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Cheesy Black Bean and Corn Quesadillas

These quesadillas are an amazing way to transform ingredients from your pantry into a crowd pleasing appetizer or meal prep snack. While they’re not the highest protein recipe on my blog, they have a whopping 13 grams of fiber per quesadilla to keep you full. And I’ve included some suggestions below for boosting the protein if you have some extra meat in the fridge.

I’ll run you through the recipe and cover other ingredient notes as we go. And you’ll find a printable recipe card that just gets down to business at the bottom of this post.

black bean and corn quesadillas on a wire rack with a bowl of spicy Greek yogurt dipping sauce

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Add a can of black beans and whole kernel corn to a skillet with a little spice. 

canned black beans and corn with spices in a skillet

Feel free to add other ingredients to the mix. I made a batch with diced green chiles and Trader Joe’s chili lime seasoning instead of the spice blend the recipe calls for. There’s also the option of starting with fresh onion and garlic like in my refried black beans. And you could also use something like taco seasoning or other spice blends for convenience.

Though adding ingredients will likely affect the number of quesadillas you make. I wouldn’t go too far above the recommended 1/4 cup of filling per tortilla or you’ll have overflow. You could, however, use larger tortillas or make more quesadillas.

Since these black bean quesadillas are meatless as-is, you could add something like the lean chorizo I used in my easy breakfast quesadillas recipe. And here’s a bonus handful of ideas for beefing them up with a little extra protein (pun intended):

I also recently posted cheesy bacon ranch ground chicken quesadillas and pizza quesadillas recipes.

Cook over high heat until no liquid remains, about 12-15 minutes.

the black beans and corn before and after reducing for 12-15 minutes

The larger the skillet, the faster you’ll be able to reduce the mixture. Don’t be afraid to crank up the heat to get this done in a hurry. Just be sure to stand watch to avoid burning. And be sure to get the crispy bits off the edges of the skillet before cooling to fill your quesadillas.

An important note here: You really want almost no liquid remaining in your mixture. If you don’t cook off the excess enough, you’ll have trouble sealing your quesadillas without some overflow. It also helps to let the mixture cool for a few minutes before assembling the quesadillas.

Throw tortillas on a griddle or in a skillet with cheese, filling, and more cheese on one half of each tortilla.

making the black bean and corn quesadillas on a griddle

Cheese, filling, cheese. Easy enough, right?

The recipe calls for eight 6-inch tortillas. I used Mission whole wheat carb balance tortillas, but you’re welcome to use any tortilla. It shouldn’t make much difference.

Also, be sure to use freshly shredded cheese for best results. The packaged stuff is inferior when it comes to melting, and we want some melty, melty action here.

Gently fold the empty half of the tortilla to seal via the cheese melting mechanism. 

how to make the black bean quesadillas

Emphasis on the gently. You’re not smashing your quesadillas like Shake Shack burgers. Fold the empty half just enough to let the top layer of cheese melt from residual heat so it sticks together.

And then…

Flip to get both sides extra toasty. 

finished quesadillas on the griddle

If you do press too hard or have a little too much liquid left in your black bean and corn mixture, you can use the flat side of your spatula to kinda push any bits back inside. The cheese should form a crust-like barrier to keep everything sealed in (see: top taco in the photo above).

Pro tip to speed things up: If you pre-measure your shredded cheese and filling for each tortilla, you can easily manage 4+ tortillas going at once. That is, if you have the pan space.

Serving Your Black Bean Quesadillas

cheesy black bean and corn quesadillas on a plate with Greek yogurt dipping sauce

The dip you see in the photos is a super simple mix of 1/2 cup (113g) fat free Greek yogurt and 2 tablespoons (30g) Trader Joe’s spicy taco sauce. You could swap the taco sauce for hot sauce, salsa, pico de gallo, or even cheddar powder like in my queso mac and cheese.

One of my favorite salsa + Greek yogurt combos is guacamole salsa. I used it for my creamy chicken enchiladas, and it’s too legit to quit.

That should cover it. You’ll find the printable recipe card below. Be sure to let me know what you think about these quesadillas once you give ’em a go! 

cheesy black bean and corn quesadillas on a plate with Greek yogurt dipping sauce

Cheesy Black Bean and Corn Quesadillas

Yield: 8 Quesadillas
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

Transform pantry ingredients into cheesy, crispy, super filling quesadillas the whole crew will enjoy.

Ingredients

  • 15 oz can Black Beans
  • 15 oz can Whole Kernel Corn
  • 1 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin
  • 1/2 tsp Onion Powder
  • 8 Tortillas (I used 6-inch Mission Carb Balance tortillas)
  • 8 oz Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese

Instructions

  1. Add the corn and black beans, undrained, to a large skillet over high heat. Add the spices and cook, stirring occasionally, until no liquid remains, about 12-15 minutes. Remove from the heat to briefly cool before making the quesadillas.
  2. Heat a second skillet or griddle over medium heat with nonstick cooking spray. Add the tortillas to the griddle. Place 2 Tbsp (14g) of cheese on one half of each tortilla followed by 1/4 cup (65g) of the beans/corn mixture and another 2 Tbsp (14g) of cheese.
  3. Gently fold the tortilla in half, holding the top half closed for a few seconds to melt the top layer of cheese. Cook for another 1-2 minutes per side until golden brown. If you have any filling or cheese leaking out of the quesadilla, use the flat side of your spatula to press it back in until the cheese forms a crust-like seal around the edges. Repeat for all 8 quesadillas.

Notes

Each quesadilla has 5 WW SmartPoints (blue plan).

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Quesadillas Serving Size: 1 Quesadilla
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 220Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 5gCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 13gSugar: 3gProtein: 13g

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amanda draisey

Monday 19th of April 2021

super simple- my little one LOVES them...i wraps a wet paper towel around them when i reheat in microwave and they seem to come out. better that way

Laura Fasulo

Saturday 10th of October 2020

My husband and I don't typically go for dishes that don't have meat as the main star, but we decided to give these a try and omg, they are amazing! We have re made these SEVERAL times now!

Hannah Demmon

Wednesday 7th of October 2020

The dipping sauce!!!! Holy smokes the sauce mentioned right above the recipe with salsa/greek yogurt is a game changer. I use it all the time to spice up literally any boring meal.

Kayley Cook

Wednesday 7th of October 2020

My husband and I absolutely love this recipe! The best homemade quesadilla's hands down. We also added ground turkey one of the times we made it! Delicious.

Bam

Wednesday 9th of September 2020

I made these for lunch. So good!!! And quick tip, a packet of taco seasoning saves about 12.3 seconds if you're into that kind of thing.

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