Homemade Corn Tortillas

    45 minutes

    Go on, have a go at making these yourself! A simple mixture of masa harina a fine cornmeal ground from white maize) and water results in the most wonderful corn tortillas you've ever tasted. The secret is to use a cast iron pan. Most supermarkets sell masa harina (maize flour) now.

    191 people made this

    Serves: 5 

    • 440g (3½ cups) masa harina (maize flour)
    • 250ml (1 cup) hot water

    Preparation:30min  ›  Cook:15min  ›  Ready in:45min 

    1. In a medium bowl, mix together masa harina and hot water until thoroughly combined. Turn dough onto a clean surface and knead until pliable and smooth. If dough is too dry add more hot water; if sticky, add more masa harina; if it begins to dry out, sprinkle with water.
    2. Cover dough tightly with plastic film and allow to stand for 30 minutes.
    3. Preheat a cast iron frying pan or griddle to medium-high.
    4. Divide dough into 15 equal-size balls. Using a tortilla press, a rolling pin, or your hands, press each ball of dough flat between two sheets of plastic film.
    5. Immediately place tortilla in preheated pan and allow to cook for approximately 30 seconds, or until browned and slightly puffy.
    6. Turn tortilla over to brown on second side for approximately 30 seconds more, then transfer to a plate. Repeat process with each ball of dough. Keep tortillas covered with a towel to stay warm and moist until ready to serve.

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    Reviews in English (146)


    When these are made correctly, like the instructions above they taste amazing, so much better than store bought wraps that stick together in the packaging  -  21 Oct 2014


    This is a very "basic" corn tortilla recipe. Traditionally, at least in Northern Baja - we use salt and 'additional' lime juice with the masa harina to prepare corn tortillas. There aren't many different types of masa harina - because masa harina is corn flour made from corn and lime. The commonly available brand in the US is Maseca; although I believe Quaker also makes masa harina. Maseca makes a masa harina for tortillas (white bag) and a masa harina for tamales (peach/brown bag). Honestly I'm not sure what the difference is between the two because the masa harina for tamales doesn't include baking powder or salt... which must be added when making tamales. So I believe the two are probably identical; but I cannot confirm this. In my experience corn tortillas don't "puff" (they are not made with baking powder, so they will not puff like flour tortillas would). However, the corn tortillas should turn light/ med-light brown. No oil is needed to 'cook' the tortillas - and although it is best to use a cast iron skillet - a comal can also be used (thin round griddle-like pan). The water amounts are just an estimation (as the temperature and humidity will always play a factor in the process). I use a little less water and add as needed (until the dough doesn't stick). Use parchment paper instead of wax paper to press the tortillas (tortilla press is essential - but may be done using a heavy plate/pan. This is not as effective and a press.  -  22 Jun 2007  (Review from Allrecipes USA and Canada)


    A few helpful hints to an otherwise good recipe. 1) A tortilla press is definitely the way to go. Less than ten bucks, no muss, no fuss. 2) Don't use plastic wrap or wax paper; both are too fragile and sticky. Use a plastic freezer bag instead and cut the bag to size for your press so you wind up with two sheets of freezer bag plastic. You still have to be careful peeling the formed tortillas off them but it's MUCH easier than wax paper. You can reuse the plastic sheets; just rinse (or wash) and dry, then reuse. Store them with your tortilla press. 3) Like one other reviewer, I find a dash of salt helpful.  -  18 Nov 2002  (Review from Allrecipes USA and Canada)