Quick Quesadillas

Healthy Recipe Challenge Winner, Ryan Gill, takes quesadillas to new heights!


  • ½ large onion, diced or cut into small pieces
  • 1 large tomato, diced or cut into small pieces
  • 1 large pepper, diced or cut into small pieces
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or cut into small pieces
  • 1 and ½ cup shredded lettuce*
  • ½ lb ground beef**
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil (vegetable, canola, or olive oil)
  • 8 tortillas
  • 1 and ½ cup shredded Mexican cheese***
  • salsa
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Start by washing all of your vegetables under cold water.
  2. Dice or cut the onion, tomato, and pepper into small pieces. Shred lettuce, if it’s not pre-shredded. Place in 3 separate bowls.
  3. Mince or cut garlic into small pieces.
  4. Preheat one tablespoon of oil in a large pan on the stove on medium heat for 1 minute. Add the ground beef, and cook over medium heat for about 5-7 minutes or until the beef is browned. Once done, put meat in a large bowl.
  5. Add peppers, garlic and onions into the skillet with one tablespoon of oil. Turn the heat down to medium-low and place a lid over the skillet. Cook for about 10 minutes until tender.
  6. Keep the burner on medium-low heat, add the meat to the warmed vegetables in the skillet. Add salt and pepper to taste. Heat for another 2-3 minutes.
  7. In a different skillet, add a teaspoon of cooking oil. Heat the oil for a minute over medium heat.
  8. Add a tortilla and let cook for one minute. While that’s cooking, add 1/4 of the ground beef mixture and 1/4 the cheese.
  9. Add another tortilla on top; flatten it with your spatula; then flip the tortilla. Each side should be golden brown.
  10. Take the quesadillas out of the pan, and cut it into four slices.
  11. Serve with salsa or any of the prepared topping you want.****

* Add whatever lettuce you prefer.
**The ground beef can be all different kinds of meat. Try ground chicken or turkey. Or, try canned chicken. Skip step number 4 for canned chicken. It should be drained and cooked in a skillet until warmed, about 3 minutes.
*** The cheese can be whatever shredded kind you prefer.
****You can add a side salad to make a well balanced meal.

 Allergy Warning:

This recipe contains milk and wheat.

  • If you are allergic to milk-based cheese, try soy-based cheese or other dairy-free alternatives.
  • If you are allergic to wheat tortillas, choose allergy-friendly pumpkin and sunflower seeds.

 Cut Down on Choking:

For kids 2- 4 years old, serve food in the following ways:

  • Stringy, melted cheese is a choking hazard. Exclude it, if you need to.
  • Cut quesadillas into bite-sized, 1/2 inch portions.
  • Cut all vegetables into bite-sized, 1/2 inch portions.