Chicken Salsa Quesadillas

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! I’m in the lobby of the Bright Angel lodge at the Grand Canyon right now sitting next to the fireplace, drinking hot chocolate, and taking advantage of the free internet! Apolinaras and my brother Richard braved a snow and ice covered slippery trail down into the canyon today, but since I’m a bit of a klutz, I decided to walk around the South rim with my parents. Talk about gorgeous views! Phoenix was very warm though, and we all had fun hiking up a rocky Camelback Mountain trail, where a festively decorated Christmas tree and bush greeted us at the top of the peak. Richard even left a little ornament on the tree! It’s been so great spending time with everyone!

Food wise, I’ve really been enjoying all the delicious Southwestern flavors, so I was inspired to share this easy and tasty quesadilla recipe. This isn’t an authentic recipe, but it’s still one of my favorites because two types of salsa are involved! The quesadillas are filled with salsa and cheddar cheese and then served with fresh Pico de Gallo on top. So delicious! I did make Christmas dinner (chicken parm and lemon garlic shrimp pasta) and brunch (egg casserole, bacon, and pastries) with a very limited supply of dishes and ingredients in our condo in Phoenix, but I already can’t wait to get back into my own kitchen and work on some ideas that have been brewing on our trip!

Chicken Salsa Quesadillas
Printable Recipe

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into small chunks
1 16-ounce jar salsa
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
1/4 cup chopped red onion
Juice of 1 lime
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 8-inch whole wheat tortillas
2 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:
Heat olive oil over medium high heat in a large nonstick skillet and sauté chicken for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring frequently, or until no longer pink in the center. Mix cooked chicken with salsa in a large bowl.

Meanwhile, make the Pico de Gallo by mixing chopped tomatoes, red onion, lime juice, cilantro, and salt in a large bowl.

Preheat broiler. Place 3 tortillas on a large greased cookie sheet. Spread half the shredded cheese evenly on the tortillas; top with the chicken mixture, the remainder of the cheese, and the remaining 3 tortillas. Place quesadillas in the oven and broil for 2 to 5 minutes on each side, or until cheese is melted and quesadillas are heated through. Cut tortillas into 4 wedges and top with Pico de Gallo. Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition: 366 calories, 15.8g fat, 4.5g fiber, 32.5g protein per serving
Cost: $1.36 per serving

31 Responses to Chicken Salsa Quesadillas

  1. I love how inspirational traveling can be. You get introduced to so many new foods and flavors that it can’t help but get the gears moving. Merry Christmas! I’m so happy to see that you’re having a good time in AZ.

  2. Wow, what a difference from MA, huh? Looks absolutely beautiful out there!

    Glad you had a nice Christmas. It’s wonderful to be surrounded by your family and have a nice break before the new year.

    And quesadillas are perfect for traveling, you only need one hand to eat, and the other to go hiking :)

  3. southwestern flavors rule my life. i want to move to texas simply to eat the food (and dwell amongst some real cowboys). your kiss-a-dillas look scrumptious!

  4. What gorgeous views!! I’d be with you – away from the slippery trails! 😀

    I could have Mexican food every day and never get sick of it!

    Glad you are having such a great time!

  5. What georgous vieuws!! I also love the Christmas tree on top of the rocks! hahaha!

    Thanks for this delcious recipe!! easy yet so tasty! Thanks for sharing , Kerstin!

  6. What a fabulous trip. The view look gorgeous. I just love hiking :) In my opinion, quesadillas make one of the easiest/tastiest dinners! Great recipe. Enjoy the rest of your time there!!

  7. Just found your blog and love it! Your recipes all look delicious, simple, and nutritious! Oh, and not too spendy, either! Thanks for including the nutrition and pricing information — that is invaluable!

  8. Oh wow, Kerstin, I envy that you were in AZ for your Christmas. I used to live there and it is so special with all of the SW and Native American traditions! The Grand Canyon is awesome and your photos perfectly reveal it’s beauty and grandeur! I enjoyed reading this post so much! I hope that you have a blessed New Years for 2010! Hugs and baci, Roz

  9. Thanks everyone! It was such a fun trip, but I’m glad to be back at home and in the kitchen – going to restaurants for every meal just becomes so unappealing after a few days! Happy New Year!!

  10. Love your pictures!!! Sounds like you had a great time. I’m so impressed with all of the cooking you did given how limited condo kitchens tend to be in terms of equipment and basic supplies. Some coworkers and I stayed in a condo at Keystone and tried to make a simple chicken fajita dinner, only to realize there was no cooking oil in the condo (of course) – ugh. It ended up ok, but not what we intended!

    I love quesadillas – probably one of my favorite foods. Yours look fantastic with the salsa and Pico!

  11. Great pictures! Isn’t the Grand Canyon wonderful!! Looks like yall had a lot of fun!

    I always find myself making quesadillas whenever I don’t want to make a big fuss over dinner. They are so good and so easy to throw together!

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