Cooking with ADHD: One More Test Recipe for Issue 1

I just discovered tlacoyos, and they look surprisingly doable: mix masa harina with salt and water, flatten into oval shapes, fill with something like beans or ground beef, fold to close, toss ’em in a pan to cook. Fry them if you want; don’t fry them if you don’t want to.  Top like you would a taco, or just eat them plain. Sounds good to me!


The process doesn’t look like it will require too much prep or cleanup — you don’t need fifteen different bowls and spoons and pots and pans to make these, just a bowl to mix your masa in and a pan to cook your tlacoyos.  Toppings can be as easy as prepared salsa and pre-chopped onions (it seems like almost every grocery store In Louisville carries these in their produce section now). 

I’m betting you can probably make these with regular cornmeal in a pinch (…and being able to do things “in a pinch” is sometimes important when you’re working around a condition that interferes with executive functioning).  In fact, I think I’ll try them that way first.  I already have everything I need to make them that way.

You can easily make your tlacoyos kosher, halal, dairy-free, gluten-free (though some kinds of cornmeal do contain gluten), vegetarian, vegan and so on.  They’re really versatile, and that’s a great thing — especially if you’re looking for something to cook for a crowd of friends who might bring different dietary challenges to the table.

I plan to add these to the first set of test recipes for Cooking with ADHD. 

They might even be first on the field, because I can’t wait to try them.  I’ll probably make some with just mashed beans (the disorganized cook’s answer to refried!) and some with my favorite meatless taco filling, which combines mashed beans with red rice (brown or white rice work fine, too, it just happens that I bought an enormous bag of red rice a while back and don’t eat rice all that often). 

I’ll do them again with proper masa harina (also widely available in US supermarkets and on Amazon) if it turns out that they’re as easy as they sound.

About asher

Me in a nutshell: Standard uptight ballet boy. Trapeze junkie. Half-baked choreographer. Budding researcher. Transit cyclist. Terrible homemaker. Neuro-atypical. Fabulous. Married to a very patient man. Bachelor of Science in Psychology (2015). Proto-foodie, but lazy about it. Cat owner ... or, should I say, cat own-ee? ... dog lover. Equestrian.

Posted on 2015/04/14, in adhd, cooking with adhd, food, life management and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. Looks appetizing. Thank you.

    Sent from my iPad


  2. These sound yummy and easy to make! I make something similar, but a round shape instead, lol. Beans and rice together is a great combination.
    Can I add a suggestion for your recipe? If you make a whole bunch, you can wrap them up individually and freeze them and then just thaw them out when you want ’em. I do that for days when I forgot that I was supposed to be making dinner…

    • OMG! Great suggestion, especially for ADHD folk! I forget about dinner on a regular basis, and that would be another lifesaver to add to my repertoire (along with homemade frozen burritos and my endless rotation of marinated-chicken-or-steak-in-freezer-bags).

      • Ooooh, those sound like great ideas as well! I think I’m gonna try them out.

      • Homemade frozen burritos are the best!

      • Do you do rice and bean burritos, or put some of that marinated chicken or steak inside? Does it affect the thawing out time in your experience?

      • I’ve done both, and they seem to work equally well. I haven’t tried thawing them, though — I pan-sear the finished burritos before I cool and freeze the batch, and then just nuke them straight from the freezer. It works surprisingly well!

      • Hmmm, we’re a microwave-free household, so I’m a have to make some adjustments. And if you fry them, it becomes a chimichanga, yum! LOL

      • Excellent point! If you figure out a good way to thaw and reheat them microwave-free, let me know. That could come in handy!

  3. So how do they taste? Have you tried spicing up the batter and where do they originate? If you don’t fry them did you bake or boil or steam them and what were the relative results? Sorry for so many questions.

    • No worries about the questions! I haven’t made them yet. Tlacoyos are from Mexico originally. They’re one of the things you encounter as street food, though I met them on the internet 😀

      If you don’t fry them, you just sort of grill them on a griddle or pan (as opposed to deep-frying them in oil).

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