Alright, confession time: I watch food shows while I run on the treadmill.
I probably look like a total goober at the gym, simultaneously drooling and sweating, huffing and puffing and muttering, “Mmm.”
Recently, I watched the Pioneer Woman make campfire quesadillas. She combined onions, red peppers, and mushrooms, which she sauteed in butter, with Cheddar, Monterey Jack, and goat cheeses in flour tortillas.
“Goat cheese in a quesadilla? That’s not Mexican!” I thought.
Within the week, I crafted a spin on her quesadillas. I combined onions, green and red peppers, zucchini, and mushrooms with mozzarella and goat cheeses in a corn tortilla.
The classic Italian vegetables paired with stretchy mozzarella and zippy tomato-basil goat cheese in a corn tortilla (which sort of is a call back to the classic Italian dish polenta) was a flavor win. And these quesadillas came together so fast!
Quick and Easy Italian Quesadillas
(Inspired by the Pioneer Woman)
These quesadillas combine quintessential Italian ingredients, such as green peppers, mushrooms, and mozzarella cheese, in a convenient Mexican-inspired package. They’re super simple, perfect for weeknight eats, and can be customized according to varying tastes.
2 tsp. butter
2 tsp. olive oil
1 small onion, sliced
1 small zucchini, sliced into half moons
6 medium-large baby Portabella mushrooms, sliced
1/2 red bell pepper, sliced
1/2 green bell pepper, sliced
salt and pepper, to taste
6-8 ounces shredded Mozzarella cheese
4 ounces goat cheese
12 small corn tortillas (such as the Mission extra thin corn tortillas)
In a large skillet, melt the butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add the sliced onions and saute until they just start to get soft and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add the zucchini, mushrooms, and peppers and saute until all the vegetables are tender and start to brown, about 10-12 minutes.
To assemble the quesadillas: Spray a large skillet with nonstick spray, then place one tortilla in the skillet. Sprinkle about 1/2 ounce of mozzarella cheese on top, then add a spoonful of the vegetable mixture; sprinkle another 1/2 ounce of mozzarella cheese on top of the vegetables, then add 1/2 ounce of crumbled goat cheese, and place another tortilla on top.
Press down on the quesadilla with the back of a spatula to ensure it holds together and then, when the bottom is golden brown and slightly crispy, flip the quesadilla and cook the other side until it also is golden brown.
Serve with marinara.