Making Tortillas!


For some time now, I’ve wanted to try and make tortillas!  Everywhere I read that they are pretty simple.  After all, they are the basic bread staple of many South American families without fancy equipment and materials.  I think they are really like many cultures basic fry breads.   Simple, no leavening, yeast or fancy waiting times.

Now, true tortillas use lard for their recipes.  Good old fashioned lard.  If you don’t have lard, you can use butter.  Or even oil.  I’ve heard that some folks will use shortening, but from what I read, that’s really a sort of last ditch, oh my gosh, what can we use we need tortillas NOW, sort of option.   I’m not sure why and I’m pretty sure someone will tell me why and or mention that their grandma always used shortening and they were just fine.

We used butter because we were fresh outta lard.

Actually, I have to admit, I don’t think I’ve EVER bought or gotten lard in my whole entire life.  I’m not really sure what I would use it for.

No, wait, I take that back.  I have a small package of leaf lard in my freezer from our first hog!!!  Everyone said that is the most wonderful, beautiful lard that you can get from a pig.  So I asked for it and then promptly forgot about it.  I should probably dig that out.  Maybe in a few days.

However, I digress.

Here is the simple recipe that we used.

2 cups flour
1 cup milk
2 tbsps lard/butter/oil/shortening
1 tsp salt   (We used sea salt because we really like that stuff!)

That’s it folks.

Cut the lard into your flour and salt.   Slowly add the milk until you get a nice kinda thick ball as you are stirring it up.  Don’t overthink it.  It’s just simple.   I used a fork to smash the butter into the flour, just like how I make a pie crust.  And then just sort of whipped it all up.  It was easy.

Then turn the lump onto a floured board and knead it for a minute or two.   Nothing too crazy, just enough to get it nice and ready.  You can then cut it into about 8 to 10 balls.  Roll them up and let them set for about 20 minutes.  You can just rush and cook them, but if you give them a brief rest, they really seem to be a little more poofyier.

(I wonder why my spell checker doesn’t like poofyier…   Hmmm….)


Once they rested a wee bit, you just get your skillet/griddle/pan ready.  

And get this… you really don’t need to do anything to your heating surface.  If it’s nice and well seasoned, like a cast iron pan, you can just flop that bad boy down and 30 seconds later, flip it for another 30 seconds and poof!  You got tortillas!

However, our electric griddle needed just a wee spray of oil olive Pam to make the tortillas really nice and have a touch of color as they cooked.

All you do is heat it up, pretty hot…  sizzley hot…  and then roll that ball out thin and just flop it on there.   Be ready, it will puff up and bubble a bit…  We really found it was good to have a roller-outer person and a flipper-gal.  Our first ones were a little misshapen. Clearly we had not gotten the whole art of rolling out a nice tortilla.  They were a wee bit too thick, too.   Almost more like a pita or something.

They tasted awesome, so it was okay.


However, as you can clearly see, our fifth and sixth were getting very nice!  Look at the size of that one on the right there!   Man, was the roller-outter gal doing a bang up job!  (if I might say so myself….)  


It really didn’t take that long.  And in fact, we were done cooking all dozen that we made in like under 10 minutes?  After we were done, we laid them on a plate and stashed them in the microwave, just to stay warm as we finished up our cooking.   We had a pair of nice little ribeye steaks, so we just cut them thin and fried them on the griddle with a touch of butter and a little garlic seasoning.   Simple and fast, really.  The girls liked theirs with just steak wrapped up.   I added a little of my sweet pepper salsa for a really good quick meal!  I wanted green beans or maybe some refried beans and rice as a side but I got voted off the island for good old corn.  Oh well, the steak rollups were so darn good, I couldn’t really complain!  



Well, another thing off the bucket list of going homemade!   I believe we will do this again, for sure… it was easy, pretty fun and the taste… oh my gosh, so so much better than store bought!  Just fresh, warm and wonderful.  I think they would be good brushed with a little butter and a sprinkle of cinnamon and sugar!   Or with some good Mexican cheese and rolled up to dip in salsa!  Or hey, how about just rolled up later with some lunch meat and all, like a wrap sandwich!  Oh, the possibilities!!!

Give these a try, you will really enjoy them!

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About Mobymom

the banjo player for Deepwater Bluegrass, and the editor of as well as the main graphic designer of the Westvon Publishing empire. She is a renaissance woman of many talents and has two lovely daughters and a rehab mobile home homestead to raise.


Making Tortillas! — 2 Comments

  1. I got my husband aka ‘the only one that cooks round these here parts’ into making them for me. Now we love them. One thing that we do is make them extra crispy and use them instead of tortilla chips (way, way less salt.) Also one time he made a really thick soup and we ate it off tortillas and it was so good that I even ate the extra tortillas we had in the fridge because saving food for later is not how I roll. Apparently.

    • Oh that sounds good. I think the next time we make them I’m gonna make them a bit smaller… so they can be like a flat bread for dipping or just like with dinner or something. More like a roll….? If that makes any sense. I have heard that you can bake them after cooking in the oven with a little spice shake on, maybe a brush of butter and they make AWESOME chips… like you’re saying just another step… I was just glad that we finally got over our fear of making them! hahaha…..