The Stovetop Quesadilla: How to Make a Quesadilla On The Stove

Many of us enjoy a delicious quesadilla when we're out and about at a diner or restaurant. Also, a quesadilla can make a delicious lunch, evening meal or even a hearty snack. However, it's actually easy to recreate this delicious dish at home with the minimum of effort. However, you ay not know how to make a quesadilla on the stovetop. Read on for our ultimate guide to the stovetop quesadilla!


Cooking quesadilla on a griddle

Cooking a quesadilla on your stovetop or electric griddle couldn't be simpler and takes only a few minutes. You can be creative with your fillings and add anything from chopped cooked chicken, ham, or grilled veggies. Cheese is a real must for a quesadilla to bind everything together. Here's our quick guide to making a quesadilla:

How to make cheese quesadillas on griddle


  • 2 large flour tortilla wraps
  • Cooking oil
  • ​1 cup shredded cheese
  • Any other fillings of your choice


  • Preheat your griddle to medium. A large skillet or frying pan would also work just fine. Brush with a little oil and lay one of your tortillas on the hot surface. Cook this side for a couple of minutes until golden brown and a little crispy. Don't flip it, instead remove it from the pan and place to one side.
  • Next, place the other tortilla into the pan and place the shredded cheese on top. Leave a small gap around the edge or the cheese will ooze out into the pan. Sprinkle on any other toppings at this stage and place the other tortilla on top with the cooked side up. Press them together with your spatula and cook until the cheese is melted and the lower tortilla is golden and crispy.

Quesadillas should be served cut into triangles. You could serve them with dips such as salsa, soured cream or guacamole.

Are quesadillas crispy?

Quesadillas should be nice and crispy on the outside edges, which is delicious with the oozy cheese on the inside. The trick is to fry the first tortilla separately to achieve a crisp and golden finish. If you don't, you could flip your quesadilla. This will still be delicious but will not be as crispy.


What do you put in a quesadilla?

The only limit to your quesadilla fillings is your imagination. Any savoury flavours that you enjoy which also go well with cheese will be delicious in a quesadilla. Popular fillings include:

  • Pulled pork
  • Cooked chopped chicken
  • ​Bacon
  • ​Griddled veggies
  • ​Fried onions or chopped scallions
  • ​Fresh cilantro
  • Tomatoes

As a rule of thumb, if it would be delicious on a pizza, then it should work beautifully inside a cheesy quesadilla.

What kind of seasoning do you put on quesadillas?

Ideally, a Mexican spice blend is the easiest way to add extra seasoning to your quesadilla. If you're adding spices, mix them with the cheese and other toppings before you add them into the quesadilla. This ensures evenness of flavour. If you don't have a Mexican spice blend, then ground cumin, paprika, ground or fresh cilantro and chilli powder would make a great addition.


How to make chicken quesadillas on a griddle

Chicken quesadillas are extremely easy to make on the griddle and you can use our cheese quesadilla recipe as your basis. However, when you add the cheese you can also add a handful of sliced, chopped or shredded chicken. It's vital that the chicken you add is cooked. If you add raw chicken, it won't have long enough to cook inside the quesadilla and will remain raw. Eating undercooked chicken is very dangerous for your health. For convenience, you could use precooked chicken from the store to make chicken quesadillas.


What is the best cheese for quesadillas?

Any cheese that melts is perfectly fine for making quesadillas and it depends on your personal tastes. Of course, a cheese like halloumi will not work as it won't melt and bind the quesadilla together. Mozzarella, Monterey Jack or cheddar would all work well in a quesadilla. Also, some people like the flavour of smoked cheese in their quesadillas to add extra depth of flavour. Many chefs use their own signature blend of cheeses to create their version of the perfect quesadilla, so go ahead and mix up your cheeses to find a combination you enjoy.


What kind of cheese is used in a Mexican quesadilla?

If you want to make a really authentic Mexican quesadilla, then you could try to source a fresh Mexican cheese such as queso fresco. Alternatively, you could use an aged Mexican cheese such as manchego. However, please don't worry if you can't track these down. Any fresh or aged cheese that melts and has a flavour you enjoy will work just fine.


How long do I cook quesadillas?

Quesadillas are extremely quick to cook and this makes them a very convenient meal. All in, you're looking at a preparation and cooking time of no longer than 10 minutes unless you have to precook meat for the quesadilla filling. The quesadilla itself requires a couple of minutes to crisp up the top tortilla, and then another couple of minutes to cook them sandwiched together. It's a great dish to prepare if you're in a hurry but want a hot meal.

What temperature do you cook a quesadilla at?

To cook a stovetop quesadilla, a medium temperature is ideal. That's because a lower temperature will not make your quesadilla crispy enough to be really delicious. However, a high temperature is not ideal either. Too high and your tortillas will burn before the cheese has a chance to melt and the fillings can become properly hot.

What kind of tortillas do you use for quesadillas?

