Spicy Chicken Quesadillas Recipe

Photograph and video: J. Kenji López-Alt

Why This Recipe Works

  • Mixing the cheese in with the fillings distributes it evenly and ensures that the quesadilla fillings stay intact instead of falling out.
  • Using plenty of oil gives the quesadillas a puffy, flaky, crispy texture.

Shredded chicken, kicked up with jalapeño and pepper Jack cheese, makes a hearty filling for these flaky quesadillas.


3 Ways to Make Quesadillas

Recipe Details

Spicy Chicken Quesadillas Recipe

Active 10 mins
Total 10 mins
Serves 2 servings


  • 3 ounces (85g) shredded cooked chicken breast

  • 1 tablespoon (12g) minced pickled jalapeño

  • 1 tablespoon (12g) minced fresh cilantro leaves

  • 4 ounces (115g) shredded Pepper Jack cheese

  • 2 (8-inch) flour tortillas

  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) vegetable oil

  • Salt


  1. Combine chicken, jalapeño, cilantro, and pepper Jack in a medium bowl and mix to combine. Spread half of mixture evenly over half of one tortilla, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Fold tortilla over and seal edges by pressing down firmly. Repeat with remaining filling and second tortilla.

  2. Heat oil in a 10-inch cast iron or nonstick skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Carefully add both folded tortillas and cook, swirling and moving tortillas around, until golden brown and puffy on first side, about 2 minutes. Using a flexible metal spatula, flip quesadillas, season with salt, and continue cooking until golden brown and puffy on second side, about 2 minutes longer.

  3. Transfer quesadillas to a paper towel to drain. Cut into triangles and serve immediately.

Special equipment

10-inch cast iron skillet or 10-inch nonstick skillet

This Recipe Appears In

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
570 Calories
36g Fat
29g Carbs
32g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 2
Amount per serving
Calories 570
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 36g 46%
Saturated Fat 13g 66%
Cholesterol 87mg 29%
Sodium 788mg 34%
Total Carbohydrate 29g 10%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 0g
Protein 32g
Vitamin C 2mg 11%
Calcium 460mg 35%
Iron 3mg 15%
Potassium 264mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)