How to Make Fresh Blue Corn Tortillas at Home

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How to Make Fresh Blue Corn Tortillas at Home - Serving www.compassandfork.comAre you looking for a better alternative to supermarket bought wheat tortillas? How about making your own fresh blue corn tortillas? Easy to make!

Do you love Mexican food? Like tortillas, but maybe looking for something a little different? Maybe you even think they are a little bland. Don’t buy those wheat-based tortillas from the supermarket, how about making fresh blue corn tortillas?

Learning how to make blue corn tortillas is simple. They are surprisingly easy to make. I find the taste of blue corn tortillas far superior to wheat tortillas and no gluten to worry about! Their color is also rather spectacular and will have your friends and family raving about the taste.

I also find fresh blue corn tortillas a more filling alternative to their wheat counterparts. They are fun to make and you can involve the whole family. This is another good recipe to introduce the joys of cooking to children.

And once you know how to make blue corn tortillas, you can use them as the basis for other blue corn tortilla recipes.

About Corn

We all know yellow corn, but did you know corn actually comes in a variety of colors including blue, black, purple and red? And many of these heirloom or native varieties are much better tasting and much better for you in terms of nutrition.

Corn is the largest, agricultural crop in the USA, and America grows more of it than anywhere in the world. In the USA, much of the corn crop is used in other products or to feed livestock. Roughly 36% of corn grown in the USA goes to feed livestock (cattle, pigs and chickens), and another 40% is used for biofuels including ethanol.


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Of the small percentage consumed by humans, some is exported to other countries, some is consumed as corn and the remainder is used to make food and food products including corn flour, cornmeal, hominy, and grits. The making of high fructose corn syrup is another large use of corn in the USA.

Unfortunately breeding corn for these by-products has increased the sugar content and reduced the nutritional value now found in most widely available corn varieties. So, there is not a lot of nutrition in yellow corn. So what is the alternative?

How to Make Fresh Blue Corn Tortillas at Home www.compassandfork.comAbout Blue Corn

Look for heirloom varieties of corn at the local farmer’s market or specialty grocery store. When using corn flour or corn meal a nutritious alternative is blue corn flour.

Blue corn is common in Mexico, Peru and other parts of South America. Corn is one of the most widely used ingredients in Peruvian cuisine. During our visit to Peru we learned a lot about the ancient farming techniques of the Incas. They used careful breeding and seed selection to create varieties of both corn and potatoes that would grow in a variety of climates and terrains. There is evidence of corn growing in Peru as far back as 1200 BC.

Today Peruvian farmers grow over 55 varieties of corn, more than anywhere else on earth, in a wide range of climates. Mexico’s corn production is much the same, focusing on native varieties that thrive in a variety of natural conditions.

Health & Nutrition Benefits of Blue Corn

Blue corn contains high levels of anthocyanins, which is what give it the blue tones. This is the same antioxidant found in other blue/purple/red plants including berries.

The health benefits of anthocyanins include:

  • better metabolism of glucose;
  • properties that protect from cell damage and toxins;
  • inflammation reduction; and
  • better cognitive function.

And blue corn tortilla recipes contain 20% more protein than those made form white or yellow corn. They also have less starch and a lower glycemic index (GI).

And if we still haven’t convinced you, how about the fact they look and taste great!

Fresh Blue Corn Tortillas

As to the question of, “How to make blue corn tortillas”? Only 2 cups of blue corn flour mixed with 2 cups of warm water. Could there be anything easier than that?

We used Minsa Blue Corn Masa Mix. Not only can you make tortillas with this mix but also tamales, sopes, enchiladas, pupusas, gorditas and atoles. When you open the pack the delightful smell of the blue corn will have you smiling with delight. We receive no commission for mentioning Minsa, we just like the brand. If you use a different brand, the measurements may be different, so follow the instructions on the pack.

Try these home-made, fresh blue corn tortillas. They are easy to make, deliver a superior result and the dark blue color makes for some interesting taste and color combinations. Try making fish tacos with them, you will love the result. Also great with tomatillo chipotle salsa.

We used Minsa brand blue corn, but there are others available and you can order online if you can’t find it in your local shop.


 

How to Make Fresh Blue Corn Tortillas at Home
How to Make Fresh Blue Corn Tortillas at Home
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Fresh blue corn tortillas represent the taste and aromas of everything good about Mexican cooking.
Servings Prep Time Cook Time
16tortillas 10minutes 20minutes
Servings Prep Time
16tortillas 10minutes
Cook Time
20minutes
Ingredients
  • 2 cups flour, blue corn we used Minsa brand. Check quantities if using a different brand
  • 2 cups water warm
Servings: tortillas
Units:
Ingredients
  • 2 cups flour, blue corn we used Minsa brand. Check quantities if using a different brand
  • 2 cups water warm
Servings: tortillas
Units:
Instructions
  1. Mix the blue corn flour and warm water for about 4 minutes. I mixed by hand.
  2. Divide the dough into 16 small-sized portions, about golf ball size.
  3. Press into 6 inch (15 cm) round shapes using a tortilla press lined with wax paper, or use hands to flatten out the dough without the wax paper.
  4. Place on a griddle, pre-heated to a high temperature. Let cook for about 20 seconds and flip. Cook for a further 20 to 30 seconds. Additional flipping may be necessary to fully cook the tortillas depending on their thickness. I used a sandwich press and this worked well.
  5. Place the completed tortillas in an oven on low heat, covered to keep from drying while you cook the remaining tortillas. (You can use a tortilla server as well if you have one or a terracotta bowl.)
Recipe Notes

