Homemade Tortilla Chips

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All of my best tips for how to make the best homemade tortilla chips with just 3 ingredients!

Homemade Tortilla Chips

My deep and undying love for chips and salsa has been well-documented here on the blog over the past decade with dozens of recipes for my favorite dips and salsas.  But many of you have been reminding me lately that there has been a major hole in our recipe archives up until now for the equally important other half of the equation…

…a recipe for how to make tortilla chips! ♡

Many of you have noticed that I have gotten in the habit of making homemade tortilla chips ever since we moved to Barcelona.  And while I will be the first to admit that I somewhat begrudgingly got in the habit of making tortilla chips from scratch out of sheer necessity since they are difficult to find here (never again will I take those aisles full of multiple brands of tortilla chips for granted in the States), I’ve honestly gotten so hooked on them now that they are just a given in our house!

If you’ve ever had freshly-made tortilla chips in a restaurant or made them at home, I’m sure you know the difference that I’m talking about.  There is always a distinct and satisfying crunch that comes with homemade tortilla chips.  And when made with standard corn tortillas, I love that homemade chips are sturdy and strong enough to scoop up even the thickest buffalo chicken dip or pico de gallo or any number of salsas without breaking.  When making your chips homemade, you also of course have the option to use whatever color and/or thickness of corn tortillas you prefer.  And best of all, in my opinion, you can sprinkle them with flaky sea salt which always adds the most irresistible crunch.

To be sure, making your own chips homemade does require a bit of extra time.  But they are super easy to make with just 3 ingredients.  And, in my opinion, they are always deliciously worth the effort.

So put on a good kitchen playlist, maybe make yourself a margarita or mocktail to sip while we cook, and let’s make some homemade corn tortillas together!

Blue, Yellow and White Corn Tortillas

Homemade Tortilla Chip Ingredients:

So here’s the beauty of making your own chips — you get to choose exactly which types of ingredients you love best!  Here are the three main ingredients that you will need:

  • Oil for frying: It’s essential that you choose an oil that has a high smoke point for this recipe, since the oil will need to heat to 350° to fry the tortillas.  I typically just use standard vegetable oil, since it has a neutral flavor and is inexpensive.  But you could also opt for canola oil, grapeseed oil, sunflower oil, or any other high-heat oil that you prefer.
  • Corn tortillas: Feel free to use whatever color and thickness of corn tortillas that you prefer.  The chips will also have better texture and crunch if your tortillas are slightly dried-out and stale.  So if you have the time, you can leave them out on the counter overnight or pop them in a low-temperature oven briefly to dry out a bit.  But if not, no worries, even corn tortillas that are fresh out of the package will still fry up to make delicious crunchy chips.
  • Salt: As mentioned above, I am incredibly partial to using flaky sea salt (or flaky smoked sea salt) on my chips, which provide a delightful extra crunch.  But you can use any kind of salt that you prefer.  Or see my options below for other fun seasonings that you can add too!

I also recommend two essential pieces of equipment for this recipe:

  • Thermometer: It’s essential that the oil maintain its temperature while you are frying different batches of the chips.  So you will need a cooking thermometer — I recommend an instant-read digital thermometer — to monitor the oil.
  • Strainer: You will also need some sort of strainer to transfer the chips from the oil to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet to drain and cool.  I prefer to use a large spider strainer, but any type of large strainer (or even a large heatproof spatula) will do.

Frying Tortillas to make Homemade Chips

How To Make Tortilla Chips:

Here is a quick overview of the process for how to make tortilla chips (full recipe included below):

  1. Heat the oil. Fill a sauté pan with enough oil so that it is between 1/4 to 1/2-inch deep, then heat the oil until it reaches 350°F.  (From this point on, I recommend measuring the temperature of the oil every few minutes so that you can adjust the heat as needed to maintain this temperature.)
  2. Fry the tortillas. Add about a dozen or so chips at a time to the oil (or however many fit in a single layer without overlapping) and fry for about 2-3 minutes until they are crispy and lightly golden, gently stirring and pressing the chips below the oil occasionally so that they cook evenly.
  3. Drain. Use the spider strainer to quickly and carefully transfer the tortilla chips to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet and spread them out in an even-ish layer, then immediately sprinkle with salt or whatever seasonings you prefer.
  4. Repeat. Repeat the process with the remaining tortilla triangles until all have been fried.  (While each batch is frying, I carefully push the finished chips to one side of the baking sheet to make room for the next batch to drain.)
  5. Serve. Then serve them up while they are still nice and warm and enjoy!

