Cheese Corn Tortilla Quesadillas Carnitas Black Beans

This is the best-tasting gluten-free Corn Tortilla Quesadillas recipe with a healthy twist. Using corn flour tortillas, they’re filled with gooey cheese, sauteed beans, corn, onions, garlic, and my slow cooker carnitas, making them ideal for weeknight dinners and accommodating gluten allergies.

Sliced corn flour tortilla quesadillas with carnitas, black beans, and corn on a plate.

This corn tortilla quesadilla recipe is the perfect way to enjoy gluten-free Corn Tortilla Quesadillas with a healthy twist. Using corn flour tortillas, they’re filled with gooey cheese, sauteed beans, corn, onions, garlic, and my slow cooker carnitas, making them ideal for weeknight dinners and accommodating gluten allergies. They have all the flavors of a classic Mexican dish without the fire, but you can easily add more spice to suit your taste. 

I share a simple hack for getting soft corn tortillas without adding any oil. Once cooked, they perfectly hold your favorite fillings and are crispy and sturdy enough to dip in my 4-ingredient guacamole. Whether you need an easy dinner or healthy lunch, these quesadillas are sure to become a household favorite.

Bring Your Own Spice Mild Recipe logo

BYOS: Flavor Without the Fire!

Love bold flavors but not the heat? Spice things up on your own terms with this BYOS recipe bursting with deliciousness. All the ingredients are prepped for easy digestion and a heartburn-free experience. Adjust the spice level to your preference—no more burnt tongues or tears here! Now, everyone can enjoy this recipe regardless of their spice tolerance!

YouTube video

Why You’ll Love This Corn Flour Tortilla Quesadilla Recipe

  • You only need a few simple ingredients.
  • It is super easy to make for an impressive result.
  • It is full of delicious flavor!
  • All the ingredients are easily digestible for a gentle tummy.
Sliced corn flour tortilla quesadillas with carnitas, black beans, and corn on a plate.

Ingredients & Substitutions

Here is everything you need to make my easy quesadillas with white corn flour tortillas:

White Corn Tortillas: I love using the largest white corn tortillas. But you can also use yellow corn tortillas, whole wheat tortillas for a healthier, fiber-rich alternative, or flour tortillas if you prefer a softer, more flexible wrap. 

Shredded Cheese: You can use your favorite variety of shreddable cheese, including Monterey Jack Cheese, cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, pepper jack cheese, Colby jack, or Mexican cheese blend. You can also use dairy-free cheese if you’re lactose intolerant or vegan, feta or goat cheese for a different flavor profile, or low-fat cheese for a lighter option. You can buy a block of cheese and shred it or buy pre-grated cheese.

Black Beans: If you don’t have black beans, pinto beans are a good substitute as they have a similar texture and taste; kidney beans can be used as another nutritious option or chickpeas for a different texture and flavor. 

Corn: Frozen or canned corn works great! You can also cut the corn off a cob.

Onions: White onion, yellow onion, or red onion taste great! Shallots can be used for a milder flavor, green onions for a fresh, mild taste, or leeks for a sweeter, more delicate flavor. 

Garlic Cloves: For garlic, you can use garlic powder, substituting 1/4 teaspoon per clove of fresh garlic, shallots for a milder, slightly different flavor, or garlic-infused oil for a mild garlic flavor without the pieces.

Carnitas: Make my Crispy Carnitas in Slow Cooker or your favorite pulled pork recipe. You can use shredded chicken or rotisserie chicken for a lighter meat option or ground beef or turkey for a different texture and flavor.

Sliced corn flour tortilla quesadillas with carnitas, black beans, and corn on a plate.

How to Make My Crispy Corn Tortilla Quesadilla Recipe

Here are easy, detailed, step-by-step skillet instructions for making the best quesadillas with white corn tortillas. The simple ingredients are also repeated in the recipe card at the bottom of this blog post.

Step 1: Prepare the Ingredients

Rinse and drain the black beans and corn, finely dice the onion, and mince the garlic cloves.

Pour 1 teaspoon of oil (light olive and avocado oil are my favorites) in a medium skillet, and sauté the diced onion over medium heat until translucent.

Add the minced garlic and sauté for 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Add the black beans and corn to the skillet, stirring to combine, and heat through. Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel to soak up the excess moisture. Set aside.

Sauteeing corn, beans and onions in frying pan.

Step 2: Prepare the Tortillas

Dip each corn tortilla in water to moisten both sides.

Cook the tortillas until they are soft and pliable, about 30 seconds on each side. Remove from the skillet and set aside.

Dipping corn tortilla in water.

Step 3: Assemble the Quesadillas

Lay a softened tortilla on a flat surface. Sprinkle shredded cheese evenly over the tortilla. Add a generous spoonful of the sauteed onions, beans and corn mixture. Top with carnitas pulled pork. Fold the tortilla in half.

Adding ingredients to quesadilla.

