We present Vortex a new family of one way hash functions that can produce message digests of 256 bits. The main idea behind the design of these hash functions is that we use well known algorithms that can support very fast diffusion in a small number of steps. We also balance the cryptographic strength that comes from iterating block cipher rounds with SBox substitution and diffusion (like Whirlpool) against the need to have a lightweight implementation with as small number of rounds as possible. We use only 3 AES rounds but with a stronger key schedule. Our goal is not to protect a secret symmetric key but to support perfect mixing of the bits of the input into the hash value. Three AES rounds are followed by our variant of Galois Field multiplication. This achieves cross-mixing between 128-bit sets. We present a set of qualitative arguments why we believe Vortex is secure.