My Tortilla Stack is a delicious mid-week meal of gluten free flour tortillas layered with rich Bolognese sauce and cheese, baked to perfection. If not gluten-intolerant, just use normal wraps!
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Gluten Free Tortilla Stack… Quite possibly one of the BEST mid-week meals EVER!
Messy, I grant you… But Tortilla Stack was my family’s favourite mid-week meal before we had to become a gluten free household due to Coeliac (Celiac) diagnosis. A speedy alternative take on lasagne, it consists of a stack of thin, soft tortilla wraps, layered with a tasty, rich Bolognese sauce and cheese, before being baked in the oven until golden.
So, when Miss GF was diagnosed Coeliac, disaster struck. Why? Because no gluten at that time, meant no flour tortillas. And no flour tortillas meant no Tortilla Stack. Forget missing pizza or bread… In our house, THIS was the biggest sacrifice. And there was nothing… NOTHING that I could find at that time that could replace what was missing.
The search for gluten free Wraps for a Tortilla Stack
Now this is where I get a little obsessed. But if it’s your family’s favourite meal, what choice is there… And the search for the elusive gluten free wraps to make a perfect Tortilla Stack was on.
Initially, we tried substituting the old flour tortilla wraps with corn tortillas… Naturally gluten free and available from Mexican grocers, they seemed a perfect choice. Did they work? Nah! They were a bit too ‘corny’ and too brittle and just didn’t give the soft bite or pair well with the Bolognese flavours they sat next to…
I then went on to search the internet via all the specialist bakeries within potential reach (in the UK and Europe). But there seemed to be nothing equivalent on the market…
Then… The gluten free market got more savvy… First was a discovery at the Allergy and Free From Show (back in 2013) that the Irish company BFree had started to produce gluten free wraps… And then… One after the other, a whole gamut of gluten free producers started making them… Everything from plain white and multigrain to sweet potato, seeded, ‘high protein’ and even beetroot-based pink ones!
The RIGHT Gluten Free Wrap for a Tortilla Stack
Now… I don’t want to seem ungrateful, but I’ve tried every wrap on the market with our favourite Tortilla Stack recipe. And I genuinely appreciate the availability of commercial gluten free wraps in the supermarket. Some of them taste pretty good… And some of them roll reasonably well too, for a speedy wrap lunch. But do they make a good Tortilla bake? The honest answer is it’s pretty variable. So here are my thoughts on choosing a commercial wrap for Tortilla Stack…
- The more neutrally-flavoured plain wraps are the best match for taste pairing against the cheese and sauce.
- Try and pick larger wraps… They stack and layer with sauce better and don’t dry out as much in the oven.
- Don’t use the Old El Paso gluten free wraps for this recipe… Sure, they are very soft and pliable, but they create an excessively doughy bake that isn’t pleasant to eat. Plus, they are really tiny and quite sweet.
- All the other commercial wraps we’ve tried tend to curl at the edges when baked, as they are drier. They are ok-enough for this recipe but can be a little ‘crisp’.
The PERFECT Gluten Free Wrap for a Tortilla Stack…
I appreciate that some of you will think making your own gluten free flour wraps is not worth it… But think again!
In my search for the perfect, soft gluten free tortilla, I have developed my own recipe. And it’s amazing! I’m incredibly happy with it for all sorts of reasons… One of them being that it makes a perfect Tortilla Stack!! And that makes me super-excited because finally… FINALLY we can eat the layered tortilla bake that we truly remember.
And it’s easy… Really. My Gluten Free Wraps take very little skill or time to prepare. So, if you want the ultimate gluten free wrap, whether for a stack or just to replace those wraps you miss, go grab the recipe now!
The Inspiration and recipe for this tortilla bake
Credit where credit’s due… There’s nothing worse than bloggers who take other people’s recipes without clear acknowledgement!
The recipe for Tortilla Stack that I made before going gluten free originally came from a booklet called ‘Mince Magic’ (2006). It came free with a magazine and was used to promote UK beef mince. ‘Mince Magic’ was produced by an organisation called Simply Beef & Lamb and has some great ideas for quick, tasty, nutritious meals… Including Tortilla Stack.
The recipe shared below is more or less what came out of ‘Mince Magic’ with a couple of minor tweaks… and of course my gluten free wraps!
Tortilla Stack – Tortilla Bake – Tortilla Lasagne – Different names, same dish?
