Sweet potato and black bean quesadillas, featuring quinoa, are a healthy and easy meal. Crunchy on the outside, creamy inside--it's a match made in heaven! Even my pickiest child loves this one!
Bulk Items used: quinoa and black beans
There are two things I love about this meal. Number 1: You can make this meal quickly, and there aren't a lot of dishes. What more could you want?
Number 2: This meal is full of healthy ingredients that you can trick your kids (or maybe yourself?) into eating. The first ingredient is sweet potatoes. Besides giving these quesadillas a beautiful pop of color, sweet potatoes have many vitamins and minerals in them, plus a lot of fiber.
Next up is quinoa. This little seed is often called a "superfood," and for good reason. Adding this into the quesadilla adds even more vitamins and ups the protein amount. The best part is that it goes completely undetected. My kids say they HATE quinoa, but they love these burritos! Tricking my kids into being healthy is one of my simple pleasures (what's wrong with me!? I used to be cool).
Learn more about the health benefits of Quinoa and how to cook and use it here---> "What Is Quinoa"
And finally, black beans. Black beans are high in fiber, low in fat and full of protein. They are a great alternative to meat, and just really tasty.
Oh, maybe there is a 3rd reason I love these. They've got cheese. Mmmmm, cheeeeese.
Tips for Making Sweet Potato and Black Bean Quesadillas
- This recipe calls for cooked sweet potatoes. You can roast them in the oven, but to make this recipe quicker, I always microwave them. For average sized sweet potatoes, I microwave them for 4 minutes, then flip them over and microwave for 4 minutes more. Cooking time will depend however, on how fat your sweet potatoes are. Add more time for larger potatoes.
- This recipe calls for black beans, and you can either use dry black beans that you have cooked, or canned black beans. Just remember that 1 can of beans is equal to 1 ½ cups of cooked beans. This recipe calls for either 2 cans of beans or 3 cups of cooked beans.
- Looking for some tips on cooking quinoa? Check out "How to Cook Quinoa on the Stove" or "How to Cook Quinoa in the Instant Pot". I use quinoa a lot, so I often cook a big batch and freeze it in 1 ½ cup portions. Then I can just defrost a portion for 1 minute and I'm ready to use. Having this on hand cuts down on cooking time and clean up time for this recipe.
- I always use our non-stick griddle to grill the outside of these quesadillas. If you'd don't have a non-stick pan to do this in, I would recommend brushing the outside of the quesadillas with olive oil, and then baking in a 425 degree oven for about 15 minutes. This will do the same thing as grilling them on a griddle.
- As with all recipes, I recommend getting creative and making this the way you'll most enjoy. Add in some extra veggies, like corn or sauteed peppers. Make it spicy with pepper jack cheese instead of cheddar. Dip it in salsa, or hot sauce, or guacamole. I'd love to hear how you made this recipe yours in the comments!
How to Layer the Quesadillas
Sweet Potato and Black Bean Quesadillas
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, cooked, peeled and mashed *see notes
- 1 cup quinoa, cooked **see notes
- 4 flour tortillas whole wheat tortillas are good too
- 1 lime cut into 4 wedges
- cheddar cheese
- sour cream
- 3 cups cooked black beans or 2 cans-drained and rinsed
- ½ tablespoon olive oil
- ½ cup chopped onions
- 2 garlic cloves or ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ⅔ cup water
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- ¼ teaspoon coriander
- ¼ teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- In a saucepan on the stove, saute the onions in olive oil until they start to become tender. Add the garlic and saute for 30 more seconds. Add in the rest of the bean ingredients and stir well to combine. Let simmer on stove for about 5 minutes, or while you prepare other quesadilla ingredients.
Quesadilla Assembly (see photo above)
- Starting with a plain tortilla, take a large spoonful of sour cream and smear all around the tortilla.
- Sprinkle cheddar cheese onto ½ of the tortilla.
- Add a heap of mashed sweet potatoes onto the cheese and smooth out. Half of the tortilla should still be empty, other than the sour cream.
- Add ¼ cup of quinoa on top of the sweet potatoes, followed by spoonfuls of black beans.
- Finish the burrito by squeezing the juice from one lime wedge all over the quesadilla contents and sprinkling the top with cheese. Fold the clean side of the burrito over to make the quesadilla.
- Using a griddle, or other non-stick pan, grill the outside of the quesadilla over medium-high heat for about 1 ½ mins per side, or until golden and crispy. ***
- Eat and enjoy! Can be dipped in hot sauce, salsa or guacamole.
- I usually get 4 quesadillas out of ingredients when making these for adults, but when I make them for children I fill each quesadilla less full and can get 6 instead. Also, there might be extra black beans in the end, and they are delicious served over rice for another meal.
Having trouble finding Quinoa at your grocery store? Buy it online!
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