Shrimp quesadillas are one of those fun easy to make Mexican recipes. Sauteed shrimp, baby spinach, and melted cheese sandwiched between a toasty flour tortilla. Served with my homemade guacamole and tomato salsa, this is great Mexican home-cooking!
We love to make quesadillas regularly at my house. The quesadilla ingredients vary, usually, we use our leftover chicken or beef fajitas. Occasionally just plain cheese quesadillas. However, My shrimp quesadillas are special, it’s one of those recipes so good I make it from scratch. I serve them with chips and salsa, and my homemade guacamole. It’s a fun, delicious, and easy-to-make Mexican dinner.
If you’ve never had a quesadilla, think of it as the Mexican version of a grilled cheese sandwich. The quesadilla can be made with either corn or flour tortillas. Quesadillas are served hot and can either be a full quesadilla (2-tortillas with the fillings in between) or a half quesadilla (1-tortilla folded in half with the filling inside). For the shrimp quesadilla, I use large flour tortillas, like the ones you use for sandwich wraps or burritos.
Quesadilla is pronounced kase-a-de-ya, the correct technical dictionary pronunciation is /ˌkāsəˈdēyə/. It can be filled with a wide variety of ingredients meats, veggies, or seafood. My shrimp quesadillas include delicious marinated shrimp, sautéed spinach, and onions. I use either shredded cheddar, Monterey Jack, or pepper jack cheese in the quesadilla. Something that melts and is nice and gooey.
Serve the shrimp quesadillas with guacamole, chips, and salsa!
Shrimp Quesadilla Ingredients
- Shrimp: For the shrimp quesadillas, any size shrimp will work. However, I prefer larger shrimp that are cut into smaller ½-inch pieces. Small shrimp tend to get lost and don’t have enough bite.
- Spices: The spices are used to marinate the shrimp prior to sautéing them. Afterward, the spices leftover in the skillet will flavor the onions, garlic, and spinach. I flavor the shrimp similar to the way I would for shrimp fajitas.
- Spinach, Onions, and Garlic: Spinach and onions give the quesadilla great flavor and nutrition, making the shrimp quesadilla a complete meal. The spinach mixture has an amazing flavor from all the spices left in the pan after sautéing the shrimp.
- Cilantro: Fresh cilantro (coriander) adds a bright flavor to the shrimp quesadilla. There are many people who can’t eat cilantro. So check with your guests first before adding this ingredient. The cilantro is of course optional.
- Cheese: Shredded cheese that melts and becomes gooey is what you want in a quesadilla. I usually use shredded cheddar, however, any melty, stringy Mexican-style cheese will work in this recipe.
- Tortillas: My favorite tortilla for quesadillas are the big flour tortillas that you would use for sandwich wraps or burritos. Corn tortillas also make delicious quesadillas. However, I prefer making one large shrimp quesadilla as opposed to several small ones. It’s easier and I’m lazy, haha.
My Top Shelf Margarita is perfect with this quesadilla recipe!
Here is my Shrimp Quesadilla recipe
- 1/2 Pound Shrimp 16 shrimp, sized 21/26. Cut into thirds
- 2 Large Flour Tortillas
- 1/2 Cup Onion Sliced
- 1 Teaspoon Garlic Crushed and chopped
- 5 Ounces Baby Spinach Fresh, not frozen
- 1/4 Cup Water To steam the veggies
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1 Teaspoon Mustard German or Dijon-style
- 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cumin
- 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Paprika
- 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cayenne
- 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
- 8 Ounces Cheddar Cheese Shredded. Can substitute Monterey or Pepperjack
- 1/4 Cup Cilantro Rough chopped
- Remove shells and tails from the shrimp and cut them into equal size thirds.
- Preheat a non-stick skillet with a tight-fitting lid, over medium-high heat.
- Combine the mustard and all the spices except salt. Place the shrimp and spice mixture together and give it a good mix. Place the olive oil in the skillet and add the shrimp. Saute for 4-minutes, remove from the pan, and set aside.
- Add the sliced onions and water to the skillet, cover, and let them steam. Use a spatial to loosen all the spices from the bottom of the pan. Steam for 5 minutes until the onions are translucent, add the garlic and spinach, cover, and let steam until wilted. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- Clean the skillet and preheat it, dry, over medium heat.
- Add one tortilla and let it warm for about 20-seconds. Turn it over and add a thin layer of cheese
- Spread half of the spinach mixture over half of the tortilla
- Add half of the shrimp on top of the spinach mixture
- Sprinkle another layer of cheese on top of the shrimp
- Fold the tortilla in half, then cook until nicely toasted, cut the tortilla into 4-wedges. Serve with guacamole, salsa, chips, and sprinkled with chopped fresh cilantro.
- Repeat this process with the second tortilla