Step 4: Cook the Quesadillas

Fold the tortilla in half to enclose the filling. Return the filled tortilla to the skillet and cook over medium heat until the tortilla is golden brown and the cheese is melted, about 2-3 minutes on each side.

Allow the quesadillas to cool for a few minutes before slicing. Slice each quesadilla into wedges with a pizza cutter and serve warm.

Slicing quesadillas with pizza cutter.
Sliced corn flour tortilla quesadillas with carnitas, black beans, and corn on a plate.

Helpful Recipe Notes

Sauteeing the Vegetables: Sautee the vegetables before adding them to the quesadilla is optional. But it will infuse them with more flavor and make them easier to digest.

Softening the Corn Tortillas: Dipping the tortillas in water before softening without oil is optional. You can also pour a small amount of oil in the pan and warm the tortillas.

Tortilla Filling: Do not overfill the tortillas as the filling can easily fall out when flipping. Sprinkling cheese on the top and bottom of the filling helps ‘glue’ them to the tortilla.

What to Serve with Corn Quesadillas

  • 4-Ingredient Guacamole: Add a dollop of cool, creamy guacamole to the quesadilla triangles.
  • Taco Quesadillas: Transform your quesadillas into taco quesadillas by adding leftover taco meat to the filling. This adds a delicious twist and makes use of any extra meat you have on hand.
  • Veggie Filling: Boost the nutrition by incorporating a veggie filling. Sauté red bell pepper, onions, and other favorite vegetables like spinach or mushrooms. This adds color, flavor, and extra nutrients to your quesadillas.
  • Red Peppers: For an added crunch and sweetness, thinly slice some fresh red peppers and include them in the quesadilla filling. They complement the other ingredients perfectly.
  • Pico de Gallo: Serve your quesadillas with a side of pico de gallo. The fresh, tangy flavors of tomatoes, onions, cilantro, and lime juice enhance the rich, cheesy filling.
  • Side of Salsa: Add a side of salsa for dipping. Whether you prefer mild, medium, or hot, salsa adds a flavorful kick to each bite.
  • Fried Egg: Top your quesadilla with a fried egg for a hearty, protein-packed meal. The runny yolk adds a delicious richness that pairs well with the savory filling.
  • Sour Cream: A dollop of sour cream on top of your quesadillas or on the side for dipping adds a cool, creamy contrast to the warm, cheesy filling.
  • Air Fryer: If you have an air fryer, use it to reheat your quesadillas. This method keeps them crispy without the added oil, giving you a healthier option that maintains the texture.

How to Make Quesadillas Spicier

  • Add Jalapeños: Include sliced or diced jalapeños in the filling. For more heat, leave the seeds in; for a milder spice, remove the seeds.
  • Use Spicy Cheese: Substitute regular cheese with pepper jack or a spicy cheddar to add a kick of heat throughout the quesadilla.
  • Spicy Salsa: Serve with a side of spicy salsa or mix it into the filling for an extra burst of flavor and heat.
  • Hot Sauce: Drizzle your favorite hot sauce over the filling before folding the tortillas. You can also serve hot sauce on the side for dipping.
  • Crushed Red Pepper Flakes: Sprinkle crushed red pepper flakes into the filling for a consistent spiciness in every bite.
  • Chipotle Peppers: Add chopped chipotle peppers in adobo sauce to the filling. They provide a smoky, rich heat that enhances the overall flavor.
  • Spicy Seasonings: Incorporate spices like cayenne pepper, chili powder, or smoked paprika into the bean and corn mixture for a deeper, spicier flavor.
  • Spicy Guacamole: Make or buy a spicy version of guacamole to serve on the side. The creamy texture combined with the heat complements the quesadillas perfectly.
  • Pickled Jalapeños: Add pickled jalapeños to the filling for a tangy, spicy twist.
  • Sriracha Mayo: Serve with a side of sriracha mayo for dipping. This adds a creamy yet spicy element to each bite.

Refrigerate: Store leftover quesadillas in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Reheat: To reheat, place the quesadillas in a skillet over medium heat for a few minutes on each side until the cheese melts and the tortilla is crispy. Avoid using the microwave, as it can make the tortillas soggy.

Freeze: Cool the quesadillas completely, then wrap each one individually in plastic wrap or foil. Place them in a freezer-safe bag and freeze for up to 2 months.

Defrost: To defrost, move the quesadillas from the freezer to the refrigerator and let them thaw overnight. Reheat as mentioned above.

Prevent Sogginess: Store quesadillas in a single layer, or place parchment paper between them to keep them from getting soggy.

Reheating: To refresh the muffins, you can warm them in a preheated oven at 300°F (150°C) for about 10-15 minutes. This will help restore their texture and taste.

Can I use flour tortillas instead of corn tortillas?

Yes, you can substitute flour tortillas for corn tortillas. Flour tortillas are softer and more flexible, which can make them easier to work with. Just keep in mind that the flavor and texture will be slightly different.

How can I make this recipe vegetarian quesadillas?

