While tortillas are super tasty, I don’t use them all the time, so I always end up with a ton of extras lying around.
I once made the mistake of storing them in the fridge, thinking I could still use them the next time I prepared a Mexican feast. Sadly, I had to throw them out because they’d gone bad.
Since I hate wasting food, I researched ways to preserve tortillas for a longer period.
Fortunately, tortillas apparently freeze well! While they only last one week in the fridge, they’ll survive in the freezer for over 6 months.
This is great for those like me that don’t have a constant need for them in their cooking. If you only use this Mexican staple from time to time, you need to learn how to freeze them and preserve them longer.
Here’s how to freeze and thaw tortillas so you’re always ready for your next Taco Night!
How to Freeze Tortillas
Simple – just freeze the tortillas in the package. If the package has been previously opened, that’s fine, just seal it again and freeze. Be sure to squeeze out any excess air before sealing.
For packages that don’t come with a seal, transfer the tortillas into a Ziploc bag, squeeze out any excess air and place in the freezer.
Keep in mind that the quality of the tortillas deteriorates the longer they stay in the freezer. If you plan to keep them around for a long time, you have to take extra measures to keep their integrity intact.
Follow these few tips and you’ll have excellent quality tortillas, even after months of freezing:
Wrap the tortillas in a layer of foil before placing them in a Ziploc bag.
Don’t freeze room temperature tortillas. Warm tortillas have more moisture in them, so when you freeze them, they are more likely to form ice crystals. Place them in the fridge for a few minutes before freezing.
How to Thaw Tortillas
When you freeze tortillas, they’ll gather ice crystals on the surface. You’ll need to defrost them the right way if you don’t want to end up with wet tortillas.
All you need to do is to take the tortillas out of the freezer and put them in the fridge to thaw, 24 hours before you need to use them. Then take them out of the fridge and let them sit at room temperature 30 minutes before use.
Warning: Don’t transfer them straight from the freezer to the counter, as this will result in wet tortillas.
Another warning: Do not microwave frozen tortillas hoping it will speed up the process. It will just cause the bread to stick together and become crisp.
Tips & Tricks
- Be sure you have enough space in the freezer so you can store the tortillas laying flat. The tortillas will freeze in the position you store them, so unless you want a taco-shaped tortilla, be sure to spread them flat in the freezer.
- Only defrost tortillas once. Do not place previously frozen and thawed tortillas back in the freezer, this will affect the integrity of the bread.
- As they freeze, tortillas will fuse, making it difficult to separate without tearing. Make your life easier by placing a sheet of parchment paper in between each tortilla before freezing. This will also allow you to defrost a few tortillas at a time, rather than the entire package.
- In case you end up tearing your tortillas while separating them, you can still put them to good use. While you can’t use them for burritos and tacos, they’ll work well for enchiladas! Just cover them with cheese or salsa to hide the cuts.