How to Make Quesadillas

  • 01 of 06

    How to Make Quesadillas

    Quesadillas
    Quesadillas. Sarah Crowder / Katie Workman / themom100.com

    Everyone loves quesadillas. It’s just hard not to like melted cheese between two carbs. Cooking the first batch of tortillas on their own before you fill the quesadillas saves you the skilled chore of flipping them, which can result in a quesadilla piñata, meaning the filling flies out all over the place. Make sure to really chop up any ingredients you use for filling so that they stay put inside the quesadilla.

    There are multiple ways to make a quesadilla: grilling, pan sautéing and broiling three very accessible methods that yield great quesadillas every time.  You have to pay attention when you are making quesadillas – they go from golden brown to not-so-golden-brown quite quickly.  These recipes all call for making them in a pan, but you can easily broil or grill them instead.

    Quesadillas make a great lunch or dinner paired up with a salad if you like.  And don’t forget about them as appetizers – festive, fun, easy.  If you want to make a party out of it, put out different bowls of shredded cheese and various fillings and let everyone be creative.  Kids love this (supervise the cooking for the little ones, of course!)

     

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  • 02 of 06

    Arugula, Roasted Chicken, Cheddar Quesadillas with Salsa

    Arugula, Roasted Chicken, Cheddar Quesadillas with Salsa
    Arugula, Roasted Chicken, Cheddar Quesadillas with Salsa. Katie Workman / themom100.com

    This is a great way to make use of any leftover cooked chicken, be it roasted, broiled, steamed, sautéed.  A store-bought roast chicken works perfectly, too.  Arugula adds a nice sharp bite, but you can use watercress or spinach instead.  Add the greens at the end so that they stay fresh but still wilt a bit from the heat of the quesadilla.

    For each quesadilla

    • 2 medium-size (8-inch) flour tortillas
    • 1/3 cup shredded sharp cheddar
    • 1/3 cup shredded cooked chicken
    • ½ cup roughly chopped arugula (a nice handful)
    • Salsa to serve
    1. Heat a skillet with a teaspoon of vegetable or canola oil, if desired, over medium high heat.

    2. Place a quesadilla in the pan and watch it carefully until it turns golden brown on the underside, 1 to 2 minutes. A dark brown bubble here or there is fine. Remove the tortilla and set it aside. Place the other uncooked tortilla in the pan, and reduce the heat to medium.  Sprinkle the cheese over the quesadilla, and distribute the shredded chicken over the cheese.  Cook until the cheese is melted and the underside is browned, 2 to 3 minutes.

    3. Sprinkle the arugula over the quesadilla.  Place the cooked tortilla on top of the filling, uncooked side down.  Remove the quesadilla to a cutting board and let the quesadilla sit for a minute before you slice into 6 wedges.  Serve with sour cream.

     

     

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  • 03 of 06

    Blue Cheese and Bacon Quesadilla with Pickled Onions

    Blue Cheese and Bacon Quesadilla with Pickled Onions
    Blue Cheese and Bacon Quesadilla with Pickled Onions. Katie Workman / themom100.com

    You can use sautéed onions instead of pickled, but the pickled ones take minutes, keep forever in the fridge, and add a snazzy piquancy to this rich quesadilla.  And they’re pink, which is cool looking.

    For each quesadilla

    • 2 medium-size (8-inch) flour tortillas
    • 2 tablespoons cream cheese, softened
    • ¼ cup crumbled blue cheese
    • 1 or 2 pieces cooked bacon, roughly crumbled
    • ¼ cup pickled onions (see Note)
    1. Heat a skillet with a teaspoon of vegetable or canola oil, if desired, over medium high heat.

    2. Place a quesadilla in the pan and watch it carefully until it turns golden brown on the underside, 1 to 2 minutes. A dark brown bubble here or there is fine. Remove the tortilla and set it aside.

    3. Spread the cream cheese evenly over the other tortilla, and place it – cream cheese side up – in the pan and reduce the heat to medium.  Evenly sprinkle the blue cheese and the bacon over the tortilla.  Cook until the cheese is melted and the underside is browned, 2 to 3 minutes.

    4. Place the cooked tortilla on top of the filling, uncooked side down.  Remove the quesadilla to a cutting board and let the quesadilla sit for a minute before you slice into 6 wedges.

    Note: Cut 2 red onions in half lengthwise, then thinly slice them cross-wise.  Bring a small pot of water to a boil, add the onions, simmer for 1 minute, then drain.  Place the onions back into the pot, add 1 cup of cider vinegar and a teaspoon of salt and return to a boil.  Boil for a couple of minutes, then let cool.  Store the onions in the vinegar in a glass jar in the fridge for up to 6 months.  

     

     

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  • 04 of 06

    Quesadilla with Sautéed Leeks, Roasted Broccoli, and Mixed Cheeses

    Quesadilla with Sautéed Leeks, Roasted Broccoli, and Mixed Cheeses
    Quesadilla with Sautéed Leeks, Roasted Broccoli, and Mixed Cheeses. Katie Workman / themom100.com

    You can use onions instead of leeks, you can use cauliflower or peppers or any other veggie instead of the broccoli, you can steam or sauté the vegetables instead of roasting them, you can use Monterey Jack or Fontina instead of a Mexican blend….you get the picture.  This is a boilerplate recipe for a vegetable quesadilla and proof that whatever is lying around in your vegetable bin is fair game for a great lunch.

