{The avo-bean quesadilla: no real cooking required, takes less than 15min}

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Summary: 
I would like to dedicate this post to all of my FRIENDS and readers who say “I can’t cook” or “it looks complicated”. Anyone can prepare this -it is low budget, contains few ingredients and requires little or no cooking skills. This makes a super easy and quick lunch or dinner. I always keep a can of Rosarita’s vegetarian refried beans on my pantry because it’s just so practical! Unexpected guests arrive? Heat some, add some chips and you are done. Don’t have anything to take to work for the next day? Veggie-Bean burrito in less than 5min away. So here is one of my favorite lunch recipes…no real cooking involved…takes 15 minutes or less to prep and make…it’s colorful, it’s healthy, it’s meatless, it’s lean and it’s loaded with fiber… anything else?

To find out more about the nutritional benefits of red cabbage, check out our previous health article here: An Ode to Red Cabbage. 

Ingredients:
1 can of Rosarita vegetarian refried beans or about 1 cup of the homemade kind
3 whole grain or corn tortillas , *I always choose tortillas that are 100 calories or less
1 medium sized avocado
1 cup red cabbage
1/2 cup reduced fat mexican cheese blend or your own blend of cheddar cheese/monterrey jack
juice from half a lemon
garllic powder, salt & pepper
Garnishes/Extras:
reduced fat sour cream
cilantrillo or parsley leaves
hot sauce or cayenne pepper

Directions:
1. PREP: Peel and core the avocado. Cut into slices. Drizzle with juice from half a lemon. Season with salt & pepper; add cayenne if desired. Set aside. Chop the red cabbage. If using natural block cheese, shred from 1/2 cup to 1 cup (depends on the desired version – see below). In a microwave safe bowl, heat the refried beans for about 1 min.

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2. PORTION CONTROLLED VERSION:
Place 1 tortilla onto a plate: spread with 1/2 cup of heated refried beans, layer 1/2 cup of cabbage, add 2-3 slices of avocado. Smash the avocado with a fork and sprinkle with some garlic powder and cayenne pepper (if desired). Keep it vegan or top with 1/4 cup of cheese.

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3. GREEN MONSTER VERSION (aka GUY VERSION):
Follow the same layering instructions from the portion controlled version but use 2 tortillas instead of one. To add fat (don’t laugh guys have a higher metabolic demand so they can spare more calories) – use real cheese (and be generous with the amount) + use about 1/2 or 3/4 of the avocado. Follow the illustrations below.

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4. Grill or heat on a non-stick pan until the cheese has melted and the tortilla turns golden brown. Enjoy while warm. Garnish with a spoonful of sour cream & cilantrillo. I used a panini grill as the cooking method – it creates the “just grilled effect”, cooks both sides evenly and it’s easier!

The avo-bean quesadilla - green monster version

Yield: 2 to 3 servings
Calorie note: 120 calories for the 1/2 c of beans + 100 for the tortilla + 60-100 calories from the cheese + 50 calories from the avocado = less than 350 cal! And did you notice that skipping the cheese can save up to 100 calories? It wouldn’t be much of a quesadilla though…I was also surprised to find out that 1 tbsp of reduced fat sour cream has around 17.5 cal. So this is a great alternative if you are looking to add creaminess to your wraps or salad dressings.
Avo-bean quesadilla
Avo-bean quesadilla
Melted cheese, smashed garlicky avocados, creamy refried beans, crunchy cabbage…
… Being healthy never tasted this good (or required less culinary skills!)
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2 thoughts on “{The avo-bean quesadilla: no real cooking required, takes less than 15min}

  1. Pingback: {5 de MaYo: Mexican recipes roundup} | HealthY, HaPpy & WhOle

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