Easy Does It: Soft Tacos

Easy Does It: Soft Tacos

Gluten Free Soft Tacos

My husband hardly ever looks at himself in the mirror. Like, once a week at the outside.

Say what?

He shaves in the beginning of the week, & then rides out the rest of it, Miami Vice style.

Thank GOD he has me. Otherwise, how would he know when he has a pimple? Or that he needs a haircut? Or when that one rogue eyebrow hair is making a spectacle out of itself?

But does he appreciate my mirror services? Don’t be ridiculous. He doesn’t even appreciate my soft tacos. I have had to train him to say “thank you” for dinner. It goes like this:

He: {finishes eating and puts his plate in the sink, then the dishwasher}
Me: You’re welcome!
He: Oh, thanks for dinner.

All the same, I will continue to be his mirror, and I will continue to be his personal chef. He has other good qualities. They’re just not as much fun to talk about.

So I tried making you Strawberry-Rhubarb Coffee Cake, but you were relatively unimpressed. You didn’t want to turn on your oven in the heat.

Have I mentioned how much I hate Summer?

So this time, no oven. Just the stovetop, and even that only briefly. These Soft Tacos are a riff on the  Flour Tortilla recipe from my book, reprinted in the article I wrote in the current issue of Living Without Magazine. But rather than using only all-purpose gluten-free flour, I used a combination of flour and masa harina corn flour, since I like the weight and chewiness of the masa but the flour makes the dough a bit easier to handle. And instead of oil, I used nonhydrogenated vegetable shortening because I like how smooth it makes the dough. If you’re running out of Better Batter all-purpose gluten-free flour, you can replace the flour called for in this recipe with more masa harina.

These make a super quick Summer dinner. Fill them with a variety of chopped grilled vegetables, or with leftover grilled chicken or ground beef you brown quickly on the stovetop. There’s lot of potential here. And no oven!

What’s your favorite way to eat a soft taco? For me, I like it just the way you see it above: black bean and corn salsa with tomatoes and freshly grated cheese, in a warm taco right out of the pan.

Easy Does It: Soft Tacos
Recipe Type: Main
Author: Nicole @ Gluten-Free on a Shoestring.com
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 10 mins
Total time: 20 mins
Serves: 8 to 10
Gluten-free Soft Corn Tacos
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour (I use Better Batter)
  • 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if using Better Batter)
  • 3/4 cup masa harina
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons nonhydrogenated vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup warm water, plus more
  1. In a large bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum, masa harina and salt, and whisk to combine well. Add the shortening and cut in with a pastry blender, two knives, or your fingers (it doesn’t need to stay cold, so your hot little hands work fine here) until evenly distributed throughout the dry ingredients.
  2. Add the water to the mixture slowly, mixing constantly. The dough will begin to come together. Depending upon the climate in your kitchen, you may need more water than 1/2 cup, and you made need less. After 1/2 cup, add the water sparingly by the tablespoon, kneading well after each addition. If the dough is crumbly, it is too dry and needs a bit more water. If it is sticky, it is too wet and could benefit from another teaspoon of masa. Add all ingredients sparingly.
  3. Knead the dough for about 5 minutes, until smooth and well integrated, cover with a towel, and allow to rest on the counter for 30 minutes.
  4. Once the dough has rested, divide it into 8 to 10 equal parts (depending upon how large you want your tacos), and roll each into a ball. Roll between two either two sheets of plastic wrap or a gallon-sized Ziploc bag, split down the seams and then cut in half. Use a tortilla press (lined with plastic on both sides) if you have one – they’re worth the small investment.
  5. Cook each round of dough in a heavy-bottom cast iron (or nonstick) skillet over medium-high heat for 20 seconds on one side (pressing the tortilla gently in the center with a wide spatula as it cooks), flip and cook for 10 seconds on the other side. The tortilla should be completely opaque and lightly charred in spots.
  6. Remove the tortilla from the pan, and place either in a tortilla warmer or in a moist tea towel, covered on both sides with the towel. Repeat with the remaining rounds of dough.
  7. Fill and serve warm.
  8. This recipe can be easily doubled.

