DIY Homemade Flour Tortillas

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Tortillas Three Rolled LandscapeIt seems many bloggers have a bucket list of sorts.  Most of them have publicly written about them and call them a 30 by 30 list (30 recipes they want to try before turning the age of 30) or 101 things I need to do before I die, etc.  I’m here to admit, I definitely have a list.  However, my list resides in my mind and I have no idea how many items are on it.  I’m also very sure that the components have changed over time and that I’m more than likely not even halfway through this list.  And, if I ever was, then I just added on more items to my ever growing list.

The one thing I’m certain about, though, is that homemade tortillas has been filed away in my mental record for a very long time.  And, recently, I was thrilled to internally check this off my “list”.

Heading into the recipe, I was expecting to completely fail the first few times before getting the hang of it.  What a welcome surprise to find that making homemade tortillas is no sweat, especially if you have a food processor!  Since this post will already be lengthy with a photo tutorial, I’ll be brief about the taste:  I believe, without reservation, that once you try a homemade tortilla, you will never go back to store-bought.

Tortillas Mix IngredientsMix your ingredients in a food processor, fitted with your dough blade.  You can most definitely do it by hand with a pastry cutter, as well.  While the food processor is on, pour in your water.

Tortillas Dough TackyKnead the dough until it’s tacky.  (Somewhat sticky, but not enough to stick to your fingers.)

Tortillas Dough Ball in HandPinch off golf ball sized portions, about 2 ounces each.

Tortillas Dough BallsI really need to invest in a kitchen scale.  See that dough ball in the middle?  Way bigger than the others… an outcast… poor thing.

Tortillas Patted DoughWait 10 minutes to let the dough balls rest, then roll them out one at a time by first patting it out to a small disk.

Tortillas Rolled DoughThen put your rolling pin to work and roll the dough to about an 8-inch diameter. (I have a little more to go in this photo.)

Tortillas Thin DoughMake sure it is very very very thin.  I do not know that measurement, but it is very very very thin.  Even much thinner than pictured above.

Tortillas CookingCook the tortilla in a skillet for 10 to 20 seconds on each side.  It will bubble, but that’s good.  Let those bubbles brown up a little, which is when you know it’s ready. This one is a little burned. Hey, it was one of the first ones I tried.

Tortillas StackedPlace on a plate and cover with a kitchen towel to keep warm until use.

Tortillas FreezeOR…after they are cooled, transfer to a zipper bag.  Keep on the counter for up to 3 days, or store in the freezer for much much longer.  When ready to use, warm them between paper towels in the microwave, or in foil in the oven.

Tortillas BiteOR…take a bite right away and taste the perfection.  Next I want to try my hand at corn tortillas.

Now, here’s the full recipe:

DIY Homemade Flour Tortillas

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 12 (8-inch) tortillas

DIY Homemade Flour Tortillas

Such a satisfying accomplishment to make tortillas at home. Don't let these flour discs intimidate you, because you will be surprised at how EASILY they whip up!

  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 heaping teaspoon salt
  • 5 Tablespoons shortening, cut up into sections (or use lard, softened butter, olive oil)
  • 3/4 to 1 cup warm water

Pulse the dry ingredients in a food processor fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the fat and process until the mixture is uniformly crumbly, about 5 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.

With the food processor still on, slowly stream in the water, just until the dry ingredients form a ball and starts traveling around the bowl.

Knead the dough for about 30 more seconds, until the dough cleans the sides of the bowl and is tacky. If the dough is too sticky, add a little more flour and continue to knead.

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface or pastry mat. Divide the dough into 12 golf-ball sized portions, about 2 ounces each. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rest for 10 minutes.

Heat a large skillet over medium to medium high heat. I use a cast iron skillet.

Working with one dough ball at a time while keeping the others covered with the kitchen towel, pat the dough ball into a disk. Dust the top lightly with flour then use a rolling pin to spread it out to a very thin (almost translucent) 8-inch round. Carefully transfer the tortilla to the heated skillet and cook each side for 10 to 20 seconds, until the bubbles are browned. Be careful not to cook too long as they will turn crispy. Also watch the temperature of the heat and turn it down if necessary. Keep somewhere between medium to medium high. Transfer to a plate and cover with a kitchen towel to keep pliable. Repeat for remaining dough balls.