How to Make Fresh Blue Corn Tortillas at Home www.www.compassandfork.com

30 Responses

  1. Andy
    | Reply

    Is there a way to make the totillas without a press? Thanks

    • Compass & Fork
      |

      You can just use a pan. If you watch them make them in Mexico or other parts of Central America they don’t use a press. Just flatten them with your hands and use a flat pan.

  2. Emily
    | Reply

    I have lived in Mexico and watched the best of the hand made tortilla makers at work. They then taught me, over and over again! Practice makes perfect.
    The water has to be hot when you add it. This is important when using maseca azul corn flour.
    yes, salt can be added, but avoid other additions if you want the tortilla to rise and be pliable.(seeds and such will make your tortilla very tough)
    let it sit with a towel over it. Although it does not have any rising agents, leaving the warm dough to sit covered for no more than a half hour really helps to produce a lighter textured tortilla. I keep my dough covered when I am pressing out my tortilla. If the texture changes; like becomes a bit dry, dip your hands in water and then work the dough with your damp hands to ensure this moisture is distributed. Don’t just add more water and stir.
    You need a griddle or comal of some form. Heat is important. For some people around the mid point on an electric stove dial, but this really depends on your set up. On an open flame you have to test out your surface to make certain it is not too hot, not too cold. I have been using an electric grill where I can set the temperature around 350F.(I alos have a traditional clay comal which is a different skill using this cooking surface) Make certain you have pressed your tortilla thinly, and with the azul masa, you need to adjust for the density of this flour. Slip your tortilla on the griddle, wait and watch, but make certain it is fully in contact with the hot surface. Do you see steam rising from the tortilla? This shows the moisture is cooking out, and look to see if the edges are slightly showing a sign of rising off the surface. Flip the tortilla, let it rest, and you can “pat” the tortilla slightly to ensure it is in contact with your hot surface. Let it sit but watch it…is the stem rising, is some of the tortilla puffing up? Do not let it linger too long on this side. The third flip over, and a slight touch against the comal will result in the tortilla puffing up. If you finally get this knack, the puffy part, then get it off the grill because it is ready! It is learning the knack of how the dough feels in your hands, thin pressing of the tortilla, and then the perfect moment between laying the tortilla on the grill and the brief time it takes to cook it. Most people cook their tortilla too long! I myself have had some hilarious times making tortilla-corn masa flour, either white, yellow or blue corn flour, has its own unique way it likes to work. And I have been frustrated, but also triumphant so my advice is keep on making them. The moment you get the knack, its with you always. Tortilla are as much an art form, as they are also an expression of the hands and heart of the maker.

    • Compass & Fork
      |

      Emily, Excellent advice- thanks for your comment. I agree watching the tortilla masters is amazing!

  3. Jessi
    | Reply

    So, I tried this recipe with another brand and it was very moist so I tried adding more flour, that didn’t work. Was back and forth between water and more flour. Then, I tried it from a different recipe which called for tapioca flour, oil and baking powder. That didn’t seem to make a difference so then, I tried putting standard masa harina, but I don’t think it feels right. It’s still moist. Right now I wrapped it in a ball and put it in the fridge for tomorrow and dinner was pretty much ruined! Do you think at this point it could be salvaged? The flour itself is very fine by the way so I kinda figured that was going to happen.

    • Compass & Fork
      |

      Jessi, if you have more flour you might try again in a smaller batch- warm water and flour and see if you get the correct consistency. If you do it might help you to decide how to adjust the dough from the fridge. And maybe overnight in the fridge will dry it out but you might you might try leaving it in a oven on low heat and see if that drys it out if overnight in the fridge doesn’t help. Not clear if you tried adding tapioca and oil to the original mix or just tried another recipe. Also try taking a golf ball sized bit of dough and just adding flour to it rather than the entire batch.

    • Jessi
      |

      Thank you so much for answering so promptly! I might have some flour still left over I can try a smaller batch as u suggested. First time around, I used more hot than warm water and poured the water lil by lil but the consistency against my hands always felt moist but still crumbly when I tried forming a small ball. (If that even makes sense lol.) Definitely not like masa. It’s still in the fridge waiting for me to get home. I’ll try all your suggestions. To be on the safe side, I’ll search for Maseca Blue Masa before going home. I read they make it. I never knew that! And yes, I did add the oil, baking soda and tapioca from another recipe I happen to find with blue corn flour. It’s NOT that common btw lol. Also my hands turned purple messing with the dough. Is that supposed to happen? I haven’t read anyone say that’s happened to them One last thing…do u think adding some regular masa to a fresh batch will help? I read by someone that tortillas cannot be made with just any type of cornmeal/flour, unless it’s made with masa harina? Something about it being specially made for that very purpose. I don’t know.

