Substitutes for Spanish Chorizo


Spanish chorizo is a spicy, dry-cured pork sausage eaten cold. This meat differs from fresh Mexican chorizo sausage, and the two are not interchangeable. Look for replacements that mirror the paprika-seasoned, smoked, dried and cured Spanish chorizo.


  • Pepperoni is a good stand in for Spanish chorizo in recipes. Spanish chorizo and pepperoni are both seasoned with paprika, but pepperoni has the addition of chili peppers for added spiciness. Pepperoni is a dried product compared to the cured and dried Spanish chorizo. Substitute an equal amount of pepperoni for Spanish chorizo and reduce any added spices in the recipe to compensate for the spicier pepperoni.


  • Linguica is a spicier cured option to Spanish chorizo from Portugal. It is seasoned with onions, garlic and paprika compared to chorizo's paprika seasoning. Reduce the amount of linguica used compared to Spanish chorizo, or use fewer spices in the recipe. Always cook linguica thoroughly before eating it.


  • A Polish pork sausage, kielbasa is available fully cooked, but it lacks the smoky flavor of Spanish chorizo. Some brands of kielbasa are available smoked and these are a closer replacement for Spanish chorizo. Use the kielbasa in your recipe in the same amount as the Spanish chorizo.


  • If you cannot locate a suitable sausage substitute for Spanish chorizo, use bacon to add a pork flavor to foods. Add 1 tsp. of Spanish smoked paprika to your recipe if you use bacon. The smoked paprika will replicate the paprika flavor in the chorizo, which is usually smoked before drying and curing. The bacon has the same cured pork taste as the Spanish chorizo. Always cook bacon thoroughly before adding it to your recipe.

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