Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Gluten free burritos

I live in the San Francisco Bay  Area, and forgive me folks from Southern California, but we are known for a very specific kind of burrito - the Mission Burrito. My husband loves burritos. He loves them so much we served them at our wedding reception (mediocre ones but that is a different story). When he lived in France he would roll flour tortillas by hand, mixing with whatever close-enough ingredients he could find. So it is a bit of travesty that Aaron can't eat burritos. 

Honestly, I don't miss flour tortillas for the most part. Here we have access to such wonderfully fresh corn tortillas. Who needs flour tortillas? But corn doesn't work for burritos, they are too small and even the freshest will break with the folding. The faux "flour tortillas" on the market leave a bit to be desired. They are brittle and if warmed too much give your jaw quite the work out. 

I have to admit I came up with my solution after trying the Amy's burritos. When you open it up, the appearance screams "I'm a crepe." What a great idea! Now their formula is egg-free, I use eggs for ease and protein. But the process is much like a crepe. You make a batter a bit thicker than a crepe batter, spread it in your pan, cook, flip (my heat insensitive hands help here), and then fill, fold and freeze. Voila, soft flour tortilla burritos. 

I make up a big batch and then freeze them for Aaron to take for lunches. He loves them. Yes they are time consuming if you aren't in the zone, but just prepare well and you can whip out a bunch while listening to NPR's "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me" Saturday morning. 

These are filled with rice, beans, leftover braised leg of lamb, a green chili sauce and cheese. If you are eating them right away, make it a super with guacamole and sour cream. You know you want to!

Gluten-free flour tortillas

  • 2 cups gluten-free flour*
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup shortening or lard
  • 2-3 cups water (depends on your blend)
  • 2 t xanthan gum
  • 1 t salt

*ratio of 1 part brown rice flour, 1 part whole grain corn flour, 1 part tapioca starch, 1 part corn starch. I measure by weight not volume, but these are forgiving. 

Tortilla just set ready for flipping

 Tortilla cooked just through
  1. Mix together flour, xanthan gum and salt. 
  2. Using your fingers rub in the shortening or lard. If you wish you can use vegetable oil instead, just add it with the liquids. 
  3. Blend the eggs with 1 cup water. 
  4. Add it to the flour mixture and stir well. 
  5. Using an immersion blender or blender, blend together slowly adding water until it is somewhat fluid. It will be a bit gloopy, but that is OK. You should be able to spread it very quickly.
  6. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. I used a 10 inch very non-stick skillet, but if yours isn’t wonderfully non-stick, you must brush the pan with oil. 
  7. For a 10 inch skillet I added about ½ cup of batter. Smooth the batter with an offset spatula, and cook over medium heat until it is set. (See picture) 
  8. Carefully flip and cook until it is fully cooked through, but not crispy. 
  9. Remove and top with ingredients while warm. Fold into burrito, and place on a sheet pan to freeze if desired. 


  1. These look so good. I'm allergic to eggs, do you think this would work with an egg substitute? I really miss flour tortillas!!!!

  2. I have done similar with flax seeds - it leaves a nutty flavor but works. The trick is to have a very non-stick pan and a very big spatula to help flip if you are using flax. Chia might work too.

  3. We finally tried these and they were great! The kids prefer the taste of regular rolled out tortillas when they are fresh, but these kept much better and made great quesadillas the next day. Thanks for sharing.