Serve immediately, while warm, or store for later use.

To store, keep in a zip-locked bag on the counter for up to 3 days. Or, store room temperature tortillas in the freezer in a freezer bag. Rewarm wrapped in foil in the oven, or between paper towels in the microwave.

Source: Adapted from Confections of a Foodie Bride


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  1. I too have a list in the exact same way as you, its in my head and is constantly changing! Tortillas have always been on there though and ive seen so many recipes but ive often thought the homemade ones looked a little too thick for my liking, yours look wonderful though and i didnt realise you could freeze them so well – ideal as i dont get through that many. So grateful for this one! They look perfecto 🙂

  2. I was talking to Ben last night about homemade tortillas before we fell asleep, and how I was dying to make them but every recipe seemed to call for a tortilla press. Though I’ve had Shawnda’s recipe bookmarked since she posted it, I somehow missed that you could just roll them out. This is awesome – thank you! Definitely something I’ve been dying to try. I can’t wait to make them!

  3. It’s true. You’ll never go back to store-bought after those. Your tortillas look fantastic!

  4. These are most definitely on my list, too, and I cannot wait to make them! Thank you for posting such in depth directions!

  5. What a great tutorial! I am always looking to replace things I normally buy at the grocery store with homemade version.

  6. Most things I have made at home that I would normally never think twice about buying from the store have also turned out to make me never want to buy again! And I too have a mental list, but it grows faster than I can check things off.

  7. Awesome tutorial Nikki! I’m adding this to my bucket list of foodie things to do, and I still have “to meet Pennies on a Platter” on my blogger list. 😉

  8. Thank you for posting this recipe — I have recently been eating a lot more tortillas than bread (I’m having a BLT for lunch in a tortilla, I love polish dogs wrapped in a tortilla rather than a hot dog bun — with all the fixins trapped inside burrito style), so this is very timely. I knew that tortillas were easy to make, I just didn’t realize HOW easy until I read your post (and clicked through to Shawnda’s). Thank you for posting and showing just how easy . . . I’ll be trying this (probably tonight!)

  9. Oh, I can’t wait to try this!

  10. Thanks for this great recipe! I just got done making a batch and it was so easy using my food processor. I tried another tortilla recipe several months ago and it was horribly frustrating and didn’t taste very good either. This recipe is going in my staple file. Do you know if I could replace some of the while flour with wheat? If so, what combination? Thanks

    • Hi Nichole,

      You’re quick! 🙂 Glad you liked them and found it easy, too.

      I wish I could give you a sure answer about substituting in wheat flour, but I’m not confident as I haven’t tried it. If I were to take a stab at it, I would do half white and half wheat to begin with.

  11. These look great!

  12. I absolutely love fresh tortillas. Whenever I eat at a Mexican restaurant I have to keep asking them to bring out more and more! These seem fairly simple to make. These are definitely on my bucket list now… moving to the top too!

  13. Thanks Nikki, I will give this a try!

  14. Very impressive! And who knew they were simple to make!! Definitely want to try these soon!

  15. These look SOOO good. I need to make these as I have been eating more tortillas then you should lately.

  16. can’t wait to try this at home! 🙂

  17. I tried making tortillas years ago when I was first married but as I recall they were far too much work for the bland reward. These look a whole lot simpler and tastier. Love how soft they look! Can’t wait to try it. 🙂

  18. Hi! I just found your blog from Annie Eat’s and its AMAZING!! I am new to this, and I have been looking for a measuring mat like the one pictured above. What store (mainstream or online) that you know where I can find one? Thank you soo much for awesomeness!!

    • Hi Faith,
      I got mine from Tupperware, it stopped sticking to the counter so I bought a silicone one from our local grocery store (Safeway) for about $10.00. It is pink I think it was to raise money for breast cancer. Anyway I really like it.
      Hope you can find one,

      • Kerry,
        Thanks for answering Faith, which brought to my attention that I forgot to get back to her and answer! Oops, I’m so sorry, Faith! My silicone mat is this one, by Bonjour: Pretty sure I bought mine off Amazon, but it’s no longer available there. Looks like you need to order direct from Bonjour. I love it because I can easily roll it up to store it and it’s nice and large with all the measurements I need. A friend of mine bought a cheaper one, but it now has creases from being rolled up and doesn’t stick in place on the counter top. So, I would advise spending the $20 on this one for better quality. (It has made working with dough much more enjoyable for me!) 🙂

  19. You make them look so easy! I might just have to try these at some point. I can only imagine how much better tortillas are when homemade when compared to store bought.

