Black bean and sweet potato quesadillas with lime-infused cabbage slaw

Black bean and sweet potato quesadillas with lime-infused cabbage slaw

Quesadillas are delicious and easy snacks, but can easily be high in fat and carbohydrates. This healthier version is made with black beans, sweet potato, and whole grain tortillas, making them high in vitamin A, potassium, iron, and fiber. Enjoy with some lime-infused cabbage slaw, which adds a refreshing kick to the dish.

Some tips:

 - Switch up your beans: black-eyed peas or any other bean would go well with this recipe.

 - Make a double batch and have enough for multiple meals.

 - Purchase fresh salsa from your local taqueria; vary the salsa to suit your taste buds.

 - If not following a low-fat plant-based diet, add 1/4 sliced avocado to your quesadilla.

Servings: 6 to 10



  • 1 large sweet potato (~9 ounces), chopped into ~2 inch pieces
  • 1 cup brown rice, cooked
  • 8 ounces vegetarian, no added oil, refried beans (about a half a can)
  • 1 cup of fresh salsa (mild or spicy, it’s up to you)
  • 1 cup fresh spinach
  • 8 ounces black beans, drained and rinsed (1 full can or fresh)
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, diced (optional and HOT)
  • 6 to 8 Engine 2 Ancient Grain Tortillas or Alvarado St Bakery or Ezekial 4:9 sprouted grain tortillas or organic corn tortillas

Cabbage slaw:

  • 1/2 medium-sized head of red or green cabbage, thinly sliced into 3-inch pieces
  • 1 red bell pepper, julienned
  • 2 medium carrots, julienned
  • 1/2 medium red onion, sliced thinly
  • 3 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped (optional)
  • Juice of 1 to 2 limes, to taste
  • Sea salt to taste



  1. Prepare rice in a rice cooker or on stove top as directed or use thawed, frozen brown rice. 
  2. In the meantime, steam chopped, unpeeled sweet potatoes in medium pot for ~15 minutes.
  3. Drain sweet potatoes and return to pot used for steaming. 
  4. Mash with the salsa, rice and fresh spinach. 
  5. Then mix in black beans and refried beans, heating mixture thoroughly over medium heat. 
  6. Add onion powder, chili powder, and cumin to taste and stir.
  7. Place a tortilla in a frying pan on medium heat, and slather half of the tortilla with 1/2-3/4 cup of the sweet potato and bean mixture. Add jalapeños if desired.
  8. Fold tortilla in half and cook quesadilla on medium heat for about 3 minutes, then flip with spatula and cook for another 3 minutes. Cut into desired number of sections and serve topped with salsa.

Cabbage slaw:

  1. Combine onion and 1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar in medium pot with enough water to cover; boil for one minute. Drain in colander and run cold water over to cool.
  2. Next, combine cabbage, onion, carrot, and bell pepper into a large bowl. 
  3. Add juice of 1 lime, rice wine vinegar, ground cumin, cilantro, and a dash of sea salt. Adjust seasoning. Add more lime juice to taste.
  4. Toss together thoroughly, cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or until ready to use.

Nutrition information (per serving)

Quesadilla (6 servings):

  • Calories: 130
  • Total fat: 1 g
  • Saturated fat: 0 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Sodium: 180 mg
  • Total carbohydrate: 27 g
  • Dietary fiber: 5 g
  • Sugars: 3 g
  • Protein: 5 g

Cabbage Slaw (6 servings): Includes 1/4 teaspoon added salt

  • Calories: 40
  • Total fat: 0 g
  • Saturated fat: 0 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Sodium: 130 mg
  • Total carbohydrate: 9 g
  • Dietary fiber: 3 g
  • Sugars: 5 g
  • Protein: 1 g