All I want for Cinco de Mayo is cheese. Lots and lots of cheese. Queso. Cheese enchiladas. Cheese quesadilla grilled cheeses. Yes, you read that right: Cheese quesadilla grilled cheese. Never had one? Well, you’re in luck, because we just developed a recipe for this very dish in the TG & Co. studio, and it satisfies the cheesiest of cheese cravings.
Some little cheese things
Before we jump into the recipe, let’s talk a little history. The quesadilla goes way back to the 16th century in northern and central Mexico. The translation for quesadilla is “little cheese thing,” which is absolute perfection. I almost want to ask my fiancé to forfeit the nickname “pookie” for “quesadilla” so I can be his little cheese thing.
Anyway, according to Quesadilla 101, the Aztecs were big fans of dessert quesadillas stuffed with squash and pumpkin. They didn’t discover more savory ingredients such as cheese and other dairy products until Spanish settlers introduced them to sheep, lambs and cows in 1521. Once the Aztecs got their hands on cheese, they started shoveling it into their little cheese things. The rest is history.
But the Aztecs (and everyone else) made one mistake: not throwing those quesadillas between two just-as-cheesy slices of sourdough bread for the most gigantic, ultimate quesadilla grilled cheese known to (hu)man. Sourdough bread with quesadillas may not sound like a match, but trust me, it is. I taste-tested four sandwiches to confirm that fact. You’re welcome.
As you celebrate Cinco de Mayo without mustaches and sombreros (read this article), embrace the Mexican-American culture by making this fusion food dish. It’s affordable, it’s easy, and it’s carb-overload with bread and cheese. Need I say more?
To complete the recipe, you’ll need sourdough bread, unsalted butter, an ungodly amount of Monterey jack cheese, quesadillas, and if you want to up the festivity, food dye and color spray. We highly recommend serving guacamole and salsa on the side. Season the cheese mix however you’d like (cilantro, basil and red pepper flakes are so good!).
The recipe calls for three cups of cheese. Measure out one cup and put it to the side; you’ll use this for the white section of your red, white and green Mexican flag quesadilla grilled cheese.
Fill two Ziploc bags with 1 cup of cheese each. Add food dye to each bag (one red, one green) and shake to mix.
Suggestion: Wilton Icing Color from Michaels. It’s strong stuff! A little goes a long way, so to start, dip a fork into the dye, swirl it around in the bag, close the bag, and mix. You can always add more to make the color more vibrant. If you don’t have Ziploc bags, you can mix the food dye into the cheese by simply using a bowl and fork.
Place the flour tortillas on top of the uncooked sourdough bread and cut the quesadilla so that it fits perfectly on the bread.
Keeping the cheeses separated, grease a skillet with unsalted butter. Add two pieces of sourdough bread and sprinkle (or shovel) green cheese onto both sides.
Then, in the same skillet or in another pan, make a quesadilla using the same green cheese. Once the quesadilla cheese has melted, add it to one of the open-face sourdough slices. Flip the other sourdough slice onto the quesadilla, cheese-side down.
Let the quesadilla sandwich sit for a couple minutes, then flip. Now that the hot side is up, add white cheese. Using the same white cheese, make another quesadilla; add more butter to the skillet and a new piece of sourdough bread, also adding white cheese. Once the quesadilla cheese is melted, stack it on top of the growing sandwich, followed by the newest slice of bread — then flip.
You might want some extra hands to help you from this point forward so that your sandwich doesn’t fall apart.
Follow the same steps with your red cheese, and wala! A festive, delicious Cinco de Mayo quesadilla grilled cheese.
To decorate the exterior, we used Wilton Color Mist Food Color Spray. Cover the middle with white pearl color mist. Then, using a piece of printer paper, cover two-thirds of the sandwich and spray with green color mist. Repeat the process by covering the green and white portions with the printer paper, and spraying red color mist.
Top it with guacamole, salsa and maybe even a Mexican toothpick flag, and serve this Mexican-American fusion dish for your Cinco de Mayo party (or dinner for one).
Check out our video on how to make this Cinco de Mayo quesadilla grilled cheese below along with the full ingredient list and instructions.
Unsalted butter (to grease pan and spread on bread, as needed)
Food color mist
Measure 1 cup of cheese and put it to the side. Fill two Ziploc bags with 1 cup of cheese each.
Add food dye to each bag by dipping a fork into the dye and swirling it around in the bag. Close the bag and mix. Add more dye as desired.
Place flour tortillas on top of uncooked sourdough bread. Cut tortilla so it fits perfectly on bread.
Keeping cheeses separated, grease skillet with unsalted butter. Add two pieces of sourdough bread and sprinkle green cheese onto both sides.
In same skillet or in another pan, make quesadilla using the same green cheese. Once quesadilla cheese has melted, add it to one of the open-face sourdough slices. Flip other sourdough slice onto quesadilla, cheese-side down.
Let quesadilla sandwich sit for a couple minutes, then flip. Add white cheese.
Using same white cheese, make another quesadilla. Simultaneously, add more butter to skillet and a new piece of sourdough bread. Pile on white cheese.
Once quesadilla cheese is melted, stack it on top of the growing sandwich, followed by newest slice of bread, then flip.
Repeat with red cheese.
To decorate exterior:
Using color mist food color spray, cover middle of sandwich with white color mist.
Cover 2/3 of sandwich with printer paper and spray with green color mist.
Repeat process by covering the green and white portions with printer paper, and spraying red color mist.