The vegan quesadilla has been saving my meal planning lately. I grew up with my mom planning out a week’s worth of meals and she made those meals each night as planned. No food wasted, no questions asked. I plan out my meals just the way she did, but inevitably something comes up 1-2 nights a week that throws the whole thing off. I need at least one meal that is fast, easy and the whole family will eat. The vegan quesadilla has become my savior. I keep all of the ingredients on hand. I add 1 “free” night to my meal plan where I don’t plan anything. I know that I can make these if needed. It is easy to customize to everyone’s preferences and is ready in less than 20 minutes. I can also make them ahead if Trey has a game or a late practice. He can inhale them in the car either before or after.
Last night was definitely a vegan quesadilla night. I was exhausted and everyone was starving. The first thing I did was cook a package of Beyond Meat Feisty Crumble. It adds a lot of flavor to the quesadillas and makes them hearty enough for Harrison. While that was cooking I made black beans using the method for my Black Bean Tostadas. Last week I used the Pacific Foods Refried Black Beans I bought at Target for the quesadillas. That is definitely the way to go since the whole idea is to make this meal easy and streamlined. I’ll be stocking up on those for my pantry!
Once the “beef” (or “meatish” as Trey calls Beyond Meat) was cooked and the beans were ready I started to assemble and cook. I take flour tortillas from Trader Joe’s and spread each one with Earth Balance while I heat up my cast iron skillet. Each of us likes different fillings. Harrison’s started with a layer of black beans, then Papalote Salsa (available at Whole Foods), then Daiya cheddar shreds, the Beyond Meat and finally sliced avocado. I cooked the quesadilla on the first side for 4-5 minutes and then flipped it over and cooked it for another 3 minutes until crisp. Harrison likes his quesadillas topped with Tofutti sour cream and pickled jalapeños.
I cooked Trey’s, decidedly more plain, quesadilla at the same time Harrison’s was cooking. All Trey wanted in his quesadilla was black beans, salsa and cheese. He did top his with sour cream and pickled jalapeños after we sat down. The kid loves his spice! He also loves to take these quesadillas to school for lunch. I am a big fan of cooking lunch and dinner at the same time.
I made my quesadilla on the panini press to save time. That let all 3 of our quesadillas cook at the same time. This panini move was a mistake though. It makes the quesadillas too flat and gives them a weird texture. I filled mine with beans, salsa, cheese and sliced sweet potato that I had left over from earlier in the week. Aside from my panini error the flavors were good. Next time I’ll be adding the Beyond Meat to mine as well.
These quesadillas would be awesome for Cinco de Mayo next week…with margaritas of course!