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Recipe | Kale & Sweet Potato Quesadillas

Kale and Sweet Potato Quesadilla

Kale & Sweet Potato Quesadilla
There are two things you should know about this recipe:

1. The name is a lie. There’s no queso in these quesadillas. But calling them “dillas” makes them sound like something cutesy off of a children’s menu, doesn’t it?

2. Yes, if it sounds familiar, it’s because I made these with leftovers from my Sweet Potato & Kale Wraps. I decided to save the recipe for a rainy day and its day has finally come!

So yeah, about #2. We had tortillas and fillings leftover after making those wraps. But, as you saw, I am no burrito wrapper, so the second night around, I made these Kale & Sweet Potato Quesadillas for dinner. Instead of binding everything together with cheese like in a traditional quesadillas, I used mashed sweet potatoes. Is this weird? Okay, fine, maybe it sounds weird, but sweet potatoes and kale go really well together (this is one of my most popular posts, after all!) and so do sweet potatoes and black beans.

Oh, and one note about the chorizo: if you can purchase Field Roast locally, use their Mexican Chipotle sausage. Their sausage is made with real vegetables, grains, and spices and it’s minimally processed. (Yes, I’m talking up Field Roast again.)

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Kale & Sweet Potato Quesadillas

Kale & Sweet Potato Quesadilla

Vegan quesadillas with kale, caramelized onions, smoky black beans, and sweet potatoes.

  • Prep Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4

Ingredients

  • 1 small sweet potato, pierced with fork
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 1/2 c. kale, chopped
  • 1 vegetarian chorizo sausage, crumbled (optional)
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/2 c. black beans, cooked or canned (rinse well if using canned)
  • 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • olive oil cooking spray or mister
  • 4 whole wheat tortillas
  • salsa for serving

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Place sweet potato on a small baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until tender. Cool slightly, then remove skin, transfer to a small bowl, and mash with a fork or potato masher until smooth.
  3. While potato is cooking, heat oil in a large skillet on low heat. Add onion and cook until just starting to caramelize, about 45-60 minutes. Add chorizo (if using) and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in kale and continue to cook until wilted. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Combine black beans and paprika in a small bowl.
  5. Divide sweet potatoes, caramelized onion mixture, and beans evenly onto one half of each tortilla, leaving about 1/2 inch of space along the edges. Fold empty half onto the half with filling.
  6. At this point, you can cook your quesadillas however you prefer. I like to cook mine on a grill sprayed with olive oil and heated at medium. You can also use a quesadilla maker if you have one or cook them in a skillet on medium-high heat, flipping over after tortilla begins to brown.
  7. Cut into wedges and serve with salsa.

Notes

Prep time includes time spent baking the sweet potato and caramelizing the onion. Yes, it takes a long time for both, but it’s worth it! For a quicker dinner, caramelize the onions and roast the sweet potato the night before.

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38 Comments

  • Reply
    The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh
    March 15, 2012 at 11:34 am

    I had no idea they made vegan chorizo sausage! You can bet I’m gonna look for it! It might be easier on my stomach than the real thing.

    • Reply
      The Type A Housewife
      March 15, 2012 at 6:23 pm

      The sell it at Trader Joe’s! A lot of people are huge fans of the soy kind, but I have to tell you, I’m not–I like the Field Roast kind instead. The one time I had the soy kind, I could barely choke it down and then I threw it up an hour later. (TMI?)

  • Reply
    Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell
    March 15, 2012 at 2:11 pm

    They look very appetizing, I must say!

    • Reply
      The Type A Housewife
      March 15, 2012 at 6:20 pm

      I don’t like how cheese quesadillas get so greasy, so I really like these more. I think I’m going to try other queso-less quesadillas in the future.

  • Reply
    Audrey
    March 15, 2012 at 3:44 pm

    I smiled reading your post. I can turn most any leftovers into either a burrito or a quesadilla. I so love mexican food.

    • Reply
      The Type A Housewife
      March 15, 2012 at 6:11 pm

      Turning burrito leftovers into quesadilla leftovers isn’t much of a challenge, but now you’ve given me the idea to make leftovers from other types of meals into burritos or quesadillas. 😀 I imagine that the successes will be very tasty, but the disasters will be pretty epic.

  • Reply
    Smedette
    March 15, 2012 at 7:22 pm

    Yum, yum, yum!!!

  • Reply
    Brenda Williams
    March 15, 2012 at 11:58 pm

    Easy fix for the name “sweet potato kalesadillas” Sorry, I couldn’t resist that one. They just really do sound good.

    • Reply
      The Type A Housewife
      March 16, 2012 at 10:39 pm

      Ha, I love it! I really just gave up on coming up with a good name and thought, “Eh, Kale & Sweet Potato–that’s good enough.” It’s embarrassing how much time I spend on naming things sometimes.

  • Reply
    Lisa Marie
    March 16, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    Not weird at all Sweet potato and kale really do go well together. Sometimes I whip up sweet potato and kale taquitos. Your quesadillas look great. But that pizza you linked to has me drooling over here. It’s like a work of art! 🙂

    • Reply
      The Type A Housewife
      March 16, 2012 at 10:29 pm

      Thank you! It’s so funny, when I first published that pizza recipe, it was like crickets. And then in January (almost a year later!), people discovered it. With the mashed sweet potatoes, it’s very easy to just omit the cheese–everything still holds together well!

      I love the sweet potato and kale taquito idea!

