Virtual Museum – Make a Tortilla


Create handmade tortillas to enjoy with family and friends!


  • Masa harina (2 cups)
  • Warm water (1.5 to 2 cups)
  • Large bowl
  • Wax paper (Two 8 inch square pieces)
  • Tray or clean table surface
  • Griddle or cast iron pan
  • Optional: rolling pin


  1. Measure 2 cups of masa harina and add to a large bowl.
  2. Add 1.5-2 cups of water to the masa. Double check the directions on the package to give you specific guidance.
  3. Mix masa and water and let sit for 5 minutes. This is your dough that will become your tortilla!
  4. Knead the dough for several minutes until the dough is smooth and releases from your hands without sticking.
  5. Add more water (if dough is too dry) or add more masa (if dough is too watery).
  6. Form balls of dough the size of a golf ball or plum (you should be able to make 16-18 balls from the dough).
  7. Place one piece of wax paper on top of your tray or table.
  8. Place one ball of dough on top of the wax paper.
  9. Place another piece of wax paper on top of your ball of dough.
  10. Press the dough with your hands or a rolling pin so that’s about 4-5 inches in diameter.
  11. Heat your griddle or pan on high heat (with adult assistance).
  12. Remove the uncooked tortilla from your wax paper and place it on the hot griddle or pan (with adult assistance).
  13. Cook the tortilla for 30-60 seconds on each side (with adult assistance).
  14. Remove the tortilla when it looks slightly toasted and after air pockets have formed (with adult assistance).
  15. Keep your tortilla warm by wrapping it in a dish towel until you are ready to eat it!


  • What happened when you added water to the masa harina?
  • How can you make a ball out of the dough?
  • What happened when you pressed the ball of dough to make a tortilla?
  • What shape is your tortilla?


  • Supports gross and fine motor skills as children engage hands and arms to knead and press dough
  • Encourages basic step-by-step directions to create a final outcome
  • Introduces basic geometry concept of how three-dimensional shapes (sphere) when flattened can become a two-dimensional shape (circle)


Encourage your child to draw a visual recipe (a drawing of a recipe’s steps and ingredients) of how they made a tortilla. Ask your child to think about the steps they took and what ingredients were needed to make a tortilla. Have your child describe the steps and ingredients as they show you their visual recipe drawing.



Made possible by the Presenting Sponsor