Learn how to make flour tortillas with this easy and homemade vegan flour tortillas recipe. Homemade tortillas taste way better, are much cheaper than buying them at the store and you only need a few simple ingredients. You’ll never want store-bought tortillas again!
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What Are Flour Tortillas
Tortillas de harina or flour tortillas are a Mexican flatbread commonly eaten in the Northern states of Mexico. However nowadays, they have become popular throughout the whole country.
These soft tortillas are incredibly easy to make at home. It’s really just mixing dry ingredients with wet ones, forming a dough ball and using a rolling pin to roll out into a thin round tortilla.
Unlike corn tortillas, which are made with fresh or masa harina, these vegan tortillas are made with all purpose flour and you don’t need tortilla presses to make them.
In my Mexican home growing up they weren’t the traditional tortillas but my mom would treat us to these fresh tortillas now and then.
It’s really not difficult to make your own tortillas, both vegan flour or vegan corn tortillas, are easy so to make. They won’t break the budget and you can serve with your favorite fillings or even enjoy with some regular or vegan butter — they’re heavenly plain like this!
Plus this is a great recipe for anyone making flour tortillas for the first time.
Are Tortillas Vegan?
Traditionally corn tortillas are fully vegan since no animal products are used.
Many traditional flour tortillas aren’t vegan. The reason for this that some people like to use pork lard or drippings to make flour tortillas.
But don’t worry because my tortillas recipe is 100% vegan and loved by meat eaters or those following a plant based diet.
Vegan Flour Tortilla Ingredients
You only need 4 basic ingredients to make homemade vegan flour tortillas, and they are common pantry items everyone should have in their kitchen at all times.
- all purpose wheat flour
- vegetable oil or vegetable shortening
Please note that I’ve never tested it out with whole wheat flour or gluten free flour mixes. The main ingredient is regular flour or regular white wheat flour you find at any grocery store.
For the best results and to get the same soft flour tortillas you see in these photos and video, follow the recipe exactly and also read over all of the tips and troubleshooting information below.
What Makes This Recipe a Vegan Flour Tortilla Recipe
Traditionally many people used lard instead of vegetable oil or vegetable shortening to make flour tortillas. Lard was and still is a common ingredient in a lot of Mexican food.
Of course we don’t want to consume lard, which is an animal fat made from rendered pork skin, so oil is the best vegan option.
My recipe uses vegetable oil and I have also used olive oil and melted or liquid coconut oil with good results. Experiment to find your favorite.
But note that this recipe doesn’t contain any animal products and therefore making it a vegan tortilla recipe
Why Is Baking Powder Used in Flour Tortillas
Some people use baking powder so that the tortillas will have more air bubbles and make them puff up when they are cooking. It’s intended as a leavening agent — much like yeast with loaves of bread or pizza dough.
Do You Have to Use Baking Powder to Make Flour Tortillas
The short and quick answer is a firm no!
Every family has its own flour tortilla recipes and some people like to add baking powder to their tortilla mix, but there are plenty that chooses not to.
I’m one that chooses not to and finds baking powder unnecessary in flour tortillas.
In the many years I’ve made homemade flour tortillas only a couple of times have I ever used baking powder, and I was not happy with the results.
I have found that baking powder actually makes the masa or dough tougher. It dries out the dough and makes it harder to roll out the tortillas into flat disks.
The video and photos you see, I didn’t use any baking powder or leavening agent. The tortillas still puff up very nicely, as you can see.
I find that using warm water, making sure the tortilla dough is well hydrated and that the raw dough is allowed to rests in room temperature sufficiently, this will guarantee those nice air bubbles.
Can You make Gluten-Free Tortillas
My tortillas recipe is not for gluten-free tortillas, but you can make Mexican corn tortillas for an authentic gluten-free tortilla.
I’ve personally never tested gluten free tortilla recipes nor used gluten-free flour. But I did a quick Google search and saw a very promising gluten-free option, Gluten Free Flour Tortillas recipe by Gluten Free on a Shoe String.
From the photos her tortillas look soft and pliable and perfect for making gluten-free wraps. Her recipe includes all purpose gluten free flour, xanthan gum, tapioca flour, and coconut oil. Go check out her recipe!
How to Make Flour Tortillas
Making homemade vegan tortillas is one of the easiest Mexican foods you can possibly cook. Best of all the ingredients are easily found all over the World. So there’s no excuse for not making authentic Mexican flour tortillas.
