Chipotle Chicken Quesadillas

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I always have the ingredients for this recipe on hand because it’s quick, easy, filling, and most important of all, delicious.  I actually came up with this when we were limiting our carbs.  Even though we aren’t following that way of eating anymore, we still make these often and use Mission brand Carb Balance tortillas.  They are the best tasting low-carb product I’ve ever had.  Whichever brand or type of tortilla you choose to use, you really can’t go wrong with this recipe.  It’s a go-to dish in our house, and it’s very versatile.  It’s easy to add or omit ingredients to suit different tastes.  This is also a great recipe to use with leftover chicken.


Ingredients:

  • 1 pound (about 2 large, or 3 to 4 small) boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • Garlic salt and black pepper for seasoning chicken
  • 1 package of taco seasoning
  • 2 Tbsp crushed red pepper (optional)
  • 2 cups shredded Mexican blend cheese
  • 4 burrito-sized flour tortillas
  • 4 Tbsp chipotle sauce (we love this Taco Bell brand, or you can make your own!)
  • 2-4 Tbsp butter for pan searing
  • Sour cream for dipping (optional)
  • Cilantro for garnish (optional)

Preparation:

  • Sprinkle the chicken breasts with garlic salt and black pepper and place in a casserole dish or on a baking sheet.
  • Bake chicken at 350 degrees F for about 20-30 minutes, or until no longer pink inside.
  • Shred chicken and place into a large mixing bowl (if you have a stand mixer, cut the chicken into large chunks, throw it the mixer bowl, and pulse on low-speed with the paddle attachment.  It really does shred the chicken beautifully!)
  • Add taco seasoning and crushed red pepper (if using) and mix thoroughly.  If the chicken seems too dry, just add some water or some of the chicken juice from the pan. You don’t want the mixture to be too wet though, so add the liquid in small increments until it’s just moist.
  • Construct your quesadillas by laying out a tortilla shell flat on the counter, place 1/4 of the chicken mixture on one half of the tortilla, add about 1 Tbsp of chipotle sauce evenly distributed over the chicken, and top with 1/2 cup of cheese. Then fold the empty half of the tortilla over.  Repeat with other tortilla shells.
  • Melt one Tbsp of butter in a large skillet on medium-high heat.
  • Carefully place the prepared quesadilla in the skillet and sear until golden brown. Adjust the heat as needed.  Flip the quesadilla and repeat on the other side.  You want a nice, golden brown on both sides and the cheese melted.
  • Add more butter to the pan if needed, and repeat for the remaining quesadillas.
  • Place the cooked quesadillas on plates and cut into 4 equal triangles with a pizza cutter (or a knife, but the pizza cutter is easier!)
  • Serve with cilantro-sprinkled sour cream on top or on the side (if desired).

 This recipe makes 4 good-sized quesadilla halves.  The Fella and I usually have one a piece, but if he’s feeling particularly ravenous, he can eat two!  😉  You can have this alone as a meal, which is what we usually do, or you can serve a smaller portion with some black beans and Mexican rice.  These work well for lunch, dinner, or you can even serve them as an appetizer.  I make this recipe at least once every few weeks, and it’s always super satisfying.  Make these low-fat by using reduced fat cheeses and sour cream, and cooking spray instead of butter.  You can mix it up by using other meats, and you can add veggies like onion, peppers, corn, or beans right into the tortilla.  Use more or less cheese, spice, or sauce if you like, and just have fun with it.

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