    For each quesadilla

    • 2 medium-size (8-inch) flour tortillas
    • ⅓ cup shredded Mexican or Italian blend, or any other shredded cheese
    • ¼ cup sautéed leeks
    • ⅓ cup chopped roasted broccoli (see Note)
    • Sour cream to serve
    1. Heat a skillet with a teaspoon of vegetable or canola oil, if desired, over medium high heat.

    2. Place a quesadilla in the pan and watch it carefully until it turns golden brown on the underside, 1 to 2 minutes. A dark brown bubble here or there is fine. Remove the tortilla and set it aside. Place the other uncooked tortilla in the pan, and reduce the heat to medium.  Sprinkle the cheese over the tortilla, then distribute the leeks and broccoli evenly over the cheese.  Cook until the cheese is melted and the underside is browned, 2 to 3 minutes.

    3. Place the cooked tortilla on top of the filling, uncooked side down.  Remove the quesadilla to a cutting board and let the quesadilla sit for a minute before you slice into 6 wedges.  Serve with sour cream.

    Note: You can also use steamed or any other cooked broccoli in place of the roasted.

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  • 05 of 06

    Quesadillas with Chili, Cheddar, and Monetary Jack and Sour Cream

    Quesadillas with Chili, Cheddar, and Monetary Jack and Sour Cream
    Quesadillas with Chili, Cheddar, and Monetary Jack and Sour Cream. Katie Workman / themom100.com

    Whenever you make chili, be it vegetarian, turkey or chicken, or meaty, save a bit to make these later in the week.  You’ll also want to bring out the condiments you used with the chili to complete them, like chopped scallions and tomatoes, shredded cheeses, salsa and sour cream.

    For each quesadilla

    • 2 medium-size (8-inch) flour tortillas
    • ⅓ cup shredded cheddar and/or Monterey Jack
    • ⅓ cup chili
    • Chopped tomatoes (optional)
    • Chopped scallions (optional)
    • Sour cream and/or salsa to serve
    1. Heat a skillet with a teaspoon of vegetable or canola oil, if desired, over medium high heat.

    2. Place a quesadilla in the pan and watch it carefully until it turns golden brown on the underside, 1 to 2 minutes. A dark brown bubble here or there is fine. Remove the tortilla and set it aside. Place the other uncooked tortilla in the pan, and reduce the heat to medium.  Sprinkle the cheese over the quesadilla, and distribute the chili over the cheese.  Sprinkle over some chopped tomatoes or scallions if using. Cook until the cheese is melted and the underside is browned, 2 to 3 minutes.

    3. Place the cooked tortilla on top of the filling, uncooked side down.  Remove the quesadilla to a cutting board and let the quesadilla sit for a minute before you slice into 6 wedges.  Serve with sour cream and/or salsa.

     

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  • 06 of 06

    Asparagus, Feta and Mozzarella Quesadilla with Chipotle Mayonnaise

    Asparagus, Feta and Mozzarella Quesadilla with Chipotle Mayonnaise
    Asparagus, Feta and Mozzarella Quesadilla with Chipotle Mayonnaise. Katie Workman / themom100.com

    Mozzarella provides the creamy meltiness so delightful in a quesadilla, and feta offers up a salty and pungent kick-in-the-pants of flavor.  Use leftover roasted or steamed asparagus in this (or broccoli is also a good match).  This easy chipotle mayonnaise dip is a mainstay in my fridge, as it’s great with cold poached shrimp, roasted potatoes, sandwiches, and this quesadilla, amongst other things.

    they stay fresh but still wilt a bit from the heat of the quesadilla.

    For each quesadilla

    • 2 medium-size (8-inch) flour tortillas
    • ¼ cup shredded mozzarella
    • ¼ cup crumbled feta
    • ⅓ cup 1-inch pieces cooked asparagus
    • Chipotle dip to serve (see Note)
    1. Heat a skillet with a teaspoon of vegetable or canola oil, if desired, over medium high heat.

    2. Place a quesadilla in the pan and watch it carefully until it turns golden brown on the underside, 1 to 2 minutes. A dark brown bubble here or there is fine. Remove the tortilla and set it aside. Place the other uncooked tortilla in the pan, and reduce the heat to medium.  Sprinkle the cheeses evenly over the quesadilla, and distribute the asparagus over the cheese.  Cook until the cheese is melted and the underside is browned, 2 to 3 minutes.

    3. Place the cooked tortilla on top of the filling, uncooked side down.  Remove the quesadilla to a cutting board and let the quesadilla sit for a minute before you slice into 6 wedges.  Serve with the chipotle dip.

    Note: To make the chipotle dip, in a small bowl combine ½ teaspoon very finely minced garlic, 1 teaspoon chipotle puree, ½ cup mayonnaise,1 teaspoon fresh lime juice, and salt and pepper to taste.  Stir until blended.  This keeps in the fridge for up to a month.