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Pepperoni vs Chorizo - Health impact and Nutrition Comparison

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Article author photo Elen Khachatrian by Elen Khachatrian | Last updated on March 25, 2021
Education: Nutrition & Microbiology at YSU
Pepperoni
vs
Chorizo

Summary

Chorizo is relatively richer in Vitamins. The amount of Vitamins B12 and B1 are two times higher in chorizo than in pepperoni. It also has lower levels of sodium and saturated fats. On the other hand, pepperoni contains more Vitamin E, Vitamin K, and folate.

Introduction

We will discuss a detailed comparison and the main differences in the nutrition of chorizo and pepperoni.

Externally, chorizo and pepperoni both have a red color to them. Nevertheless, the taste is different. The main difference between chorizo and pepperoni begins with preparation. Chorizo is a type of Spanish cured and smoked pork sausage, and pepperoni is American salami. Chorizo is made from pork, while pepperoni is made from pork and beef.

Varieties

There are two different types of chorizo sausage; Mexican chorizo and Spanish chorizo. Spanish chorizo contains cured chopped pork and Spanish paprika.

Pepperoni has two different types, traditional American and cooked. Both are made from pork and beef, usually 30% beef and 70% pork.

Uses

Chorizo is used in a sandwich, pizzas, grilled, fried, simmered in liquid. It can be used as a partial replacement for ground beef or pork. Pepperoni can also be used to fill the pepperoni roll or in pizzas and kinds of pasta. Cured meats like pepperoni make a great starting point for homemade pasta sauces.

Pizza

Pepperoni is a loved American food staple. In the United States is most commonly used to make pepperoni pizza. The pepperoni pizza is usually more prominent in diameter than chorizo pizza. Chorizo is more complex than pepperoni because it has different versions. However, Spanish chorizo is the most similar to pepperoni. You can sometimes use them interchangeably because they use pork and similar spices. The pepperoni pizza and chorizo pizza have similar recipes; moreover, they can be used together in Pepperoni-Chorizo Pizza [1] [2].

Nutrition

To understand the differences in the nutrition of pepperoni and chorizo, we created a nutrition infographic, have a look below.

Macronutrients

Pepperoni contains more fats, including polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats.

On the other hand, chorizo contains more protein, carbs, water, and less cholesterol. Both have no fiber and sugars [3].

Calories

The amount of food energy of chorizo and pepperoni sausages is equal to 965 kJ. Overall, the calories of pepperoni and chorizo are pretty similar. Nevertheless, the calories level of pepperoni is a bit higher than in chorizo. It contains 504 calories per 100g, whereas chorizo contains 455 calories per 100g [4].

Minerals

Chorizo is richer in iron, potassium, and zinc. The level of sodium is 21% lesser in chorizo than in pepperoni. In any case, pepperoni is richer in calcium and copper. The amount of calcium is two times higher in pepperoni. Both completely lack magnesium and phosphorus [5].

Mineral Comparison

Mineral comparison score is based on the number of minerals by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" chart below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food
Contains more Calcium +137.5%
Contains more Copper +13.8%
Contains more Iron +19.5%
Contains more Potassium +45.3%
Contains less Sodium -21.9%
Contains more Zinc +39.8%
Equal in Magnesium - 18
Equal in Phosphorus - 150
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper 6% 50% 13% 68% 25% 207% 67% 31%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper 3% 60% 13% 65% 36% 162% 93% 27%
Contains more Calcium +137.5%
Contains more Copper +13.8%
Contains more Iron +19.5%
Contains more Potassium +45.3%
Contains less Sodium -21.9%
Contains more Zinc +39.8%
Equal in Magnesium - 18
Equal in Phosphorus - 150

Potassium

Your body cannot produce potassium naturally. It is an essential mineral, which can help with average water balance, blood pressure, and muscle contractions. Chorizo contains more potassium than pepperoni. The amount of potassium in chorizo is 398 mg per 100 g, while pepperoni contains 279 mg per 100 g [5].

Vitamins

Chorizo contains significantly higher concentrations of vitamin B1 than pepperoni, making it an excellent source for those with vitamin B1 deficiencies. It is also high in Vitamin B12, Vitamins B2 and B6, and Vitamin D. On the other hand, pepperoni is higher in Vitamin E, Vitamin K, and Folate. Chorizo and pepperoni are equal in Vitamin B3 and contain no Vitamin A, Vitamin E, and Vitamin C [5] [6].

