If tacos are on the menu more often than not, it may be time to consider a tortilla press. These simple machines use leverage and two plates to press balls of corn mixture into perfectly round, flat disks.
A heavy-duty press that is easy to use and creates consistent tortillas is critical, especially if you’re new to tortilla making at home. The Victoria 8-inch Cast Iron Tortilla Press is the best tortilla press to start with.
Tortilla makers are available in four materials.
Corn tortillas are typically smaller than flour tortillas, but there are different sizes of presses. Smaller presses — 7 inches or shorter in diameter — are good if you don’t have a lot of storage space and prefer two- or three-bite tacos, but for larger applications like burritos or enchiladas, you’ll need a press that’s 8-10 inches wide.
Traditional corn tortillas are one-eighth of an inch thick, but this may not be possible with a lightweight press. If you want to go even thinner, you’ll need a heavy press (or a lot of elbow grease) to make that happen.
Cast iron presses are available in three basic finishes.
Pre-seasoned cast iron plates mean that you can use your tortilla press right out of the box. You may need to re-season over time, but this cuts out a step in the very beginning.
Even if your press is not cast iron, some other materials add weight to the lid. This makes it easier to press perfectly thin tortillas with less effort.
The price of tortilla presses varies depending on the size and the material. Expect to spend $15 to $40.
A. Not necessarily. The price difference has more to do with the finish on the outside than the quality of the press. Regardless of the finish, you'll want a cast iron press that is heavy and well-constructed, with hinges that move smoothly and a handle that helps add pressure.
A. Unless you choose an electric maker that presses and cooks in one appliance, you’ll need to cook the tortillas after they are pressed.
What you need to know: No pre-seasoning is necessary with this heavy-duty press.
What you’ll love: The heavy lid takes the grunt work of pressing out of the equation. The surfaces are completely flat for perfect tortillas every time.
What you should consider: It’s one of the heaviest options, and it’s more expensive than other presses. But if homemade tortillas are a staple for you, it’s a good investment.
What you need to know: The smooth sand-cast plates and the leverage of the handle make perfect tortillas every time.
What you’ll love: It is pre-seasoned with flaxseed oil. This cast iron press has heavy-duty reinforced hinges and extra weight on the sides to make pressing easier. A recipe book is included to help you get started.
What you should consider: This does not make the thinnest tortillas.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
What you need to know: This is good for home cooks who want smaller tortillas and a press that is not cast iron.
What you’ll love: It’s lightweight and compact for easy storage in small spaces. It makes tortillas up to 6 inches. It presses thin enough to make homemade tortilla chips, too.
What you should consider: The smaller size produces less versatile tortillas. No burritos with this one.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Suzannah Kolbeck writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.