Want to experiment on homemade gluten-free tortillas with me?
Leah and I made some videos of our testing with the Mockmill and einkorn and gluten-free grains in tortillas, and I wanted to let you know a bit about what you’ll see. We’ve made homemade whole wheat tortillas for years, and they’re even a part of our Kids Cook Real Food eCourse to help kids learn to use a rolling pin properly (that’s at the level for ages 6+, and kids love learning this skill!).
But even though we’ve been eating mostly gluten-free for almost a decade, I’ve never really tackled GF tortillas. I did some grain-free tomato-pizza tortillas for a spell, but they were hard enough to work with (and not great as leftovers) which just didn’t work for my family.
With our new Grinding Grains Challenge, the KS readers asked me to experiment with different flours in the same recipe – kind of what we specialize in here at Kitchen Stewardship, for better or for worse!
Leah and I took a few different days to play with recipes and recorded the second session for you so you can see what cooking with kids is REALLY like in our kitchen – no scripting, no practice, and no experience with the recipe! Gabe (age 3) really wanted to be part of the action, so he’s right in the middle of it all, demonstrating how we let even our littlest ones get involved in the kitchen. (And adding a bit of humor to it all – if he opens his mouth, try to hear what he’s saying because he’s hilarious!!)
Are Homemade Gluten-free Tortillas Possible?
I really thought GF flours would be awful to work with on tortillas and fully expected the finished product to be brittle and gritty. Apparently, I’m a pessimist when it comes to gluten-free baking! #honesty
On our first tortilla experimentation day, I tackled my own recipe for whole wheat tortillas to figure out how it would go if I used weights for baking instead of cups. I also wanted to try “my” tortillas with einkorn flour using the einkorn flour conversion from whole wheat that I’d learned. I accidentally ground the first batch of whole wheat flour on a pretty coarse setting, forgetting that I had done cornmeal before that, so we got to do one more experiment: coarsely vs. finely ground whole wheat flour!
We learned many lessons (which I cover in another post), and since I’m an “all-in” kind of gal as you saw when we tested many kinds of homemade pizza dough in one weekend, I figured I’d try a gluten-free tortilla recipe as well (this one).
It was rough to work with, but look how pliable they ended up!
On this day in the video, we tried some whole grain gluten-free tortillas, and we had to improvise a little – ok a lot – because:
- First, I didn’t want to use the original recipe’s flour mixture because it wasn’t actually whole grain at all.
- Then I decided I’d try to reverse engineer Jovial Foods whole grain gluten-free blend, guessing at percentages to balance the flours. (here it is on Amazon)
- But then I didn’t have any teff, so we used quinoa instead.
- Here’s the whole grain gluten-free blend recipe.
Phew! Amazingly, the gluten-free tortillas turned out, and although they’re a little bitter if you just taste them by themselves (quinoa!), they were excellent once they were part of a quesadilla.
Check the video to see what we did with weighing and freshly milling our grains!
VIDEO: Kids Experiment with Homemade Gluten-free Tortillas
If you can’t see the video above, click Kids Help Cook in Homemade Tortilla Testing (Whole Grain Gluten Free Experiments)re to see it directly on YouTube.
The mill we are using in the video is the Mockmill, which we’ve been using all winter/spring to test whole grains:
- Free US shipping
- Full 6-year warranty
- Info about freshly milling grain and recipes
Click over to Mockmill, and use the code kitchenstewardship2019 at checkout for a little discount. 😉
Mexican Night with Lots of Help from Kids Who Know How to Cook
Once we had the tortillas rocking the griddle, we ended up having EVERYONE helping, including our neighbors who my kids begged to be able to stay for dinner. Look out – if you come to dinner at the Kimballs’, you might get put to work, kids included!
Quinn and Paul are the stars of the Advanced Level of our Kids Cook Real Food eCourse and made one of their favorite dishes from the course, egg-fried rice, while John and his buddy (Quinn’s brother) grated cheese – an important ingredient for quesadillas of course!
Notice how the little guys are at the table – one of my hot tips for parents to improve elbow room issues when inviting kids into the kitchen.
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Are homemade gluten-free tortillas (with no gums!) possible? YES! The dough can be tricky to work with but totally doable. These tortillas make excellent quesadillas!
