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how to make sausage from scratch recipe - illustrated recipe Eat with Tom

Chorizo Recipe - How to Make Pork Sausage

Tom Schmidt (eatwithtom.com)
A wise man once said: "When life gives you big ole pork butts, make Chorizo sausage"
Course Sausage
Cuisine Spanish
Servings 20 links


  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon New Mexican chile
  • 1 tablespoon Ancho chili ground
  • 1 tablespoon Aleppo chili ground
  • 1/2 tablespoon oregano
  • One and a half tablespoon crushed garlic
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 5 pounds pork butt


Make the Chorizo

  • De-bone the pork butt with a boning knife or very sharp paring knife. BE CAREFUL!
  • Slice the resulting roasts into 1 to 1.5 inch slices. Chunk up these slices to end up with about 1 inch pieces. Don’t make them too big or they might not fit down the grinder chute.
  • Arrange the cut pieces in a single layer on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Put into freezer for 30-45 minutes. You are looking for a firm, but not rock hard freeze on the meat. This will give you the best grind and deliciously cut fat! If you get impatient and grind before it is nice and cold, the meat will get gooey…
  • Prepare the grinder with a fine blade and get a container ready to catch your beautiful ground meat.
  • Remove the meat from the freezer and begin to grind immediately.
  • Prepare the spice mixture. Add all spices, vinegar and water to a bowl and stir to combine.
  • Add spice mixture to ground meat and knead it in. It’s going to be cold!! We used plastic gloves due to the intense color of the chorizo spices. Worth considering, but not absolutely necessary.
  • Knead until the sausage becomes rather sticky. The salt and vinegar cause a bit of a reaction in the meat to stiffen it up. The common test is to take some in the palm of your hand and if does not fall, you are good!
  • Cover and put Chorizo into the refrigerator until ready to freeze or stuff into casings. Be careful to keep the meat cold to prevent any foodborne illness issues!

Prepare Pork Casings

  • Remove 2 casings from the salt-water packed batch. Place into a plastic container of cold water and allow to soak for a few minutes.
Fill a second container with fresh water and set both in sink.
  • Find the end of one casing. Turn on the faucet with a very slow stream of water. Allow some to enter the open end of the casing, about 1/2 cup or so, and turn off water. Ensure run-off (water missing the casing) does not flow into the containers. This will cause a knot!
Hold the casing in both hands to cradle the water in the middle. Seal the edges between your fingers and allow the water to wash back and forth a few times to clean out the casing. Continue by allowing the water to flow to the next section, and repeat the washing until the entire length has been rinsed. Let the clean side the casing fall into the fresh water container. Repeat so that interior of each casing is rinsed twice.
Allow the rinsed casings to soak for about an hour prior to use.

Stuff the Sausage

  • Prepare the stuffing area. You will want a decent sized counter top that can get a little wet. Attach stuffer pressing base to countertop with hand clamps or A-clamps.
  • Remove canister from stuffer and attach the medium sized plastic stuffing tube. Pack canister with raw sausage meat by making softball sized balls of sausage and pressing them into the container. Smashing them in helps to extract the air, which can be a hassle later on.
  • Return the canister to the pressing base. Turn the pressing crank until the sausage appears at the edge of the stuffing tube.
Coat the stuffing tube with about 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Load rinsed pork casings onto the stuffing tube. The best trick here is to catch about a tablespoon of water in the end of the casing that will go onto the tube. This will help to lubricate it while loading. Try to keep the casing from twisting while loading or you may end up with a knot! Be sure to keep the casing wet or it could stick to the tube.
Once the entire length of casing is loaded, begin the stuffing process by slowly turning the press. This is easiest done with two people: one to run the press and the second to guide the meat into the casing.
  • Gently pull the casing along with the meat allowing it fill the casing, but not too tight. Splash a bit of water on your work surface and the finished sausage will move around with ease. As the casing is filled, give the finished sausage a little spin to create a large spiral.
  • Depending on the length of your casings, you may need to re-load. No worries, we will be chopping them into links soon.
  • After all sausage has been packed into the casing, inspect for air pockets. Use a simple pin to release any bubbles.
  • Now we are ready to create links! Beginning at the end of the spiral, section off your link by gently pinching the preferred size. While holding the ends of the link in both hands, give it a quick spin clockwise for 3 revolutions.
  • Repeat with the second link, although spin it counter-clockwise (just the opposite of the previous one…) to section off. Feel free to cut the links with a sharp knife any time now.
  • Repeat until all links are formed. Trim links apart.

For storage

  • Arrange onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet so that the links are not touching. Return to the freezer for 1 hour. This pre-freeze creates individually frozen links that freeze well and do not stick to each other.
Pack pre-frozen links into gallon or quart sized bags depending on your needs.
  • Let’s Eat!