Crispy Cheese and Mushroom Quesadillas

Crispy, cheesy quesadillas come together in just minutes! To make these a more complete meal, we add mushrooms to the mix. They make a quick snack, or a full meal with a salad or soup on the side.

Photography Credit: Sally Vargas

In our house, when we’re hungry and in a hurry, we always turn to quesadillas.

These mushroom quesadillas take the instant “plain cheese” version a step further, but with only about 10 extra minutes of time. The reward is eating more vegetables—or at least, one more vegetable! Plus, the earthy flavor of mushrooms is especially good with corn tortillas!

WHAT TO SERVE WITH QUESADILLAS

Depending on my mood and my energy level, I would serve these as a meal with soup foraged from my freezer, or alongside a big green salad. They also are great for a quick snack.

How to Make Quesadillas Vegetarian - cooked tortillas filled with cheese and mushooms in black skillet.

How to Make Quesadillas Vegetarian - cooked tortillas filled with cheese and mushooms in black skillet.

MAKE-AHEAD STEPS!

You can cook the mushrooms, grate the cheese, store them in separate containers in the fridge, and then just assemble the quesadillas to order.

Already assembled and cooked, these will also be good for at least one day stored in the refrigerator. Place them on a plate, cover with plastic wrap, refrigerate, and reheat in the microwave for soft tortillas. Or you can take a little extra time and reheat them in a skillet until crisp and hot.

HOW TO SPEED THINGS UP EVEN MORE!

These quesadillas are already fast to make, but here are a few ways to make them even faster:

  • Hack #1: To make these quesadillas really quickly, buy pre-grated cheese and pre-sliced mushrooms. You’ll pay a little extra for that, but weighed against your time, in my book, it’s worth a few pennies more. The ingredients are still fresh!
  • Hack #2: If you have a pancake griddle, you can make several at a time, and feed everyone at once.

Vegetarian Quesadilla Recipe -close up of cheese and mushroom quesadillas stacked on top of each other with a jar of red salsa in the background.

Vegetarian Quesadilla Recipe -close up of cheese and mushroom quesadillas stacked on top of each other with a jar of red salsa in the background.

MICROWAVE OR STOVETOP COOKING?

You can assemble these quesadillas and cook them in the microwave until the cheese melts, but I love the crispy edges of melted cheese that come from cooking the quesadillas on top of the stove. Let’s face it—crispy bits are where it’s at!

If you want to reheat leftovers, however, the microwave is a little less cumbersome than the pan on the stove.

HOW TO SERVE THE MASSES

If you want to serve all your quesadillas at once, preheat the oven to 300ºF. Place the already-made quesadillas in a single layer on a baking sheet. Keep them warm in the oven as you make more.

You can also serve them like pancakes! Pass the one you just finished to the first in line while hot, then make another!

MORE EASY QUESADILLA RECIPES TO TRY

Crispy Cheese and Mushroom Quesadillas Recipe

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Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound cremini, button, or wild mushrooms, or a combination, thickly sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 bunch scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups (about 6 ounces) grated cheddar or Monterey Jack, or a combination
  • A small handful of fresh cilantro leaves
  • 10 (6-inch) corn tortillas

To Serve

  • Salsa
  • Jalapeño peppers

Method

1 Cook the mushrooms: In a large skillet over medium-high, heat the oil until it shimmers. Add the mushrooms to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until they release some of their moisture.

Add the garlic and scallions to the pan and cook for 2 to 4 minutes longer, or until the garlic is aromatic and the scallions soften. Add the salt and pepper.

How to Make Quesadillas Vegetarian -- silver pan with raw mushrooms about to be cookedVegetarian Quesadilla Recipe - silver pan with sauteed mushrooms

2 Assemble and cook the quesadillas: Wipe out the skillet and place it over medium heat. (Alternatively, place a pancake griddle over the heat, or heat an electric griddle.)

Once hot, place a tortilla in the pan and scatter with 2 tablespoons of cheese and 2 tablespoons of the mushrooms. Top with cilantro leaves and another 2 tablespoons of the cheese. Place a second tortilla on top and press down lightly.

Cook on one side for about 1 minute, or until the cheese begins to melt. With a large spatula, flip the quesadilla over and cook for another 30 seconds, or until the cheese melts and the tortillas are lightly toasted with a few brown spots. Repeat with remaining tortillas, cheese, and filling.

Alternative Microwave Method: Assemble the quesadillas as above. Place on a plate and microwave for about 1 minute, or until the cheese melts. Cut into quarters. (Your quesadillas will be softer and less crispy.)

Cheese Quesadilla with Mushrooms - black skillet with quesadilla filled with cilantro, mushrooms and cheese.Quesadilla Recipe with Cheese and Mushrooms - tortilla in black skilled. Cheese, musrooms and cilantro are ontop of the tortillaHow to Make a Cheese Quesadilla with Mushrooms - uncooked tortillas filled iwth cheese in mushrooms in black skilletHow to Make Quesadillas Vegetarian - cooked tortillas filled with cheese and mushooms in black skillet.

3 Serve: Cut each quesadilla into quarters as they finish cooking and serve while hot.

Alternatively, if you’d like to cook and serve all the quesadillas at once: Transfer each quesadilla as it’s done to a baking sheet in a 300°F oven to keep warm while you finish cooking the remainder. Serve the tortillas on a platter in the center of the table with salsa and some sliced jalapeños, if you like.

Vegetarian Quesadilla Recipe -close up of cheese and mushroom quesadillas stacked on top of each other with a jar of red salsa in the background.

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