Bean flour blends are not true all-purpose gluten-free flours. They do not behave the same.
Pamelas bread mix and Pamelas baking mix are not intended to be all-purpose gluten-free flours, as they have various other ingredients (like baking powder, baking soda, yeast, salt, etc., depending upon the mix) added to them.
Bob’s Red Mill makes a certified gluten-free masa harina flour.


Love you. Mean it. Still love me?
xoxo Nicole

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Comments are closed.

  • Michelle n
    June 3, 2012 at 10:50 PM

    My husband and I enjoyed these amazing soft tacos tonight. We are both gluten-intolerant and loved the softness of a flour tortilla after so many years without. Your recipes have changed our lives. Bless you for sharing your talent with us!

  • […] Easy Does It: Soft Tacos from Nicole Hunn […]

  • Janet
    August 12, 2011 at 1:54 PM

    Thank you so much! Once again you have rescued lunch with GF boy! Before it was pizza, today he wanted a cheesy tortilla, but the standard corn tortillas would not do. “They’re tear too much”. So I made a batch of these today and got 16 in the batch (about the size of a regular corn tortilla). He loved them and had 4 for lunch today! I wrapped the rest in plastic wrap and I am going to try them reheated tomorrow and see if he likes them that way too.

    Many thanks,

    • Nicole
      August 12, 2011 at 8:09 PM

      Hi, Janet,
      Sounds like you’ve got a smart boy there! So glad you’re enjoying this recipe. It is such a cinch, and I’m sure it will reheat just fine. When you’re ready to use them, heat them in the microwave and they should be soft and pliable again. If the tortillas feel stiff at all, sprinkle them with water before heating.
      xoxo Nicole

  • August 5, 2011 at 7:46 AM

    […] you could try the Corn & Flour Soft Taco Recipe from last week. Those are de-lovely. And super easy to work with, maybe even easier than the […]

  • Darlene
    August 2, 2011 at 6:56 PM

    Your husband puts his dishes in the sink?!!! And then the dishwasher?!!!!

    • Nicole
      August 2, 2011 at 7:04 PM

      Hi, over here, Darlene,
      Believe it or not, yes. But I would rather some emotional investment in the food. The dishwasher is nice, but it’s only because I cook and bake and bake and cook and clean ALL day, considering what I do for a “living.” Notice “living” is in quotes. Since I haven’t made a dime since I got the last of my “advance,” since it’s only half earned out. You’ll notice that “advance” is in quotes. …
      xoxo Nicole

  • August 1, 2011 at 10:49 AM

    […] he means this post, and this post. This is surprising for a couple […]

  • July 30, 2011 at 2:21 PM

    […] Gluten-free Soft Tacos in this recipe with more masa harina. These make a super quick Summer dinner. Fill them with a variety of chopped grilled vegetables, or with leftover grilled chicken or ground beef you brown quickly on the stovetop. […]

  • Sarah
    July 29, 2011 at 10:41 PM

    These were soft and delicious. Everyone in my house gobbled them up. I did modify back to not have corn and used lard for the shortening. I love how your recipes are very robust! Thank you for a wonderful meal!

    • Nicole
      July 30, 2011 at 3:07 PM

      Hi, Sarah,
      Oh my goodness lard for the shortening is decadent and delicious. I have even used bacon grease. It’ll kill you, but you’ll die happy. :)
      Thank you so much for telling me how you made out. I love hearing “after” stories!
      xoxo Nicole

  • Mj Rogers via Facebook
    July 27, 2011 at 5:40 PM

    I made these for supper, they were fantastic! They were so easy to roll out. I ended up using about 3/4 cup of warm water and I used wax paper cereal bag to roll the dough, it worked great and it was a gf cereal bag of course. lol I will be using this recipe a lot. Thank you so much for posting this. Soooooo Gooood!!!

  • July 27, 2011 at 4:51 PM

    I just made these, and tried better batter the first time too. They were/are tasty and while I had some issues they were in no way recipe related.

