These smashed white bean and kale quesadillas served with a creamy BBQ dip are the perfect meatless meal for a light dinner.

I spent last week at my mother in law’s in Florida lamenting the fact that I have to drive 40 minutes to the closest Whole Foods while her kitchen was stocked with delicious fruits, vegetables, sustainable meats and the like from her store 5 minutes down the road.

Then yesterday, I finally made it to the newly opened 40 minute away store by me and pushed my cart around each aisle as 2 little voices carried away on my shoulder.

Voice #1: “Oooh, look! Black spaghetti. How cool!”

white bean and kale quesadillas
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Voice #2: “Um, there’s 8.8oz of that stuff in the package and the price tag says $6.59. Get a grip, Gina.”

white bean and kale quesadillas with creamy BBQ dip

Voice #2 won out for the most part but I did somehow get suckered into some perfect looking red leaf kale, an assortment of pick your own mushrooms, mangos, local organic grass fed skirt steak, the kimchi bar and kombucha…for $71.

Ok, maybe there were a few other small items.

But $71?! There were 2 bags, but I’m pretty sure the cashier just did that to make me feel better because it easily could’ve all fit into 1.

So here’s my question, do people actually shop at Whole Foods regularly?

Like, “oh, we’re out of milk and eggs, let me just pop into Whole Foods real quick!”

Because I’m pretty sure we’d be bankrupt in about 2 months if that were the case.

Kale quesadillas with white beans

So these white bean and kale quesadillas are brought to you by my little ghetto produce store’s tuscan kale ($1.39 vs. whole foods $3.49), a can of non-organic (ah, the horror!) cannellini beans (Goya $0.99), some seriously sharp Cabot cheddar cheese they so graciously sent me (free) and Trader Joe’s whole wheat tortillas ($2.69).

Because I’d rather have money left over for more vacations than eat exorbitantly priced (albeit cool) black spaghetti.

These quesadillas are great when you want to get a full meal out of them. But if you’re looking for something more basic (and kid friendly!) try this air fryer cheese quesadilla. Simplicity never disappoints!

More quesadilla recipes to try:

Love, love, love brisket quesadillas when I have leftover brisket. They’re mouthwateringly good!

Both this summer harvest cheddar quesadilla and this peach burrata bacon quesadilla are great options for the summer when produce is abundant and you’re looking for a quesadilla that’s got a little bit more polish to it.

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4.34 from 39 votes

Smashed White Bean and Kale Quesadillas with Creamy BBQ Dip

Servings: 2 servings
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
These smashed white bean and kale quesadillas served with a creamy BBQ dip are the perfect meatless meal for a light dinner.

Ingredients 

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 15 ounces canned cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • salt & pepper
  • 5 leaves tuscan kale, stems removed and cut into thin strips
  • 2 cups grated sharp white cheddar cheese
  • 2 whole wheat 10 inch tortillas
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons BBQ sauce

Instructions 

  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  • Once hot, add the shallots, beans, salt & pepper and cook for about 5 minutes until the shallots are softened, stirring occasionally. Transfer mixture to a small bowl, mash with a fork or potato masher and set aside.
  • Place the tortillas in a microwave with a damp towel on top and microwave for about 20 seconds to soften.
  • Place one tortillas in the skillet, sprinkle the entire tortilla with cheese then spread the bean mixture on only one half of the tortilla. Top with half the kale, then sprinkle a bit more cheese on top of the kale. Fold the tortilla in half, press down and cook for about 1-2 minutes per side until golden brown.
  • Transfer the tortilla to a cutting board and cut into four pieces.
  • Repeat with the other tortilla and remaining ingredients.
  • To make the dip, combine the yogurt and BBQ sauce in a bowl and stir together.
  • Serve warm with the dip.

Nutrition

Serving: 1SERVINGCalories: 966kcalCarbohydrates: 82gProtein: 48gFat: 51gSaturated Fat: 25gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 117mgSodium: 1246mgPotassium: 1278mgFiber: 15gSugar: 11gVitamin A: 3950IUVitamin C: 27mgCalcium: 1153mgIron: 8mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Appetizers
Cuisine: American
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Founder and Writer at Running to the Kitchen | About

Gina Matsoukas is an AP syndicated writer. She is the founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.

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55 Comments

  1. This was a huge hit even with all my changes (had to use what I had on hand – corn tortillas, dry great northern beans that I soaked and cooked, onion and garlic instead of shallot, Colby jack cheese, and spinach for the greens). Even with all the changes it was a hit! I have one child who won’t touch beans for anything – if she suspects beans she refuses to even try it. She ate this!! Thank you so much

  2. 5 stars
    I used what I had on hand – corn tortillas, dry great northern beans that I soaked and cooked, onion and garlic instead of shallot, and Colby jack cheese in place of the cheddar. I also had to use fresh spinach for the greens. My non bean eater ate it up! My kids declared it tastes like restaurant food. I will make this again!!!

  3. Christmas traditions are a big deal at our house too – we send out Christmas cards every year and the list grows longer by the year but I love it! My mom collected Christmas stories as we grew up and we’d read some each night around the tree. Now we have our own that we keep under the tree and the boys can look at them to their heart’s content – their favorites are A Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg and The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechowski. My husband is awesome about putting up our tree and the decorations. He starts playing Christmas music during October! My favorite part of Christmas is our Christmas Eve when we read from Luke 2 about the birth of Jesus Christ. Hope you have a wonderful Christmas in your new home with your precious family! Thank you for sharing all your marvelous traditions!

  4. I love love love this recipe! I made it tonight with Swiss cheese instead of cheddar, and a combo of kale, spinach, and chard and it tasted amazing. Thanks for the inspiration!

  5. We solely purchase our food from natural food stores—Natural Grocers for most things, Whole Foods for a few things, and our local Co-op for some things—and our cart is >95% organic and we are not wealthy by any stretch of the imagination. It can be done. Like another commenter said, she goes with a list and sticks to it. You have to buy smartly and simply and really be willing to make meals from scratch. I meal plan for a week at a time and stick to the list. The receipt is not that shocking considering we are buying a week’s worth of groceries. For reference, I can buy a can of Field Day organic white beans in a bpa-free can for $1.49 at my local co-op, which does not seem out of line at all. Buy dried beans and you’ll save even more. We seldom eat out, which obviously makes a huge difference. We don’t buy organic food or shop at these places because it’s trendy or cool, we buy because we value it. You would rather go on vacations and whatnot like you said, instead of putting organic food into your body everyday. I can’t remember the last time we went on a real vacation. We live extremely frugally in our day-to-day lives, but we don’t compromise when it comes to quality of food. It all depends on your priorities. So short answer is, yes!, people really do shop at these places in their everyday, real-life!

    Thanks for the recipe; looks yummy!