Vitamin Comparison

Vitamin comparison score is based on the number of vitamins by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" chart below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food
:
Contains more Vitamin E +368.2%
Contains more Folate +150%
Contains more Vitamin K +262.5%
Contains more Vitamin D +15.4%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +132.5%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +16.7%
Contains more Vitamin B5 +20.4%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +46.4%
Contains more Vitamin B12 +53.8%
Equal in Vitamin B3 - 5.131
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Vitamin K 0% 21% 39% 0% 68% 60% 94% 56% 84% 4% 163% 15%
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Vitamin K 0% 5% 45% 0% 158% 70% 97% 68% 123% 2% 251% 4%
Contains more Vitamin E +368.2%
Contains more Folate +150%
Contains more Vitamin K +262.5%
Contains more Vitamin D +15.4%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +132.5%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +16.7%
Contains more Vitamin B5 +20.4%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +46.4%
Contains more Vitamin B12 +53.8%
Equal in Vitamin B3 - 5.131

Glycemic Index

Overall, the glycemic index of a food is a value based on how slowly or how quickly those foods cause increases in blood glucose levels. The glycemic index of pepperoni and chorizo is equal; it is 28. Both are considered low glycemic index food.

Acidity

The acidity of foods is portrayed by the potential renal acid load (PRAL), which shows the acid production of the food inside the organism. The acidity level of pepperoni is about 8.8, while chorizo has 8.4. Both are acidic.

Production

Traditional American pepperoni is a dry, smoked, and air-dried sausage. During production, salt and sodium nitrate are added as curing agents to prevent the growth of unwanted microorganisms.

The pepperoni sausage is soft, bright red, from paprika and cayenne pepper [7].

Traditional chorizo is made with chopped pork meat seasoned with paprika and garlic. The chorizo sausage is soft, smoky, earthy, sweet with a gentle tang [8].

Health Impact

Ketogenic (Keto) Diet

The ketogenic diet is a very low carb, high-fat diet which includes foods with high protein. It is good to have meat, including fatty meat such as pork belly, lamb, and poultry, if you are on this diet. Pepperoni contains fewer carbs than chorizo, has a higher fat level, and is a good source of protein. If you’re on this diet, eating pepperoni and chorizo is not an issue, but in any case, try to combine it with a natural source of healthy fats [9]․

Dukan diet

Dukan diet is a high protein, low carbohydrate diet. This diet allows eating meat, including pork, beef, lamb, and any other red meat. Pork is allowed in the Attack Phase because you can eat only protein in this phase. In this case, pepperoni and chorizo are allowed in this diet [10].

Beneficial Vitamins

Pepperoni and chorizo are rich in B vitamins, especially Vitamin B1 (thiamin). According to studies, your body needs B vitamins to provide energy for the proper functioning of your brain, nerves, muscles, skin, and every cell in your body. It also helps prevent heart, nerves, and digestive system diseases [11]. Pepperoni and chorizo are also good sources of Vitamin B3 (niacin), which may help lower LDL cholesterol and prevent heart disease [12].

Side Effects

Pepperoni and chorizo are rich in several vitamins and minerals; nevertheless, they are also rich in sodium and saturated fats. Try to avoid pepperoni if you are on low-calorie and low-fat diets, and avoid chorizo if you are on a low-carb diet [13].

Allergy

Overall, two reasons cause allergy to pepperoni and chorizo. One of them is an allergy to red meat, and the other is an allergy to one of their ingredients.

Red meat allergy

Red meat allergy is common in some parts of the world, including any age group and race. Most of these cases relate to specific IgE to galactose-α-1,3-galactose (α-Gal), an oligosaccharide of non-primate mammals. People can have this allergy if they are sensitive to cat serum albumin that cross-reacts with albumin in pork. Symptoms are most common, including urticaria, vomiting, and stomach cramps, in rare cases, anaphylaxis [14].

Paprika allergy

Paprikas are a spice made of a combination of dried peppers, including both sweet and hot peppers. Common symptoms include wheezing, hives, dizziness, and swelling of the throat [15]. Paprika allergy symptoms are rare, but severe paprika allergies can result in anaphylaxis, so it is essential to get tested if you typically have food allergies.

References

  1. https://books.google.am/books?id=brdM8-ahRg4C&pg=SA72-PA68&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q&f=false
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2211601X13000151
  3. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0889157596900319
  4. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30795111/
  5. https://sci-hub.se/10.1016/j.profoo.2013.04.014
  6. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0309174001002303
  7. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0308814604001918
  8. https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/food-science/chorizo
  9. https://www.sciencediOpen link in new tabhttps://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26024402/rect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1871403X07000816
  10. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26024402/
  11. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27488863/
  12. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18375237/
  13. https://sci-hub.se/10.1016/j.meatsci.2012.02.007
  14. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6488443/
  15. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4954633/
Article author photo Elen Khachatrian
Education: Nutrition & Microbiology at YSU
Last updated: March 25, 2021

