Appetizers/ Recipes/ Vegetarian

Creamy Mushroom and Kale Quesadillas

Hello and happy Friday!

I hope you are doing something fun this weekend. I have no real plans at all except for a yoga meeting and dinner with a friend Sunday night, and I’m not going to lie—I’m really looking forward to laying low and catching up! The only problem is that I SAY this, but after thirty minutes of “laying low”, I get bored and immediately start cooking again. It is HOT here, like I’m sure it’s hot where you are, and I am literally living in a cave with the blinds shut and the fan going on high while I cook. Things are probably happening in the outside world, but I’m not sure what if they don’t involve cream cheese, mushrooms and kale.

Such is my world: cream cheese, mushrooms and kale.

Such a beautiful trilogy! I made these quesadillas the other night for dinner and absolutely loved them!

The kale and mushrooms are mixed in with cream cheese, garlic and green onions and then sprinkled with {more} cheese and pressed between tortillas.ย  Because I’m not dramatic in the least or anything, I’m just going to go ahead and call them earth shattering. There. I said it.

It’s the perfect dish to introduce picky eaters to kale! Once, young grasshopper, I thought kale tasted like dirt, too. But now I can’t stop eating it.

I don’t know who I am anymore. This must be a side-effect of never leaving the cave.

No need for salsa with these although a little hot sauce never hurt anyone.

I end this post with a brief public service announcement: {There is a special party invite happening over on the ELR Facebook Page. Homemade pimento cheese and champagne punch may or may not be involved…but you didn’t hear it from me}

Creamy Mushroom and Kale Quesadillas

serves 2-3

Print this Recipe!


10 oz sliced mushrooms

1 tbsp butter

2 green onions, chopped

2 cups chopped lacinato kale (about 1 bunch)

1/2 tsp minced garlic

3 oz cream cheese

1/4 cup shredded monterey jack cheese

4 “burrito-size” flour tortillas

pinch of salt


Melt the butter over medium heat in a large saucepan. Once melted, add the mushrooms, green onions and a pinch of salt and saute for six minutes, or until soft. Add the garlic and kale and continue sauteing for another three-five minutes, until kale as wilted.

Reduce heat to low and stir in cream cheese to mushroom and kale mixture. Mix well. Remove from heat.

Heat a cast iron (or another large skillet) over medium heat. Place one tortilla on the skillet and add about a quarter cup of the mushroom mixture. Top with a sprinkle of grated cheese and then place other tortilla on top.

Cook quesadillas for about three minutes per side, until golden and cheese is hot and bubbly.


20 minutes


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  • Reply
    Jonathan Dueck
    August 10, 2012 at 6:25 am

    And here’s what you do with your leftover kale. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply
    Courtney @ Brussel Sprouts and Beer
    August 10, 2012 at 6:39 am

    These look delicious! We are about to start growing kale in our garden and this would be a perfect way to get the BF to eat it!:)

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 6:41 am

    Sounds amazing! Looks like I have a new recipe to try tonight ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Gabby (Quest for Delicious)
    August 10, 2012 at 6:59 am

    Looks fantastic! All I need are mushrooms and I’ll be on my way to making this!

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 6:59 am

    I signed up for the party!

    Question: does your book only come in hardcover as of now or will there be paperbacks offered at the Savannah signings.

    Would it be bad if I showed up to both? The B&N signing AND the party?!

    What? I’m a fan!

    • Reply
      August 10, 2012 at 7:03 am

      1. the book will only be available in hardcover in the beginning….later on down the line, it will be paperback, too. it will also be available on the Nook.

      2. PLEASE COME TO BOTH!!!! that would make my life.

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 7:00 am

    this looks amazing! i’ve just recently gotten into kale & i really do love it now! i was just scared of it before!

  • Reply
    Heather @ Girlyeverafter
    August 10, 2012 at 7:02 am

    Mushrooms and Kale are so great together. I sauteed them as a side the other night and it’s easily the best combo EVER!

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 7:07 am

    This recipe is perfect for my dinner tonight. My husband is out-of-town, so I was looking for something tasty and simple to whip up. I’m looking forward to “laying low” this weekend too.

