Pinto Bean Quesadilla with Spiced Zucchini | Naturally Ella

Quesadillas have had a recent uptick in our household thanks to a high-energy toddler. It’s one of my go-to lunches when were hanging out at home primarily because I can put almost anything in a quesadilla and as long as there’s a dip like salsa or hummus, my son will eat it. This pinto bean quesadilla uses the spiced zucchini component I shared a few days ago. The pinto adds the bulk while the zucchini adds the flavor. Best of all, if you make the zucchini ahead of time, these quesadillas only take about 15 minutes to make (which when you’re chasing a toddler is a major win.)


Pinto Bean Quesadilla with Spiced Zucchini

  • Author: Erin Alderson
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 1 serving
  • Cuisine: dinner


An easy, kid-friendly lunch or dinner featuring melted cheese, zucchini, and pinto beans.


  • 1 large wheat flour tortilla
  • 1 1/2 ounces shredded cheddar, jack, or something similar
  • [url]1/2 cup spiced zucchini∞[/url]
  • 1/3 cup cooked pinto beans, drained and rinsed if using canned
  • Salsa/Hot sauce, for serving
  • Olive oil, for brushing


  • Preheat a griddle or large, flat skillet over low heat- the pan should be large enough to fit the tortilla. Brush one side of a tortilla with olive oil and place it oil-side down in the skillet. On half of the tortilla, sprinkle with 1/2 of the cheese, followed by the spiced zucchini, pinto beans, and finish with another layer of cheese.
  • Fold the tortilla in half, covering the mixture.
  • Cook the quesadilla over low heat, flipping once, about 4 to 5 minutes. The tortilla should be browning and crisp and the cheese should be melting. Cut into wedges to serve.


Tips & Tricks: These quesadillas are also delicious is you slightly mash the beans. I like to pan fry beans with a bit of garlic and oil then mash before using. 

Stock up: get the pantry ingredients you will need: pinto beans, tortillas, zucchini

Nutrition:  see the information.


  • Calories: 402
  • Sugar: 3.3
  • Sodium: 733
  • Fat: 23.7
  • Saturated Fat: 9.7
  • Carbohydrates: 32.7
  • Fiber: 2.1
  • Protein: 15.9
  • Cholesterol: 43.4

Pinto Bean Quesadilla


The beauty of quesadillas is that as long as there’s a tortilla and cheese, you can switch up whatever else might go inside. Since I’m usually cooking for a toddler, I keep it simple but there’s almost always some kind of legume and some kind of vegetable.

Beans: Black beans are usually my go-to and they would work equally as well.

Vegetables: Swap the zucchini for something that’s in season. I like the same flavors with sweet potatoes and/or butternut squash.

Omelette: I know this makes a completely different meal but the filling for this pinto bean quesadillas makes for a wonderful omelette as well. Cut back on the cheese a bit and be sure to serve it with plenty of hot sauce or salsa.