January 19, 2012

Easy Cheesy Black Bean & Corn Quesadillas

I've mentioned before that I'm trying to include more easy weeknight dinner recipes on my blog, for all those busy working people who don't have time to make things like ravioli or lasagna for their hungry families. These black bean and corn quesadillas are almost too simple to share a recipe for, but because I've made them at least four times in the last few months (and I very rarely repeat recipes that close together), I thought they were worth sharing!

This is the kind of meal you make when you're at the grocery store and realize you have nothing to eat for dinner, but don't have a recipe to consult for ingredients to buy. For this meal, all you have to remember to buy are tortillas, black beans, corn, salsa, and cheese (and chances are you have most of those things at home anyway). And if you're cooking for only 1 or 2 like I usually am, then you won't have to worry about what to buy or eat for the next few days because you'll have a ton of leftovers!

The quesadillas are made by heating a can of black beans with some corn and salsa, then spooning that onto tortillas, topping it with some shredded cheese, and heating them until the tortillas are crisp and the cheese melts to hold everything together. If you want to be a bit fancier, you could add in some cilantro, onions, garlic, or any other ingredients you like, but I find simple is best here. You can also adjust the heat depending on what type of salsa you use - I usually stick to mild but any kind would work!

The end result is a cheesy, comforting meal that both kids and adults would love. They're also reasonably healthy, so I have no guilt about eating them for multiple meals in a row (they reheat pretty well). They are a little messy to make though, as trying to flip them can sometimes cause the filling to fall out, but I have a tendency to overfill my quesadillas, which may be part of the problem. I have a feeling that baking them in the oven instead of on the stove would be much easier, but I haven't tried that yet - if you do, let me know how it works!

And for another easy and delicious quesadilla idea, try my peach and brie quesadillas! Though peaches aren't in season right now, they could easily be replaced with another fruit (I think apples or pears would work well!)

Easy Cheesy Black Bean & Corn Quesadillas

Makes about 6 quesadillas


1 can (2 cups) black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups corn kernels (I use frozen, thawed)
1 cup salsa (I use chunky mild salsa)
12 medium (6-inch) whole wheat flour tortillas
1-2 cups shredded Mexican cheese
Extra salsa and sour cream for serving


Heat black beans, corn, and salsa in a large saucepan over medium heat until heated through.
Spray a large non-stick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Add one tortilla, spoon black bean mixture on top to cover the surface, sprinkle with desired amount of cheese, then top with a second tortilla. Cook 1-2 minutes until golden brown on one side, then flip and cook another minute or two until the other side is golden brown.

Remove from heat and repeat with remaining tortillas, bean mixture, and cheese. Separate cooked quesadillas with foil or parchment paper so they don’t get soggy from laying on top of each other. Slice each quesadilla into four and serve warm with extra salsa and sour cream, if desired.

*Note: All amounts are rough estimates and are adjustable to taste. You may end up using more or less tortillas, depending on the size of the tortillas and how much filling you want in each quesadilla.


  1. Super tasty, easy to put together, and generally awesome.  Thanks for a great new recipe!

  2. And thank you for the comment!  I'm glad you like it :)

  3. Just made these babies in the oven. It worked! I just mixed the filling in a bowl and popped them in which made the recipe even easier. The top got a little crispy and the bottom got a little soft/soggy but still so good. Thanks :)

  4. Oh good, thanks for letting me know!  I'll have to try them in the oven next time I make them, seems like it will make things easier, but that's too bad about the soggy bottom .. I just read somewhere that spraying/brushing them with a bit of olive oil on each side before baking helps them get crispy, so maybe I will try that.  Or I wonder if putting them on a rack (on a baking pan) would help?  I don't mind making these many times to practise :)

  5. This has become my go to recipe every time I need something fast and that happens a lot in our family. Thanks a lot, Natalie.

  6.  Thanks, I'm so happy to hear that!   It's definitely my go-to recipe too for the same reason!


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