Home / Healthy Living / Recipe Challenge: Quesadilla Edition
Photo of chicken quesadilla on illustrated plate with utensils and banner with title

Recipe Challenge: Quesadilla Edition

Welcome to our Inaugural Recipe Challenge

It’s time for our very first recipe challenge! The mission – should you choose to accept it – will give you a chance to get creative with healthy living:

(1) We share either a meal solution from Thinking Outside The Box on the Healthy Living section of our website or another recipe that DeCA’s Dietitian has created.

(2) We challenge you to comment on the post to share how you would tweak the recipe to make it your own within the dietitian-approved nutritional parameters we describe.

Because we’re publishing this first challenge during the Month of the Military Child, it only makes sense to feature a recipe that kids will love and that they can make or help make using the microwave. So get your kids involved in this one and encourage them to get creative!

Month of the Military Child Recipe Challenge: Quesadilla Edition

When you’re constantly on-the-go, it can be hard to make the time for healthy eating. But, luckily, there’s no need to choose between convenient and nutrient-dense foods, nor do our taste buds need to suffer!

There are many tasty and quick items than we can make in the microwave that are nutrient-dense and easy to reach for when the dining facility may be closed or we just don’t feel like going out to obtain foods to curb our hunger.

For example, quesadillas aren’t just made on the stove or in the oven. By using canned chicken or turkey, you can skip the stove and go right to the microwave.

This is kid-friendly, high-nutrition and high-performance meal can be made in around 5 minutes. It’s also very versatile: it can be an easy, on-the-go breakfast, or you can add any leftovers and make it a burrito.

Speedy Microwave Chicken Quesadilla Recipe

Ingredients (serves 4):

  • 5-6 oz. of canned chicken or turkey, drained and flaked
  • ⅓ packet of taco seasoning
  • 1 14-16 oz. can fat-free refried beans
  • 4-5 oz. of sliced black olives, drained
  • 4 oz. salsa
  • 8 6-inch whole-wheat tortillas
  • 4 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
  • Mixed salad greens
  • Plain nonfat Greek Yogurt (optional)
  • Juice of ½ lime (optional)


  1. In a medium-sized bowl, empty the refried beans, ⅓ packet of taco seasoning, drained olives and lime juice (optional); gently mix.
  2. Lay out 4 tortillas and then spread ¼ of the mixture on each tortilla. Top the mixture with ¼ of the chicken per tortilla and then top the chicken with 1 oz. of cheese. Finish by topping each with a tortilla.
  3. Place one quesadilla in the microwave, cover with a damp paper towel and cook for 60-70 seconds — or until heated through and the cheese is melted. Carefully remove quesadilla from the microwave and top it with ¼ of the salsa and mixed salad greens, plus a dollop of Greek yogurt (optional).
  4. Repeat step 3 for the remaining quesadillas.

Nutritional Parameters

  • A Whole-Grain Tortilla
  • A Lean Protein
  • Mixed Leafy Greens

Ready… Set… Cook!

Now that it’s time to get creative, we invite you to check out our sales flyer for inspiration! With Cinco de Mayo coming up, we have products on promotion that could help you make this recipe your own.

Please share your creation in the comments below, and feel free to include pictures of the final product or comment on the recipes that others share. Are you up for the challenge?

Check Also

Featured Image: Did You Know? Dietitian-Approved Healthy Living Resources

Did You Know? Dietitian-Approved Healthy Living Resources

“It’s a new year, new you!” I know, I know… it’s already February, so you’ve …