Ready in minutes, these easy corn tortilla quesadillas are crisp, savory, cheesy, and loaded with your favorite fillings. This quick and easy snack is completely gluten-free and super customizable!
This corn tortilla quesadilla recipe takes all the components of your favorite cheesy snack with one simple twist. Instead of using flour tortillas, you’ll be using corn tortillas. This easy swap makes for gluten-free quesadillas with a totally unique flavor compared to flour.
In addition to making this a totally gluten-free snack, corn tortillas impart a distinct nutty flavor that’s unmatched by flour tortillas. Also, tortillas made from corn have a slightly chewier texture than flour tortillas due to the masa harina that makes them up.
As for the filling, each tortilla is topped with shredded cheese and a mix of black beans, corn, fresh cilantro, and spices. Then, they’re cooked on a warm skillet until golden brown on the outside with ooey-gooey melted cheese on the inside. This is one of our favorite quesadilla recipes, and it’s easy to see why.
Discover how to make quesadillas with corn tortillas today. Using just a handful of basic ingredients, you’ll have them ready and on the table in just 15 minutes.
- Tortillas: Corn tortillas, white, yellow, or blue tortillas work equally well.
- Cheese: This recipe uses shredded cheddar cheese, but any type of cheese will do.
- Beans: To add protein. Canned, cooked black beans or pinto beans will work best.
- Corn: Canned and cooked, for texture and sweetness.
- Cilantro: For essential freshness, must be destemmed first.
- Spices: Cumin and chili powder, for added flavor.
- Salt and pepper: Added to taste.
- Oil: To grill the tortillas.
- Toppings: Sliced avocado, sour cream, and salsa are all great options.
Ingredient Swaps & Suggestions
As good as this recipe is, there’s definitely room to make some simple swaps to enjoy them a bit differently each time.
Here are some suggestions:
- Swap beans for ground beef, ground turkey, or leftover shredded chicken
- Swap the cheddar cheese for pepper jack or a 3-cheese Mexican blend
- Add cream cheese for extra richness
- Add additional ingredients like diced tomatoes, black olives, or pickled jalapeños
How to Make Corn Tortilla Quesadillas
These corn tortilla quesadillas come together in just 15 minutes, and all it requires is a small bowl and a skillet. This is a perfect snack or lunch to make if you’re new to the kitchen since it comes together so quickly within just a few steps. Here’s how it’s done:
- Prep Work: Preheat a large skillet to medium heat.
- Make the Filling: In a mixing bowl, combine beans, corn, cilantro, and spices. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
- Layer the Tortillas: Lay out 3 tortillas, then top them with half of the shredded cheese, followed by the bean mixture, then more cheese. Top each quesadilla with the second tortilla.
- Grill the Quesadillas: Add oil to the skillet, then place the quesadillas on the skillet. Cook them for 2-3 minutes on one side, then flip them over and grill for another 2-3 minutes, or until the cheese is melted, and the tortillas are crisp.
- Slice and Serve: Slice each quesadilla into quarters and serve with your desired toppings.
Serving & Side Dish Ideas
The versatility of these quesadillas makes them perfect for mixing and matching with a number of dishes. If you’re not sure what to serve with quesadillas, these simple side dish ideas are here to help:
- Refried Beans: A classic side, refried beans offer a smooth consistency that balances perfectly with the cheesy and meaty fillings of quesadillas. Add some cilantro and lime juice to really elevate the flavor.
- Black Bean Salad: While black beans are a staple in many dishes, creating a salad with them offers the perfect freshness to cut through the cheese of quesadillas. Add a splash of vinaigrette, a little lime, and a serving of fresh avocado to create a layered and cohesive side dish.
- Pico de Gallo: Like most types of salsa, this side packs a lot of flavor with just a few fresh ingredients. Use ripe tomatoes, fresh onion, jalapeño peppers, and finely chopped cilantro.
This recipe makes about 3 servings, so it should be just enough for a quick lunch. And no worries if you end up with leftovers since they reheat easily and taste just as good the following day.
To store your leftovers, transfer cooled pasta to an airtight container and store it in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.
To freeze your leftovers, allow them to cool, then transfer them to an airtight container or freezer-safe bag and freeze for up to 6 months.
To reheat your leftovers, transfer them to a skillet set over medium heat with a little oil. Let them cook for 1-2 minutes, then flip and continue cooking until they’re fully reheated.
- Don’t overdo it on the oil. Too much, and they’ll turn soggy and not get crispy.
- Want to cook your quesadilla in the air fryer? Heat them at 350°F for 10 minutes, stopping halfway through to flip them.
- For flatter, more crispy quesadillas, press on them as they grill with a wide spatula.
- Be careful not to add too much filling, otherwise, they’ll make a big mess when you try to flip them.
Are corn tortillas healthy?
Corn tortillas are generally lower in fat and calories than flour tortillas. In addition, they also tend to have more fiber, protein, and essential vitamins.
Should I use white or yellow corn tortillas?
Yellow corn tortillas tend to have a stronger flavor, whereas white tortillas tend to be a milder and nuttier flavor.
Corn Tortilla Quesadillas
- 6 corn tortillas
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- ½ cup cooked black beans
- ½ cup cooked corn
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- ¼ tsp ground cumin
- ¼ tsp chili powder
- kosher salt to taste
- black pepper to taste
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 avocado sliced
- kosher salt
- sour cream
- Preheat a large skillet over medium heat
- In a mixing bowl, combine the cooked black beans, corn, cilantro, spices, and salt and pepper to taste
- Lay 3 corn tortillas on a flat surface, then spread an even layer of cheese over each tortilla
- Spoon the black bean mixture over the top of the cheese
- Top the bean mixture with more shredded cheese, then cover it with another corn tortilla
- Repeat this process with the remaining tortillas
- Brush the preheated skillet with oil and place each quesadilla in the skillet
- Cook the quesadillas for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until the cheese has fully melted and the tortillas are crispy
- Remove the quesadillas from the skillet and cut them into quarters. Serve them with your desired toppings.