Blue Corn Tacos

Fresh, homemade tortillas are so much better than store-bought. Unfortunately, the exact ratios and timings depend on various factors like the flour, the temperature of your cooktop, and maybe even the ambient humidity. Practice makes perfect, and even your less-successful attempts will still turn out pretty good.

The corn flour I like to use is store-bought blue corn masa harina, which results in a beautiful dark blue tortilla, but the principle should be the same for other types of masa. If you’re especially adventurous, you can even make your own at home!

There’s no shortage of toppings to fill your tacos with, but I’ve listed two of my favorites below to make it a complete meal. Don’t forget shredded cheese, hot sauce, and lime wedges for the table!

Blue Corn Tacos


  • 1 cup blue corn masa harina

  • Approx. 2/3 cup warm water

Turkey Carnitas

  • Cooking oil or duck fat

  • Dark turkey meat, shredded

  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  • 1 avocado, diced

  • 1 tomato, diced

  • Juice from 1 lime

  • Garlic powder, to taste

  • Salt and pepper, to taste


Making the Tortillas

  1. With the masa in a bowl, pour in about half of the water and mix. Then gradually add more water, mixing after each bit, until the dough incorporates all the flour from the sides of the bowl and comes together into a ball. If it feels too wet, dust with more masa and incorporate. The texture you want is a smooth ball that, if slapped, won’t stick to your palm. Split the ball into 5 or 6 evenly-sized portions and roll each into a ball. Keep them in the bowl and cover with a kitchen towel to avoid them drying out.

  2. Preheat a cast iron pan on medium heat for at least 5-6 minutes. Water droplets should immediately sizzle and evaporate on contact when it is hot enough.

  3. For each ball, place the ball in between two sheets of wax paper and press them into a circle about 5-6 inches in diameter, using either a tortilla press or a large heavy plate. Carefully peel the wax paper off both sides and place into the heated pan. You can reuse the wax paper for subsequent tortillas.

  4. Cook the tortilla on the first side for about 15 seconds. The edges should slightly begin to curl up, and using a thin metal spatula, you should be able to easily reach underneath the tortilla without encountering any resistance. Flip the tortilla over to the other side.

  5. Cook the tortilla on the second side for about 70-80 seconds, then flip the tortilla again to the first side. You should ideally see the tortilla begin to puff up. You can help this along by pressing down on the top of the tortilla with the spatula for a few seconds, and then releasing. If they don’t puff up, don’t worry! Play around with the heat and timings, and it’ll happen with practice.

  6. Cook the tortilla on the first side for about 15 seconds, and then move to a plate to let them puff down. Keep the tortilla covered with a clean kitchen towel or pot lid as you make the rest of the tortillas.

Turkey Carnitas

  1. Coat a cast iron pan with oil or duck fat and cook the turkey meat on medium heat until it crisps up and browns. You can stir to achieve more crisping, or leave it for more textural contrast. Add salt and pepper, to taste.


  1. Place the avocado, tomato, and lime juice in a large bowl or mortar and mash thoroughly with a pestle. Add the garlic powder, salt, and pepper to taste, mixing thoroughly to incorporate.