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Tortilla vs. Chapati: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Janet White || Published on December 10, 2023
Tortilla is a thin, flat, round bread made from corn or wheat flour, originating from Mexico. Chapati is an unleavened flatbread from the Indian subcontinent, made from whole wheat flour.

Key Differences

Tortillas are traditional Mexican flatbreads often made from corn or wheat flour. They are a staple in Mexican cuisine and are used in dishes like tacos and burritos. While, chapatis, originating from the Indian subcontinent, are unleavened flatbreads made primarily from whole wheat flour, known as atta, and are a daily staple in many Indian households.
The making of a tortilla involves mixing the flour with water and sometimes oil, then cooking it on a griddle. Corn tortillas are integral to Mexican cuisine, while wheat tortillas are more common in Tex-Mex dishes. However, chapatis are made by kneading whole wheat flour with water, rolling the dough into thin circles, and cooking them on a flat pan called a tava, often puffing up when cooked.
Tortillas can vary in size but are generally thin and flexible, ideal for wrapping or folding with fillings. Wheat tortillas are softer and more pliable, whereas corn tortillas have a distinct texture and flavor. Chapatis are typically smaller and thicker than tortillas, with a soft, layered texture, and are often eaten torn into pieces and used to scoop up other foods.
In terms of taste, tortillas made from corn have a distinct, earthy flavor, while wheat tortillas are milder. They are an essential component in many Mexican and Tex-Mex dishes. Whereas, chapatis have a subtle, nutty flavor due to the whole wheat flour and are commonly served with vegetables, dals (lentils), and meats in Indian cuisine.
Tortillas are a versatile base for a variety of dishes in Mexican and Tex-Mex cuisine, serving as a wrap, side, or even as a base for dishes like enchiladas. Chapatis are integral to many meals across India, often consumed with every meal, serving as a staple food that complements a variety of dishes.

Comparison Chart


Indian Subcontinent

Main Ingredient

Corn or Wheat Flour
Whole Wheat Flour (Atta)


Typically unleavened
Always unleavened


Thin and flexible; corn tortillas have a distinct texture
Softer, layered, and slightly thicker

Use in Cuisine

Used in tacos, burritos, and other Mexican and Tex-Mex dishes
Eaten with vegetables, dals, and meats in Indian cuisine

Tortilla and Chapati Definitions


A thin, flat Mexican bread made from corn or wheat flour.
She wrapped the chicken and vegetables in a tortilla to make a burrito.


An unleavened Indian flatbread made from whole wheat flour.
She served hot chapatis with a vegetable curry.


Unleavened flatbread common in Mexican and Tex-Mex cuisine.
For dinner, we had homemade tortillas with our fajitas.


A staple in Indian cuisine, often eaten with every meal.
For lunch, we had dal and chapati.


A staple in Mexican cuisine, often served with various fillings.
We filled our tortillas with beans, cheese, and salsa for a quick meal.


Made by cooking rolled dough on a flat pan until puffed.
He skillfully flipped the chapati on the tava until it puffed up.


Corn or wheat-based, round, and typically cooked on a griddle.
I love the taste of freshly grilled corn tortillas.


Chapatis have a subtle, nutty flavor and a soft texture.
The homemade chapatis had a delicious, fresh taste.


A versatile bread used as a base for tacos, enchiladas, and more.
He used a tortilla as the base for his homemade quesadilla.


Often torn into pieces and used to scoop up other foods.
I used a piece of chapati to scoop up the chicken masala.


A thin disk of unleavened bread made from masa or wheat flour and baked on a hot surface.


A flat, unleavened, disk-shaped bread of northern India, made of wheat flour, water, and salt. Also called roti.


(Mexican cuisine) A flat round bread made out of cornmeal or flour.


A flat, unleavened bread from northern India and Pakistan.


(Spanish cuisine) Spanish omelette; an omelette containing potatoes and onions.


A flat pancakelike bread cooked on a griddle, originating in India.


An unleavened cake, as of maize flour, baked on a heated iron or stone.


Flat pancake-like bread cooked on a griddle


Thin unleavened pancake made from cornmeal or wheat flour


What is a chapati?

A chapati is an unleavened Indian flatbread made from whole wheat flour.

Can tortillas be made from wheat?

Yes, tortillas can be made from either corn or wheat flour.

Is chapati always made from whole wheat flour?

Yes, traditional chapatis are made from whole wheat flour known as atta.

What is a tortilla?

A tortilla is a thin, flat Mexican bread made from corn or wheat flour.

Are tortillas used in any specific cuisine?

Tortillas are a staple in Mexican and Tex-Mex cuisine.

Is a tortilla always unleavened?

Yes, traditional Mexican tortillas are unleavened.

Can tortillas be used for wraps?

Yes, tortillas are often used to make wraps, tacos, and burritos.

How is chapati cooked?

Chapatis are cooked on a flat pan called a tava, often puffing up when heated.

What dishes are chapatis served with?

Chapatis are commonly served with Indian dishes like curries, dals, and vegetables.

How is chapati different in texture from tortillas?

Chapatis are slightly thicker and softer with a layered texture, while tortillas are thinner and more flexible.

Is chapati healthier than tortilla?

Chapati, made from whole wheat, is often considered healthier due to its higher fiber content.

Do tortillas come in different sizes?

Yes, tortillas come in various sizes, especially for different dishes like tacos or burritos.

Are tortillas gluten-free?

Corn tortillas are gluten-free, but wheat tortillas contain gluten.

What is the nutritional value of chapati?

Chapatis are a good source of carbohydrates and fiber, with minimal fat.

Are tortillas used in desserts?

Yes, tortillas can be used in desserts, like cinnamon-sugar tortilla chips.

Is chapati a part of every meal in Indian cuisine?

Chapati is a common staple in many Indian meals, often eaten daily.

Is chapati vegan-friendly?

Yes, traditional chapatis, made only from whole wheat flour and water, are vegan-friendly.

Can tortillas be made at home?

Yes, tortillas can be easily made at home with either corn or wheat flour.

What gives tortillas their distinct flavor?

Corn tortillas have an earthy flavor, while wheat tortillas are milder.

Can chapatis be stored for later use?

Yes, chapatis can be stored and reheated, though they're best enjoyed fresh.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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