Photo of Homemade Corn Tortillas by WW

Homemade Corn Tortillas

Total Time
1 hr 31 min
15 min
16 min
Making homemade corn tortillas is actually quite simple and requires just three ingredients. Plus, the flavor is unbeatable. Masa harina is made from ground corn kernels that have been soaked in an alkaline solution, such as limewater (this is called nixtamlization). It makes the corn easier to grind, easier to digest, and adding a distinctive flavor. A tortilla press isn’t absolutely required, it makes the process easier and produces perfect tortillas every time because it evenly applies pressure to the dough. If you don’t want to invest one to try this recipe or can’t borrow one from a friend, you can use a rolling pin or a flat-bottomed pan. Just know that it will take a bit longer.


Masa harina

32 Tbsp, preferably Bob’s Red Mill brand or Maseca (2 cups)

Kosher salt

1 tsp


1½ cup(s), hot from the tap (plus more as needed)


  1. Place masa and salt in a large bowl; whisk well to combine. Slowly pour in water; stir well to combine with a wooden spoon to form a dough. (The dough should be firm and neither too dry or too sticky. It should feel a little bit springy to the touch.) Drape dough with a damp kitchen towel (or plastic wrap) and let it sit, about an hour, so that dough can fully absorb the water.
  2. Preheat a large cast iron pan or griddle over medium heat. Roll dough into an even rope about 1-in thick; cut evenly into 16 pieces (it’s easiest to cut the rope in half and then cut each half in half so you have four smaller pieces – then cut each piece into 4 equal pieces). Cover dough pieces with a damp kitchen towel (or plastic wrap).
  3. Cut a 6-inch circle out of a plastic zip-close bag (since the bag has 2 sides, you will end up with 2 circles). Or use parchment or wax paper. Place one piece of plastic on bottom of a tortilla press. Roll a piece of dough into a small ball; place it on top of the plastic. Press it down gently with the heel of your hand; cover with second piece of plastic. Press tortilla press down to flatten dough into a tortilla.
  4. Gently peel one piece of plastic off of tortilla; invert tortilla onto your hand. Gently peel off second piece of plastic; place tortilla onto your hot skillet. Cook until underside is very light golden brown and top looks nice and cooked through, about 45 seconds. Flip tortilla and cook until second side is cooked through, about 15 seconds. Repeat process with remaining dough. Keep tortillas warm in a cloth-lined basket or a tortilla warmer; serve immediately.
  5. Serving size: 1 tortilla