- 110g whole grain sorghum (about a cup of flour)
- 55g quinoa (about 1/2 cup flour)
- 40g millet (a scant 1/3 cup flour)
- 40g brown rice (about 1/3 cup flour)
- 30g garbanzo beans (about 1/3 cup chickpea flour)
- 1 Tbs. psyllium husk
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1 1/2 tsp. Real salt
- 2 Tbs. palm shortening
- 1/2–1 c. room temperature water (we used 3/4 cup)
- Weigh and grind all the whole grains to make flour in a medium bowl.
- Add the psyllium husk, baking powder and and stir until uniform.
- Use a pastry blender to cut the palm shortening into the flour mixture. If there are large chunks, get your hands in there and pinch them between your fingers to incorporate them into the flour until no fat is larger than the size of a pea.
- Add water bit by bit and mix into the dough (just use your hands!) until all the flour is pulled into the mixture. It will be a bit sticky but not too crazy.
- Let dough rest 30 minutes (this is important for the psyllium husk to do its binding work).
- Make 12-16 balls of dough.
- Heat a cast iron griddle or skillet to medium.
- Use two pieces of parchment paper and roll the dough into a circle as best you can. It’s much softer than whole wheat tortilla dough, so use a gentle touch at first.
- Peel the top piece of parchment paper off, and flip the tortilla over on the cast iron surface once it passes “the sizzle test” with water. (We teach kids how to do that in our Kids Cook Real Food course!)
- Wait about 10-15 seconds and then the top parchment will be really easy to peel off. (DON’T use waxed paper!)
- Check the bottom of the tortilla, and when it’s just starting to brown, flip it over. The second side takes less time to cook.
- Remove to a plate and keep cooking all the tortillas. They are pliable enough for tacos but REALLY good as quesadillas!
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The recipe is adapted from Gluten-free Girl, where she didn’t use 100% whole grain flours and described the result as “warn, soft flatbreads.” Our got thin enough to be “real” tortillas for sure and I used my adaptation of Jovial Foods’ 100% whole grain GF blend. Since you can taste the quinoa a bit, if you want a more “blank palette” tortilla, I’d try the teff in this recipe in place of quinoa.
I have only used “bake by weight” with this recipe but included the “cup” measurements as well using my cup-to-gram converter for gluten-free flours. You should be able to make these tortillas without a mill no problem – if you do and there is an issue with the recipe though, please let me know because I did NOT test the cup measurements out yet.
Here is a close-up of the finished product:
I hope you enjoyed watching us test out something new! More to come about einkorn and whole wheat tortillas in coming posts…
The Grinding Challenge Series is getting me to use my Mockmill grain mill! Here’s what we’re covering:
- Intro to the challenge and a video of setting up the Mockmill for the first time
- How to Translate Whole Wheat Recipe to Einkorn (and an interview with an einkorn farmer)
- Bio-Individuality – why it’s both the new face of health and the genesis of this whole project
- How to Translate Baking Recipes to Weights
- Why Baking with Weights is the Best for Kids
- Testing Pizza Dough with Freshly Milled Grain: Whole Wheat, Einkorn, Gluten-free (whole grain and not-whole-grain)
- Interview with a Master Gluten-free Baker
- Testing Tortillas with Freshly Milled Grain: Whole Wheat, Einkorn, Gluten-free
- Why Mill Your Own Gluten-free Grains?
- How to Make a Gluten-free Sourdough Starter
- Whole Grain, Gum-Free Gluten-free Flour Blend (& a bit on whether xanthan gum is bad for you)
- Interview with a Grain Milling Expert
- The Official Kitchen Stewardship Mockmill Review
Recipes We’ve Worked on in the Series:
- Spelt Banana Muffins
- Einkorn Applesauce Muffins (with peanut butter variation)
- 100% Whole Grain Gluten-free Tortillas
- Whole Wheat Pizza
- Crispy Crust Gluten-Free Pizza (amazing!)
- Einkorn Pizza Dough
- 100% Whole Grain Gluten-Free Pizza Crusts (no gum!)
- How to Make a Gluten-Free Sourdough Starter
Don’t worry, if you don’t have a grain mill or couldn’t imagine yourself grinding grain yourself, I’ll be sure to address when any of these CAN’T be done with commercial flour. Usually recipes are very compatible!