Buffalo Chicken Quesadillas – Slender Kitchen

Healthy Buffalo Chicken Quesadillas packed with lean ground chicken, carrots, celery, cheese, and buffalo sauce is a deliciously simple recipe for only 316 calories.

These Buffalo Chicken Quesadillas may just be my new favorite lunch and easy weeknight dinner. These cheesy, buffalo chicken-packed quesadillas are addictive and something you will want to make over and over again. You may also want to try these Healthy Chicken Quesadillas and easy Freezer Friendly Breakfast Quesadillas if you love quesadillas as much as we do.

True story, I will eat almost anything covered in buffalo sauce. It seriously makes everything taste delicious and a bit naughty since we usually associate buffalo sauce with high-calorie treats like wings. Although these baked buffalo wings are amazing! Luckily, buffalo sauce itself is surprisingly low in calories when you don’t mix it with a pound of butter, so it’s a great way to add flavor to your recipes.

Today’s simple recipe capitalizes on all that flavor to make a delicious quesadilla. Buffalo chicken, carrots, celery, and cheese are all folded into a low-carb wrap (or flour tortilla) and cooked up until it’s nice and crispy. They are loaded with buffalo flavor, melted cheese, and everything you want in a quesadilla.

To top things off and get all that buffalo chicken flavor, you will probably want to serve it with some ranch dressing or blue cheese dressing on the side for dipping. You could even add some ranch seasoning mix right to the chicken to kick up that buffalo ranch combo that is so good.

Why We Love Buffalo Chicken Quesadillas

There are so many reasons to love these quesadillas. 

  • Ready in 20 minutes: Make a crowd-pleasing lunch, dinner, or party appetizer that everyone will love in just twenty minutes! Use the baked quesadilla option if cooking for a crowd to save even more time. 
  • Use leftover chicken: While this recipe uses ground chicken,  these quesadillas are delicious with any kind of leftover chicken. Use grilled chicken, rotisserie chicken, or this slow cooker buffalo chicken. Or use deli chicken or deli turkey. 
  • Freezer friendly: Consider making a double or triple batch of these quesadillas since they keep well in the freezer. Reheat quickly in a skillet, the air fryer, or the toaster for an easy meal in minutes. 

Looking for more buffalo chicken recipes? Check out these Buffalo Chicken Bowls, Buffalo Chicken Salad, and Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Sweet Potatoes.

Ingredients and Substitutions

Here is everything you need to make these tasty quesadillas.

  • Chicken: Any type of chicken works in this recipe including ground chicken, rotisserie chicken, leftover chicken, and even canned chicken.  When using ground chicken, make sure to add some seasoning to ensure it is flavorful. I added garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper.
  • Cheese: Any cheese that melts well works in these quesadillas including cheddar, mozzarella, shredded Mexican cheese, Monterey jack, or pepper jack for some extra spice. 
  • Buffalo sauce: My all-time favorite buffalo sauce is Frank’s buffalo wing sauce. Primal Kitchen also makes a delicious buffalo sauce that’s Paleo, Whole30, gluten-free, and dairy-free for a healthier option.
  • Veggies: Carrots and celery are the classic pairing with buffalo chicken. Saute them with the chicken so they soften. You could also add diced bell peppers, zucchini, cauliflower, spinach, or any other veggies you like. 
  • Tortillas: Flour tortillas are traditionally used in quesadillas but usually I use high-fiber, low-carb wraps instead. Use any type of tortilla you like.
  • Toppings: Serve these delicious quesadillas with a drizzle of ranch dressing or blue cheese and a sprinkle of green onions or fresh cilantro. These quesadillas are also delicious with avocado or guacamole, sour cream, salsa, and pico de gallo

Flour tortillas filled with buffalo chicken and shredded cheese.

How to Make Quesadillas: Skillet, Oven, and Air Fryer

Here are three easy ways to make these quesadillas.

