Updated August 21, 2021Corn flour, or maize flour, forms the traditional tortilla in Mexican cuisine. While flour tortillas are popular, corn tortillas actually predate flour tortillas. Corn tortillas can be traced back to the Aztecs, while flour tortillas were not produced until the Spaniards brought wheat to Mexico.When choosing a corn tortilla, read the nutrition facts and ingredients list. Many mass-produced corn tortillas mix corn flour with wheat flour, affecting its nutritional makeup.What’s in a Corn Tortilla?According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), a medium-size corn tortilla is about 28 grams and includes the following:12.8 grams of water (we get about 20 percent of our daily water intake from food and other beverages)12.5 grams of carbohydrates1.6 grams of protein1.76 grams of dietary fiber0.798 grams of lipid (fat)0.246 grams of sugar52.1 milligrams of potassium22.7 milligrams of calcium20.2 milligrams of magnesium0.344 milligrams of iron12.6 milligrams of sodiumOne hundred percent corn tortillas are an excellent choice for anyone with Celiac disease or gluten intolerance. Just remember to check the nutrition facts label to ensure there’s no added wheat flour.Corn vs. Flour TortillasAccording to the USDA, the average medium-size flour tortilla is 45 grams and contains the following:14.4 grams of water22.2 grams of carbohydrates3.69 grams of protein1.58 grams of dietary fiber3.6 grams of lipid (fat)1.67 grams of sugar56.2 milligrams of potassium65.7 milligrams of calcium9.9 milligrams of magnesium1.63 milligrams of iron331 milligrams of sodiumFlour tortillas are often larger and thicker than corn tortillas, making a good base for burritos and other similar foods.While neither tortillas are bad for you, a flour tortilla is often considered the less healthy option. The average flour tortilla has more carbs, fat, sugar, and sodium and less magnesium and fiber than a corn tortilla. Plus, some find it easier to stick to serving sizes when they eat dishes made with smaller corn tortillas instead of flour tortillas.If you prefer flour tortillas or have a recipe that calls for one, try a whole wheat tortilla instead of a refined flour tortilla. Whole wheat bread options contain more vitamins and minerals than white bread.Making Corn TortillasHow should you track what goes in and out of your body? Many people argue the best way is to prepare your food. Others simply enjoy the satisfaction of making their meals from scratch or the taste of home-cooked food.If you’re interested in preparing homemade corn tortillas, the process isn’t hard. You need:Corn flour (available online, at most Mexican markets, and some chain grocery stores)Warm waterA tortilla press or rolling pinSheets of parchment paper or plastic wrapA griddle, skillet, or frying panOptional ingredients, such as ½ teaspoon of salt and ½ tablespoon of olive oil, for a different tasteTake 2 cups of corn flour and mix 1 ½ to 2 cups of hot water in a bowl. If you have olive oil or salt, add them in as well. Stir to combine and let the mixture sit for a few minutes.Next, knead the dough with your hands for several minutes until it’s pliable. Ideally, it should feel smooth without feeling sticky, like you’re working with clay. If the dough is too wet or dry, add more water or dough as needed.If you want better tasting tortillas, let the dough rest for 15 to 30 minutes. However, if you’re hungry and eager to eat, you can skip this step.Form the dough into balls that fit in the palm of your hand. You can also experiment and make larger or smaller balls for different tortilla sizes.If you’re using a tortilla press, place a parchment or plastic sheet on the press, followed by a tortilla ball and another sheet. Gently press down until the tortilla is about 4 to 5 inches wide.If you’re using a rolling pin, place the ball between sheets and press it down until it’s a disc. Then use the rolling pin until it’s the desired size and thickness.Once you have your raw tortilla, cook it in a pan on high heat. Each side should cook for 30 seconds to 2 minutes. The tortilla should look lightly toasted with curling edges and forming air pockets.You can serve immediately or refrigerate the tortillas for a later meal.What if Corn Tortillas Aren’t for Me?If corn tortillas aren’t to your taste, that doesn’t mean you’re limited to flour tortillas. With a little bit of creativity and research, you’ll discover many types of tortillas you can try.Cauliflower tortillas are one option:Take a cauliflower head and use a blender or food processor to cut into pieces that are smaller than rice grains. Many stores sell riced cauliflower in the frozen foods section, enabling you to skip this step.Steam the riced cauliflower, then wrap the cauliflower in a clean cheesecloth or dish towel. Squeeze thoroughly to remove all excess moisture. If too much water remains in the cauliflower, your tortillas will be soggy.Mix the cauliflower with two large eggs and your choice of seasonings. Try basic salt and pepper, or add in cilantro, oregano, paprika, etc.Separate the “dough” into balls and form into tortillas. Place your tortillas on a baking pan.Cook in the oven for about 8 to 10 minutes, then flip and cook the other side for about 5 minutes. Your tortillas should be ready to eat then.There’s also almond flour or coconut flour tortillas. You can buy them at select stores or prepare at home by following a recipe—you’ll find many online with a quick web search.You also substitute wrap options for tortillas when you’re making a dish. Place your fillings in a lettuce or egg white wrap and roll it up to make a meal. [faq_cooper]Did We Help?Corn tortillas are an excellent way to control portion sizes and ingest necessary nutrients. They’re also a good flour alternative for anyone who has trouble digesting gluten. While they’re a staple of Mexican dishes, you can get creative with how you incorporate corn tortillas into your diet.This article is for informational purposes and should not replace advice from your doctor or other medical professional. CommentsLeave a comment Jessica Santos January 21, 2021 at 8:21 pm ReplyThis was informative (although I’ve read better descriptions of the corn flour needed to make tortillas at home). My main takeaway is: I got some great suggestions and ideas from this article. Thank you! 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