I have a recipe that calls for ground chorizo, but I don't own a meat grinder and my local grocery store only sells chorizo sausages. Now, I guess I could mince the sausages and maybe achieve the same effect, but my question is, if I remove the casing from the sausage, will the insides essentially be ground chorizo?

edit: here's the recipe, http://www.johnsonville.com/recipe/chorizo-mac-skillet.html, it specifically calls for Johnsonville brand ground chorizo, so I'm unsure if it's Mexican or Spanish chorizo. That brand unfortunately isn't sold at my grocery store.

  • That's Mexican-style. :D I live in Texas and we have a section with Mexican meats and cheeses... I don't suppose you've asked at the store whether they carry anything similar to this?
    – Catija
    Oct 23, 2017 at 19:51
  • Yes :( the only carry the sausages. I guess I could buy ground pork and spices and make my own chorizo, but if I can somehow achieve something similar with the sausage, that'd save a lot of time.
    – lmotl3
    Oct 23, 2017 at 19:53
  • If you can get a raw chorizo, you just slit the casings and separate it. If it's a dry chorizo, you'd likely be better off w/ ground pork and the appropriate seasonings.
    – Joe
    Oct 23, 2017 at 19:55
  • if it's calling for a product sold as 'ground chorizo', it's likely loose (no casing) raw Mexican chorizo. (and johnsonville is known for their raw pork products ... and the recipe calls it 'Fresh Chorizo Ground Sausage' and links to a picture of how raw loose sausage is typically packaged (and mentions "Prepare within 3 days or freeze for up to 30 days") ... so I'm going to say they don't want Spanish chorizo.
    – Joe
    Oct 23, 2017 at 21:14
  • And I should probably say 'latin american chorizo' instead of mexican as the latin grocery that I shop at has Mexican, Argentinean, Salvadoran, etc. ... all of which are raw sausages.
    – Joe
    Oct 23, 2017 at 21:16

2 Answers 2


Assuming that the "chorizo sausage" that you are referring to has some manner of skin on the outside (and is "Mexican Chorizo" - see comments), you can do what I have done on occasion, slice lengthwise down one side of the sausage and turn it inside out, and discard the skin. Voila, instant 'ground chorizo'. You might need to squeeze the sausage together and then break it up as it cooks, but it should work out fine.

In one case (with Italian sausage links) I had to run the meat through a food processor for just a few moments to thoroughly break apart the sausage form, just don't over do it if you need to do this.

  • But the Spanish style is fully cooked - dried, even... It's like salami. It's not going to prepare the same way... the kind in the link posted above is raw meat with spices added to it.
    – Catija
    Oct 23, 2017 at 20:02
  • Yes, this would only work with Mexican chorizo. I've not used Spanish in such a long time I didn't even think about that.
    – Cos Callis
    Oct 23, 2017 at 20:07

I think your best bet if you can't find any Mexican style (raw) chorizo (either loose or encased) is to just use some ground pork and add spices - the spice list on that product is:

chili pepper and less than 2% of the following: pork broth with natural flavorings, salt, dextrose, garlic powder, flavorings, spice, oleoresin of paprika, BHA, propyl gallate, citric acid.

So there's not much to add or find a recipe so you don't have to guess. There are a couple of them. Or just add a packet of "Mexican seasoning" to the sausage. I think this will actually take quite a bit less time than trying to prep Spanish style chorizo.

You're literally just mixing in some spices.

If you don't want to buy the spices, just switch to any "spicy" raw sausage. For example Jimmy Dean Hot. Again, this will be an easier option for you than using Mexican (hard) chorizo.

  • 1
    That would probably be the best way to do it. The only problem is, I'm a poor college student with no spice rack, so buying say, cumin, paprika, and garlic powder plus the ground pork could total up to $10, while I could just get the sausages for $3. I think the sausages sold at the store deli counter may actual be Mexican chorizo sausages, judging by their appearance, so I might just try to use the de-casing method. Thanks for your help!
    – lmotl3
    Oct 23, 2017 at 20:07
  • Does your grocer not have bulk spices? I buy my spices there and it would cost about $1.50 for the tiny amounts needed for these recipes. You'll also find that any type of sausage will be better than using the Spanish style Chorizo... just pick a spicy raw sausage and go with it.
    – Catija
    Oct 23, 2017 at 20:10
  • If they're raw then, yes. Of course you can do that. You don't ever need to grind raw sausage again. You never mentioned until now that they were raw. :)
    – Catija
    Oct 23, 2017 at 20:14
  • Yes, they're raw. Now that I'm thinking about it this was a pretty silly question, but I guess I just wanted to make sure. Thanks!
    – lmotl3
    Oct 23, 2017 at 20:18
  • We all ask silly questions every now and then :D I hope you enjoy your recipe!
    – Catija
    Oct 23, 2017 at 20:19

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