4 Tortillas With the Lowest Quality Ingredients, According to a Dietitian
With so many tortilla products on the market, you might find it overwhelming to pick out the best option for Taco Tuesday. Let's break down exactly what is important to look at when purchasing tortillas at the store, and which tortillas we advise against due to their quality of ingredients. (Similarly, consider these 5 Fast-Food Tacos with the Lowest Quality Ingredients.)
The three key components to look at on the backside of the label are fiber, added oils, and sodium. Each product goes about the recipe slightly differently, and even healthier-looking products may still have low-quality ingredients. In general, we want to look for minimally processed options that have fewer ingredients and use fiber and oils from healthy sources.
- Fiber: Fiber helps slow down digestion, and keep us for longer. Tortillas with higher fiber will make it easier to portion ties and feel full after the meal. Alternatively, tortillas with lower fiber may be easier to over eat and possibly eat past the point of fullness. We want to look for fibers that come from healthy sources, and not tons of extra fiber that make the product hard to digest.
- Added oil: Some oil is needed to hold the tortilla together. Finding products that use healthy plant forward oils that are not hydrogenated is the best combo for your tortilla.
- Sodium: The daily recommended amount of sodium for the average American is 2300 mg per day. This is equivalent to about a teaspoon of salt, and then spread out throughout the day equates to roughly 600–800 mg per meal. Buying food products with less sodium has been shown to improve our health by regulating blood pressure.
With these criteria in mind, here are our picks for tortillas with the lowest quality ingredients that are currently on the market. And after learning which tortilla varieties to avoid, you can also find out which wholesome tortilla selections dietitians chose via The Best Tortillas for Belly Fat—Ranked!
Mission Flour Taco Tortillas
Mission Flour Tortillas may be classic, but their nutrition facts are lackluster—especially the fiber content. With 26 g of carbs, but only 1 g of fiber and 400 mg of sodium per serving, these aren't my favorite tortillas on the market.
If I were going to incorporate them into a meal, I would be sure to load up on protein and veggies for extra balance. If you're searching for ways to create even more delicious tacos, we've got you covered with these simple 9 Hacks for The Best Tacos Ever.
Mission Gluten-free Tortillas
Finding high-quality gluten-free products can be challenging, and tortillas are no exception. Oftentimes gluten-free products are made with rice and potato products that are low in fiber.
Mission Gluten-Free Tortilla contains 140 cal, 25 total carbohydrates, and 420 mg of sodium per tortilla. Each of these wraps also contains 5 g of fiber—which appears to be quite a lot!
When we look at the ingredients in Mission's gluten-free tortillas, you'll see that there are many food additives including hydrogenated oil and several types of starches. The fiber in this product comes from resistant corn starch.
If you have to eat gluten-free for medical reasons, I prefer Siete Frozen Cassava Flour Tortillas.
Toufayan Keto Wraps
Despite their health claims, Toufayan Bakeries Keto Wraps don't impress me much. One wrap contains 40 calories and appears quite health conscious from the label.
However, the product is mainly made of lower quality fiber like modified wheat starch and cottonseed fiber. The wrap is held together with hydrogenated soybean and palm oils.
The majority of the calories in this product come from the fiber under total carbohydrate. Large doses of fiber all at once in a meal can contribute to digestive discomfort and irregular changes in bowel movement including cramping, bloating, pain, diarrhea or constipation.
The daily recommended dose of fiber is 25–38 g per day for adults, and our systems tolerate this better if it is spread out over the course of the day rather than all at once.
Mission Carb Balance Spinach Herb Tortilla Wraps
Mission Carb Balance Spinach and Herb Tortillas contain about 60 calories per serving, 18 g of carbohydrate, and 330 mg of sodium. While one might assume that the spinach component would make this a healthy tortilla choice, the nutrition label and ingredients tells another story—one that may leave you feeling discouraged. With hydrogenated oils, food dyes, and sucralose, we don't love the additives in this product.
I personally love the Whole Wheat Tortilla from Mission Foods instead. You will get high quality fiber from whole grains rather than huge amounts of fiber from food additives like modified wheat starch in the Carb Balance option.
You may have special dietary reasons for choosing the carb couscous option, and that's your call! We caution that huge amounts of fiber at once may cause some gastrointestinal discomfort as well, so monitor your individual reaction wisely.