One-bowl sourdough tortillas, made with discard, are an excellent alternative to store bought flour tortillas. Sourdough starter discard adds slight tang and makes these tortillas extra soft. Easy enough for everyday, they're a really great way to utilize discard in a way that really adds something special to the recipe.
Pictured are Sophie's jackfruit carnitas but this recipe lends itself well to any time you'd use tortillas or wraps. While the added discard keeps them fresh a little bit longer compared to normal homemade tortillas, they're still best fresh.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Flour: use up to 50% whole grain flour for whole wheat tortillas. This recipe is adapted from Alex's spelt tortillas and works well with lower gluten flours like spelt and khorasan.
- Olive oil: any light tasting oil can be used in place of olive. Avocado, canola, whatever you use most.
Step 1: mix the dry ingredients together in a large bowl.
Step 2: add the hot water, discard, and oil, then mix into a shaggy dough.
Step 3: knead a few times until a soft, smooth ball of dough forms.
Step 4: divide the dough into 12 equal pieces and roll into thin tortillas.
Step 5: add a little oil to a hot frying pan and cook the tortillas.
Step 6: cook about 30 seconds each side and keep them on a plate covered with a tea towel while cooking the remaining tortillas.
- Roll as thin as you'd like: some people swear by the thinnest tortillas possible and roll the dough through a pasta maker. Depending on your personal preference, you might want them a bit thicker or thinner. These are middle of the road and work well for any tacos, wraps, or quesadillas.
- Use active starter: if you don't often have discard (if you use levain, for example) you can use active starter here too. It doesn't make a difference as there's no active rising time, but should be weighed for most accuracy.
- Cook quickly: be sure not to overcook the tortillas, as that's often the biggest reason for hard, inflexible breads. A quick cook on either side, until just lightly golden, is perfect.
If you have too many leftovers and know you won't be able to finish them, make chips! Cut them into pieces and mix with a little olive oil and some spices, then bake at 400°F (200°C) for 10-15 minutes, or until crisp.
You can slightly dampen the tea towel you're using to cover the cooked tortillas while you're cooking the rest if they do have a tendency to dry out too much. This is a good idea if you're making them an hour or two in advance, too.
Olive oil, coconut oil, and ghee are good options to cook the tortillas in. Butter tastes good but tends to splatter here.
If you want to have a stronger sourdough flavour, let the tortilla dough rest, well-covered, at room temperature for four hours before shaping, rolling, and cooking.
How to Store
Storage: sourdough tortillas are best fresh, but will keep for a day or two in an airtight container at room temperature.
Freezing: the tortillas tend to get a little dry and hard after being frozen, but it can be done, especially if you're planning to use them for something like a quesadilla. Freeze cooled tortillas in an airtight container (place parchment or wax paper between each if you want to take them out individually) and freeze for up to a month. Thaw at room temperature.
What are tortillas made of?
Tortillas are traditionally made with cornmeal but are quite often made with flour now, especially in North America and Europe.
Can I use starter instead of discard?
If you don't have enough discard to add, use active starter instead. Since active starter takes up more space than discard, use weights if you're making that substitution.
Do sourdough tortillas taste sour?
Depending on how old your discard is, it might add a fairly sour flavour to the tortillas. If you want to avoid this, use a fresher discard.
If you make this Sourdough Tortilla recipe or any other sourdough discard recipes on the Baked Collective, please take a moment to rate the recipe and leave a comment below. It’s such a help to others who want to try the recipe. For more baking, follow along on Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube.
- Measuring cups and spoons or a digital kitchen scale
- Mixing bowl
- Wooden spoon or spatula
- Frying pan
- 2 ¼ cups flour
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ cup hot water
- ½ cup sourdough discard
- 3 tablespoons olive oil plus more for cooking
- Add the flour, salt, and baking soda to a large bowl and mix to combine. Make a well in the centre of the mixture.
- Add the hot water, discard, and olive oil. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to stir until a shaggy dough forms.
- Knead the dough a few times, either in the bowl or on a lightly floured work surface. Dust with flour as needed to prevent sticking. The dough will be soft but not sticky when it's ready.
- Divide the dough into 12 approximately equal pieces. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into thin rounds, about 18cm (7 inches) in diameter. If you have enough space, all of the dough can be rolled before cooking. If not, roll each out once the previous one is in the pan.
- Heat a frying pan over medium heat. Once the pan is hot, add a drizzle of olive oil (brush it over the base of the pan if preferred). Add a tortilla and cook about 30 seconds each side, or until bubbles form and the surface is just golden.
- Repeat until all of the tortillas are cooked, covering with a tea towel while cooking to prevent them from drying out.
- The tortillas are best fresh, but will keep for a day or two in an airtight container at room temperature.