Lamb Chorizo Albondigas Tacos with Fresh Tomatillo

Lamb Chorizo Albondigas Tacos with Fresh Tomatillo

Albondigas is the Spanish word for meatballs. These, made with lamb and bacon, are served with fresh tomatillo salsa and pickled red onions as a very creative take on tacos. Lamb Chorizo Albondigas Tacos

Lamb Chorizo Albondigas Tacos with Fresh Tomatillo 

Print This Recipe Total time Yield 15–20Published

The pickled red onion, tomatillo salsa and lamb chorizo may be made up to 1 day in advance. Store in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before using.

Lamb Chorizo Albondigas Tacos with Fresh Tomatillo


  • 1 red onion (peeled, halved and thinly sliced
  • ½ cup warm water
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon plus 1 tablespoon kosher salt (plus more as needed for seasoning)
  • 3 fresh tomatillos (husks removed and cut into ¼‑inch dice)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon freshtl squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil (divided)
  • ½ pound thick cut bacon (roughly chopped)
  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • 5 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 6 ounce tomato paste
  • ¼ cup adobo sauce (such as Doña Maria brand) it may need to be heated slightly to liquify)
  • ½ medium yellow onion (cut into ¼‑inch dice)
  • 4 clove garlic (peeled and minced)
  • 3 large eggs (lightly beaten)
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 15–20 warm tortillas
  • crumbled queso fresco (as needed)


Make the pickled red onion: Place red onion slices into a medium bowl. In a 1‑cup pitcher whisk together water, vinegar, granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon salt until dissolved. Pour the mixture over the onions. Set aside.

Make the fresh tomatillo salsa: In a medium bowl combine diced tomatillos, lemon zest, lemon juice, 1 tablespoon olive oil and a pinch of salt. Set aside.

Make the lamb chorizo: Place the chopped bacon in a food processor and process until completely ground. Transfer to a large mixing bowl, add the lamb, paprika, coriander, cumin, cayenne, tomato paste, adobo, 1 tablespoon salt, diced yellow onion, and garlic, and mix until just combined. 

Make the albondigas: Combine the lamb chorizo, eggs, and panko breadcrumbs in a large mixing bowl and mix until just combined. Use a 2‑inch ice cream scoop to divide the mixture into 30 equal sized portions, roll each portion between the palms of your hands to form into balls. Place the formed chorizo albondigas onto 1 or 2 parchment-lined baking sheets. Cover and refrigerate until firm; at least 4 hours and up to 1 day. 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Heat a large cast-iron pan over medium heat, add remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Working in batches, sear the meatballs on all sides, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Return the seared meatballs to the parchment-lined baking sheets; they should not touch. Bake in the heated oven 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly.

Make the tacos: Wrap 1 or 2 lamb chorizo albondigas in the center of a warm tortilla. Garnish with pickled red onions, fresh tomatillo salsa, and queso fresco.