Just wanted to let you know that this healthy Mexican meal is sponsored by my friends at Lentils.org!
This quick and easy grilled lentil Mexican Quesadilla recipe is a tasty summer dinner for meatless Monday! Make them for a weeknight meal that everyone will love!
Are you ready to get your LENTIL ON?
I know, you’ve probably never been asked that before. BUT, you know what they say right?
There’s a first time for everything!
You probably saw my million Instagram Stories last week, while I was up in Saskatchewan, Canada (my home country! <3) hanging out with Lentils.Org, to learn ALL things lentil!
It was LENTIL-ICIOUS.
You guys. This trip was SO fun and even more informative! I got to hang out with the ladies who run the blogs Five Heart Home, Le Petit Eats and West of the Loop for a whole day, along with the team at Lentils.org, to taste lentil creations, learn about how they’re grown, and how nutrient-PACKED they are.[clickToTweet tweet=”Power up your summer with a Grilled Mexican Lentil Quesadilla! @CdnLentils #LetsLentil #LoveALentil” quote=”Power up your summer with a Grilled Mexican Lentil Quesadilla! @CdnLentils #LetsLentil #LoveALentil” theme=”style2″]
We started the day with the most DELICIOUS pumpkin lentil muffins. Uhh, WHO KNEW that lentils INSIDE a muffin could be so DELISH.
Then we got to visit Simpson Seeds, where we got to tour the lentil field (how adorable is that little lentil!) and lentil seed cleaning facility.
There was so much interesting information shared at the cleaning facility, however, a few things really stood out to me. We learned that lentils have different grades, and their grade affects their usage. For example, the lentils your buy in stores are grade A. Lower grades are used for other things, like animal food.
Speaking of which, isn’t it AWESOME that such healthy, real, plant-based nutrition is going to feed our pets? <3 <3 <3
We also saw this SUPER high-tech machine that uses infrared technology to separate lentils based on the color that it sees. SO. FANCY.
What I also thought was so interesting was seeing the whole process of getting lentils from the farm to our mouths. It goes like this:
- Staff visually inspect a sample of lentils off of the delivery truck to ensure the grade matches what they are expecting.
- If grade is a match (yay!), the truck is accepted. The lentils are then moved into a storage bin for processing and cleaning.
- Lentils are sorted by weight, size, then color – this makes sure the lentils are uniform and tip-top quality!
- Lentils are then bagged and screened for any metal or foreign objects and placed into shipping containers to get to you and me.
When you cook lentils, and realize how SUPER SIMPLE it is to do (they only take about 20 mins!) it’s so easy to forget about all the love and care the farmers put in to make them happen on your dinner table.
I absolutely LOVED seeing the process, and really getting reminded of how we get our food, the importance of our farmers, and the importance of choosing nutritional powerhouse foods – like lentils!
Speaking of their “powerhouse” qualities, here are some fun facts I picked up to share with you:
- They’re high in protein – there are 26 grams of protein in a 100g serving of cooked whole green lentils, which is almost double what quinoa has!
- They’re PACKED with fiber as well! 18g in a 100g serving of split red lentils, to be exact!
- Lentils are a great source of minerals such as potassium, iron, and folate and micronutrients like folate, iron, selenium and zinc.
Told ya. Lentils are small but MIGHTY.
Another HUGE takeaway was that lentils are SO versatile. Put down that lentil soup recipe my friends, because we learned how to make lentil energy bites, lentil side dishes, dips and we even ate (the most DELISH!) lentil BROWNIES.
I know. Mind. BLOWN.
That creativity is what inspired this Mexican L-E-N-T-I-L quesadilla.
We were all having our last dinner together, and one of the ladies was talking about she loves cheese quesadillas but, to be more “adult,” has been adding chicken for a little protein-packed addition (kind of like in the low carb healthy quesadillas.)
I already knew that Mexican flavors worked with meatless dishes (HELLO super yummy easy homemade sweet potato veggie burgers!) So, my brain went, “WHAT IF LENTILS WERE THE PROTEIN PACKED ADDITION?”
Lentil quesadillas are the newest, latest-and-greatest thing to happen to your easy-weeknight-dinner-loving selves.
It’s the Summer and you need a no-fuss, super-easy dinner, right? Well, lentils cook on the stove top (no turning on the oven!) and in only 20 minutes or so. You could EVEN prep them ahead!
Pureeing the lentils with a little bit of salsa is a GAME-CHANGER in the sense that it TOTALLY mimics refried beans, but in a WAY healthier and Way WAYYYY more delicious way. <— SRSLY, even Mr. FFF declared that they tasted exactly like the re-fried beans that his Momma made growing up.
Lentils? You’re KILLIN’ IT.
Grilling the quesadilla is A-L-S-O a game-changer in the sense that it makes the humble quesadilla the EPITOME of summer-food-perfection. A little grill actions adds this totally addicting crispy-smoky flavor that balances out the creamy lentils, and plays DELICIOUSLY with the ooey-gooey cheese and spicy salsa.
If you’re one of those people who is always trying to sneakily add nutrition into your families faces, then this grilled LENTIL quesadilla is going to be your JAM.
JAM-packed with nutrition.
JAM-packed with YUM.
Healthy-yet-simple dinner goals? CRUSHED.
Grilled Mexican Quesadilla Recipe with Lentils
- 1 1/2 Cups Water
- 1/2 Cup Green Lentils
- 1/2 Cup Salsa, divided
- 1/8 tsp Salt*
- Olive oil spray
- 8 Extra-large white corn tortillas (6 inches)
- 1/2 Cup Cilantro, Roughly chopped
- 1 1/3 Cups Mexican Blend Cheese (5 oz)**
- Sour cream, (for serving, optional)
- Guacamole (for serving, optional)
- Rinse the lentils and stir together the water and lentils in a medium pot and bring to a boil.
- Once boiling, turn the heat to medium-low, cover and cook until tender, about 15-20 minutes. Drain and add to a food processor.
- Add 1/4 cup of the salsa and salt into the food processor and pulse until combined and smooth, but leaving some lentils intact for texture.
- Preheat your grill to medium heat.
- Spray one side of each tortilla with the olive oil spray and sprinkle with salt. Place 4 tortillas, un-sprayed side up, onto a baking pan. Spread a lightly heaping 1/4 cup of the lentil puree all over the tortilla, covering it completely.
- Then, spread 1 Tbsp of salsa on each of the tortillas. After that, divide the cilantro and, finally, the cheese between each tortilla. Cover with the remaining tortillas, so the sprayed side is facing up towards you.
- Gently slide the tortillas on the grill, cover and cook for 3-4 minutes. Gently flip and cook and additional 3-4 minutes. If some of your topping come out after flipping, just gently press them in.
- Slice and DEVOUR immediately with extra salsa, guacamole and sour cream if you choose!
WEIGHT WATCHERS POINTS PER SERVING: SMART POINTS: 11 POINTS+: 9. OLD POINTS: 8
(per 1 quesadilla with no sides)
IF YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE, PLEASE REMEMBER TO TAG @FOODFAITHFIT AND #FOODFAITHFITNESS ON INSTAGRAM! I LOVE SEEING YOUR RECIPE RECREATIONS!
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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Lentils.org. The opinions and text are all mine.