Triple-Protein Huevos Rancheros Quesadilla

Sometimes you just need a really hearty brunch. Maybe you had a rough night out drinking and need a big filling, flavorful, kick in the pants to get you going. Or maybe you are over all that, and just recovering from a standard night of baby-feedings, looking forward to a day of chores, like me!

Either way, if you can muster the energy to chef up this protein-heavy vegetarian brunch dish, you'll have even more energy to get stuff done later. AND you'll have some pretty versatile leftovers to use the next day.

Huevos Rancheros (a bean-laden egg breakfast dish) was the inspiration for this breakfast quesadilla. Ground veggie protein, fried egg and jack cheese are folded neatly into a crispy tortilla. The whole thing is topped with warm seasoned black beans, crisp tomatoes, sour cream and hot sauce. Make it even healthier by using egg-whites only and topping with sliced avocado drenched in lime juice. Leftover protein grounds and beans can be used over chips for nachos, on rice or a baked potato for a dinner, or mixed up with tomato sauce for a chili.

If you don't have a little guy depending on your milk factory, like I do, then go ahead and pair this rich breakfast with a brew-driver beer cocktail: 1/2 OJ, 1/2 Wheat Ale (such as Blue Moon or any Hefeweizen / Weiss beer).

Wishing you a happy healthy new year! Cheers!

Triple-Protein Huevos Rancheros Quesadilla

Flour Tortillas

1 T olive oil
1 package Lightlife Smart Ground® Mexican (or other ground veggie protein)
1 packet Sazón Goya with Coriander and Annatto (or your favorite taco seasoning)
chili powder
Adobo spice mix

1 T olive oil
1 14 oz can black beans, drained
1/2 small onion, diced
dried oregano
salt, pepper

2 eggs (or 1 egg per quesadilla), slightly beaten (if using whites use about 1-1/2 eggs per quesadilla)
salt, pepper

1 C tomatoes, diced
Shredded jack cheese, or sharp cheddar
Sour Cream
Hot Sauce

1. Prepare filling by sautéing grounds with oil and seasoning a little at a time to taste. Cook about 5-8 minutes and set aside. (If you put it directly in a storage container, it makes clean-up quicker).

2. In a small saucepan, cook onions over low heat in oil until tender. Add black beans and season to taste. Cook 5-10 minutes and set aside.

3. Coat a 6-8" frying pan with non-stick spray and heat over medium heat. Add 2 eggs and stir just a little as it starts to cook and then let it set into an omelet. When cooked completely, slide the omelet onto a plate. Repeat for remaining eggs, as 2 eggs will make 2 quesadillas.

4. For each quesadilla, heat a frying pan coated with non-stick spray over medium heat. Working quickly, place a tortilla in the pan and press it down flat. Sprinkle a little cheese over the whole thing. On one half, place half the omelet and 2-3 tablespoons of veggie grounds. Cook about 2 minutes and fold the other half of the tortilla over the filling, just as it starts to brown but before it becomes stiff. Cook another minute or two and slide onto a plate. Repeat for remaining quesadillas.

5. Serve each quesadilla with a few spoonfuls of beans, tomatoes, sour cream and hot sauce.


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