Spicy ground beef quesadilla recipe with black beans, avocado, and cheese. Crispy tortillas stuffed with a cheesy, meaty filling; this dish will make anyone happy!
Who doesn’t love a good, hearty quesadilla? Learn how to make cheesy ground beef quesadillas with lots of beans, creamy avocado, and cheese.
Trying new Mexican recipes has become quite a “hobby” lately; I bought some books, searched the internet, and tried one recipe or another every other week. Look at these Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas, these amazing Chorizo Tostadas, or the Tres Leches Cake.
And not to mention the tacos. My son is a fan and wishes me to make tacos all the time; they are some of his favorite things to eat.
Why will you love these cheesy quesadillas?
- Irresistible: The kind of food that everybody loves.
- Texture: The contrast between the toasted, crispy tortillas and the soft, oozy filling is fantastic!
- Economical: Just a few simple ingredients, so much cheaper than going out.
- Easy dinner recipe: Cooking the ground beef filling and frying the quesadillas is super easy.
- The tortillas available here are large, about 9 -10 inches / 24-26 cm in diameter.
- If your tortillas are smaller, you will need more than four for all the filling.
What kind of tortillas to use?
I always choose flour tortillas over corn tortillas when making ground beef quesadillas; they are sturdier than those made with corn and less prone to break during cooking.
- I always choose lean ground beef.
- A mixture of dried oregano, sweet paprika powder, cayenne pepper, ground cumin, and ground coriander. (Amazon affiliate links)
- Taco seasoning is also excellent if you want to take a shortcut.
- I use tomato paste and water for the ground beef quesadilla recipe most of the time. However, if I have an open salsa jar or bottle in the fridge, I will use about 4 tablespoons of salsa of choice instead of tomato paste and water.
- I used Gouda cheese for my black bean quesadillas recipe, but Cheddar cheese and Monterey Jack are great. Any melting cheese you like is fine.
Fresh cilantro is the best, most genuine option.
- If you don't like cilantro, you can replace it with parsley.
- Chives are nice as well; they add extra onion flavor.
- Cook the ground meat, onions, and garlic on medium heat making sure to break all the lumps while the meat is cooking. Drain grease if there is too much of it in the pan.
- Add drained beans, spices, tomato paste, and water, and stir well. Let the mixture cook shortly (1).
- Only add the chopped avocado and fresh herbs after removing the pan from the heat (2).
- Brush a non-stick pan with some olive oil. Place one large tortilla in the hot pan. Sprinkle cheese on half of the tortilla.
- Cover this half with a bit of meat mixture, and add some more cheese (3).
- Fold the tortilla half over the filling; it should have a half-moon shape (4).
- Turn the cheesy beef quesadillas carefully using a spatula. Fry it on the other side until the cheese melts and the shells are crispy and golden brown (5).
- Repeat with the remaining tortillas.
- Don't use pre-shredded cheese; the additives it contains will prevent it from melting nicely.
- Make sure the skillet is large enough to accommodate the entire folded tortilla.
- The heat should not be too high. Turn the heat down to low if you notice that the ground beef quesadillas are getting too brown, and move them gently in the pan using a spatula.
- Flip them carefully to avoid spilling the filling. Use two spatulas or a spatula and a wooden spoon.
- Use a pizza cutter to cut the crispy quesadillas; it works great.
Yes, using ground turkey also makes a very good quesadilla, an even healthier one as turkey has less fat than lean beef.
Add a few tablespoons of diced bell pepper or corn. Add green chilies, chili powder, cayenne pepper, or red pepper flakes for more heat.
Cook the filling (preferably without the avocado), assemble the quesadillas and freeze them before cooking. Thaw and fry them in the pan as instructed.
Once the filling is cool, fill the quesadillas. Freeze them on a baking sheet in a single layer for a couple of hours. Once solid, wrap them in plastic wrap and keep them in an airtight container or freezer bag. They will keep for 2-3 months.
Refrigerate leftover quesadillas for 2-3 days in an airtight container.
Reheat in the pan in a very lightly greased skillet, about 1-2 minutes per side.
Reheat in the oven on a baking sheet at 350°F/180°C for 10 to 15 minutes or until hot. Flip them halfway.
How to serve?
- Serve the ground beef quesadillas with some lime wedges and sour cream on the side. Greek yogurt would also be an option; it makes the meal livelier and more refreshing.
- Serve with pico de Gallo, homemade guacamole, corn salsa, or Fiesta Corn Salad.
- A cold beer on the side makes the ground beef quesadillas even better.
More Mexican recipes
Ground Beef Quesadillas (with Black Beans)
- Large skillet or non-stick pan
- 2-3 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 1 lb lean ground beef 450 g, Note 1
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 onion
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon sweet paprika powder
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper more or less to taste
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon ground coriander
- fine sea salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- ¼ cup water 65 ml/ 2 oz, Note 2
- 2 cups cooked black beans 125 g/ 4.5 oz
- 1 large avocado
- 4 large tortillas Note 3
- 2 cups cheese grated, 200 g/ 7 oz, Note 4
- 1 lime
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro parsley, or chives
- sour cream to serve Note 5
- Chop the onion and the garlic.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet or non-stick pan. Cook the onion and the garlic for 2 minutes.
- Cook beef: Add ground beef and brown well, breaking it up as it browns, 3-4 minutes until the onions are softened. Drain the excess grease if there is too much in the pan, but it shouldn’t be if the beef is lean.
- Add the dried oregano, paprika powder, cayenne pepper, cumin, coriander, salt (½ to 1 teaspoon to taste), and pepper. Stir in the tomato paste and the water (Note 2). Add the drained black beans.
- Cook beef filling: Stir well and cook on medium-low heat for about 5 minutes.
- Chop the avocado in the meantime. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the avocado and herbs.
- Wipe the pan clean or use another one. Heat the pan and brush it with some of the remaining olive (Note 6).
- Fill quesadillas: Place one tortilla in the pan, and add some cheese to one half of it. Top with some of the beef mixture and add more grated cheese. Fold the other tortilla half over the filling.
- Fry the quesadilla lightly on both sides until golden. Use a spatula to turn the quesadillas to the other side carefully.
- Repeat with the remaining tortillas and filling.
- Serve immediately with tomatoes or tomato salsa, sour cream, and lime wedges.
- Ground turkey works too.
- You could replace the tomato paste and water with about 4-5 tablespoons of salsa of choice.
- The tortillas available here are large, about 9 -10 inches / 24-26 cm in diameter. If your tortillas are smaller, you will need more than four for all the filling.
- Cheddar, Gouda, Monterey Jack, Manchego, Mexican cheese. Any good melting cheese you like.
- The nutrition is calculated without the sour cream.
- Don’t use too much oil, or the quesadillas will be greasy and soggy.