Mastering the Art of Using a Tortilla Warmer: Your Guide to Warm and Delicious Tortillas

How to use a tortilla warmer (and why you should)

If you’re a fan of Mexican food, you probably love having tortillas in your pantry. They’re versatile, delicious, and easy to make. But have you ever had trouble keeping them warm until you’re ready to serve them? A tortilla warmer is a simple yet effective solution to this problem.

What is a tortilla warmer?

A tortilla warmer is a kitchen utensil used to keep tortillas warm and soft. It is usually made of insulating materials such as cloth, plastic, or ceramic. There are even electric tortilla warmers, but we’ll get to those later.

Cloth Warmers

The most popular material for tortilla warmers is cloth. They are inexpensive and easy to wash. They also come in a variety of designs, colors and sizes. Cloth tortilla warmers work by trapping heat to keep the tortillas warm. The warm tortillas are placed in the warmer and the heat spreads throughout the stack, keeping them warm and pliable. They are perfect for individual servings or when serving at a dinner party.
To use a cloth tortilla warmer, first dampen the cloth, then heat the tortillas in a microwave or oven. Finally, place the tortillas in the warmer and wrap the cloth around them.

Plastic Warmers

Plastic tortilla warmers work differently than cloth ones. They are usually made of BPA-free plastic and have a tight-fitting lid to keep moisture in. Unlike cloth warmers, plastic ones are dishwasher safe and more durable.
You can place tortillas in the warmer without moistening them, and they will retain heat longer. Plastic tortilla warmers are also stackable, making them perfect for larger gatherings.

Ceramic Warmers

Ceramic tortilla warmers (like these from Amazon) are the fanciest of all. They come in a variety of designs and sizes. You can use them to warm your tortillas in the microwave or in the oven. They usually have a solid lid to keep the tortillas warm and fresh. Ceramic warmers can be a little more expensive, but they look great on the table.

Electric Warmers

Finally, electric tortilla warmers are a game changer. They are perfect for commercial use, large gatherings, or for those who want to enjoy warm tortillas all day long. These warmers come with an electric heating element that can keep tortillas warm for hours. They are easy to use and can heat up tortillas in minutes. If you want to serve freshly heated tortillas in an instant, an electric warmer is for you.

Why use a tortilla warmer?

There are many benefits to using a tortilla warmer and why you should consider adding this kitchen must-have to your collection.

  1. Retains heat: The first reason to use a tortilla warmer is that it helps retain the heat of your tortillas for longer. Instead of resorting to makeshift methods like wrapping them in a paper towel or aluminum foil, simply place your freshly made tortillas in the warmer and close the lid. This will keep them warm and soft until you’re ready to serve.
  2. Preserves moisture: Tortilla warmers are great at keeping the moisture in your tortillas. This feature is especially helpful if your tortillas have dried out a bit. Placing them in a warmer will help to soften and moisturize them, giving them a fresh out of the oven feel.
  3. Easy to use: Tortilla warmers are incredibly easy to use. All you have to do is preheat them before use and then add your tortillas. You can find ceramic, plastic or fabric warmers to suit your preference and budget.
  4. Versatile: A tortilla warmer can be useful for more than just keeping tortillas warm. You can also use it to warm other baked goods like naan, flatbread, or even pancakes and waffles. So when you invest in a tortilla warmer, you’re investing in a versatile kitchen accessory.
  5. Cost-effective: Another benefit of tortilla warmers is that they are affordable, so you don’t have to break the bank to add one to your kitchen. They also last a long time, making them a worthwhile investment.

Step-by-step guide to using a tortilla warmer

The easiest way to use a tortilla warmer is to use it in the microwave. Let’s take a look at the step-by-step process:
Step 1: Wet the tortillas

  • Place the tortillas under a damp cloth or paper towel. This step is not necessary, but it will help maintain the pliability and texture of the tortillas.

Step 2: Place the tortillas in the Tortilla Warmer

  • Once the tortillas are wrapped in a damp cloth, place them in the tortilla warmer. The warmer is designed to hold multiple tortillas, so you can repeat these steps a few times.

Step 3: Heat the tortillas in the microwave

  • With the tortillas in the warmer, place the lid on and microwave for about 30-45 seconds.
  • Exact heating time may vary depending on the wattage of the microwave and the number of tortillas inside. Make sure the lid is closed to ensure even heating.

Step 4: Serve hot tortillas

  • When the microwave beeps, the tortillas are ready to be served. In most cases, they should be well heated and pliable, and they will remain that way for some time while they sit in the warmer.


A tortilla warmer is a valuable tool for any lover of Mexican cuisine. Whether you prefer cloth, plastic, ceramic, or electric warmers, they all serve the purpose of keeping your tortillas warm, soft, and delicious. The benefits of using a tortilla warmer, including heat retention, moisture retention, ease of use, versatility, and cost effectiveness, make it a worthwhile addition to your kitchen arsenal.
So the next time you’re preparing a Mexican feast or simply enjoying some warm tortillas, reach for your tortilla warmer and elevate your dining experience. You’ll never have to worry about cold tortillas again!


How long does a tortilla stay warm in a tortilla warmer?

A tortilla can be kept warm in a tortilla warmer for approximately 30 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the insulation of the warmer and the initial temperature of the tortillas.

Can I use a tortilla warmer for corn and flour tortillas?

Of course you can! Tortilla warmers are suitable for both corn and flour tortillas. They effectively retain the heat and moisture of both types, keeping them soft and pliable.

Can I use a tortilla warmer in the oven?

Yes, some tortilla warmers, such as ceramic ones, are oven safe. Be sure to check the manufacturer’s instructions for the recommended temperature and time for heating tortillas in the oven.

Are tortilla warmers dishwasher safe?

Plastic tortilla warmers are usually dishwasher safe, so they are easy to clean. However, cloth and ceramic tortilla warmers should be hand-washed to maintain their quality and prevent damage.

Can I use a tortilla warmer for other types of bread or baked goods?

Yes, tortilla warmers can be used to warm other types of bread such as naan, flatbread or even pancakes and waffles. They are a versatile kitchen accessory for keeping a variety of baked goods warm and delicious.

Are electric tortilla warmers safe to use?

Yes, electric tortilla warmers are safe to use provided you follow the manufacturer’s instructions and safety guidelines. They are designed with built-in heating elements that maintain a constant temperature to keep your tortillas warm for longer.