Infographic

Pepperoni vs Chorizo infographic
Infographic link

Comparison summary table

Pay attention to the most right column. It shows the amounts side by side, making it easier to realize the amount of difference.
Pepperoni Chorizo
Lower in Sodium ok
Lower in Cholesterol ok
Lower in Saturated Fat ok
Lower in price ok
Rich in vitamins ok
Lower in Sugar Equal
Lower in glycemic index Equal
Rich in minerals Equal

All nutrients comparison - raw data values

Nutrient Pepperoni Chorizo Opinion
Net carbs 1.18g 1.86g Chorizo
Protein 19.25g 24.1g Chorizo
Fats 46.28g 38.27g Pepperoni
Carbs 1.18g 1.86g Chorizo
Calories 504kcal 455kcal Pepperoni
Starch g g
Fructose 0g g Pepperoni
Sugar 0g 0g
Fiber 0g 0g
Calcium 19mg 8mg Pepperoni
Iron 1.33mg 1.59mg Chorizo
Magnesium 18mg 18mg
Phosphorus 158mg 150mg Pepperoni
Potassium 274mg 398mg Chorizo
Sodium 1582mg 1235mg Chorizo
Zinc 2.44mg 3.41mg Chorizo
Copper 0.091mg 0.08mg Pepperoni
Vitamin A 0IU 0IU
Vitamin E 1.03mg 0.22mg Pepperoni
Vitamin D 52IU 61IU Chorizo
Vitamin D 1.3µg 1.5µg Chorizo
Vitamin C 0mg 0mg
Vitamin B1 0.271mg 0.63mg Chorizo
Vitamin B2 0.257mg 0.3mg Chorizo
Vitamin B3 4.987mg 5.131mg Chorizo
Vitamin B5 0.93mg 1.12mg Chorizo
Vitamin B6 0.362mg 0.53mg Chorizo
Folate 5µg 2µg Pepperoni
Vitamin B12 1.3µg 2µg Chorizo
Vitamin K 5.8µg 1.6µg Pepperoni
Tryptophan 0.23mg 0.278mg Chorizo
Threonine 0.869mg 1.473mg Chorizo
Isoleucine 0.901mg 2.206mg Chorizo
Leucine 1.575mg 1.708mg Chorizo
Lysine 1.652mg 2.414mg Chorizo
Methionine 0.511mg 0.47mg Pepperoni
Phenylalanine 0.778mg 1.149mg Chorizo
Valine 0.987mg 0.914mg Pepperoni
Histidine 0.688mg 0.721mg Chorizo
Cholesterol 97mg 88mg Chorizo
Trans Fat 1.527g g Chorizo
Saturated Fat 17.708g 14.38g Chorizo
Monounsaturated Fat 20.77g 18.4g Pepperoni
Polyunsaturated fat 4.458g 3.46g Pepperoni

Which food is preferable for your diet?

ok
ok
is better in case of low diet
Pepperoni Chorizo
Low Fats diet ok
Low Carbs diet ok
Low Calories diet ok
Low glycemic index diet Equal

People also compare

Vitamin and Mineral Summary Scores

The summary score is calculated by summing up the daily values contained in 300 grams of the product. Obviously the more the food fulfills human daily needs, the more the summary score is.
Vitamin Summary Score
50
Pepperoni
68
Chorizo
Mineral Summary Score
58
Pepperoni
57
Chorizo

Macronutrients Comparison

Macronutrient comparison charts compare the amount of protein, total fats, and total carbohydrates in 300 grams of the food. The displayed values show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of food.
Protein
116%
Pepperoni
145%
Chorizo
Carbohydrates
1%
Pepperoni
2%
Chorizo
Fats
214%
Pepperoni
177%
Chorizo

Comparison summary

Which food contains less Sodium?
Chorizo
Chorizo contains less Sodium (difference - 347mg)
Which food is lower in Cholesterol?
Chorizo
Chorizo is lower in Cholesterol (difference - 9mg)
Which food is lower in Saturated Fat?
Chorizo
Chorizo is lower in Saturated Fat (difference - 3.328g)
Which food is cheaper?
Chorizo
Chorizo is cheaper (difference - $3)
Which food is richer in vitamins?
Chorizo
Chorizo is relatively richer in vitamins
Which food contains less Sugar?
?
The foods are relatively equal in Sugar (0 g)
Which food is lower in glycemic index?
?
The foods have equal glycemic indexes (28)
Which food is richer in minerals?
?
It cannot be stated which food is richer in vitamins. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information.

References

The source of all the nutrient values on the page (excluding the main article the sources for which are presented separately if present) is the USDA's FoodCentral. The exact links to the foods presented on this page can be found below.

  1. Pepperoni - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/174575/nutrients
  2. Chorizo - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/173859/nutrients

All the Daily Values are presented for males aged 31-50, for 2000 calorie diets.

Data provided by FoodStruct.com should be considered and used as information only. Please consult your physician before beginning any diet.