Feeling frustrated by the lack of snack chips fried in healthy fats (like olive oil, coconut or avocado oil, ghee, or animal fats like lard, tallow, or schmaltz), I crafted a technique and recipe for homemade baked tortilla chips that are as good as any fried version. They’re better in fact, as you’re no longer ingesting rancid, omega-6/PUFA laden, über-processed “vegetable” (actually seed) oils (such as sunflower, corn, safflower, or canola) in which just about every chip on the market is fried! (To be fair, there are numerous potato chip brands that are now fried in healthy fats. But I’ve seldom found tortilla chips made with those).
Start with fresh round corn tortillas. If you’re not making them yourself, the only ingredients should be corn, flour and lime (skip brands with preservatives or vegetable oils(!) I prefer yellow corn, but any variety (white or blue) will work. I mostly use coconut oil as my chosen fat.
Besides enhanced freshness and nutrition, making your own chips in small batches encourages you to appreciate and savor (rather than “hoover”) them, as the fruits of your labor. Rather than mindlessly plowing through a seemingly bottomless bag of store-bought, mass produced chips, homemade hand crafted chips encourage you to slow down, and recall the care taken to make each bite. That’s what I call mindful eating!
Baked Tortilla Chips
- 200 g (6 oz.) corn tortillas, about 9 6-inch tortillas
- 30 ml (2 Tbsp.) coconut oil or other nutrient dense fat (tallow, lard, schmaltz, avocado oil, ghee, etc.)
- sea salt to taste
- Preheat oven to bake (or convection bake) at 365°F/185°C.
- If the fat you're using is solid at room temperature (e.g. coconut oil), warm it gently until it melts. Alternately, heat up 1/2 cup water, or run a silicone spatula or brush under hot water for 20 seconds. Dip heated utensil into the solid fat, to enable it to be spread more easily.
- Spread a thin layer of fat on one side of each tortilla.
- Stack the tortillas (up to 4 or 5 at a time). Slice the stack in half and repeat until you have made 4 cuts (8 pieces to each tortilla). Repeat until all tortillas have been cut.
- Lay chips head-to-tail on a single layer on two half-sheet pans lined with silicone mats or parchment paper.
- Bake 13-15 minutes, rotating pans and trays halfway through.
- Increase oven temperature to 375°F/190°C, and bake another 5 to 7 minutes, or until they just start to curl up and turn golden brown. Keep an eye on it! It can go from golden brown to burnt quickly.
- Remove from oven and salt immediately, while they're still hot.
- Store in an airtight bag or container for up to 4 days.
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