Top 10 Dishes with Tortillas

As many of you know, tortillas are a crucial ingredient in Mexican cuisine. It is important to note that corn is an original cereal from Mexico but is also cultivated in parts of what is now Central America. Tortillas date back to the Aztecs who used them on a daily basis for their cooking. When the Spaniards conquered Mexico they named them tortilla or “little cake”. Tortillas are made out of corn flour although there are some variations such as those made with blue corn, or the so called tortillas de harina which are whiter and mainly consumed in the northern part of Mexico.

Nowadays around 94% of the Mexican population consume tortillas in one way or another. Tortillas are such an important ingredient when it comes to Mexican gastronomy, that some of the most important dishes are made with them. Below you will find the top 10 dishes made with tortilla:


Chilaquiles is the favorite breakfast dish for many Mexicans. They consist of fried tortilla pieces, salsa (either green or red), cream and cheese. They are often served with a sunny side up egg on top and black beans. The secret to the best chilaquiles is to pour the hot salsa over them at the last minute so the tortilla pieces are crispy and crunch with each bite.


Tacos are the go-to meal for Mexicans, it doesn’t matter what time of the day it is, you can have them for breakfast, lunch, dinner and even in the early hours of the morning as a snack. There are many types of tacos one can enjoy, some include eggs, fish, beef, pork and even cheese tacos. The morning favorites are egg tacos, while for lunch some of the most popular ones include arrachera and bistec which are different cuts of beef. Tacos al pastor are also extremely popular throughout the country, they are made out of pork meat which has been marinated with a combination of dried species and chiles, cooked in a vertical rotisserie turning the meat red. The sliced meat is then served with a piece of pineapple in small tortillas.


Flautas which means “flutes”are very similar to tacos. The main difference is the size, they are usually longer and thinner. They have different fillings inside ranging from chicken, beef, potatoes and chorizo (spicy pork sausage), to cheese and beans. The tortilla is deep fried making it crunchier, they are served with green or red salsa, cream and cheese on top.


Tostadas come from the Spanish word “toasted” and is given to dishes where the base of preparation includes a toasted ingredient. This dish uses dry tortillas which previously have been fried or toasted and diverse ingredients are placed on top. You can find seafood tostadas such as shrimp, tuna and fish tostadas. Chicken tostadas are also favorites, they are served with a base of black beans with chicken, lettuce, avocado, salsa, cream and cheese on top. It is a fresh dish which is perfect to enjoy in hot weather.


This dish consists of rolled up corn tortillas with a filling inside and topped with a sauce. Enchiladas verdes or green enchiladas are filled with chicken or cheese and topped with salsa verde. Enchiladas de mole are made out of chicken, cheese or beef and topped with mole a dark sauce made out of different chiles and spices. Enchiladas are served as a main dish in most places and accompanied with rice, the mix of flavors make them delicious. If you are really hungry and want to try a traditional Mexican recipe you must try this one.

Pastel Azteca

Also known as pastel de pobres or cake for the poor. This dish is like a cake with different layers of tortillas that have been lightly fried in oil, salsa and a protein, it can be either chicken, beef or pork. You can also add cheese, corn and slices of poblano chile. It is easy to make and the perfect meal to prepare when you have a large number of people coming over to eat at your house.

Huevos Rancheros

This is a favorite amongst Mexicans especially for breakfast. It is made up of a light fried tortilla topped with a sunny side up egg and salsa on top. The salsa can be either green or red, or you can ask for huevos divorciados (divorced eggs) which are half and half green and red salsa.


These are similar to enchiladas and are mostly eaten during breakfast or as a light dinner. Enfrijoladas are made up of a tortilla topped with a black bean salsa with cream and cheese on top. They can also be served with different fillings such as chicken and chorizo (spicy pork sausage).

Sopa de Tortilla

This soup is the most common one with tortilla as a main ingredient. It consists of a tomato, garlic and onion broth with submerged fried tortilla pieces. It is commonly served with shredded cheese which melts in the soup creating an interesting mix of flavors, to which you can add some avocado and cream.


This is one of the most popular meals in Mexican gastronomy, quesadillas can be eaten at any given time and can be made with diverse ingredients. They are made up of a tortilla filled with cheese and stuffings such as black beans, mushroom, ham or turkey breast. They are cooked in a comal or griddle and folded in half creating a half-moon shape. Its very easy to prepare and Mexicans love to eat them!

Although these are some examples of dishes that can be prepared with tortilla as the main ingredient, there are many others not mentioned here. Mexican gastronomy is so extensive and varies from region to region that many of the dishes use tortilla in some way or another. Tortillas are a must in Mexican meals, regularly as a substitute for bread. Have you eaten any other dish with tortilla in it? I invite you to share what your favorite tortilla dish is. For more information and tips on traveling and food in Mexico and abroad visit