sausage can be substituted for the chorizo. If your sausages are too soft to slice, poach them first by simmering in water for 10-15 minutes or until cooked through. Then slice and brown as per the recipe. For an even closer match add a little Spanish smoked paprika. And if you want heat, add some fresh or dried chilli peppers.
2. Mexican Chorizo
You won’t be able to slice it, however the flavours will still be great. Just brown the crumbled meat in a pan. For an even closer match add a little Spanish smoked paprika.
If you want to replicate a more dried style chorizo, as in the photo above, salami is your best bet. Again add paprika for extra smoke.
4. Ground (Minced) Pork + Smoked Paprika
Essentially a DIY option. Just brown some minced (ground) pork with a little oil and some smoked paprika. For 500g (1lb) meat, use 3-4 teaspoons paprika. Then use as per the recipe. The texture will be different but you’ll still have the lovely smoky porky flavours.
Feel free to add fresh or dried chilli peppers if you like it hot!
5. Chickpeas + Smoked Paprika
If you’re looking for a vegetarian or pork-free alternative, I like to substitute drained canned or home cooked chickpeas for the bulk of the chorizo. And then either add a little smoked paprika to the sauce if there’s a sauce. Or if you’re cooking in oil just add to the oil to make a smoky flavoured oil.
Some grilled red peppers can add an extra dimension as well.
Favourite Spanish Chorizo Recipes
- Fast Roast Chorizo with Hot Feta & Veg
- Chorizo with White Beans
- Eggplant & Chorizo Supper
- Roast Broccoli & Chorizo
- Hummus & Chorizo Recipe
- Chorizo with Chickpeas
Delicious Spanish Chorizo Flavour Pairings
- Broccoli & Chorizo
- Kale & Chorizo
- Peppers & Chorizo
- Chicken & Chorizo
- Chickpeas & Chorizo
- Seafood & Chorizo
More Ingredient Substitutes
- The Ultimate Guide to Vegetable Substitutes
- Collard Greens
- Miso Paste
- Oyster Sauce
Also see see the Simple Ingredients Substitutes Index.
Have fun in the kitchen!
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