The Cheapest, Bestest Dinner Ideas VII


Today, we’re going to make a dang quesa-dilla!

Like the recipe for grilled cheese sandwiches, most people know about making a quesadilla. At its most basic form, this quick meal is two tortillas and grated cheese. Gourmet chefs then cook, microwave, grill, or fry their Mexican-style sandwich till the insides melt.

Quick, easy, cheap, and mostly healthy -What more could you want besides some salsa and sour cream to dip in?

Quesadillas are our family’s standby. When feeling fancy, we add actual meat pieces and fried peppers and onions with fancy cheese, stuffed between homemade tortillas. Middle-fancy: refried beans and sharp cheddar or Monterey Jack. One the low end, we’re partial to my standby frozen shredded cheese on the cheapest tortillas at the store.



Flour tortillas (2 per quesadilla)
Grated cheddar cheese
Refried beans; or cooked and cubed chicken, pork, or beef
Oil for frying
Salsa, sour cream, guacamole for dipping


Frying pan or griddle
Cheese grater, if not pre-shredded
Knife for spreading refried beans
Pizza cutter or knife


  1. Heat oil in skillet or on griddle.
  2. Lather one tortilla with refried beans and place in pan on oil. If using meat, place tortilla on oil and sprinkle with meat.
  3. Liberally sprinkle grated cheese over beans, meat, or tortilla half sitting in the oil.
  4. Top with second tortilla.
  5. When the underside is brown and the cheese is melted inside, use the spatula to flip over the quesadilla. Cook till both sides are browned.
  6. Cut into pieces and serve with salsa, sour cream, guacamole, or tomatoes according to taste.


Lately we’ve been getting a bag of tortillas for $1 at the store. Since I already have beans and cheese and salsa on hand, the whole meal costs us that $1. Not bad, huh?

So if you’re short on time and feeling peckish, whip up your own quesadillas today!