Check the internet for similar recipes to the one shared here and you’ll find layered bakes made with wraps called many things… The popular recipes are called ‘Tortilla Bake’, ‘Tortilla Stack’ and ‘Tortilla Lasagne’. And all are pretty much one and the same… Sure, there are variations in the tomato sauce filling and grated cheese is sometimes interchangeable with white cheese sauce. But essentially, they are all stacks of soft flour wraps, layered and baked.
At the end of the day, you can call it what you like. But as it was originally called ‘Tortilla Stack’ in the ‘Mince Magic’ book, that is how it has continued to be for us here at Gluten Free Alchemist.
Is this recipe gluten free and safe for Coeliacs?
Absolutely yes… This Tortilla Stack recipe is entirely gluten free and Coeliac Safe as long as you use gluten free wraps!
If you want to make it dairy free, be sure to use a dairy free cheese alternative.
For a Vegetarian version, sub the meat for a soya or other mince alternative.
Can I make Tortilla Stack in advance?
If you want to get ahead so that the meal is prepared in double-quick time, I would suggest the following…
- Make the Bolognese sauce and set aside (place in the fridge once cold until ready to make the stack).
- Grate the cheese and set aside.
- Make your Gluten Free Wraps and set aside wrapped in a tea towel or in an airtight bag to keep fresh.
- When ready to eat… Layer and bake! The final preparation and baking will be done in about three-quarters of an hour… or less!
Reheating Tortilla ‘Lasagne’ Left-Overs
Depending on how many people are being fed with your Tortilla Stack, it is possible that you may have left-overs… Ok. It’s a small possibility. But if you do, simply wrap in foil or transfer to an airtight container and pop in the fridge for another meal…
To reheat – Simply wrap the left-overs in foil and pop in a hot oven for about 10 minutes. Or, cover with clingfilm or the loose lid of the microwave-safe container and zap on high for about 3 minutes (depending on how big the left-overs are).
Ready to make Gluten Free Tortilla Stack?
And that’s it… All I need to share about making Gluten Free Tortilla Stack. Thank you for reading!
I hope you are now ready to make it… And if you do, let me know whether you liked it! Leave a comment, rate the recipe or tag me on social media. (Find me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter).
And one more thing… Have you seen our mahoosive Gluten Free Recipe Book Index Yet? No? Then head over and take a look… It’s all the gluten free inspiration your need… Literally at your finger tips!
Happy stacking lovely people
Other Quick and Delicious Gluten Free Mid-Week Meals
Tortilla Stack (aka Tortilla Bake)
- sharp vegetable knife
- large saucepan
- oven + hob
- large baking tray
- 1 tbsp olive oil to fry
- 1 medium white onion finely chopped
- 2 large garlic cloves minced or finely chopped
- 500 g good quality beef mince
- 3 tbsp tomato puree concentrated
- 2 tsp ground smoked paprika
- 400 g tinned chopped tomatoes
- handful fresh chopped coriander
- salt and pepper to season (to taste)
All the other bits…
- 4 large plain tortilla wraps gluten free as required – See NOTES
- 160 g mature cheddar cheese grated
- soured cream and salad to serve (optional)
- In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil and gently fry the chopped onion until translucent.
- Add the minced garlic and stir through before adding the beef mince. Cook over a medium heat, stirring intermittently until the mince is browned.
- Add the tomato puree and paprika and stir into the mince mix allowing to cook for a couple of minutes.
- Add the tomatoes and bring to a simmer, stirring intermittently.
- Reduce the heat and allow to simmer for about 10 minutes.
- Add the coriander, stir through and season to taste with salt and pepper
- If not making the stack immediately, set the sauce aside to cool until ready to use.
Building the Tortilla Stack
- Preheat the oven to 180 C/350 F/Gas 4.
- Place a flour tortilla wrap on a large non-stick baking sheet (I place mine on non-stick baking parchment).
- Top with a couple of spoonfuls of bolognese sauce and gently and evenly spread out over the tortilla.
- Sprinkle a layer of cheese on top of the sauce (about a quarter of the cheese).
- Carefully place a second tortilla wrap on top and repeat with a further layer of sauce and cheese.
- Continue with a third layer of wrap, the REST of the sauce and half of the remaining grated cheese (reserving some cheese for the final layer).
- Top with the last tortilla and the rest of the cheese.
- Bake for about 10 to 15 minutes (if the sauce was warm when layered) until the cheese melts and the wrap edges begin to crisp. If the sauce is cold, the stack will need longer to heat through (about 20 to 30 minutes).
- Cut into portions and serve
© 2019-2022 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist