Breakfast Quesadillas with Scrambled Eggs, Spinach and Black Beans

Vegetarian breakfast quesadillas: a simple and healthy breakfast (or dinner)! cookieandkate.com

Blink. Blink. Blink. I’ve spent so much time staring at quesadilla photos this morning that I can hardly see straight. Quesadillas are challenging to photograph. Actually, all of the staple Mexican meals are difficult to photograph—tacos, tostadas, huevos rancheros, burritos, enchiladas. They’re all messy, round and irritatingly, impossibly delicious. I try to do them justice. I don’t even want to tell you how many photos I took of these quesadillas before I settled on the ones you see here.

quesadilla ingredients

I’m hoping these pictures will entice you to make these extra-crispy scrambled egg quesadillas. The filling is composed of spinach, black beans and scrambled eggs (hello, protein!), which is secured to the tortillas with a light sprinkle of shredded cheese.

Then, to make the quesadillas can’t-stop good, I sprinkled a tablespoon of cheese on the outside of the quesadilla and let it fry against the pan. Served with guacamole, you have an outrageously tasty, complete meal. The quesadillas are so tempting, in fact, that I had to take Cookie on a walk last night just to get away from the leftovers. I polished off the rest this morning.

spinach and guacamole

These quesadillas are one of those beautiful recipes that scale well, from a single serving to family-sized proportions. I live alone so I appreciate quick, satisfying, one-person meals. Sometimes I don’t want to eat the same leftovers for days. I’ve heard from some of you lately who are in the same boat. Sometimes those leftovers serve as reminders of what we don’t have—a boyfriend, a husband, friends in a new city. This recipe is for you.

You can, of course, make more than one quesadilla if need be. Just multiply the filling ingredients as necessary and cook them all at once. Then transfer the filling to a bowl and make two quesadillas at a time in a large skillet. You could get multiple burners going if you have enough skillets. I think these would be a fun brunch recipe for a small gathering. Kids just might love these quesadillas, too. I love a good breakfas-for-dinner option, don’t you?

scrambled eggs

Before you go, thought I’d mention that I started a new Pinterest board for wholesome breakfast recipes, featuring some of my favorite food bloggers’ recipes! If you’re looking for Cinco de Mayo recipes, I’m working on a Facebook album full of them. (Warning: you’re going to want at least one of my fresh margaritas.) Lastly, you can find my tips for making great quesadillas on this post.

Breakfast quesadillas with scrambled eggs spinach and black beans recipe - cookieandkate.comBreakfast quesadillas with hot sauceVegetarian scrambled egg quesadillas with spinach, black beans and guacamole! cookieandkate.com

4.8 from 4 reviews
Vegetarian Breakfast Quesadillas with Scrambled Eggs, Spinach and Black Beans
Author: 
Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1
 
Quick and healthy scrambled egg quesadillas stuffed with spinach and black beans. Extra crispy outsides and guacamole on the side make this quesadilla a totally irresistible breakfast (or lunch or dinner!).
Ingredients
Scrambled egg quesadillas (ingredients per quesadilla, multiply as necessary)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup spinach, roughly chopped
  • ¼ cup cooked black beans
  • 1 medium whole grain tortilla
  • ½ cup melty shredded cheese (like cheddar or Monterey Jack), divided
  • Hot sauce, like Cholula
  • Sea salt
Guacamole (yields enough guac for 2 to 4 quesadillas)
  • 1 large avocado, diced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (about 1 small lime, juiced)
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped white onion or radishes
  • 3 packed tablespoons fresh cilantro (about 1 small handful)
  • 1 small garlic clove, pressed or minced
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
Instructions
  1. To make the guacamole: Combine the guacamole ingredients in a small bowl. Mash with a fork until the mixture is well combined and mostly smooth. Set aside.
  2. To prepare the eggs: Scramble the eggs in a small bowl. Season with a couple dashes of hot sauce and a dash of salt.
  3. To cook the eggs: Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a medium-sized skillet (either well-seasoned cast iron or nonstick) over medium heat until shimmering. Add the chopped spinach and cook, stirring often, until wilted, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the black beans to the skillet. Pour in the scrambled eggs and cook, stirring often, until the eggs are just set, about 1 to 3 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a bowl to pause the cooking process (the eggs will finish cooking in the quesadilla).
  4. To cook the quesadilla (if desired, you can cook two quesadillas at once): In a large skillet (preferably cast iron, but nonstick also works), warm the tortilla over medium heat, flipping occasionally. Once the pan and tortilla are warm, sprinkle one half of the quesadilla with ¼ cup cheese. Top the cheese with scrambled eggs, then top the scrambled eggs with almost ¼ cup cheese, reserving about 1 tablespoon of cheese for later. Press the empty tortilla halve over the toppings.
  5. Let the bottom side of the quesadilla cook for a minute, then carefully flip the quesadilla with a spatula. Immediately sprinkle the remaining tablespoon of cheese over the hot side of the quesadilla and let it melt as the other side cooks for a couple of minutes. Flip the quesadilla again, and let the cheese sizzle into the quesadilla for a couple of minutes. Use the spatula to get underneath the melty cheese side and flip again. Cook that side for a couple more minutes if necessary, until both sides are a nice, crisp golden brown.
  6. Transfer the quesadilla to a cutting board to cool for a few minutes, then slice each quesadilla into 2 slices using a pizza cutter or a very sharp knife. Serve with guacamole.
Notes
Make it gluten free: Use gluten-free tortillas, like these brown rice tortillas.
Storage suggestions: Quesadillas keep well in the fridge, covered, for a few days. Reheat in the microwave or, better yet, warm in the oven/toaster oven. To keep leftover guacamole fresh, mix in an extra squeeze of lime juice and press plastic wrap over the surface to help prevent browning.
Leftover guacamole? Use it as a dip for chips or veggies (carrots, bell peppers, etc.). You could even spread it on toast.
Change it up: This recipe is super versatile. Sauté vegetables like bell peppers or mushrooms before adding the greens and eggs. Change up the greens (arugula, chard or kale would be good) or skip them altogether. Serve with pico de gallo or sour cream instead of the guacamole.
Make it quick: Skip the onions and cilantro in the guacamole or serve with a fresh tasting, store-bought salsa instead of guacamole.
Recommended equipment: My beloved 12-inch cast iron skillet makes the best quesadillas.
If you love this recipe: You'll also love my crispy mushroom, spinach and avocado quesadillas, egg enchiladas with roasted poblano sauce, Greek tomato and chickpea quesadillas and huevos rancheros with avocado salsa verde.

P.s. Food for thought: An open letter to the future Mrs. Clooney by Mackenzie Dawson, via Erin, and Comorbid: finding stability on shifting ground by Beth Kirby.

Comments

  1. says

    Your quesadilla photos are gorgeous – I’ve taken some truly horrendous ones. Breakfast quesadillas are my all-time fave, and it’s genius to pan fry them with some cheese on the outside! Can’t wait to try them.

  2. says

    You did such a terrible job with these photos that I’m TOTALLY not going to rush home and make these for lunch in an hour… (why oh why is there not a sarcasm font?)

    SERIOUSLY SO EXCITED ABOUT THE GLORIOUS GOODNESS THAT IS THIS AWESOME LOOKING RECIPE.

  3. says

    Whether or not these are difficult to photograph it’s rare to find a recipe for a quesadilla that’s bad. They’re always messy and sooooo delicious. I love the idea of starting my day off with an eggy one. Yum!

  4. says

    Kate, you have forever changed the way I will make my quesadillas, the extra sprinkling of cheese on the outside is genius!! Also,Breakfast quesadillas sound way tastier than the usual breakfast tacos I have :)

  5. says

    You actually did an exceptional job in capturing how good these really are. So great. They look amazing and I plan on making them here very soon. Thanks and have a great weekend!

  6. says

    Hi Kate, your idea for the sprinkling of cheese on the outside of the tortilla is genius, these are the kinds of things that make recipes so special , it’s the little things. Thanks for sharing!

  7. says

    Your quesadillas looks amazing!I always struggle to photograph food that looks ‘messy’ but that’s when you know it’s very, very good :) xo

  8. says

    Ooh these look fabulous!! I totally hear you on looking at so many photos of the same thing that you can barely see straight by the end. #foodbloggerproblems. However, you have done a beautiful job! I love breakfast for dinner and you’ve given me yet another fabulous reason to use my cast iron skillet!

  9. says

    I like your new ‘notes’ section, Kate! Really useful!
    As for the quesadillas, well as usual with your recipes, I love them. I actually made some veggie quesadillas of my own recently for my blog (Greek-Mex – weird, I know, but it worked!), so I totally hear you regarding the photos. Foodgawker told me that mine could have been better! ;-) I went for the overhead ‘keep them in a circle’ approach in the end.
    Already checked out your breakfast Pinterest board & re-pinned a few – very nice!

    • says

      Greek-Mex sounds great to me! I have some Mediterranean quesadillas on my blog, too. Sorry to hear about Foodgawker—they can be finicky sometimes.

  10. says

    These look delicious (and they photographed well!). I made spiced beans yesterday– from a Martha Rose Shulman recipe– and put them in a bowl with brown rice, a poached egg, sliced avocado and Sriracha. And I *just so happen* to have 1 cup left over…and there are some tortillas in the fridge too. Hello breakfast! Also, love the Pinterest board for breakfast ideas. It really is the best meal of the day, no? Happy Cinco de Mayo! Thanks for sharing.

  11. says

    These quesadillas look yummy and filling, and I think the photos look great! I understand what you mean though. Sometimes I get ready to photograph something and feel completely uninspired! Also loved those two articles. Thanks for sharing the links!

  12. Molly says

    Oh this looks super good! I’m a Kansas City girl and a vegetarian too…this is quickly becoming my new favorite recipe site…so much yummy stuff and from such a sweet personality!! I really appreciate the single servings and advice for leftovers since my hubby is definitely a meat eater and not big on veggies even if they are served with meat or eggs, so I’m on my own in the kitchen. Beautiful photos too!

    • says

      Molly, thank you so much for your sweet comment! It’s always nice to hear from a fellow KC girl/vegetarian. Glad you’re enjoying the recipes!

  13. says

    Mexican Food really is the hardest food to photograph! Despite it’s deliciousness… You did do a good job in making these quesadillas look irresistible so I’d say mission accomplished!

  14. says

    These were delicious! Your beautiful photos convinced me to make them for breakfast today. They were good with the gruyere I had on hand, but will be better next time with cheddar. On the side we tried basic guac, sour cream, and spicy salsa — the salsa was our favorite.

    • says

      Julie, so glad you enjoyed the quesadillas! I tried my quesadillas with salsa and wasn’t crazy about them that way… but that’s because I don’t like the salsa I bought! D’oh.

  15. says

    I love quesadillas, burritos, enchiladas… anything cheesy, avocadoey and spicy (I think the word ‘avocadoey’ doesn’t exist but oh well) in a warm tortilla! Love your ultra-crispy version here. I’ve recently grown to love black beans, so good!

    *re the photo issues, you’ve done an amazing job! Totally overcame the lack of aesthetic appeal in a normal quesadilla! x

  16. says

    You more than nailed these photos, they are beautiful! This breakfast is calling to me :) I also never would have thought of keeping leftover quesadillas for reheating later. Awesome work-breakfast idea!

  17. says

    I love the tip for cooking a little cheese directly into the tortilla! I’m making sweet-potato and black bean quesadillas tonight in honor of Cinco de Mayo, and I’m totally going to try this out!

  18. Fiona says

    My husband will be SO into this recipe. Whenever I make something from your blog, he’s like, “This is so good!” This is a even bigger compliment because he loves ordering out (which I used to take as a reflection on my cooking skills, but now I just roll with it).

  19. says

    Why does it always end up that ugly food turns out to be the most delicious?! Although, honestly, these look pretty damn good to my eyes. And stomach.

  20. says

    This looks so good! I would probably even just eat the filling on a morning I’m feeling too rushed to deal with flipping a tortilla!

    By the way, I love this: “Sometimes those leftovers serve as reminders of what we don’t have—a boyfriend, a husband, friends in a new city.”

    Thank you.

  21. Carrie says

    I made these for breakfast yesterday and they were absolutely delicious! Fabulous recipe – thanks so much.

  22. Wendy says

    Long time veggie, new Celiac diagnosis. This was my first go at a gluten-free recipe to please my meat-eating husband and it was great!! Heck, I’m basically new to the kitchen and this recipe did not intimidate me at all! Thanks Kate for making my transition to GF a bit brighter!! Looking forward to trying more stuff. So happy I found your Veggie/GF recipe site!

    • says

      Wendy, welcome to the blog! So glad you both enjoyed the quesadillas! Not all of my recipes are gluten free, but I try to provide gluten-free substitution suggestions in the notes, when applicable. Here’s an index of all of my gluten-free recipes, in case you haven’t stumbled across it yet: http://cookieandkate.com/gluten-free-recipes/. Happy cooking!

  23. Pam says

    Do you know what the calories would be for this? I know I could probably figure it out on my own, but was just curious if you knew. Sorry if it is posted and I just didn’t see it.

    • says

      Hi Pam, I’m sorry, I don’t know the nutrition details for the recipe. If you calculate them, please feel free to share in the comments. I’m sure others would like to know, too!

  24. Paige says

    Have had these for dinner two nights in a row-yum! Keep the easy, single person recipes coming, loved it! :)
    Also, I bought the cast iron skillets you recommended to me, but am having trouble keeping one clean. I’ve looked online, but wanted to see if you had any preferred tips? Thanks, Kate!

    • says

      Will do, Paige! Cast iron skillets can be a little tricky sometimes. Mine seem to have a life of their own—sometimes they’re super well seasoned, other times not so much. My best tip for achieving a non-stick surface is to let the pan heat up *before* adding oil and cooking in it. To clean my pans, I use a bamboo scraper from Crate and Barrel to scrape off the goop (if it’s bad, I’ll fill the pan with water and let it sit for a few minutes, but you don’t want to leave water in there for long). Sometimes that plus a good rinse is plenty, or I’ll rub kosher salt onto it, rinse and dry. Hope these tips help!

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