Simple, Delicious White Bean & Veggie Quesadillas (Vegetarian)

If Meu hasn’t already convinced you to get more beans in your diet, please stop what you’re doing and let her persuade you. She has certainly inspired me to sneak more nutrient-packed legumes into my daily life. I love cooking with cannellini beans, partly because they are so versatile and soak up so many different flavors and spices.

These Simple, Delicious White Bean & Veggie Quesadillas are a great vegetarian lunch or dinner and a super simple way to pack in a serving of beans. They have a crispy tortilla shell, gooey cheese, and a lightly spiced bean and veggie filling that still has a little crunch to provide a nice variety of textures. My favorite part? They are fast, “cheap and cheerful” (as Antoni Porowski would say), and addictively good.

Side view of the veggie quesadillas

How to Make These Bean-Powered Veggie Quesadillas

Once I learned how to make quesadillas, I felt like the sky opened up and I could feel the sun on my face. It was magical. I’m sure it was because growing up, quesadillas seemed more like “vacation food” than a weeknight staple. But these bean and veggie quesadillas could not be easier.

Bowl of chopped veggies

After your veggies are chopped, which is truly the hardest part of this whole dish, you’ll combine them with cannellini beans and spices and cook them until tender, but not quite soft. Keeping the veggies al dente adds a nice gentle crunch to the quesadilla.

Bean, veggie, and spice mixture

These veggie quesadillas are incredibly versatile and pantry/fridge friendly. Have a white onion on hand instead of red? Go for it! Have avocados you need to use up? Slice some on and enjoy. Trying to use up a few different cheeses you have in the fridge? Add them all. You can add or subtract whatever veggies or extras you want (corn would be a great addition) or have on hand.

The same goes for spices. My midwestern palate prefers foods on the less spicy side, but these can easily become more spicy. Turn up the dial on the chili powder or cumin to add more punch. I’m also one of those non-cilantro people (any cilantro haters here with me?), but my husband loves cilantro and enjoys adding it to his quesadillas. These veggie quesadillas can be adapted to fit all of the preferences in your household.

Veggie quesadilla cooking with half beans and half cheese

Crispy, Crunch, Gooey, Melty

As the filling is cooking, mash about half the beans with a fork. Again, this provides a nice textural contrast. Some of the beans become creamy, while some remain intact. This is a trick I learned from making The Kitchn’s 10-Minute Black Bean Tacos (which I highly recommend).

After your filling is cooked, it’s time for my favorite part: the melty cheese. There is something so warm and cozy, so deeply satisfying about watching cheese melt. And as a bonus, while watching the cheese melt, you can hear the slight sizzle and pop of a tortilla browning and becoming deliciously crispy.

Close up of veggie quesadillas

Once the cheese has melted, fold the cheesy half over the veggie half, much like cooking an omelet, and give it a good press so that all of the ingredients meld together. A little bit more cooking on each side will guarantee a melty interior and crispy exterior to your veggie quesadilla.

Stacked and plated veggie quesadillas with sour cream and salsa

Cut into wedges, serve with sour cream, salsa, guacamole, or just enjoy the bean & veggie goodness on their own!

Happy cooking,
Lu

Simple, Delicious White Bean & Veggie Quesadillas (Vegetarian)

5 from 1 vote
Recipe by Ifyougiveagirlanoven@gmail.com Course: Plant-Based, VegetarianDifficulty: Easy
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

5

minutes
Cooking time

10

minutes

These veggie quesadillas are packed with beans, vegetables, and melty, gooey cheese. The are simple yet tasty and can easily be adapted to the veggies you have on hand.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus additional oil or butter for cast iron pan

  • 1 cup cannellini beans (canned, drained, rinsed)

  • 1/2 cup diced bell pepper

  • 1/4 cup diced red onion

  • 1/4 cup diced tomato

  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin

  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • Pinch of chili powder

  • 2 large flour tortillas

  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese (cheddar or Mexican-style)

  • Sour cream (optional)

  • Salsa (optional)

Directions

  • Add olive oil to a medium skillet or frying pan. Add beans, bell pepper, onion, tomatoes, cumin, garlic powder, and black pepper, and stir to combine. Cook over medium-low heat until peppers and onions are al dente, about 5-7 minutes, while stirring occasionally. Lightly mash about half of the beans with a fork.
  • Grease a cast iron skillet or clean frying pan with olive oil or butter, and heat until butter or oil sizzles. Add one tortilla.
  • To one half of the tortilla, add half of the bean & veggie mixture. To the other half, add 1/4 cup shredded cheese. Let sit over medium-low heat until the cheese melts.
  • Once the cheese has melted, fold the tortilla in half (it’s easiest to fold the cheesy side over the veggie side). Press with a spatula, and cook on both sides until the tortilla is golden brown.
  • Repeat with second tortilla and the remaining bean filling and 1/4 cup cheese. Cut in wedges and serve with salsa or sour cream if desired.

Notes

  • Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container for 3-4 days, then reheated in microwave. It will lose some of its crispness but will still be tasty!

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2 Comments

  1. Delicious! I tried making it in a panini press – I put all the ingredients in the middle of the tortilla shell, cheese first, then folded the tortilla shell in on all four sides so all ingredients were enclosed. I only had smaller tortilla shells on hand, so I determined how much cheese and veggies and beans to use by my ability to fold it up without anything spilling out. Heat in panini press for 3 minutes. It’s yummy made either way! I’m going to try it with black beans next.

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