Why I Make Homemade Tortillas

One of Money Saving Mom’s most popular posts is titled “Why I Don’t Make My Homemade Tortillas.” Since she posted it almost two years ago (um, that’s like half a century in blogging-time, right?), I’ve thought about this article many times, because I make my own tortillas

In her post, Crystal shares a compelling reason why she doesn’t make her own homemade tortillas:

  • Time is valuable. If you do an activity just to save money, you need to be certain it’s really saving enough money to be worthwhile.

Your time is valuable. We’ve only got one life to live. We only have 24 hours in a day. We can scurry from one money-saving activity to the next and wear ourselves out in an effort to save 50¢ here and 7¢ there.

In some rare instances, it really is necessary to squeeze every last penny just to make ends-meet. For most of us though, we get to choose our sacrifices so we can choose our splurges. I line-dry many of our clothes, but keep our house a tad cooler than absolutely necessary. I gladly drive an old, paid-for van, but love my high-speed internet.

Life is made up of choices, and when it comes to the kitchen, it’s no different.

For example, one of the many ways that Crystal keeps her grocery budget low is by couponing. I have tried couponing. And failed. After repeated efforts (and many, many hours of frustration) I found that I could usually get the desired item cheaper at Aldi or from a local, convenient farmer’s market than I could matching a coupon and sale.

Shopping with three small children isn’t fast. I’d much rather grocery shop once a month (plus fill in from the market) than go to even two stores a week to catch the few sales that were really worth it in my area.

Not couponing frees up time to make even more of our foods from scratch (like tortillas or sandwich bread.)

Still, it would hardly be worthwhile to make my tortillas from scratch just to save 50¢ a package, if I was making them just to save money. They take about 5-10 minutes to make and my time is worth more than $3-6 an hour!

But, I don’t make tortillas just to save money.

  • I make homemade tortillas because they’re healthier.
  • I make homemade tortillas because my kids love them.
  • I make homemade tortillas because I love them.
  • I make homemade tortillas because I think they’re fun to make
  • ….and my children think they’re fun to make with me.

As an added benefit, making your own saves a few dollars a month.

Feeding a growing family healthy foods on a budget is a balancing act. I can’t pursue every last penny-pinching idea, but making my own tortillas is one of the many ways I shave a few dollars off our grocery budget, while enjoying time with my children and creating a more healthy end-product.

So that’s why I make my own. Want to give homemade tortillas a try? Here’s the whole wheat tortilla recipe that I use.

What about you? Do you do some money-saving activities mainly just because you like to? Have you ever made your own tortillas? 

Linked up at Titus 2sdays,Teach Me Tuesdays, Cornerstone Confessions, Consider the Lillies, Encourage One AnotherHomemaking LinkupWomen Living Well & Works for Me

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  1. says

    Those sound good. I’ll look forward to seeing the “how to” for these. 🙂 And I’m not a coupon person either. (I really haven’t tried it either. 😉 )

  2. says

    And here I was checking to see what the recipe was – guess I’ll have to check back tomorrow!

    Anyway, I highly agree with your reasoning – this is a very well written and though-out post. I don’t think it’s always as simple as counting the value of your time in monetary terms. If you categorize the activity as an opportunity to spend quality time with your children (or teach them how to make a particular food item), or any other reason, it can definitely be worth it. I’d like to do more baked goods from scratch, and suspect that a lot of it has to do with finding the right routine.

    I’m the same when it comes to couponing. Having an Aldi makes a huge difference, and when you factor in the time to have to stand in line at a grocery store, print, clip, and organize your coupons, for me it doesn’t save that much, and often is only for foods we don’t eat that often.

  3. says

    I make my own torillas as well, except I make corn tortillas. Mostly because my husband is gluten intolerant, but as an added bonus, they’re faster to make.
    You’re so right, they taste so much better homemade!

  4. Mrs. CLB @ A Study In Domestic Arts says

    I make my own bread for health reasons first but the savings is an added bonus 🙂 Homemade is usually cheaper and much healthier!

  5. says

    I read the “Why I don’t make my homemade tortilla” post too, and what stuck out in my mind was the $20 an hour wage guideline that was mentioned in it. I have always set my “to be worth it savings hourly wage” at minimum wage for my state, because truthfully that is where I would start out if I tried to re-enter the working beyond my home world. I am sort of at a toss up with the tortilla making issue I make them sometimes and sometimes I buy them. It depends on my mood. Great post, great points!

    • anna says

      Thanks so much for stopping by Victoria! I agree that $20 an hour savings seemed really high…that’s not what my starting pay would be (especially after tithe, taxes, etc!)

      Sometimes I still buy tortillas for when we’re in a big hurry and just need dinner fast, but love making them. And that makes it worth *not* saving $20 (or even $10) an hour!

    • anna says

      Thanks so much for joining us! I think it’s worth it just because the kiddos love to help (and eat!) these so much. At first I was a bit disappointed when I “over-baked” a tortilla and it was too crispy to fill, but those are my kiddos favorites. 🙂

  6. Ruth says

    I love making my own tortillas too. I’m making enchilada casserole right now with homemade corn tortillas.

    I agree, not everyone is cut out to save money the same way. For me, personally, it’s better to buy eggs from my neighbor with chickens, grow my own vegetables wherever possible, go berry picking, make as many things from scratch as possible, and buy bulk than to bother with tedious coupon clipping.

    • anna says

      Thanks so much for stopping by! You sound like a kindred spirit. 😉 Getting food from usually saves money AND I think it’s fun. Clipping coupons is a dreaded chore. So glad we have the freedom to choose what works best for our own families!

  7. says

    I have never made tortillas (actually that isn’t true. I made them in 6th grade Spanish class), but Costco has some raw tortillas that are delicious. Honestly they are so amazing I snack on them raw. Sadly I looked at the ingredients and they have bad oils in them, so I should probably start making my own.

    • anna says

      They’re really easy, at least if you have a tortilla press. But I love the taste so much better and, like you said, they’re so fun to snack on that it’s worth it to make them by hand, in my opinion.

      (The tortilla press was a Christmas present–one of my favorite to date. 🙂 )


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