Homemade flour tortillas are surprisingly easy to make! With just a simple list of ingredients and a few turns of the rolling pin, you can have warm, fresh, delicious homemade tortillas ready to serve in about a half an hour!
It's been more than twenty years since I had first ate a warm, homemade flour tortilla. The memory is as fresh as if it had happened yesterday.
I remember watching in fascination as our cousin Leah, the Mexican-born daughter of Christian missionaries, rolled out one tortilla after another, flour motes dancing with each turn of her pin.
In well-practiced rhythm, Leah rolled, flipped, turned, and fried each circle of dough with machine-like consistency; quickly building a stack of warm, floury flat-breads tall enough to feed our small army of children. Watching her work was a moment of pure grace, and I remember feeling immense gratitude for her efforts.
Soft, flavorful, and tender, Leah's homemade flour tortillas made nearly every tortilla I'd eaten up until then taste like flattened papier-mâché. If you have never made homemade tortillas, it's high time that you do. And once you do, you will never go back to store-bought. (OK, maybe you will sometimes, for the convenience; but after these, those store-bought tortillas will never taste the same again.)
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How to Make Homemade Flour Tortillas
Now, here's the big secret about homemade tortillas... they are surprisingly fast and easy to make!
(For ingredient amounts and further instructions, scroll down to the recipe card below.)
The dough should be soft but not sticky. You can always add more flour if you need to.
Knead the dough for about 5 minutes, adding flour as needed if the dough gets sticky.
Step 2: Allow dough to rest.
Form the dough into a large ball and wrap in plastic or cover with a towel.
Allow dough to rest on counter for about 20 minutes.
Step 3: Form dough into balls.
After the dough has rested, divide it into 2” balls (about the size of a golf ball). Form all of the dough into balls before progressing to the next step. Cover the balls with plastic or a clean cloth. (I like to use a gallon-size reusable bag for this.)
Step 4: Roll out tortillas.
Flatten a dough ball with your palm and dust each side with flour, then roll into a 5-6” circle. Turn and flip each tortilla a few times as you roll them out.
Want to make an awesome tortilla warmer like the one in the picture above? Check out my Tortilla Warmer DIY tutorial here!
Homemade Flour Tortillas
- Mix together flour, salt and baking powder. Drizzle in the olive oil and mix with your hands.
- Mix in a little water at a time with your hands until you have a soft dough. (The dough should be soft but not sticky. You can always add more flour if you need to.) Knead the dough for about 5 minutes, adding flour as needed if the dough gets sticky.
- Form the dough into a ball and wrap in plastic or cover with a towel. Let rest for about 20 minutes. (This allows to gluten to rest.)
- Divide dough into 2” balls (about the size of a golf ball). Flatten a dough ball with your palm and dust each side with flour, then roll into a 5-6” circle. Turn and flip each tortilla a few times as you roll them out. [See note]
- Heat a frying pan or griddle over medium heat. DO NOT grease or spray pan with cooking spray. Place a tortilla in the pan and cook until it bubbles a little – around 20-30 seconds. Flip it and cook the other side 20-30 seconds.
- Place cooked tortillas in a tortilla warmer, or inside a folded kitchen towel. The steam from the hot tortillas softens them.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information provided is accurate, complete, and useful.
Our flour tortilla recipe is an adaptation of "Flour Tortillas Diaz." I love that it doesn't call for lard or shortening, and the tortillas it makes are soft and pliable even after they have been sitting for some time.
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POST UPDATED 2.15.2020 - This post was originally published June 30, 2014.