what to serve with quesadilla

What to Serve with Quesadilla: 13 Mexican-Inspired Side & Dips

Quesadilla is one of the crowd favorites in Mexican restaurants. Traditionally, it’s a tortilla filled with only Mexican cheese; sometimes, vegetables and meats are included. Over time and with Western influences, quesadilla has taken on many forms and ingredients, from breakfast foods to desserts.

While a quesadilla alone is a fantastic, satisfying meal, it’s impeccable when you pair it with a complimentary side dish. The usual choice is a flavorful dip, but quesadilla is also great with Mexican-inspired salads, beans, slaw, and corn dishes. If you are wondering what to serve with quesadilla, check out these 13 sides.

1. Homemade Salsa

Salsa is the most classic side dish to many Mexican snacks, from quesadillas to tortilla chips. It is distinct for spicy, sour, and fresh flavors, brought by the hot peppers and fresh tomatoes. There are many types of salsa, including salsa roja – the bright red, chunky side you are most familiar with and what this recipe will make.

2. Cilantro Lime Crema

Sour cream is an increasingly popular tandem to a quesadilla, but it’s more of a Western influence than Mexican. If you want something similar but lean toward Hispanic flavors, try cilantro lime crema instead. It’s as creamy, tangy, and delicious as sour cream; however, the spices are Mexican, so it’s more suited to dishes like quesadillas. This recipe needs only Greek yogurt, cilantro, lime, garlic, salt, and pepper.

3. Guacamole

Another well-loved Mexican dip is guacamole. Many people have it with classic Mexican dishes like tortilla chips, tacos, and – of course – quesadillas. Besides those, they have also added this dip to toast, salads, eggs, and more. It’s creamy, fresh, and well-balanced; thus, it’s no surprise that many love this avocado-based treat with their favorite foods.

4. Queso Dip (Mexican Cheese Dip)

You can dunk your quesadillas in a bowl full of creamy, tasty, and silky smooth queso. It’s made with real cheddar cheese for authentic, delicious flavors. Besides the main ingredient, there are also cornstarch, butter, garlic, onion, evaporated milk, tomatoes, and more. Simply put, this Mexican cheese dip is more than just melted cheese – it’s deliciously complex and flavorful.

5. Chipotle Sauce

Before anything else, this chipotle sauce does not mean a condiment or dip you pick up from Chipotle, the fast food. This one is as authentic and homemade as it can get. It is a fiery hot, tangy, and sweet dip that gets its heat and flavors from chipotle or red jalapeno peppers marinated in adobo. It is also creamy, owing to the addition of mayo and sour cream.

6. Fresh Herbed Avocado Salad

If you need another side dish besides dips and sauces, quesadillas are also perfect with salads because the latter is light and fresh. This fresh herbed avocado salad, in particular, provides excellent flavors that are a bit reminiscent of guacamole – fresh avocados with some chili. Even so, it’s a unique dish with more layers of textures and tastes than simple guacamole.

7. Fresh Black Bean Salad

Black beans are common in many Mexican dishes. But for this salad, the black beans are more than just an added ingredient – they’re the essence of it. These protein-rich beans are combined with corn, bell peppers, tomatoes, spices, lime, and more; thus, this recipe gives you a lot of crunch, crispiness, and flavors. Also, you can try having this as a filling for quesadillas instead of a mere side.

8. Mexican Green Salad with Jalapeño-Cilantro Dressing

This recipe may not be authentically Mexican, but the flavors and most ingredients are. It contains pepitas, chili powder, avocados, baby spring mix, lettuce, tomatoes, cauliflower, feta cheese, and more. All these fantastic fruits, spices, vegetables, and whatnot are tossed in a one-of-a-kind jalapeño-cilantro. Thus, you get a lot of heat and tang from this salad, which pairs well with your quesadilla.

9. Elote Grilled Mexican Corn Salad

Elote is Mexico’s corn on a cob; instead of just plain butter and salt, the corn is slathered with spices, mayo, cheese, lime, and more. This recipe takes those flavors and puts them into a bowl with other ingredients. Thus, you’ll need sweet corn kernels, crema, lime juice, cumin, paprika, chili, black pepper, salt, cojita cheese, red onions, and cilantro.

10. Simple Mexican Coreslaw

Like a classic coleslaw, this simple Mexican slaw has crispy cabbage strips you’d enjoy with your quesadilla. This one even has carrots and cilantro. However, the slaw is tossed in a lime and garlic dressing instead of a creamy, mayo-based mixture. The dressing also has cumin, honey, salt, pepper, and olive oil, giving hints of spice and sweetness throughout your slaw.

11. 10-Minute Homemade Refried Black Beans

Another hit treat in the Mexican potluck is homemade refried black beans. It’s creamy, packed with protein from the beans, and extremely flavorful. That’s because a ton of spices are added: onion, garlic, cumin, coriander, black pepper, and the optional cilantro. There’s also a subtle acidity that cuts through all that with the addition of lime juice.

12. Spicy Black Bean Soup

Try this spicy black bean soup if you want a spicier and tastier version of your refried black beans. Like the recipe above, it’s flavorful and packed with protein, but this recipe has so much more ingredients, so there’s a lot it can offer. For instance, it has carrots, celery, and bell peppers. Meanwhile, it gets its heat from the chipotle, chili, paprika, and red pepper flakes.

13. Pinto Posole

Another bean-based, spicy soup you can pair with your quesadilla is pinto posole, similar to a traditional posole but without pork. Instead, the beans provide the protein and primary flavors. This one also has tomato paste and lime, giving you a sharp acid taste that cuts through the rich flavors. Guajillo chili peppers provide the dish’s spiciness, but you can also add jalapenos for more heat.

AboutRibana Hategan

Ribana is a certified pastry chef and passionate home cook who curates and develops recipes that are high on nutrition. She develops and tests cost effective, nutritious meals using quality ingredients to help people better their everyday eating experiences.