Appetizers

Chicken Fajita Quesadillas

Quesadillas are one of my favorite appetizers- cheesy and delicious. One of the things I love about them is the condiments they come with. Sour cream, salsa, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, chipotle crema…the possibilities are endless. And then there’s the quesadillas themselves- so versatile.  You can make pulled pork quesadillas, steak quesadillas, dessert quesadillas…I once even made a bacon cheeseburger quesadilla!

This quesadilla is inspired by the classic chicken fajita. Seasoned chicken breast, peppers, onions, and cheese are nestled inside a flour tortilla and cooked to crispy perfection…add some sour cream and salsa and you’ve got a winner! These are absolutely delicious and a cinch to make. Perfect as an appetizer or for an easy Mexican dinner night. I even like to save leftovers and have it in the morning with a fried egg on it. Yum!

Ingredients:

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to ½ inch thick
2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
Juice of 2 limes
4 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, halved and sliced
1/2 red bell pepper, cut into strips
1/2 green bell pepper, cut into strips
4 flour tortillas
1 1/2 cups shredded Monterey jack/cheddar cheese
Cooking spray
Sour cream, salsa, guacamole, or any other toppings you like!

Directions:

Step 1: Whisk the cumin, paprika, chili powder, salt, pepper, lime juice, and 2 tablespoons oil in a bowl. Remove one tablespoon of the mixture to a small bowl and set aside for use during step 4. Place the chicken in an airtight container or a Ziplock bag and pour the rest of the spice mixture over the chicken. Allow to marinade in the fridge for an hour.

Step 2: Remove the chicken from the marinade and discard the marinade.  Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Add the chicken and cook on each side for approximately 3-4 minutes.  Remove and keep warm.

Step 3: Heat another tablespoon of oil in the skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and peppers and saute for approximately 3-4 minutes, or until soft.

Step 4: Slice the chicken and add to the skillet with the veggies. Whisk the reserved tablespoon of unused marinade with 2 tablespoons water and pour into the skillet. Saute for 1 minute, to combine flavors, then remove from heat.

Step 5: Coat a clean skillet with cooking spray and heat on low. Place a flour tortilla in the pan and top with ¼ cup cheese, about 1/3 cup of the chicken and veggie mixture, then a sprinkling of more cheese, being sure to leave about ½ inch of space along the perimeter of the tortilla.  Cook until the cheese starts to melt a bit, then fold the tortilla in half while it is in the pan and press down.  Cook for another 30 seconds or until the one side has lightly browned, then flip and cook until that side has lightly browned.  Remove, keep warm, and continue this process for the remaining quesadillas.

Step 6: Transfer the quesadilla to a plate and cut into triangles.  Serve with sour cream, salsa, or whatever toppings you like!

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