Our favorite flour tortilla recipe based on the method from Mexico: The Cookbook. A wet dough and long kneading time make them soft and chewy.
Recipe first posted February 15, 2015. Last updated with clearer instructions on January 10, 2024
I have been pouring over Mexico: The Cookbook, have you guys read it? There are so many things I want to try. So many things I’ve never heard of. I think I could live the rest of my life and never know even a quarter of what makes up Mexican cuisine.
Could someone please tell me what acitrón de biznaga is? And further more, where I can buy some? This book is giving me a serious case of wanderlust, I just want to know more and more and more.
I have a loooooonnnnggg list of the recipes I want to try from the book but a true indication of any cookbook’s integrity is most often found in the most basic of recipes, therefore, flour tortillas is where I began.
We are a big flour tortilleros in our family.
Armando’s family is from Chihuahua in Northern Mexico where flour tortillas reign supreme so he generally prefers flour to corn.
I’ll admit since discovering pre-rolled, but not cooked, flour tortillas at the grocery store, I hardly ever make my own, but they really are not in the least bit difficult to make and as you can imagine, homemade tortillas are pretty outstanding.
Ingredients To Make This Flour Tortilla Recipe
Home cooks who make flour tortillas for the first time are always surprised at how short the ingredients list is. Are you ready? Here are the simple ingredients:
- All purpose flour
- Vegetable shortening, butter, or lard
- Kosher salt
- Baking powder
How To Make This Flour Tortilla Recipe
If this is your first time making tortillas I suggest following the instructions on the recipe card which tell you how to mix the dough with a stand mixer. This is a very sticky dough (which is the secret to stretchy, chewy tortillas) and might be challenging to make by hand for first-timers.
Combine dry ingredients. Measure the flour by the scoop and scrape method and add to a large bowl. Mix in the baking powder and salt.
Add shortening. Add whichever fat you are using (if using butter make sure it is at room temperature) and rub it into the flour with your hands. Keep working it in until the flour resembles coarse sand with a few larger pebble-sized pieces of fat here and there.
Add water. Add water (warm water from the tap is fine) and stir it in with your hands until all the flour is wet and you have a sticky dough.
Knead the dough. Scrape dough onto a clean counter (don’t add extra flour) and begin kneading the dough. It will be very sticky at first but will come together as you knead it. Use a bench scraper if you have one to unstick the dough from the counter as you go. Knead the dough for 5 minutes. The picture below is what the dough will look like after 5 minutes.
Let it rest. Oil a large bowl and place the dough inside of it. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap and let the dough rest for 20 minutes.
Divide the dough. Pinch off one piece of the dough and roll into a ball. The size will depend on how big your comal or skillet you are going to cook the tortillas on is. If you have a smaller pan you don’t want the dough balls to be too big.
My griddle is 10 inches, so I make my balls about little bit larger than a golf ball each weighing around 1 1/2 ounces (using a kitchen scale makes this super easy). This size ball makes about 8-inch tortillas.
Roll to make smooth balls then place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. I usually get between 28-30 balls. Cover with a clean kitchen towel.
Roll the dough. Place one ball of dough on a floured work surface and roll with a rolling pin into a very thin circle. Keep dusting the counter and rolling pin to maintain a lightly floured surface to prevent from sticking while you are rolling the tortillas. You should be able to see through the dough. That’s how thin it needs to be. Repeat with the remaining dough balls.
You can roll all the dough balls at once and keep them separated between pieces of parchment paper or do them one at a time.
Cook the tortillas. Heat a comal or cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Let heat for about 3 minutes before adding your first tortilla.
Place tortilla on the hot pan and let cook, undisturbed, for about 1 minute or until the surface is covered with bubbles, it removes easily from the pan and has some golden brown spots. Flip and cook on the other side a minute more.
Enjoy! Keep tortillas warm wrapped in a clean kitchen towel and serve right away or let cool completely and then store in a plastic bag or airtight container for up to a week in the refrigerator. Rewarm in a skillet over medium-high heat for a minute or two before eating.
These Flour Tortillas Were Made For:
- Roasted Squash and Kale Quesadillas (healthy, cheesy, YUM!)
- Fried Green Tomato Vegetarian Burrito (make extra-large tortillas for this one)
- Shredded Beef Tacos (our favorite pairing)
- Classic Grilled Steak Fajitas (naturally)
- Rainbow Veggie Quesadillas (lots of veggies!!)
- Green Tomato Chili (the flour tortilla makes and excellent dipper)
Variations On This Flour Tortilla Recipe
How to make them gluten-free. I’ve never tried this recipe with gluten-free flour (if you have please let me know how it went in the comment section below). If you are gluten-intolerant however, I encourage you to make these corn tortillas. They are the bomb!
How to make them with a stand mixer. Combine the dry ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment. Add the shortening and water and mix on low just until the dough comes together, then raise the speed to medium and knead for 5 minutes. Continue with the recipe as written.
How to make them with other fats. You can swap the vegetable shortening for equal amounts of lard or butter or a combination of any of these as long as it equals 2/3 cup. I’ve never made them using a liquid fat like vegetable oil or olive oil but if you wanted to give it a try, please let me know how they turned out.
How to make them with a tortilla press. You can’t. The dough is too springy and won’t get flat enough. It doesn’t work.
More Authentic Mexican Recipes You’ll Love
- Got a can of chipotle peppers in the fridge? Here’s 17 recipes to use them.
- Have you ever made Agua de Jamaica at home? Give this recipe a try!
- This Cilantro Cream Sauce is good on everything!!
- Chicken Mole Verde is one of our go-to meals for family gatherings.
- Kid-friendly option: Chicken Flautas Mexicanas
- A Mangonada is refreshment in the palm of your hand
- Every home cook needs a good bean recipe in their back pocket. This is mine.
Homemade Flour Tortillas Are Simply Dreamy
This flour tortillas recipe is so YUMMY with the perfect soft, chewy texture. You’ll never buy store-bought tortillas again! Try them and let me know how it goes by snapping a pic and tagging me on Instagram @holajalapeno and #holajalapeno so I can see or leave me a comment below (don’t forget to leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating) ! Also, make sure to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!
In support of this small business, ¡Hola! Jalapeño earns revenue in a few different ways. Several sponsored posts are published each month. I also earn an affiliate commission on the sales of products I link to— there are a few of those links in this post. I only feature items I genuinely love and personally use on a regular basis. This commission is an arrangement between the retailer and ¡Hola! Jalapeño (readers never pay more for products). This income allow me to run the site. Thank you for reading!