The ingredients are mixed together, allowed to rest, shaped into small balls, rolled out into flat disks and then cooked for a few minutes on a hot comal.
It’s truly so easy that even children can learn to make tortillas de harina at home!
Step 1: Add the flour and salt to a large bowl. Mix until well combined.
Step 2: Add the oil (either vegetable or olive oil) then pour in the warm water and mix until well combined and shape into a ball of dough. The dough should be hydrated but not too stiff or too wet.
Step 3: We do the dough rest by placing it inside the bowl and covering the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap. Allow to rest for 10 minutes.
Step 4: After resting the dough will be very soft, pliable and stretchy. Watch the video for a demo. Make equal pieces for each size balls, I like to make smaller tortillas and end up with 12. But you can make larger tortillas by dividing the dough into larger pieces.
Once divided, cover the balls so they don’t dry out. Start heating your comal or frying pan to medium-high heat to cook the tortillas.
Step 5: Dust a large cutting board or your work surface with a little bit of flour. Grab one tortilla ball then flatten it with the palm of your hand. Dust with a little flour then roll out to a flat disk shape or tortilla shape into 1/8th of inch.
Step 6: Turn the heat down to medium heat then carefully place a rolled out tortilla on the comal or frying pan. Cook the first side for 2 minutes, you’ll see the air bubbles all around the tortilla.
Flip over and you’ll notice the golden or brown spots from where the air bubbles form. Cook for another minute.
Step 7: Remove the tortilla from the heat and place on a plate. Cover the plate with a clean kitchen towel. Repeat until all the tortillas are cooked. Enjoy immediately or save for later.
How to Make Flour Tortillas Light, Airy and Puffy Tortillas
I have personally found that the key to making flour tortillas light, airy and puff up, is to let them rest so that the flour has a chance to hydrate well.
Leave to rest and cover the mixing bowl with a damp towel or even damp paper towels will work, just don’t let them touch the dough. You could also use plastic wrap.
Then you want to also make sure that you’re mixing the ingredients well. All the kneading will also add air.
Another trick is that when the tortilla is cooking on the comal, use a paper towel or a clean kitchen towel. As you see the air bubbles appear you can gently press on then to help more air build up and create more airy tortillas. (Watch the video for a visual guide.)
How to Keep Tortillas Warm and Soft
As you’re cooking your tortillas make sure to keep them covered. Don’t let them sit out in the open air or they’ll begin to cool down and dry out.
How to Store Homemade Flour Tortillas
If you have any leftovers first allow to come to room temperature, remembering to keep them covered.
The best way is to put cooked tortillas in an airtight container, plastic bag or a Ziploc bag – or a thick freezer bag will also work. Then you can store them in the refrigerator for a week.
To freeze flour tortillas allow to come to room temperature then layer them with a piece of parchment paper between each of them. Flour tortillas will keep fresh in the freezer for up to 6 months.
To defrost frozen flour tortillas place on the counter and allow to defrost. Them you can heat and use as desired.
How to Reheat Flour Tortillas
You can reheat flour tortillas on a hot comal or griddle, or non-stick pan or hot skillet. Simple heat up the pan then place the tortillas on it for a minute or two on each side.
You can also reheat tortillas in the microwave. Set microwave timer for 15 seconds them check on them and if not heated through do another 10 seconds.
When reheating be careful to not do it for too long or the flour tortillas will dry out and break easily.
How Long do Homemade Tortillas Last
They’ll keep fresh in the refrigerator for about a week. Just make sure there’s no moisture on them.
Troubleshooting Flour Tortilla Problems
Below are some common questions and problems that may arise when making flour tortillas. Please let me know if you have any further questions.
Why Did My Tortillas Turn Out Dry
Too much flour was added when rolling them out or not enough water was added when making the dough. Another reason is not allowing them to rest and let the flour hydrate properly.
My Tortillas Crack When I Fold Them
Again it can be a water or hydration issue. Or if they’re rolled out too thinly they’ll tend to crack.
What if I Don’t Want to Use Oil
You can use vegetable shortening instead. Use 2 to 3 Tablespoons.
Can you Freeze Flour Tortillas
Yes you can! Place a piece of parchment paper between each tortilla so that they don’t stick together and fall apart when defrosting. Additionally you can easier to take out just a few as needed instead of defrosting the whole batch.
How to Keep Flour Tortillas Warm
Place the cooked flour tortillas on a plate and cover them with a cloth or place inside of a partially opened Ziplock bag.
