Brandon and I have been on a real Flex Mex / Tex Mex / Mexican food kick lately but #queso, so I have no regrets and I make no apologies. I thought I was so stocked on all things Tex Mex but I didn’t pay enough attention to my pantry because when I went in there to make dinner a few days ago the cupboards and refrigerator were pretty bare. I was able to dig out tortillas, a can of black beans, and spinach so I didn’t have much to work with, fortunately these black bean & spinach quesadillas are one of our favorite meals. 🙂
I usually reserve quesadillas and enchiladas as items I make for dinner when I have leftover filling and need something quick but these quesadillas are so good that I usually put them on menu at least once or twice a month. Plus, this recipe makes a lot and they store ridiculously easy for leftovers. Also, since I bake my quesadillas rather than fry them, you can actually fully prep these ahead of time and just pop them in the oven when you’re ready. They can take up to 15 – 20 minutes in the oven.
BTW, if you don’t have fresh spinach on hand you can also make these with kale or broccoli rabe. I’ve used both and they all turn out fabulous. I just prefer spinach and I always have it in my kitchen.
Here is what you’ll use to make them:
- Mixing Bowls
- Deep Frying Pan or Saute Pan
- Potato Masher (unless you are using canned refried beans)
- Large Baking Sheet
These quesadillas are just ridiculously good and super easy so you don’t have to be master in the kitchen in order to make them. Sometimes I’ll dice jalapenos and mix it in with the spinach before making them which makes them extra spicy, which I love! Just know it’s an option if you want to kick the heat up a little bit.
- 2 cups fresh baby spinach
- 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp lime juice
- 1 medium clove garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp salt (adjust to taste)
- 1 jalapeno, diced (optional)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 cup red onion, chopped
- 1/3 tsp salt
- 1/3 tsp paprika
- 1/3 tsp chili powder
- 1 15oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1/3 cup water
- 4 large (10-inch) flour or wheat tortillas
- 2 cups Kraft cheddar jack cheese, shredded
- Olive oil, for brushing
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Grease a large baking sheet.
- Wash and dry the spinach then tear it into bite-sized pieces. Add the spinach leaves to large mixing bowl.
- In a small mixing bowl, combine the olive oil, lime juice, garlic, and salt. Whisk well until blended (30 - 45 seconds).
- Pour the dressing over the spinach and lightly mix together until the spinach is coated.
- Add jalapenos (if desired) and lightly toss.
- (Note: if you're using canned refried black beans, skip ahead and bring them to a simmer with less than 1/4 cup of water until they warmed and spreadable)
- In a deep frying pan or saute pan, warm olive oil over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add salt and red onion, cook 4 to 5 minutes or until onions are translucent.
- Add the garlic, paprika, and chili powder. Stir for 30-45 seconds.
- Add the black beans and water.
- Bring the beans to a simmer for 10 minutes, stirring often.
- Remove from heat and mash with a potato masher until the mixture is thick but still spreadable.
- Spread the black bean mix over half of a tortilla.
- Add cheese generously over the black bean mix.
- Top the cheese and black bean mix with spinach.
- Fold the empty side of the tortilla over the mixture so it's folded in half with the filling inside.
- Place on the baking sheet.
- Brush the top of the quesadilla lightly with oil.
- Repeat (you should have enough for at least 4 large quesadillas).
- Bake at 375 degrees for 15 - 20 minutes or until the top of the tortilla is a crispy golden brown.
- After removing the quesadillas from the oven, let them rest for 3-5 minutes before cutting or serving.
- Serve with salsa, sour cream, and/or guacamole.
Don’t they sound delicious? They are definitely one of our favorite go-to dinners. What do you think? Are you going to give them a shot?