Option 1: Skillet Quesadillas

This is the classic way to make quesadillas. Prepare the filling. Then heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Add a touch of butter or cooking spray for extra crispy tortillas.

Place the tortilla in the hot skillet. Add a thin layer of cheese, then add the buffalo chicken filling, and then add another thin layer of cheese on top. Fold over the tortilla (for smaller quesadillas) or place another tortilla on top.

Cook until the cheese melts and the tortilla is golden brown. Flip and cook on the other side until golden brown and crispy. 

Option 2: Baked Sheet Pan Quesadillas

Sheet pan quesadillas are starting to pop up everything and for good reason. Instead of having to cook up multiple quesadillas, you can cook them all at the same time. Here’s how to do it!

Start by preheating the oven to 425 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray. Then follow the instructions below to cook the chicken and assemble the quesadillas. Then simply place them on a baking sheet, spray the tops with cooking spray, and bake for 10-12 minutes.

Flip them over halfway through cooking. Problem solved! All your quesadillas are ready at the same time.

Option 3: Air Fryer Quesadillas

Quesadillas turn out delicious in the air fryer. Always start by warming the tortillas slightly so they won’t break. Add the cheese and filling. 

Place in the air fryer and cook at 375 degrees for 6-8 minutes, flipping halfway through. 

Crispy buffalo chicken quesadillas with melted cheese, buffalo sauce, and cilantro on a white plate.

Recipe Ideas for Buffalo Chicken Quesadillas

There are so many ways to customize these quesadillas and make them your own.

  • Change the cheese: Although I usually reach for mozzarella or cheddar cheese, blue cheese is such a delicious addition to this quesadilla. Since I still want some ooey-gooey cheese, I replaced half with blue cheese. So good.
  • Dressing and dips: Needless to say, you will probably want to dip this in something. I recommend using a light ranch or blue cheese dressing. Consider this healthy homemade ranch and blue cheese dressing.
  • Vegetarian: If you don’t eat chicken, you can make this with chickpeas instead. It turns out tasty and even the meat eaters love it.
  • Tortillas: When it comes to the tortilla, it’s up to you. For the lowest-calorie option, I usually look for a low-carb tortilla or wrap. You can also use a traditional flour tortilla, whole wheat tortilla, or make a couple of smaller quesadillas with corn tortillas.
  • Sandwiches, pizza, and more: This filling is great for more than quesadillas. Make it into a sandwich with some slaw, stuff it into lettuce wraps, or even make a flatbread pizza. The options are endless.
  • Change the protein: Although I made this with ground chicken, you could also use shredded chicken breast or lean ground turkey. Or switch things up and make a Chipotle version, like these spicy chicken quesadillas.

Leftovers and Meal Prep

Since these are saucy quesadillas, they aren’t the best for meal prep. However, there is one workaround. Make the buffalo chicken mixture so it is ready to go and you don’t have to worry about cooking the chicken when mealtime comes around.

Then just add the cheese and make your quesadilla right before serving. This will save you about 15 minutes of prep and cook time.

If you want to assemble the quesadillas and store them for later in the fridge or freezer, make them with half the amount of buffalo sauce so the tortillas don’t get soggy.  Let them fully cool and then store them in the fridge or freezer, wrapped in plastic wrap. Reheat in a hot skillet, air fryer, or toaster oven.  Then serve with extra buffalo sauce on the side or drizzled on top.

What is buffalo sauce?

The most delicious thing ever! If you are new to buffalo sauce, it’s the orange spicy sauce you typically see on buffalo wings. It is made with vinegar, chili powder, cayenne, and spices. There are lots of brands that make buffalo wing sauce but the most popular are Frank’s Buffalo Wing Sauce or Buffalo Hot Sauce.

You can find buffalo sauce in your local grocery store. Usually, it is with the barbecue sauce and marinades. There are varying degrees of spiciness so choose mild, medium, or hot depending on what you like.

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