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 7:09 am

    Yum! Cream cheese makes anything taste good and I love that you used kale.

  • Reply
    Jewel at Eat.Drink.Shop.Love
    August 10, 2012 at 7:15 am

    Yum! I might make this for dinner tonight.

  • Reply
    Mal @ The Chic Geek
    August 10, 2012 at 7:22 am

    Love quesadillas, don’t think I’ve ever tried putting cream cheese in them, I don’t know why since it sounds perfect!

  • Reply
    Caity @ Moi Contre La Vie
    August 10, 2012 at 7:27 am

    Cannot WAIT to try this. Looks phenmenal AND I can pretend that it’s healthy. ๐Ÿ™‚ I do believe I don’t tell the bf what’s in it!

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 7:31 am

    I feel the same way about kale. Thought it was super weird at first, now I buy it every week and am already planning on growing my own next year. It’s strangely addictive.

  • Reply
    Alyson @ Yoga, Nutrition, Design
    August 10, 2012 at 7:34 am

    You deliver right? ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply
    Michelle @ Eat Move Balance
    August 10, 2012 at 7:46 am

    I love everything about this recipe, except the cream cheese (I’ve never liked it!). But I’m guessing if I leave it out, and maybe add it bit more of the jack cheese, it would still be delicious. The idea of having kale in a quesadilla is outstanding!

    • Reply
      August 10, 2012 at 9:10 am

      I feel the same way about cream cheese! I hope it works out without it ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Reply
      August 10, 2012 at 4:28 pm

      I totally promise this doesn’t taste too “cream cheesy”…you really can’t tell it’s made with cream cheese because you add so much other stuff like green onions and garlic to the mix. If you want though, you could just saute the kale + mushrooms and use extra jack cheese!

  • Reply
    Lily O' Dare @ Candied-Life
    August 10, 2012 at 7:58 am

    what a delicious combo!!

  • Reply
    Sandra A
    August 10, 2012 at 8:06 am

    Sometimes I feel like this blog reads my mind! I’m visiting family and friends in Sweden (but I grew up in Texas) and was just wondering what Tex-Mex dish I should make to convince them that America’s not all bad. This fits the bill!

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 8:12 am

    what a yummy combo! i’m always looking for new ways to incorporate kale into dishes instead of the standard kale chips, green smoothies, etc. this looks great!

  • Reply
    Cait's Plate
    August 10, 2012 at 8:46 am

    Love, love, love. Especially perfect for this gloomy weather we’ve been having of late!

  • Reply
    Caroline L.
    August 10, 2012 at 9:16 am

    Quesadillas are one of my favorite comfort foods – this version sounds like such a yummy and healthy take! Thanks for sharing xx

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 9:19 am

    These look awesome. I love the combination of mushrooms and kale. I put it on homemade pizza all. the. time. : )

  • Reply
    Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts
    August 10, 2012 at 9:21 am

    Oh yum! I have yet to try kale, but I have been wanting to. What a great recipe hopefully the whole family would eat!

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 10:15 am

    This looks so yummy! I have a question though. Can you substitute anything for mushrooms?

    • Reply
      August 10, 2012 at 10:19 am

      hehe well then they wouldn’t be mushroom quesadillas anymore! If you don’t like mushrooms, I suggest trying a different quesadilla recipe…

  • Reply
    Sam @ Better With Sprinkles
    August 10, 2012 at 10:38 am

    This seems like a good way to sneak the boyfriend some kale – he can never turn down a quesadilla. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Kaitlin @ A Taste of Bulmer
    August 10, 2012 at 10:47 am

    Omg these look a-mazingggg. I love taking classics and turning them into something new and exciting, especially quesadillas! I make a yummy italian quesadilla with parmesan, mozzarella, roasted veggies, and marinara. Now it looks like I will have to try your recipe next ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Dennis Blair @ Fort Collins Personal Trainer
    August 10, 2012 at 10:47 am

    I ate these at a party and simply loved them. I had been searching for the recipe since then and finally found it but when I tried to make some I made a mess of it.