    • Compass & Fork
      |

      I see recipes all the time that make tortillas with “normal” flour- so not sure that makes that big a difference. Let us know how you go. Good luck.

  4. Drsteele046
    | Reply

    These are especially good if you make them with a little salt and add some cassava flour as it will add to the texture and has a great flavor

  5. Dixie
    | Reply

    I haven’t tried recipe but would like to. Is it blue corn FLOUR, or blue corn MEAL?

    • Compass & Fork
      |

      Flour and meal are often used to mean the same thing. Meal is usually a coarser grind than flour. In general flour has sometimes had processing before it is ground. I.e. in almond meal the skins are usally lef t on the almonds, in flour it has been removed and is finer.

  6. Zan
    | Reply

    I made a batch of tortillas last night that were delicious. I read some above comments about the poor flavor if you don’t use the EXACT brand of flour you mentioned. I used a generic organic blue cornmeal that I added a tiny amount of salt and lime juice. When I added the lime- the flour turned bright pink!!! Absolutely beautiful! What is this phenomenon? Thank you for encouraging fellow humans to make their own food and continue broadening a connected healthy food network 🙂

    • Kirsty Prewer
      |

      Your own little acid indicator is what happened! The properties that colour the corn blue is the same as in red cabbage and blueberries. You can use them as PH indicators. Pink/red indicates acid, purple in neutral PH, blue to green indicates alkali.
      What a fun coloured tortilla you ended up with!

  7. Catherine Hurla
    | Reply

    I am originally from New Mexico. I now live in Arizona. The only place I find blue corn tortillas is in restaurants that are run by people from New Mexico. They are more of a Native American thing that the people of New Mexico incorporated into their cooking. I cannot find blue corn meal here so I have to order it or have family send me some from New Mexico. A friend of mine bought me a tortilla press and the blue corn flour. I think that she may be hinting at green chile enchiladas made with blue corn flour. Can’t wait to make them.

  8. Tracy Smith
    | Reply

    I added a half teaspoon of salt and about 1/4 cup of flax seed.
    After the tortillas were cooled I cut them into triangles and fried to make blue corn chips.

    • Compass & Fork
      |

      Tracy- that sounds fantastic. Thanks for sharing the suggestion!

  9. Janny
    | Reply

    I used a different brand blue corn flour I bought in NM. This was an unmitigated disaster. There was way too much water, and I added slowly and stopped, but too late. The only way to rescue was to add flour and follow another recipe which suggested putting a ball in the hot skillet (cast iron for me) and flattening it and cooking two minutes on each side. So don’t make this recipe unless you’re using the same brand of blue corn flour. It still was awful, BTW. I’m GF so could only nibble but my husband couldn’t eat them.

    • Editor
      |

      This is a really good point. I used Minsa brand and followed the instructions on the pack. If you are using another brand follow the instructions for the right quantities of blue corn flour and water for that particular brand.

  10. Jimmy
    | Reply

    would there be any issue with using a frying pan rather than a griddle?

    • Editor
      |

      I have made these using a frying pan as well.

  11. Ali @ Home & Plate
    | Reply

    This is such an easy recipe that even I can’t mess it up. I love blue tortillas and usually buy what I need. No longer!. I am going to give this one a try next time we eat Mexican.

    • Editor
      |

      I think you will like it. They have such a fresh taste about them and are quite filling.

  12. Ashley - Forking Up
    | Reply

    Oops, I may have double-replied… anyways, I love this recipe! Blue corn tortillas look so PRETTY. I’ve never had one, but you’re making me want to try one 🙂

    • Editor
      |

      Not only pretty to look at but tasty as well. They are good for a change from wheat-based tortillas.

  13. rika
    | Reply

    Thanks for sharing this homemade corn tortilla recipe! Looks so delicious, can’t wait to try

    • Editor
      |

      I hope you enjoy the tortillas. Something a little different.

  14. Kristen Greazel
    | Reply

    blue corn chips are my favorite! I bet these are so good! This is so creative!

    • Editor
      |

      Funny you should mention blue corn chips. That really was our inspiration for trying the tortillas.

  15. We buy blue corn tortilla chips but I can’t say I’ve ever heard of blue corn tortilla. And we don’t see blue corn either. I should really keep my eye out for that! And the flour too. We make lots of tacos at home and I think it’s about time we make our own tortilla and stop buying ready-made. I mean, just two ingredients! 🙂

    • Editor
      |

      Yes only 2 ingredients. I think you will find the blue corn flour in any Mexican store. We live in Australia and we were able to find it.

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