    • Nicole
      July 27, 2011 at 5:10 PM

      Hi, string,
      What sort of issues did you have? Ideally, this recipe should be issue-free. Maybe I can help….
      xoxo Nicole

  • Carrie
    July 27, 2011 at 2:21 PM

    These look so. delicious. I’ve made tortillas before (ok, I have a huge batch frozen right now so I can pop one out anytime I need to) but unless I reheat them right before I eat them (which is not always possible when I’m at work and such) they kinda break apart. So disappointing. So I’m excited to try these out! And I will be able to make them perfectly this time. Because you know what I did last night? I ordered Better Batter flour. And your cook book. What a lovely couple they will be. So happy together. And I will be happy too!
    Those packages better ship to me fast. That’s all I have to say about that. :)

    • Nicole
      July 27, 2011 at 2:49 PM

      Hi, Carrie,
      Any tortilla (gluten or gluten-free) will be most pliable when it’s warm – either from the pan, or from a microwave. That being said, I often make my family burritos, and bring them to-go, send my husband to work with them for lunch, put them in the kids’ lunch boxes, etc. If it’s a kid’s lunch box, I microwave the burrito right before they leave in the morning, and put it in an insulated container. It’s perfect at lunchtime. For my husband, he has a microwave available to him at work, so he just zaps it for a few seconds there. If you have to eat them cold, make the burrito when they’re warm, and be sure to roll them a little thicker than normal. It helps them retain their moisture.
      Hooray for Better Batter and the cookbook! Indeed, a match made in heaven. :) I hope they both come speedy quick. I know what it’s like to just. want. to. get. started!
      xoxo Nicole

  • Ashley
    July 27, 2011 at 11:04 AM

    I’ve never made homemade GF tortillas do they hold together instead of falling apart like all the flops I’ve bought in the past?

    P.s. You’ve changed my life with your book and blog I <3 u Nicole!

    • Nicole
      July 27, 2011 at 11:16 AM

      Hi, Ashley,
      Of course they stay together! They don’t crumble like the store-bought GF ones do. For the life of me, I can’t understand why no one has put out a good GF flour tortilla. Rudy’s makes a packaged spelt tortilla that people rave about — why can’t they do a GF one? But yes, these tortillas (or you can try the straight flour one from the book, that is reprinted in Living Without Magazine & on their website) hold together beautifully. They are soft and pliable, and roll up really nice. I promise!
      xoxo Nicole
      P.S. YOU changed your life. I just talked you through it. :)

  • Shannon Lewis via Facebook
    July 27, 2011 at 10:05 AM

    Where’s the sample? LOL

  • Kadren
    July 27, 2011 at 9:53 AM

    There is nothing like a homemade tortilla!!!!!!!! :)

    • Nicole
      July 27, 2011 at 11:13 AM

      Hi, Kadren,
      I know! I totally agree. Fresh out of the pan, you can’t beat it!
      xoxo Nicole

      • February 15, 2012 at 5:36 PM

        Janet, masa harina is a precooked cornmeal, as described in the link in the post. It isn’t corn flour.
        Penny, you’ll have to experiment.

  • Bonnie Sue
    July 27, 2011 at 9:06 AM

    You’re always making stuff I love or want to eat! I just wish I could overcome this laziness. Will you just start shipping your yummy goodness …pleeeeeeeease!?

    • Nicole
      July 27, 2011 at 11:12 AM

      Hi, Bonnie Sue,
      I don’t believe that you’re lazy! Usually “laziness” in the kitchen is really something else entirely. Do you feel competent in the kitchen? Are you just too busy doing other things that are more valuable/important to you? No way. Not going to believe you’re lazy! And, for the record, I’d love to cook for you. The blog is just a poor substitute for the real thing. :)
      xoxo Nicole

  • July 27, 2011 at 8:59 AM

    Sounds great! Will try it next week – thanks!

  • Anne Fleury via Facebook
    July 27, 2011 at 8:56 AM

    I know what we are having for dinner tonight!! Thanks Nicole!

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