Why Aren’t My Flour Tortillas Perfectly Round
Don’t stress this out, the shape is less important than the taste. It takes a lot of practice getting perfectly round tortillas. Additionally the first tortilla always seems to come out worse than the rest — kinda like the first pancake.
How to Serve Flour Tortillas
Freshly, still warm, homemade flour tortillas are a million times better than those from the grocery store. They taste delicious with just a little salt or some butter spread on them.
Below are just a few of the countless ways you can serve flour tortillas.
- Bean, Spinach & Goat Cheese Burritos
- Zucchini Blossom Quesadillas | Quesadillas De Flor De Calabaza
- Healthy Cinnamon Sugar Tortilla Chips
- Make quick and easy burritos with refried black beans and a homemade salsa.
- You can also use these to make burritos or tortilla wraps.
- Soft tacos are another great use.
- Spread with almond or cashew butter
- Spread with peanut butter. I also like to add banana slices with the peanut butter.
Vegan Flour Tortillas Recipe
Ok amigos, check out my super easy flour tortillas recipe below. Remember it’s quick, easy to make and also a delicious vegan flour tortillas! You’re going to love it and promise the store bought flour tortillas will never taste the same again.
Don’t forget to leave me a star rating in the recipe card and a comment below.
How to Make Flour Tortilla | Vegan, Quick & Easy Recipe
- rolling pin,
- comal or griddle a non-stick pan or cast iron pan work too
- clean kitchen towel for covering the cooked tortillas
- bag or container with a lid to store the tortillas
- 2 cups all-purpose wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon salt adjust to taste
- 4 Tablespoons vegetable oil
- 3/4 cup lukewarm water maybe less or more*
- extra flour for dusting
- In a mixing bowl mix the flour and salt until well combined, make a well in the center, and add in all of the oil and half of the water. Mix until well the ingredients are coming together and little by little adding more water until your dough comes together and isn't sticky. Please notice that depending on the conditions of your home you may need to add more or less water to get the dough to come together.Drizzle just a little bit of oil into the bottom of your mixing bowl, then place the dough back in the bowl, cover and allow to sit for 10 to 15 minutes.
- After 10 to 15 minutes check on the dough. It should be soft, moist, stretchy, and easy to work with. If it isn't then cover and let it sit for another 10 minutes.Divide the dough into small even-sized balls around the size of golf balls. Shape them into proper balls then place the little balls back into the bowl and cover. Place your comal/griddle/pan on the stove over medium-high heat. While you wait for it to warm up you can begin rolling out the tortillas.
- Dust your work surface with a little bit of dust, and also rub the rolling pin with some flour too. Place one dough ball onto the work surface, use your palm to flatten down. Then begin rolling and stretching out the dough into a circular shape and to 1/8th of an inch thick.Don't stress it if your tortillas aren't perfect circles — it's the taste, not the shape that matters most. Carefully place your rolled out tortilla on the comal/griddle/pan and allow to cook for about 2 minutes or until you see the dough change color and air bubbles begin to form. (Please watch the video for a visual guide).
- Carefully flip over the tortilla and cook for about a minute or less — you'll see more air bubbles for and it cooks rather quickly so keep an eye on it so that you can take it off the heat.The tortillas should be soft and little golden spots, but not be hard or crispy — they need to bend and roll with ease. Once cooked cover the tortilla in your clean kitchen cloth to keep warm.
- Next, roll out another dough ball into a tortilla repeating step number 3. Once you get the hang of it you'll be able to time the cooking perfectly so that you can be rolling and cooking the tortillas at the same time without having to stop.Serve your tortillas warm as desired and store any leftovers in the fridge inside a plastic bag or a sealed container.
♫Music By♫ Nicolai Heidlas from HookSounds.com
Royalty Free Music from HookSounds https://www.hooksounds.com
(*recipe updated September 2023)
Nancy Lopez is a food blogger and author of the cookbook Mexican Tamales Made Meatless. Born in Mexico, raised in the US, and currently living in Southern Mexico, she has followed a meatless diet for almost 10 years. It is her passion and mission to share all she has learned about vegan Mexican cooking and vegetarian Mexican recipes. Mexican Made Meatless is a blog dedicated to preserving the authentic flavors of Mexican cuisine just without the meat. It’s a place to celebrate Mexican culture and all it’s delightfully delicious traditional foods. Read more…