  • Reply
    What I love this week: August 10, 2012. - Ashley's A-Musings
    August 10, 2012 at 11:37 am

    […] quesadillas from Jenna look like such a yummy take on healthy food. Can’t wait to make […]

  • Reply
    joelle (on a pink typewriter)
    August 10, 2012 at 11:41 am

    This looks amazing! I’ve been trying to figure out a yummy way to cook kale!

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 11:42 am

    Hi! This comment has NOTHING to do with this post, but I was wondering if you would be able to put a “Photography” button on your header, like you have with travel, faq, contact — that sort of thing. I’ve been going through your old photography posts and find them very helpful, so it would be great to have them all in one spot — because I’m sure I’m missing some! thanks!

    • Reply
      August 10, 2012 at 4:27 pm

      Good suggestion! I am working on something like that in the ELR redesign ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Sarah (The Social Eater)
    August 10, 2012 at 12:19 pm

    YUM. I want one:-).

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 12:56 pm

    I would have never thought to use cream cheese…brilliant!

  • Reply
    Skinny Key Lime Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries | Ambitious Kitchen
    August 10, 2012 at 1:29 pm

    […] weekend plans consist of more cooking, maybe a little surfing, and most likely a dinner with these mushroom + kale quesadillas and probably a couple of roasted blueberry basil margaritasย to drown in my sorrows. Only kidding, […]

  • Reply
    The Meaning of Me
    August 10, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    OK, help me here. Every week I look at bags and bags of kale chips and want to try them, but I’m too scared. How do I give this stuff a shot without ruining the possibility of liking kale at all? What’s the best ease-in?

    • Reply
      August 10, 2012 at 4:27 pm

      I think a recipe like this that also involves lots of CHEESE is a good way to enjoy kale for the first time ๐Ÿ™‚ Other than that, you can bake your kale at 350 and make your own easy kale chips…delicious!

      • Reply
        The Meaning of Me
        August 10, 2012 at 9:03 pm

        Cheese is always a solution in my book. Thanks for the suggestions! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Sloane @ Life Food and Beer
    August 10, 2012 at 1:54 pm

    This looks so yummy! I would never think to use Kale in a quesadillas.

  • Reply
    Marisa @Margaritas In The Rain
    August 10, 2012 at 3:31 pm

    We’ve been in a Kale rut, so THANKS for the re-inspiration! This looks like a new week-night staple, for sure.

  • Reply
    Lexi @ You, Me, & A World to See
    August 10, 2012 at 4:39 pm

    All I’m saying is…this is happening. NO QUESTIONS ASKED! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    I’ve never thought to put Kale in Quesadillas. What a great idea!

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 4:46 pm

    Oh my word. This is like everything I could want right now!! So yummy.

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 5:16 pm

    Have a good beer tonight while you cook!

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 6:16 pm

    can you use curly kale?

    • Reply
      August 10, 2012 at 7:34 pm

      You can! Although I personally recommend lacinato kale because it has a milder flavor.

    • Reply
      August 10, 2012 at 8:34 pm

      I used curly kale and it was still delicious

  • Reply
    Julie @ Table for Two
    August 10, 2012 at 6:55 pm

    i’ve been having a hard craving for quesadillas and these look like they’re deeelicious! and healthy too since it’s not loaded with the usual quesadilla fillings ๐Ÿ™‚ gotta try this!

    • Reply
      August 10, 2012 at 7:34 pm

      yep, they are practically a vegetable! hehe

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 8:33 pm

    I made these for dinner tonight…holy YUM!!!

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012 at 9:29 pm

    Are you working on a new book or any plans? Cookbook? Fiction? Is it hard to get published without a platform?

  • Reply
    Mish @ Mish's Kithen
    August 10, 2012 at 10:12 pm

    Those look awesome. We had your carnitas tacos last night and had leftover burrito shells today. I said to andrew “want a quesadilla later?” he said: “what is that?”

    My man has NEVER heard of and/or tasted a quesadilla.