  • Reply
    Ambika
    March 16, 2012 at 9:09 pm

    Love these “dillas”! Awesome!

  • Reply
    ElfRenee
    March 16, 2012 at 9:12 pm

    Ooh, I would definitely like these!

  • Reply
    [email protected] eco friendly homemaking
    March 18, 2012 at 9:03 pm

    This looks really good. I have just discovered Kale recently and am loving it.

    • Reply
      The Type A Housewife
      March 20, 2012 at 8:05 am

      I discovered kale a few years ago and it’s my favorite green now. I’m growing three different varieties this spring! 🙂

  • Reply
    Emily Nell
    March 19, 2012 at 3:24 pm

    I love sweet potatoes! I’ll try anything (vegan) with them in it. Can’t wait to make these! I’m sure they won’t look as nice as yours though 😛

    • Reply
      The Type A Housewife
      March 20, 2012 at 7:47 am

      Well, this one was the pretty one–the one I didn’t photograph oozed out all over the place. But even if they’re not pretty, they still taste good! 🙂

  • Reply
    gillian
    November 28, 2012 at 11:00 am

    i’ve made these time and time again since i first found your site – and i’m making them again today. seriously. i think i’m kinda secretly addicted to ’em 🙂 i just love the way you cook. high five. xxxx

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      November 28, 2012 at 2:09 pm

      Well, there are definitely worse things you could be addicted to, right? 🙂 I’m glad you enjoy them so much!

  • Reply
    Shannon
    February 18, 2013 at 5:33 am

    You just solved my quesadila problem. I was looking for a way to make a vegan black bean quesadila, but I couldn’t think of something good to replace the cheese. And I’m not about to use fake vegan cheese (don’t like them and want to avoid the processed foods). The sweet potato makes a perfect binder to hold it together, and tastes even better than cheese. Thank you for this recipe. 🙂

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      February 18, 2013 at 9:17 am

      Yay, I’m glad I could help! 🙂 And mashed butternut squash works the same way too…

  • Reply
    Alannah
    August 23, 2013 at 5:05 pm

    Hi Kiersten,
    I just made these tonight and they were so delicious! Next time I make them I am definitely going to double the batch!

    Thank you for the wonderful recipe,
    Alannah

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      August 24, 2013 at 3:19 pm

      Thank you for your comment–I’m glad you liked them! 🙂

  • Reply
    Emma
    October 24, 2013 at 4:45 pm

    Yum! I made these today and they were so tasty! Thanks for sharing. I’m going to do a round-up on my blog soon of recipes that I’ve recently tried and loved and this one’s definitely featuring!

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      October 24, 2013 at 7:57 pm

      I’m glad you enjoyed them–thanks for including them in your round-up too! 🙂

  • Reply
    Candy W
    December 17, 2013 at 7:23 pm

    I was skeptical about this combination of flavors but I made these tonight and they are awesome. I skipped the chorizo. Thanks.

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      December 18, 2013 at 7:43 pm

      I’m glad you enjoyed them!

  • Reply
    Alicia Champagne
    January 25, 2015 at 10:57 am

    This quesadilla was so good! I did not have black beans on hand so I substituted kidney beans and it was still very delicious. I also substituted some seasoned ground turkey for the chorizo sausage and it was delicious as well. I wish I had the information for the calories, carbs and fiber so I could keep up with my caloric intake for the day.

  • Reply
    Megan
    May 28, 2015 at 8:38 pm

    what a delicious recipe! I served it to three skeptical meat lovers and they just raved about all the flavor. roasting the sweet potatoes the night before made this pretty easy, too. thanks so much!

  • Reply
    Blair
    June 10, 2015 at 8:19 pm

    Just made these and they were so good! Especially with some sliced avocado on top 🙂

  • Reply
    Nicole
    September 23, 2015 at 4:24 pm

    I’m about to make these, but I’m just curious if that is a typo in step 3..i dont have to cook the onions for 45-60 minutes do I?

    Thanks,
    Nicole

    • Reply
      Kiersten Frase
      September 23, 2015 at 8:19 pm

      Caramelizing onions takes time. If you have a gas range, it can take less time, but I had an electric range when I developed this recipe and it usually took me about an hour. If you don’t want to wait that long, you can sauté them over medium-high heat for 5-8 minutes instead, until they’re tender.

  • Reply
    LizM
    November 17, 2015 at 9:55 pm

    I used this recipe with Chorizo and it was delicious! This was my second vegetarian recipe and if the first two are this good I can see me eating a lot more vegetarian meals.

    I think the transition to vegetarian is difficult because the vegetarian meals look nothing like what we traditionally eat. Traditionally there would be a main meat dish with sides of veggies and a starch like corn or potatoes. I am seeing vegetarian main courses being presented as a quesadilla or pizza or soup or some grain with veggies on top. None of these are traditionally views as main courses. I look at pizza as junk food and quesadillas as snacks or bar food.

  • Reply
    Margaret
    July 23, 2016 at 7:17 pm

    They are really delicious. I wish there was a calorie count included tot eh recipe.

  • Reply
    mimi
    February 22, 2017 at 8:33 pm

    I took many short cuts with this and it still came out great. I microwaved my sweet potatoes and when soft, peeled and sprinkled w/chili powder. I used red onions and only sautéed, as I didn’t have the time. I used veggie breakfast sausage and added Bragg’s Aminos, some nooch, and liquid smoke. Cooked them in a waffle iron and topped w/guac. So good. Thanks for the inspiration.

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