BBQ Chicken Quesadillas

bbq chicken quesadillas

Last weekend we celebrated my sister in law Joy’s birthday. It was one of those milestone birthdays and so we had a lunch to celebrate the occasion. The menu was mostly salads for a hot summer day but  these BBQ Chicken Quesadillas with Smoky Salsa and Buttermilk Dressing caught my eye  It was a Bobby Flay recipe. Everything he makes is so tasty and flavorful.

The best part of this recipe is that you bake them in the oven so you could make several at one time. I was able to prepare everything ahead of time and put them in the oven when everyone arrived.

I took a few shortcuts and am offering you a few more. I bought a rotisserie chicken and shredded the chicken. I am including all the recipes for the sauces but you could substitute store bough BBQ sauce, buttermilk dressing and salsa. Now I am sure it will not be as good as his amazing sauces but for busy moms it turns this into a quick and delicious meal for your family.

When I served this not only did all the girls in the family like it but one of my nephews ate three servings. Out of the corner of my I would see him run by for one more. Even Max was lurking under the table for a few of the scraps. I served it with my Mango and Red Onion Salad topped with a Honey Basil Vinaigrette.

BBQ Chicken Quesadilla with Buttermilk Dressing and Grilled Tomato Salsa

1 rotisserie chicken, meat shredded
1 cups Mesa BBQ sauce or store bought
Salt and freshly ground pepper
12 (6-inch) flour tortillas
1 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/2  large red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons ancho chile powder


Take the shredded chicken and toss it with 1 cup of the BBQ sauce. Let sit for up to an hour to absorb the sauce.

bbq chicken in a bowl

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place 8 tortillas on a flat surface and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of each of the cheeses and onion slices. Top with some chicken. Stack another tortilla on top and repeat. Top with the remaining 8 tortillas.

quesadillas on panBrush the top of the tortillas with oil and sprinkle with the chili powder. Place tortillas on a lightly oiled baking sheet and bake for 5 to 7 minutes or until golden brown and cheese has melted.

To serve: Place 1 quesadilla on each plate and cut into quarters. Top with a dollop of salsa and drizzle with the buttermilk dressing.

Grilled Tomato Salsa

8 plum tomatoes, grilled and coarsely chopped
1/2 serrano chile, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Mix all ingredients together and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Buttermilk Dressing

1/4 cup sour cream
3/4 cup buttermilk
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Salt and freshly ground pepper

For the Buttermilk Dressing: Mix all ingredients together and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Mesa Grill BBQ Sauce

2 tablespoons canola oil
1 large Spanish onion, coarsely chopped
5 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
3 cups canned plum tomatoes and juices, pureed
1 cup water
1/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 tablespoon honey
1/4 cup molasses
3 tablespoons ancho chile powder
3 tablespoons pasilla chile powder
2-4 canned chipotle chiles in adobo, pureed (depending on how spicy you like it)
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan. Add the onions and cook until soft, 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and water, bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and simmer for an additional 30-40 minutes until thickened, stirring occasionally.

Transfer the mixture to a food processor and puree until smooth, season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour into a bowl and allow to cool at room temperature. Sauce will keep for 1 week in the refrigerator stored in a tightly sealed container.

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