  • Reply
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar
    August 11, 2012 at 8:15 am

    This looks so fabulous!

  • Reply
    Cassie (Bake Your Day)
    August 11, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    I will eat kale in any way, shape, or form. And we are big quesadilla fans here. This is a winner, for sure.

  • Reply
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    August 12, 2012 at 2:31 am

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    Moni Meals
    August 13, 2012 at 8:18 am

    I will for sure make this! Nice meal anytime!

  • Reply
    Alex @ Healthy Life Happy Wife
    August 13, 2012 at 10:28 am

    These lookso good!! I’m a sucker for kale & mushrooms:)

  • Reply
    August 13, 2012 at 12:51 pm

    Made these over the weekend and they will be a “go to” for me. Thank you for the wonderfulness!

  • Reply
    August 13, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    These were delicious and quick! I already want to make them again.

  • Reply
    Maggie @ A Bitchin' Kitchen
    August 14, 2012 at 1:05 pm

    I have never tried kale, but I just signed up for a local produce delivery service and lacinato kale is coming in my first shipment this Friday! I might just have to try these!

  • Reply
    August 16, 2012 at 7:40 am

    I made these last night with some [delicious] modifications, so I thought I’d share. I had to use swiss chard instead of kale because there were only two bunches left at the supermarket and both were mangled, limp and looked totally unappetizing. I also added a can of black beans for protein. Since that increased the amount of filling, I used a half block of cream cheese, which is just slightly more than recommended. I also added a few splashes of Chipotle Tabasco which gave the filling a little heat and a really great smokey flavor – I highly recommend it! Finally, I used whole wheat tortillas and mozzarella since that was what I had on hand. The quesadillas were fantastic and I definitely plan to make them again.

  • Reply
    August 17, 2012 at 10:35 am

    Made these last week and they are so good! I enjoy mushroom flavor, but not the texture, so I just sliced the mushrooms thin. Delicious!

  • Reply
    Mary Beth
    August 17, 2012 at 7:48 pm

    My husband doesn’t like mushrooms but said these were “really good”. Thanks for another great recipe!

  • Reply
    August 21, 2012 at 6:55 pm


    I made this for dinner this week- delicious! Thank you so much for the recipe!

  • Reply
    addie @
    August 22, 2012 at 12:12 pm

    This looks so tasty. Can’t wait to make them ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    August 30, 2012 at 12:58 pm

    I just made these and am eating them as I write! These were amazing and this page is definitely book marked for future recipes! ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for the awesome recipe!

  • Reply
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    lil deli
    September 8, 2012 at 10:25 am

    Hey! I just found your blog via Food buzz. These quesadillas look amazing! Definitely making this for dinner ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Mei-I @ gastronomic nomad
    September 8, 2012 at 10:26 am

    Picking up my weekly dose of kale tomorrow at the farmers market along with some fall mushrooms and making this tomorrow!! Yum.

  • Reply
    September 8, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    NICE! I made kale quesadillas awhile back and loved them. Adding mushrooms sounds like another great addition.

  • Reply
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    September 12, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    What a great recipe! I made it for dinner tonight with a few tweaks and it was definitely post-worthy! Thanks for the inspiration!!!

  • Reply
    September 30, 2012 at 10:30 pm

    This was delicious!!! And your pictures are so beautiful. I made a variation and linked back to you from my blog – Can’t wait to check out more of your recipes!

  • Reply
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    January 4, 2013 at 3:05 pm

    DELICIOUS!!!! Not only did my hubby like it, my 7 & 5 year old BOYS LOVED IT!!

  • Reply
    January 22, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    Made tonight with garlic salt instead of garlic, fat free cream cheese and Monterrey jack cheese. A bit hard to chew as kale tends to be, but DELISH!

  • Reply
    January 28, 2013 at 9:13 pm

    I made this. OMGoodness! It’s so delicious and it was really easy to make.
    It is now one of my favorites! I added a dash of cayenne pepper at the end for just a little kick. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply
    March 16, 2013 at 4:29 am

    These look so good!! I will definitely be making these soon. Thanks for the recipe!

  • Reply
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