How to Cook Pork Chorizo + 5 Recipes Using the Spicy Sausage

Chorizo sausage is unlike any other kind of meat. The consistency is more textured than pork sausage or cured sausage, and it has spices that add a little bit of fire added to the mix. It originates from Mexico and is typically red in color due in large part to the red pepper it's made with. When cooking this spicy sausage, it's important to think about the ingredients you're pairing chorizo with. If your supermarket offers fresh, spicy chorizo, go with that fresh chorizo option rather than the over-processed shelf-bound packages of chorizo.

How To Cook Pork Chorizo

Cook chorizo in a similar manner as ground beef or turkey: in a skillet over the stovetop on medium-high heat with a bit of olive oil in the pan. If you cook chorizo over low heat, you'll let the flavors of the chili pepper develop with time, but if you're in a rush, medium heat is just fine. High heat will burn the chorizo without fully cooking it, so try to stick to the medium temperature.

You'll be able to see how the consistency is different and be able to smell the flavors as you brown it. While cooking chorizo, break it apart like you would ground meat, going for a light browning effect on the chorizo. You'll want to stir chorizo consistently to be sure it's fully cooked.

During the cooking process, you'll accumulate grease in your pan - don't fret!  Simply drain the grease from the pan when it's finished browning. At this step, you can dump your cooked chorizo onto a paper towel to further remove grease, but that's completely up to you. Both Mexican chorizo and Spanish chorizo will produce the same amount of grease, though we don't recommend saving it like you would with bacon grease.

The Difference Between Mexican & Spanish Chorizo

Mexican chorizo is typically found in dishes such as quesadillas, egg dishes such as huevos rancheros, and cooked alongside refried beans. It is sold fresh with a hint of spice from chile peppers. Mexican chorizo can also be made from beef, chicken, and even tofu, but ground pork is the most common.

Spanish chorizo contrarily is cured or smoked and gets its reddish hue from the paprika found in the sausage mixture. This type of chorizo is served in Spain, usually passed around with tapas alongside cheese.

Now that you've got your chorizo made, you get to decide what something delicious to pair with it, and that's not a bad problem to have. Here are 5 chorizo recipes that we can't get enough of!

1. Chorizo Scrambled Eggs

There's no better way to spruce up your morning go-to than by adding that little something of spice to it. Sauté separately or in the same skillet for ease of clean up! Kick things up a notch by adding these scrambled eggs into corn or flour tortillas and topping with fresh cilantro for the perfect breakfast tacos.

Get the recipe here.

2. Sautéed Potatoes with Chorizo Sausage

There are no sides to any breakfast or brunch dish more suitable than potatoes, and when you add pork chorizo to the mix; watch out. Crispy and flavorful, this side dish can be paired with breakfast burritos. You can also swap out the new potatoes for sweet potatoes.

Get the recipe here.

3. Spanish Rice with Chorizo

Spice up taco night with a little bit of chorizo in everyone's life! Add sautéed chorizo along with black beans and bell peppers into your Spanish rice for a flavor explosion of taco proportions.

Find the recipe here.

4. Queso Chorizo Dip

Think of this is a chili con queso with a flare. Add chorizo to this classic appetizer for a flaming mash up of two food worlds. This is the ultimate comfort food!

Find the recipe here.

5. Chorizo and Cream Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breasts

We've said it before and we'll say it again: wrap something in bacon and we're in. This chicken recipe escalates the bacon game by stuffing the inside with chorizo, mozzarella or jack cheese, and cream cheese. We know.

Get the recipe here.

This post was originally published on January 13, 2017.