  20. What kind of flour do I use?
    Is it All-Purpose?

  21. Is there a way these could be made if I don’t have a food processer?

  22. I came across this recipe this afternoon, and had pulled pork already in my crock pot for dinner, I whipped up some of these to go with it and it was SO easy! Thank you! I look forward trying more of your recipes!

  23. Other than me seriously being awful at rolling them out into actual circles, these came out awesome! Thanks!

  24. a trick to really thin homemade tortillas….roll the first ball into a circle – the dough will want to pull back a little but not to worry. Sprinkle a generous amount of flour on it then lay another ball on top and start rolling that one out. The bottom one will get larger and thinner as you roll out the top one. Set the top one to one side. Take the really thin bottom one, dust excess flour off and it is ready to go into the skillet to cook. The top one that you set aside becomes the bottom one now – dust it with flour generously (this is what keeps them from melding into one tortilla). Put a new ball on top and start rolling it out………………..repeat.

  25. Do you have to oil the skillet? Cause it’s not mentioned.

    • Hi Jay,
      No, you want the skillet to be dry. 🙂

    • Darryle Sanchez says:

      In any traditional Mexican household, you will almost always find, sitting in the ready position, on the stove, a cast iron skillet, flat and shallow, but quite thick and heavy. It’s called a “comal” (ko mall’), and it’s there STRICTLY for making or heating tortillas…and it’s NEVER allowed to be oiled or greased!!! Me wife once made grilled-cheese sandwiches on mine. It didn’t cause a divorce…but damn near!

  26. Darryle Sanchez says:

    I remember (barely, as it was a LONG time ago) as a child, my grandmother making a HUGE batch of tortillas, in a washtub dedicated to strictly that purpose, twice a week. That was in the days before they invented cholesterol, so he using those big square, red packages of Manteca brand lard was just fine. She was a little lady, so when she patted them out until they were nice and round, kept patting until they became thinner and larger, they finished by flipping them to one arm, stretching it out, then flipping onto the other arm, stretching it out, back and forth until the tortilla was at least a foot across and almost paper thin. Then she would flop it out on the hot WOOD stove until nice bubbles formed and those bubbles turned nice and brown. They were SO good, and with a nice smear of real butter, they were the absolute best part of any meal.
    I remember Grandma telling us young kids how the king was a very rich man, with his palaces and estates and utensils of gold…but we were even BETTER off, because we had a BRAND NEW SPOON FOR EVERY BITE! (With that, she’d tear off a portion of her tortilla, scoop up a nice-sized bite of beans, and pop it in! :))

  27. I grew up on my mom’s flour tortillas. They were absolutely the best. She would be making them when I got home from school and she always saved 1 or 2 “patties” for me. I ate them fresh off the griddle with butter. They would melt in my mouth! Of course, she’d been making flour tortiallas for most of her life so she didn’t have a recipe. But I finally convinced her to write one down. She passed away many years ago but I still have that recipe. Except for the food processor, your recipe and instructions seem to be right on with hers. I think she would have enjoyed using a food processor. Believe it or not, but I never learned how to make them – I tried but my tortillas always came out wonky. Getting them nice and round is usually the hardest part! Your recipe has brought back many memories for me and now I have to give it a try! Thanks for sharing!

    • Oh Rita, what a lovely story! If it makes you feel any better, I never get them perfectly round either. In fact, I just don’t even care much about the shape anymore and just go with it. 🙂 I hope this recipe brings you success!

  28. I just made these, thank you they are AMAZING! Eating one with butter now, I will make enchilada’s later 🙂


  29. Love how this is so easy to follow, can’t wait to try them. Thank you for taking the time to share this with us.

  30. I am actually Mexican and grew up on homemade tortillas. Haven’t had them in a while. These taste like my Grandma used to make! This worked like a CHARM.. so impressed. Thank you!

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