Thursday, May 17, 2012

Thrifty Thursday - Vegetarian Edition!

Black Bean, Mushroom & Zucchini Quesadilla with Mango & Avocado Pico De Gallo

I very rarely cook vegetarian dinners. I've always felt that a meal isn't complete unless there was a slab of something on the plate. Nevertheless, when a veggie enthusiast friend challenged me to do a vegetarian friendly Thrifty Thursday, I just had to accept!

That being said, it would be false to claim that I embarked on this meatless journey with intense enthusiasm. On the contrary, I knew I had to have a plan B before I laid one trepidatious hand on my newly purchased blazingly green produce. With curved fingers, perfectly sculpted for hamburger holding, I dialed the number to my favorite pizzeria and ordered a  slice of pepperoni pizza to be put on standby. There was no way a couple of beans and an avocado was going to satisfy my manlike appetite.

To my surprise, the final product was like a breath of fresh air for the intestines. The flavors were light, cool and crisp. Also, with the addition of mushrooms, it tasted like meat's distant step cousin was sprinkled in each bite.  In the end, I honestly did not miss the meat and my stomach was satisfied.  As for my pepperoni slice? It remained in the fridge and was later consumed the next morning.


Serves 2, $5.01 per person*

* I know that the receipt says $14.02, but I bought a chocolate bar to snack on while I was shopping and bananas to snack on my way home. Manlike appetite. 

What I already had

  2 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
  1 tbls sour cream
  1/2 head of garlic
  1 zucchini, diced
  1/2 medium sized onion, diced
  Grapeseed oil
  1 tablespoons of butter
  Cayenne, Paprika, Salt and Pepper

What I bought

    1 avocado
     1 mango
  1 bunch of cilantro (you really only need a 1/2)
  1 block of monterey jack cheese (I shredded half)
  1 can of black beans
  1 lime
  1 jalapeno, diced
  1 carton of mushrooms (used and chopped half)
  1 package of whole wheat tortillas (I used 4)


1. Dice avocado, mango and seeded plum tomatoes.  Add into a bowl.  Toss in chopped cilantro leaves.  Dress salad with the juice from one lime, a pinch of salt and two minced garlic cloves.  Cover with plastic wrap and set aside.

2. Heat a tablespoon of grapeseed oil in a skillet.  Once hot, add diced onions and garlic until fragrant. Next, add diced zucchini, chopped mushrooms and diced jalepeno.  Once the mushrooms are slightly browned and zucchini is soft add drained black beans.  Season with cayenne, paprika, salt and pepper to taste. Allow to simmer for about 5 minutes on medium heat.  Set aside once cooked through.

3. Melt 2 teaspoons of the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Place a tortilla in the skillet, sprinkle evenly with cheese, then top with some of the bean mixture. Place another tortilla on top, cook until golden, then flip and cook on the other side. Melt more butter as needed, and repeat with remaining tortillas and filling. Top with reserved pico de gallo and serve with a dollop of sour cream. 



  1. I am so excited to eat this! Mine will be slightly less thrifty because I don't have the first set of ingredients on hand. :( But that's okay! It looks yummy and I'm always looking for amazing new dinners to make on the weekends! (also, put cilantro on ANYTHING and i'm in complete love.) Thanks, Lany!!

  2. Awesome!! Let me know how it goes! Cilan-tro? More like, Cilant-YES!


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