Tri-Color Corn Tortilla Chips

Possible Toppings:

There are so many ways that you can get creative with the seasonings on your own homemade batch of chips!  For example, feel free to sprinkle yours with…

Tortilla Chips with Flaky Sea Salt In A Pan

Ways To Use Homemade Tortilla Chips:

There are so many tasty ways to put a batch of homemade tortilla chips to use!  Some of my faves include…

  • Chips and dips: Forever and always my favorite way to enjoy these chips.  Be sure to check out all of our salsa and dip recipes here on Gimme Some Oven!  (The recipe pictured below is my roasted tomato salsa, which I highly recommend.)
  • Nachos: Load them up with some melted cheese and all of your favorite toppings to make some nachos!
  • Migas: Crumble leftover chips and scramble them with eggs, cheese, salsa, and any other add-ins that sound good to make this Tex-Mex classic.
  • Toppings: And of course, you can also crumble leftover tortilla chips to use as a topping for your favorite soups, chilis, salads, casseroles and more.

Homemade Tortilla Chips with Roasted Tomato Salsa

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Homemade Tortilla Chips

Homemade Tortilla Chips

  • Author: Ali
  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 25 mins
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 72 chips 1x

Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups oil for frying (such as vegetable oil*)
  • 12 corn tortillas, cut into six wedges each
  • flaky sea salt

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil. Pour enough oil in a sauté pan so that it is between 1/4 to 1/2-inches deep.  Heat the oil over medium-high heat until its temperature reaches 350°F.  Then reduce the heat to medium, adjusting the heat as needed (you will need to check it fairly often) to try and maintain that temperature as best as possible.
  2. Fry the tortillas. Carefully add about a dozen tortilla triangles (or however many form a single layer without overlapping) to the oil.  Fry for 2 to 3 minutes, occasionally using a spider strainer to stir and dunk the tortillas below the surface of the oil, until they are lightly golden and crispy.  Cooking time will vary depending on the thickness of your tortillas.
  3. Drain. Use the spider strainer to quickly and carefully transfer the tortilla chips to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet and spread them out in an even-ish layer, so that the chips can drain and cool.  Sprinkle evenly with a pinch of flaky sea salt, or any other desired seasonings, to taste.
  4. Repeat. Repeat the process with the remaining tortilla triangles until all have been fried.  (While each batch is frying, I carefully push the finished chips to one side of the baking sheet to make room for the next batch to drain.)
  5. Serve. Once all of the fried tortilla chips have cooled for a few minutes, go ahead and serve them up and enjoy!


Notes

Oil options: I usually use vegetable oil when making this recipe.  But any oil with a high smoke point will do, such as canola oil, grapeseed oil or sunflower oil.

Storage instructions: Homemade tortilla chips are definitely best when served the same day that they are made.  But leftovers can be stored in a paper bag (or an airtight container with a few paper towels) for up to 1 week.

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6 comments on “Homemade Tortilla Chips”

  1. These look totally awesome and I’m a big fan of fresh chips so I’d love to try this. What kind of tortillas do you use? The ones we have in supermarkets here in the UK don’t look quite like the ones in the photos, they’re a bit more like very thin flatbreads.

    • I hear you — corn tortillas can be hard to track down here in Europe! :)

      It’s important to use corn tortillas that are very thin and made without lots of extra ingredients. For example, my package just includes corn, lime and water in the ingredients. If your regular grocery store does not carry them, you may need to find a Mexican import store, which is where we shop for ours here in Barcelona. Good luck!

  2. Oh this looks easy enough and delicious! Thank y’all so much!

  3. Wow great! It was such a great and delicious recipe. i had been surfing for this awesome chips recipe and eventually found it here. Lovely! next weekend will definitely try with my kids.

  4. Which Mexican import store do you go to in Barcelona? The corn tortillas I find here have additives. Would love to find cleaner ones.
    Thanks for all the amazing recipes! We definitely have the same cooking style and food taste :-)

  5. Hi there,
    I thought I had left a message but it seems to have not gone through…
    This recipe looks amazing. But which Mexican import store in Barcelona carries additive free tortillas? Haven’t been able to find any around…
    Thanks!