Homemade tamal recipe - Step To Health

Homemade tamal recipe

Homemade tamal recipe

Last update: 28 December, 2019

It is time to learn about a delicious food called the tamal. Read on for a great recipe for homemade tamales. 

The first thing you should know when it comes to making delicious homemade tamales is that it always turns out great. The main ingredients don’t matter. And no, there isn’t any trick to it, just cooking.

To clear up any confusion, understand that tamales do not come from just one country or region. In fact, it’s quite similar to other foods from South America.

In Venezuela, they are known as hallacas and are made from three different types of meat stews. In Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia and Mexico, they have the name tamal but the ingredients, cooking methods, and foods that accompany them vary radically.

Today we’ll combine it all and give you with a recipe for homemade tamales that you’ll love. Now, what am I going to need? Well, it’s made of corn flour and filled with a sort of stew, vegetables, and sauce. Then it’s all wrapped up in a leaf, usually plantain, and cooked.

One note: you have to be fairly careful when it comes to cooking and mixing the ingredients. But follow this recipe and you’ll see that it is worth the effort.

Homemade tamal recipe

A tamal wrapped up in a leaf.

For tamales, focus on how the ingredients are cooked and mixed. Why? Just because this is the secret to the entire recipe. The flavor that they get comes from combining the ingredients with the delicious corn flour.

However, you would be right to question the nutritional value and the large amount of carbohydrates that homemade tamales must have. Well, the key is in the proportions. 

Remember that every body processes things differently. Yes, corn flour contains carbohydrates, but that doesn’t make it bad for you. It is also full of protein, vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants.  It is time to forget those food myths and instead learn to trust yourself and learn new ways to feed yourself. Plus, it’s really fun to try new things!


  • 2 onions (150 g)
  • 1 tablespoon of salt (25 g)
  • 4 cups of water (440 ml)
  • 3 serrano chiles (15 g)
  • 1 garlic clove without skin (6 g)
  • 1 kilo of corn flour
  • 10 plantain leaves (500 g)
  • 2 1/2 cups of margarine (250 g)
  • 5 large green tomatoes (500 g)
  • 2 cups of chicken broth (220 ml)
  • 3 boneless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded (550 g)
  • 4 tablespoons of sunflower oil (90 ml)
  • 1 tablespoon of baking powder (25 g)
Tamal with onions


  • First of all, even before worrying about the other ingredients, we’ll prepare the dough.
  • Take a bowl with three large cups of water and add the tablespoon of salt. Then, add the corn flour little by little and knead with your hands until it doesn’t have any lumps.
  • It’s important that the dough stays soft so that you can mold it with the filling.
  • If this isn’t enough water, you can add more until you get the ideal texture.
  • Once you have the texture right, it’s time to season. Use the chicken broth and the baking powder and knead them them in until they’re well-mixed. 
  • Now for the sauce: put a pot of water on to boil, then add the green tomatoes, the garlic and the onion. Let them cook for 10 minutes.
  • When the mixture is cooked, take it out of the pot and put it in a blender to form the sauce.
  • Heat the oil in another pot at medium heat and add the cooked sauce for five minutes. Stir occasionally.
  • Take a plantain leaf, add two large spoonfuls of the dough, spread it out well, and pour a tablespoon of the sauce and add a tablespoon of chicken. 
  • To finish, repeat the previous step until you are out of dough.
  • Wrap each tamal in a leaf and ensure that it’s well-tied so that it won’t come undone.
  • Finally, put on a large pot to boil and add the tamales. You want them to cook well. This should take around 50 minutes.
  • Now enjoy!






  • Slavin J, Carlson J. Carbohydrates. Adv Nutr. 2014;5(6):760–761. Published 2014 Nov 14. doi:10.3945/an.114.006163
  • Tamal. (s.f.). En Wikipedia. Recuperado el 13 de marzo de 2018 de https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tamal