To make this recipe vegetarian, simply replace the carnitas pulled pork with sautéed mushrooms, jackfruit, or extra beans and corn. You can also add other vegetables like bell peppers or zucchini for additional flavor and nutrition.

What type of cheese works best in quesadillas?

Any shreddable cheese, including cheddar, Monterey Jack, pepper jack, mozzarella, or a Mexican blend all work well. For a dairy-free option, use plant-based cheese.

How can I prevent my tortillas from breaking when I fold them?
If your tortillas are breaking when you fold them, try warming them in the microwave for a few seconds to make them more pliable. You can also dip them in water and cook them on both sides until soft before filling them.

Can I prepare the filling ahead of time?
Yes, you can prepare the bean and corn mixture ahead of time. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. When ready to make the quesadillas, reheat the mixture and assemble them fresh.

How do I reheat leftover quesadillas?
To reheat leftover quesadillas, place them in a skillet over medium heat and cook for a few minutes on each side until the cheese is melted and the tortilla is crispy. You can also reheat them in an oven preheated to 350°F (175°C) for about 10 minutes. Using the microwave is not recommended as it can make the tortillas soggy.

Can I freeze these cheese quesadillas?

Yes, you can freeze quesadillas. Allow them to cool completely after cooking, then wrap each one individually in plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Place them in a freezer-safe bag or container and freeze for up to 2 months. To reheat, thaw them in the refrigerator overnight and then reheat in a skillet or oven.

Are these quesadillas gluten-free?

If you use certified gluten-free corn tortillas and ensure that all other ingredients are gluten-free, then yes, these quesadillas are gluten-free. Always check the labels of packaged ingredients to be sure.

Sliced corn flour tortilla quesadillas with carnitas, black beans, and corn on a plate.

Cheese Corn Tortilla Quesadillas Carnitas Black Beans

Gluten-Free diet-friendly recipe
This is the best-tasting gluten-free Corn Tortilla Quesadillas recipe with a healthy twist. Using corn flour tortillas, they're filled with gooey cheese, sauteed beans, corn, onions, garlic, and my slow cooker carnitas, making them ideal for weeknight dinners and accommodating gluten allergies.
5 from 6 votes
Servings 4
Prep Time 11 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes

Ingredients
  

  • 1/3 cup black beans (cooked)
  • 1/3 cup corn (fresh, canned or frozen)
  • 1/4 cup white onions (diced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 4 white corn tortillas
  • 2 cups shredded cheese
  • 1 cup carnitas

Instructions
 

  • Rinse and drain the black beans and corn, finely dice the onion, and mince the garlic cloves.
    Pour 1 teaspoon of oil (light olive and avocado oil are my favorites) in a medium skillet, and sauté the diced onion over medium heat until translucent.
    Add the minced garlic and sauté for 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Add the black beans and corn to the skillet, stirring to combine, and heat through. Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel to soak up the excess moisture. Set aside.
  • Dip each corn tortilla in water to moisten both sides.
    Cook the tortillas until they are soft and pliable, about 30 seconds on each side. Remove from the skillet and set aside.
  • Lay a softened tortilla on a flat surface. Sprinkle shredded cheese evenly over the tortilla. Add a generous spoonful of the sauteed onions, beans and corn mixture. Top with carnitas pulled pork. Fold the tortilla in half.
  • Fold the tortilla in half to enclose the filling. Return the filled tortilla to the skillet and cook over medium heat until the tortilla is golden brown and the cheese is melted, about 2-3 minutes on each side.
    Allow the quesadillas to cool for a few minutes before slicing. Slice each quesadilla into wedges with a pizza cutter and serve warm.

Video

YouTube video

Notes

Sauteeing the Vegetables: Sautee the vegetables before adding them to the quesadilla is optional. But it will infuse them with more flavor and make them easier to digest.
Softening the Corn Tortillas: Dipping the tortillas in water before softening without oil is optional. You can also pour a small amount of oil in the pan and warm the tortillas.
Tortilla Filling: Do not overfill the tortillas as the filling can easily fall out when flipping. Sprinkling cheese on the top and bottom of the filling helps ‘glue’ them to the tortilla.

Nutrition

Calories: 372kcalCarbohydrates: 31gProtein: 23gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 9gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 70mgSodium: 716mgPotassium: 190mgFiber: 3gSugar: 10gVitamin A: 503IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 343mgIron: 2mg
Keyword black beans, crispy carnitas, gluten free corn tortillas, quesadillas, white corn tortillas
Did you make this recipe and love it?Please let me know in the comments below how it turned out 🙂

11 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    These are so delicious!! I added some leftover rotisserie chicken. Thank you for the hack for getting soft white corn tortillas. I didn’t think they would work in quesadillas.

    1. Thank you for the review, Heather! That was a great idea to use rotisserie chicken 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    I’m so excited to share this recipe with you! I LOVE making these for lunch or a fun dinner with my family. I hope you enjoy them, too!

5 from 6 votes

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