These quesadillas are filled with perfectly roasted and spiced delicata squash, smokey poblano peppers, slightly charred red onion, sharp cheddar cheese and the best refried black beans. Topped with a chipotle crema, quick pickled jalapeño slices and, of course, your favourite salsa. Trust me when I say these quesadillas must find a spot in your menu plan this week, especially while squash are still in season.
I have yet to meet someone who does not like quesadillas, or Mexican food for that matter. I feel like they’re one of the first meals young people start making for themselves. They were definitely my go to meal if my parents went out for the evening and I was left to fend for myself. Simple to make, always delicious and well, *melty cheese*. I like to think these quesadillas are more of a grown up version while still being very kid friendly.
The squash, roasted with chilli powder, paprika, cumin, brown sugar and salt “tastes like candy”. I am quoting my husband here. As soon as the squash came out of the oven he began snacking on them like chips. Thankfully, you will likely have some squash slices to spare for snacking on.
To me, tacos or quesadillas aren’t complete without great refried beans. I love refried beans like I love guacamole. A lot. For this recipe, you will simply sauté garlic with a spice mixture and black beans. Then the beans will simmer in water briefly and they are completed by mashing them like you would potatoes. To save some time you could use store-bought refried beans but, if time permits, definitely go with the homemade version. You won’t be disappointed.
These squash and poblano quesadillas are great for a quick weeknight dinner but also fun for the weekend, ideally paired with a margarita. Either way, I hope you give this recipe a try and let me know what you think in the comments below. I would love to hear from you!
- 2 tsp (10 ml) garlic powder
- 2 tsp (10 ml) chilli powder
- 1 tsp (5 ml) paprika
- 1 tsp (5 ml) cumin
- 2 tsp (10 ml) brown sugar
- 1 tsp (5 ml) salt
- 1 delicata squash (about 4 cups/1 litre), thinly sliced
- 2 poblano peppers, quartered (sliced lengthwise and then crosswise)
- 1/2 medium red onion, ¼ inch/1 cm thin slices
- 3-4 tbsp (45-60 ml) olive oil, divided
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- 1 can (13.5 oz/398 ml) black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1/3 cup (80 ml) water
- 1.5 cups (375 ml) white cheddar cheese
- 8 small corn or flour tortilla shells
- Optional garnish:
¼ tsp (1 ml) salt
¼ cup (60 ml) white vinegar
½ cup (125 ml) sour cream
¼ tsp (.5 ml) chipotle powder (or chilli powder)
Juice of 1/2 lime
- Salsa, Cilantro
- Preheat oven to 425℉ (220℃). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- If making Pickled Jalapeño: Put salt and vinegar in a bowl, stir to dissolve salt. Then add jalapeño slices and let sit until ready to serve.
- Prepare spice mixture by combining garlic powder, chilli powder, paprika, cumin, brown sugar and salt in a small bowl. Note: Half of spice mixture will be used for roasted vegetables and half for refried beans.
- Place squash slices on one baking sheet and poblano peppers and onions on the other, keeping the peppers and onions separated on the sheet.
- Drizzle vegetables with 2-3 tbsp (30-45 ml) olive oil and sprinkle squash, onions and peppers with half of the spice mixture.
- Roast vegetables for about 20 minutes or until slightly browned and cooked through. Once vegetables have cooked and cooled slightly, you will need to thinly slice the poblano peppers.
- While vegetables are roasting, prepare refried beans. Add 1 tbsp (15 ml) olive oil to small pot over medium heat. Add garlic and sauté for a 1-2 minutes. Add remaining spice mixture and beans. Stir for a minute. Add water and bring to a simmer.
- Let beans simmer over low heat for 10 minutes with lid on. Then use potato masher to mash beans until smooth. Some chunks of beans are okay. Set aside.
- While beans are simmering, grate cheddar cheese.
- If making the Crema: Add sour cream, chipotle powder and lime to a bowl. Stir to combine. Set aside.
- Prepare quesadillas: Add a thin layer of refried beans to one side of each tortilla then add peppers, onions, squash and cheese. Do not add too much or you won’t be able to fold tortilla shells
- Heat nonstick skillet with a little olive oil over medium heat. Add quesadilla, cheese side down, to pan. Cook each side until browned and cheese has melted. Once quesadilla’s are on pan, if they are not staying down, place a pan on top. You will likely need to do two batches or have two pans going at once.
- Seve with Pickled Jalapeño slices, Crema, cilantro and salsa of choice.
Dietary Considerations: Vegetarian, Gluten-Free (if using corn tortillas).