Back to School Recipe- Black Bean Quesadillas

With four kids, life—and dinner—is often on the go. Now that school is back in session, dinner is especially challenging on the evenings I call “double practice nights.” With so many activities, I had the bright idea that if I scheduled several activities on just a few nights of the week, we’d have a few evenings at home.  This worked great on some nights and not-so-great on others when my toddler felt especially uncooperative.  We rarely go out for fast food, so on double practice nights, we’d raid the kitchen like a bunch of hungry grizzly bears who stumbled into a campsite. Tortilla chips, cereal, oyster crackers and breakfast bars were devoured in a matter of seconds.

Realizing I had to have a better plan in place, I had to come up with some quick, healthy dinner options for double practice nights so we could eat quickly—before the grizzlies ambushed the pantry. I needed something that was high in fiber and protein and needed minimal prep time.

This simple meal can be prepared in less than 15 minutes and is a perfect dinner for those busy nights when you don’t have time to cook.  Black beans are one of the best sources of fiber of any food, providing 15 grams of fiber per cup.  With the daily recommended allowance of 25 grams of fiber per day, this recipe provides much of your fiber for the entire day and is filling and satisfying.

Black Bean Quesadillas

1 can (15 oz) black beans, rinsed

½ c. shredded Monterrey Jack cheese or pepper Jack

½ c. fresh salsa, divided

4 (8 inch) whole wheat tortillas

2 t. canola oil, divided

1 ripe avocado, diced

1 fresh tomato, diced

Light sour cream

Combine beans, cheese and ¼ c. salsa in a medium bowl. Place tortillas on a work surface. Spread ½ c. filling on half of each tortilla. Fold tortillas in half, pressing gently to flatten

Heat 1 t. oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add 2 quesadillas and cook, turning once, until golden on both sides. Transfer to a cutting board and tent with foil to keep warm. Repeat with the remaining 1 t oil and quesadillas. Serve with fresh avocado, tomato, remaining salsa and a dollop of sour cream.