Tuesday Tip: Steaming Tortillas Without a Steamer

8 03 2011

Since 2Chili and I both work from home, some days the only time we leave the house is to go to  lunch – it’s sort of a forced adventure into the world. Otherwise, between e-procurement and home grocery delivery, we’d probably never leave!

While we are generally lacking in lunch-type places in our town, we do have lots of options when it comes to “fresh mex”: Chipotle, Qdoba, Baja Fresh, and Taco Del Mar, and TDM is by far our favorite in terms of taste, price, and ability to order a smaller burrito (AKA “mondito”); and, if you order carefully, you can get out of there without blowing through your daily sodium or calorie allowance – something not possible at most of the other chains.

One of the best things about Mexican restaurants, I think, is their ability to steam the tortillas. Tortillas heated just about any other way can get crunchy and tough. 2Chili mentioned to me the other day he wished we had a tortilla steamer because he loves burritos and tacos, but they just aren’t the same with store-bought, non-steamed tortillas. And then, it hit me. We can steam them at home. And we don’t need any fancy equipment – just a little ingenuity.

Here’s all it takes to steam your own tortillas:

  • Pot of boiling water
  • Veggie steamer or metal colander
  • Lid

Just boil some water in a pot, put a few tortillas in a colander or veggie steamer, cover with a lid for about a minute, and you’ll have tasty steamed tortillas without a steamer.


Be careful when removing the colander from the pot, as, of course, it will be hot! But the end product is well worth it. Steaming the tortillas produced the best at home enchiladas we’ve had yet.





One response

8 03 2011
Edward Antrobus

Granted it’s not quite the same as a real steamed tortilla, but you can also get a decent tortilla by microwaving the tortillas for about 30 seconds. They come out soft and pliable…but really hot.

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