Before you make quesadillas, it's important to make sure you have the right tortillas for the job. Overall, we recommend using large and thin wheat flour tortillas. These give you enough surface area to spread out the toppings and still leave a gap around the edge to prevent the cheese from oozing out. Also, they are thin enough that the heat can reach the inside of the quesadilla and get the fillings nice and hot. Furthermore, a wheat flour tortilla is more robust, so it won't fall apart in the pan. If you choose to flip your quesadilla, this is particularly important.


A corn tortilla is less ideal because they are not as flexible, so we don't recommend these if you want to flip your quesadilla instead of cooking the two tortillas separately. However, if you cook them separately, corn tortillas will work fine as long as you are careful not to break them. If you're gluten or wheat intolerant, not to worry. Gluten-free tortillas are a delicious way to make quesadillas that won't trigger your food allergy.

What goes well with quesadillas?

Many people enjoy a delicious dip with their quesadillas. This adds an extra, saucy dimension and can make your quesadilla extra-indulgent. Luckily, you can buy dips to complement your perfect quesadilla in your local store. Salsa, guacamole or soured cream are the most common dips. If you want to turn your quesadillas into a more complete meal for a party or special event, providing a variety of dips is a great way to add interest and variety for your guests. You could always make your own special homemade dips for the purpose. We'll include some recipes for these later in the article.

What spices do you put in quesadillas?

As we mentioned above, a Mexican spice blend or rub is the ideal spice seasoning for your quesadillas. The spices will be well-balanced and it is more convenient than mixing your own spice blend together. You can often find pre-made Mexican spice blends or rubs in your local food store.

How you use these spices is up to you. You could mix a sprinkling of the spice blend into your shredded cheese before you add it into your quesadilla. This is a great idea as it spreads the spice evenly throughout the quesadilla. Also, it's never pleasant to find one section of your quesadilla that's over-spiced.

However, if you don't have a Mexican spice blend to hand or can't find one in the store, you can use spices already in your spice rack. A sprinkle of chilli powder, ground cumin, dried ground cilantro and paprika all make delicious and flavoursome additions to your quesadilla.

In addition to dried ingredients, some people like to add fresh herbs or spices to their quesadillas. If you like it, chopped fresh cilantro can make a delicious and zingy addition to your meal. Also, you could add in fresh chopped or sliced chilli peppers if you prefer your food nice and hot!

How to keep quesadillas warm?

A cooked quesadilla can be kept warm for a little while in a very low oven. However, don't leave it in there for too long or it could burn or dry out. Alternatively, you could warm up a quesadilla that's gone cold in the microwave. However, it will lose some of it's wonderful crispy texture if you use the microwave method. As a quesadilla is so quick and easy to make, the best thing to do is to make them fresh and eat straight away if you want them crispy but still moist in the middle.

Griddle Quesadilla Recipes

Our simple and quick griddle quesadilla recipe at the beginning of the article is a great starting point for making quesadillas, as you can customise it with a whole range of fillings to suit your own personal tastes. However, it's a great idea to add a little extra interest to your quesadilla with a delicious topping or dip. here are our two favourites.

Homemade salsa


  • 4 big beef or plum tomatoes
  • 1/2 a chopped red or white onion
  • ​A handful of chopped fresh cilantro
  • ​2 tsp finely chopped chilli pepper (can be reduced if you don't like it too hot)
  • ​1 clove finely chopped garlic
  • ​A pinch of salt
  • 1-2 tsp lime juice


This salsa recipe is extremely quick and easy to make. Simply combine all of the ingredients together in a bowl to create a quick, fresh and delicious dip. This salsa has a chunky texture. If you prefer it a little more 'saucy', you could blitz half of the recipe with a hand blender and then add the rest. This gives a perfect balance between a saucy and a chunky texture. We recommend leaving it covered in the fridge for a little while to allow the flavours to develop. An airtight container is best to keep it fresh.

Simple guacamole

Guacamole is a universally popular and creamy addition to quesadillas and makes your meal even more indulgent. Luckily, it's extremely easy to make. Here's our recipe for guacamole in under 10 minutes!


  • 2 large and ripe avocados
  • 1 finely chopped red onion
  • ​1 very small clove of garlic or 1/2 a big clove, finely chopped or minced
  • ​1 medium chopped fresh tomato
  • ​The juice from one lime
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Halve the avocados and remove the stones. Then, scoop out the flesh of the avocado with a spoon. You can now either mash the avocado with a fork for a chunky texture or blend them with a stick blender if you prefer a smoother guac. Now add in your other ingredients and stir thoroughly to combine. Season with a little salt and pepper.

Again, we recommend allowing the flavour to develop a little in the fridge before serving. While the lime juice will help to keep your guacamole nice and green, it's a good idea to put it in an airtight container. This will prevent it from going brown and keep it tasting fresh.

The Final Word

Hopefully, you now know how to make quesadillas on the stovetop. As you can see, the stovetop quesadilla is a quick and easy way to make a fresh and delicious meal that the whole family can enjoy. Let your imagination run wild with different fillings, dips, seasonings and cheese blends to create a quesadilla that is unique to you and your family. Happy munching!

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