How to Make Tortilla Chips

Three Methods:Baking in the OvenFrying in the PanZapping in the Microwave

Tortilla chips are the perfect pre-prandial snack — light and crunchy without being overwhelmingly filling. While most people buy their tortilla chips from the grocery store, it's perfectly possible to make your own tortilla chips in the comfort of your own home. The process is actually remarkably simple and straightforward.

Ingredients

  • Corn or flour tortillas
  • Non-stick cooking spray or vegetable oil
  • Sea salt

Method 1
Baking in the Oven

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    Preheat oven to 350° F (177° C).
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    With a pastry brush, lightly cover a baking tray with vegetable oil. Only a thin coating is needed. This will ensure that the chips do not end up sticking to the tray.
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    Lightly brush the pre-made tortillas with a vegetable oil such as grapeseed or canola oil. With the same pastry brush you used to brush your baking tray, hit your tortillas with a neutral cooking oil. If you want to brush both sides, go ahead. There's also another, quicker method for applying the oil:
    • Brush only one side of a tortilla with oil. Place the oiled-side of the tortilla face up on a cutting board. Oil only one side of another tortilla and place it on top of the previous tortilla, oil-side up again. As you continue to oil your tortillas and stack them, the oil on one side of your tortilla will transfer to the un-oiled side of the next.[1] This leaves you with a stack of perfectly-oiled tortillas: fully-covered but not drenched in oil. Your tortilla chips will be crispy but slightly, deliciously chewy.
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    Cut your stack of tortillas into wedges. If you have your own idea of how you want to chop your tortillas, go for it. Get creative. Otherwise, tortilla chips are ordinarily cut into either triangles or squares. Here's how to do each:
    • Triangles: Cut the round tortillas in half to create two semi-circles. Cut one half in half again, and then do the same with each resultant half. Cut the other semi-circle in the same manner.
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    • Squares: Cut off the rounded edges of the tortilla first. This should leave you with a stack of tortillas in the shape of a square. Make two cuts lengthwise, and then make two cuts perpendicularly.
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    Place the tortilla chips without overlapping onto the baking tray, and sprinkle with sea salt. If possible, place the un-oiled sides of the tortillas facing down so that they come in contact with the oil applied to the tray.
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    Bake the tortilla chips for 8 to 12 minutes, checking after 8 minutes. They are done when their edges lift slightly from the tray and feel crispy. The center of the tortilla chips may still be slightly soft, but should crisp up when it begins to cool.
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    Let cool for several minutes and serve immediately.

Method 2
Frying in the Pan

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    Fill a large frying pan with an inch to two inches of oil. Use a neutral oil, such as vegetable, grapeseed, or canola oil.
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    Heat the oil in the frying pan until it reaches 325° F (163° C). Oil that is heated to below 325° F will not produce browned or charred tortilla chips.[2] Although frying the tortilla chips at 325° F will mean a longer frying time, it produces the most consistent results.
    • If you want to heat the oil up to 350° F (177° C) or higher, expect to cook the tortilla for less time and be vigilant against browning or burning. If you decide to cook your tortilla chips at 350° F, check them for doneness at around the 45 second to one minute mark.[3]
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    • If you don't have a candy- or other thermometer to check the temperature of the oil, use the back end of a wooden spoon. Dip the handle of a wooden spoon into the oil. If bubbles just start to form, your oil is probably hot enough.[4]
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    Fry the tortilla chips in small batches at 325° F for 3 minutes. There's little need to flip them or move them around.
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    With a slotted spoon or spider, remove the batch of tortilla chips from the oil and place directly onto a paper towel.
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    Salt the chips immediately upon removal. Salting immediately after removal is best, since the salt sticks to the excess oil on the chip, adhering better.
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    Serve immediately. If not serving, store in an airtight container. Homemade tortilla chips are particularly susceptible to getting stale if not stored properly.

Method 3
Zapping in the Microwave

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    Cut a single corn tortilla into squares or wedges and place it onto a microwave-safe plate. Spread the tortilla wedges out evenly so that there's about an inch of space between each wedge, if possible.
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    Zap your tortilla wedges in the microwave, on high, for approximately one minute. At this point, your tortilla wedges should be fairly soggy, and still in need of love.
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    Flip each wedge over and place onto the same microwave-safe plate.
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    Zap the tortilla wedges in the microwave again for one minute. Pay special attention to the wedges at this point, and be especially vigilant of browning at this point.[5] Check for doneness at this point. Depending on your microwave, your chips may be done at this point.
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    Turn the wedges again, and microwave for 30 seconds to one minute. Watch very closely, as chips might burn if microwaved too long..
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    When chips are done, remove from microwave. If desired, brush lightly with a neutral oil and sprinkle with sea salt.
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    Serve immediately.
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    Finished.

Warnings

  • This is so delicious you might want to enjoy them often, but watch out, it is not a diet treat.

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