Difference between Spanish and Mexican Chorizo

Chorizo is a spicy red sausage used in many parts of the world, especially throughout Central and Latin America as well as on the Iberian Peninsula in both Spain and Portugal. While it has the same name in all these place and tastes really good, there is the basic difference of taste and how it is made locally in these places.

Whether it is Spanish chorizo or Mexican chorizo, both are equally delicious and use the specific herbs and spices that are home to these countries, and give the delicacy a distinctive flavor which is liked by the people living in these regions.


Spanish vs Mexican Chorizo
Spanish chorizo

Spanish chorizo is a cured, dry and/or smoked pork sausage which is flavored with dried smoked red chilies or smoked paprika that gives it a distinct and unique smoky flavor. It is usually made with coarsely chopped pork, paprika (sweet or spicy) and white wine along with herbs and garlic to add flavor.

Mexican Chorizo
Mexican Chorizos without casing

Mexican chorizo is a fresh and spicy grounded raw pork sausage made by combining ground pork, dried red chilies, spices, and vinegar. It can be made either without casing or with an artificial casing. Mexican chorizo is also made using beef.

Spanish vs Mexican Chorizo

What is the difference between Spanish vs Mexican chorizo? There are many people who enjoy chorizos a lot but do not know where they come from. While they both use almost the same ingredients and are made in a similar way, there are some differences between the way the Spanish and Mexicans make their chorizos.

Mexican chorizo is spicy ground meat sausage that is either available loose or in a casing or even in a dried form, while Spanish chorizo is dried and cured sausage, coarsely chopped and wrapped in a casing.

Most kinds of Spanish chorizo can be sliced and eaten without cooking but it can also be diced and sautéed, depending on personal preference and the mode of usage. On the other hand, Mexican chorizos cannot be eaten uncooked and they must be cooked before being used as they utilize raw meat and artificial casing.

Spanish chorizos can be smoked or unsmoked, and may be sweet or spicy, while Mexican chorizos are spicy and contain a lot of chilli. Spanish chorizos are made from beef and beef fat and also seasoned with paprika which gives them a very good color, whereas Mexican chorizos contain fatty pork and lots of chillies too which give them a red color. There are also green Mexican chorizos which get their color from green chillies and cilantro.

Another difference between the two is the way they are served and preferred in both regions. Spanish chorizos can be eaten on their own with the casing, but they are mostly served as tapas (snacks) as they have a very dense and almost chewy texture. They are also added to soups for richness and flavor. Mexican chorizos without casing can be added to foods in the form of minced meat but they must be cooked as they are made from raw meat. They are mostly used in tacos and tortillas; scrambled eggs with chorizos is a very popular breakfast in Mexico.

Comparison Chart

Spanish Chorizos Mexican Chorizos
They are made with smoked meat, mostly using beef They are made with fresh and raw pork but also made with beef
They can be used on their own and are ready to eat They have to be cooked because they use raw meat
They are highly seasoned with garlic and paprika They are made with vinegar and chilli peppers
They are used in tapas, soups and other dishes due to thickness of texture They are used in tacos and tortillas and served with scrambled eggs for breakfast
They are mild in taste as they contain more seasoning but less chilli They are really hot as they contain a lot of peppers, as loved by the Mexicans
They are mostly available in the form of sausage and used in that form too They are available in casing in the form of sausage as well as loose in the form of minced meat


Here is one interesting video which will help you understand the basic difference between Spanish and Mexican chorizos, how they are made and how they are best consumed.