Mexican chorizo is a spicy, smoky pork sausage used in a variety of Mexican dishes. Learn how to make epic chorizo tacos at home with authentic toppings like cilantro and onion.
Why You'll Love These Chorizo Tacos
This chorizo tacos recipe is a Mexican-inspired recipe you could find among many other street tacos while you visit the country. They're full of smoky, spicy flavor and simple to make, with minimal ingredients. In Mexico they're referred to as Tacos de Chorizo and often include street taco toppings like cilantro and onion. Here's why we love them!
- Made with 5 simple ingredients
- They're naturally gluten and dairy free
- They're done in under 20 minutes (perfect for taco tuesday!)
What Kind of Chorizo to Use for Tacos
There are two types of chorizo: Spanish and Mexican. We're going to be using Mexican chorizo for this recipe because it crumbles easier for a taco filling. Here's a little more about the difference between Mexican chorizo and Spanish chorizo.
- Spanish chorizo: this type of chorizo is dried and cured in casings and is typically found in the ready-to-eat cured sausages. It's typically made with paprika (for the red color), garlic and pork and can be sweet or spicy. They're more like a pre-cooked summer sausage you can slice and put on a cheese plate.
- Mexican chorizo: this variety of chorizo is uncooked, ground, spicy, and usually found in the uncooked meat section of the grocery store. Spicy chorizo is highly seasoned and usually made out of pork, but can be made out of other proteins, like ground beef. You can almost always find fresh chorizo in the grocery store in a loose container or in casings. You can also make your own homemade chorizo.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Mexican chorizo: this will likely come loose in a package (like ground beef) or in casings (like brats). If they come in casings, make sure to remove the casings prior to cooking so you can create a ground chorizo texture.
- Onion: softened onion helps develop the flavor and adds more dimension to these chorizo street tacos. We'll be using this ingredient in the chorizo taco filling as well as a topping when they're done.
- Corn tortillas: this is the traditional way to serve chorizo tacos. They're often charred or warmed to be more pliable and doubled to make sure they don't break on you. You could also use flour tortillas, grain free tortillas or gluten free taco shells.
Sauces and Toppings
Here are a few of our favorite toppings:
- Cilantro: this is a topping, but a much needed staple, especially for authentic tacos.
- Lime juice: squeeze the juice out of a few lime wedges to balance out the fat and spice.
- Onion: diced white onion is an authentic topping in all street tacos and adds a great crunch, but red onion is a great option.
- Jalapeno ranch: we make this dairy free creamy jalapeno ranch dressing all the time and it's a great sauce to drizzle on top!
- Crema: an avocado crema of blended mayo, avocado and lime juice would be a nice, cooling topping.
- Queso fresco: this is a soft and delicious Mexican cheese.
- Salsa verde
- Refried beans or black beans
How to Make Chorizo Tacos
- Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Once it's hot, add half of the onion and cook to sweat for 3-4 minutes.
- Crumble the chorizo over top and cook for about 10 minutes. My trick for extra flavorful chorizo tacos is to let the chorizo cook for a few minutes without touching it to crisp and char the outsides.
- While the chorizo is cooking, heat a griddle or separate dry skillet to warm the tortillas. Place the tortillas in the dry skillet over medium heat and cook them for about 30 seconds on each side. Wrap them with a kitchen towel to keep them warm.
- Divide the chorizo mixture into the warm tortillas then top with the remaining chopped onion, fresh cilantro and a squeeze of fresh lime juice. For less traditional toppings, add avocado, cilantro lime ranch* or chopped pineapple.
Prefer to Watch Instead of Read?
- Let the chorizo cook, without stirring: once the chorizo is no longer pink in the middle, allow it to sit over medium-high heat for a few minutes at a time without stirring. This make it crisp and char around the edges. Color equals flavor in cooking!
- Warm the tortillas: authentic chorizo tacos are made with corn tortillas. Double up your tortillas and warm them in the microwave or throw them on the grill for a few minutes to make them more pliable.
Chorizo is most often made from a mix of pork and fat. However, Mexican chorizo is ground and can be made with other protein like beef, chicken or turkey.
Mexican chorizo takes 5-6 minutes to cook in a skillet over medium-high heat. However, we like to crisp and char it about 5 minutes longer (10 minutes total).
Everyone's spice tolerance is different, however, Mexican chorizo is in the mild to medium category, for me. I don't typically like very spicy food and this recipe is easy and delicious to eat.
Chorizo is most often made out of ground pork, but if you grab a beef chorizo you can follow the same recipe directions to make beef chorizo tacos.
Chorizo is a mouthful of fat, flavor and spice! The ground pork is mixed with fat, to create a fatty, filling flavor, while the bold spices give it a kick and smoky flavor.
Meal Prep and Storage Instructions
Meal prep: make the chorizo filling in advance and store it in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheat the chorizo and tortillas separately and assemble the tacos when you're ready to eat.
Storage: place any leftover chorizo meat in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to four days.
Freezer: allow the meat to cool completely then store it in a plastic bag or reusable storage bag and remove as much air as possible. Store in the freezer for up to 4 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge then reheat in a skillet or the microwave until heated through.
If you make this recipe, I’d love for you to give it a star rating ★ below. I'd love to hear from you! You can also tag me on Instagram so I can see it!
Easy Mexican Chorizo Tacos
- 1-2 tablespoons of avocado or olive oil
- 1 lb Mexican chorizo (casings removed) *see notes for making your own
- 1 diced white onion separated
- 24 street corn tortillas (this is enough to double the tacos)
- Optional: pineapple avocado, avocado crema, salsa
- Large skillet
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once it's hot, add half of the diced onion and cook to sweat for 3-4 minutes, until the onion is soft and translucent.
- Crumble the chorizo on top and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-6 minutes, until no pink remains. Continue to cook for another 5 minutes, only stirring 2-3 more times to let the outsides of the chorizo crisp and char.
- While the chorizo is cooking, heat a griddle or separate dry skillet over medium heat to warm the tortillas. Cook them for 30-60 seconds on each side, or until warmed through, with grill marks if desired. Wrap them with a kitchen towel to keep them warm.
- Spoon the chorizo mixture into the warmed corn tortillas then top with the remaining chopped onion, fresh cilantro and a squeeze of fresh lime juice. For less traditional toppings, add avocado, jalepeno ranch or chopped pineapple.