Recipe for How to Make Corn Tortillas at Home
Cuisine: The Americas
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 to 16
  • 2 cups masa harina (not corn meal, not fresh masa)
  • ½ tablespoon salt
  • 1¼ cups warm water (reserve 2 tablespoons)
  • 1 tablespoon oil for cooking
  • Parchment paper
  • plastic zip top bag
  1. Whisk the masa harina and the salt together in a large mixing bowl. Push the masa harina mixture to the sides of the bowl leaving the center open making a "well."
  2. Pour the warm water into the center of the well and, using a circular motion, stir the masa harina into the water. The dough should be soft and moist and resemble sugar cookie dough. If necessary add the reserved water. Or even an additional tablespoon. The amount of water may vary slightly depending on the humidity or the freshness of the masa harina.
  3. You may shape the dough into a log or disk, wrap in plastic wrap and use later in the day or even the next day.
  4. Cut 16 squares of parchment paper large enough to cover the entire bottom of the tortilla press or, if you are rolling out the dough, about 8 inches square.
  5. Roll the dough into 16 small balls (slightly smaller than golf balls).
  6. Heat the griddle or pan over medium heat. Drizzle the pan with a little oil and wipe of the excess with a paper towel.
  7. Place a square of parchment paper on the bottom of the tortilla press. Place one ball of dough in the center of the press then move it slightly closer to the hinged side of the press (as the press closes, the dough will be forced forward and squish out of the front of the press. Moving the dough back prevents this).
  8. Place the zip top bag on top of the ball of dough close the press and press the tortilla to the desired thickness.
  9. Open the press and peel off the zip bag. Take the pressed tortilla by the parchment paper and lay it dough side down on the pre-heated griddle. As the tortilla begins to cook, the parchment is easily peeled away without tearing the tortilla.
  10. Cook the tortilla for 1 minute on the first side and slightly less for the second side. The tortillas should be soft and flexible, not over cooked and stiff.
  11. Repeat for each tortilla.
  12. Wipe the griddle or pan with the oiled paper towel when necessary. The tortillas should not require more oil than that.
  13. Place the tortillas on a plate and wrap with a clean cloth to keep warm.
  14. Serve immediately.
Recipe by Everyday Southwest at