Gluten Free Tamale Recipe Without Lard

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My daughter purchased some tamales last Christmas but she was extremely disappointed because most of them hardly had any filling in them. So, I’ve been wanting to create a gluten free tamale recipe ever since. I hope you enjoy this recipe. They’re delicious!

Links You May Need:

Shredded Mexican Chicken, Beef or Pork Recipe

Doctored-Up Enchilada Sauce

Gluten Free Tamale Recipe

Delicious gluten free tamale recipe filled with beef, chicken, pork, beans, and/or cheese with an easy, flavorful sauce.
Course Dinner
Cuisine Mexican
Ingredient Keyword beans, beef, cheese, chicken, pork
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • For the Dough:
  • 2 cups masa harina
  • 1 - 1/2 cups gluten-free low-sodium chicken or beef broth Better Than Bouillon "Organic" Reduced-Sodium Chicken or Beef Base
  • 1 teaspoon gluten free baking powder Rumford's
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2/3 cup bacon grease and/or butter or lard, melted
  • 6- ounce package dried corn husks
  • For the Filling Options:
  • Mexican shredded chicken beef, or pork (see above link)
  • Gluten free red enchilada sauce for beef or pork
  • Gluten free green enchilada sauce for chicken
  • Refried beans and shredded Mexican cheese blend or Follow Your Heart for Dairy-Free
  • Shredded Mexican cheese blend or Follow Your Heart for Dairy-Free
  • Shredded chicken and shredded Mexican cheese blend or Follow Your Heart for Dairy-Free
  • Enchilada Sauce or your favorite gluten free sauce, for serving

Instructions

  1. Place the corn husks in a large heat-proof bowl. Pour and cover with boiling water; place something heavy on top to keep them submerged; soak for at least 30 minutes.
  2. In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat the bacon fat/butter/lard and 1 tablespoon of broth until crumbly, 3 about minutes.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the masa harina, baking powder, salt, cumin, and onion powder; beat on medium speed to combine.
  4. Add more broth as necessary to form a very soft dough that spreads like peanut butter. Beat on high speed for several minutes creamy, yet sticky. To test if the dough is ready, pinch off a piece of dough and roll into a ball about 1/4-inch in diameter. Toss into a glass of water. If the dough floats it is ready. If not, beat it some more until it is light and fluffy and floats to the top of the water.
  5. When the husks are done soaking, drain them and stand them up in the bowl to fully drain.
  6. Lay a corn husk, smooth side up, on a clean surface with the widest end facing you and the pointy end away from you. Scoop a heaping serving tablespoon full of dough along the side closest to you, the widest end. Lay a sheet of plastic wrap over the top of the dough and spread it over that half of the corn husk about 1/4-inch thick. (For spreading, you can use your fingers, a light-weight plastic rolling pin, glass, or small pie dough rolling pin.)
  7. Distribute about 1 tablespoon or so of filling down the center of the dough and fold one side of the husk over the filling and then fold the other side over. Then, fold the bottom half of the husk upward, in half to lay over the filled portion.
  8. Add about 2-inches of water to a large pot. Add a large colander with its handles extending over the top of the pot so that the water will not touch the colander. Line the colander with corn husks.
  9. Place tamales, open side up, in the steamer, laying on its side, in a circle. Overlap the tamales as needed. Cover all of them with additional corn husks or a tea towel, if you've run out of husks. Place the lid on top and boil the water until it creates steam. Lower the heat to keep the water at a simmer. Steam the tamales 35 - 50 minutes. Begin testing at 35 minutes. To test if they’re done, try removing one of the husks. When the husks remove easily, instead of the dough sticking to the husks, the tamales are done. If not, steam longer.

Tips

Place the corn husks in a large heat-proof bowl. Pour and cover with boiling water; place something heavy on top to keep them submerged; soak for at least 30 minutes.
In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat the bacon fat/butter/lard and 1 tablespoon of broth until crumbly, 3 about minutes.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the masa harina, baking powder, salt, cumin, and onion powder; beat on medium speed to combine.
Add more broth as necessary to form a very soft dough that spreads like peanut butter. Beat on high speed for several minutes creamy, yet sticky. To test if the dough is ready, pinch off a piece of dough and roll into a ball about 1/4-inch in diameter. Toss into a glass of water. If the dough floats it is ready. If not, beat it some more until it is light and fluffy and floats to the top of the water.
When the husks are done soaking, drain them and stand them up in the bowl to fully drain.
Lay a corn husk, smooth side up, on a clean surface with the widest end facing you and the pointy end away from you. Scoop a heaping serving tablespoon full of dough along the side closest to you, the widest end. Lay a sheet of plastic wrap over the top of the dough and spread it over that half of the corn husk about 1/4-inch thick. (For spreading, you can use your fingers, a light-weight plastic rolling pin, glass, or small pie dough rolling pin.)
Distribute about 1 tablespoon or so of filling down the center of the dough and fold one side of the husk over the filling and then fold the other side over. Then, fold the bottom half of the husk upward, in half to lay over the filled portion.
Add about 2-inches of water to a large pot. Add a large colander with its handles extending over the top of the pot so that the water will not touch the colander. Line the colander with corn husks.
Place tamales, open side up, in the steamer, laying on its side, in a circle. Overlap the tamales as needed. Cover all of them with additional corn husks or a tea towel, if you've run out of husks. Place the lid on top and boil the water until it creates steam. Lower the heat to keep the water at a simmer. Steam the tamales 35 - 50 minutes. Begin testing at 35 minutes. To test if they’re done, try removing one of the husks. When the husks remove easily, instead of the dough sticking to the husks, the tamales are done. If not, steam longer.

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