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Done in just 15 minutes or less, my Pepperoni Pizza Quesadilla recipe is a tasty twist on the flavors your family loves. Pepperoni, cheese and other customizable toppings makes this an easy, family friendly meal!
Why This Recipe Works
Quesadillas have been a staple around our house for as long as I can remember. They’re so easy to make and my family loves them!
And since my kids love quesadillas and pizza, this seemed like a natural mash up recipe to me!
Quesadillas are one of the first meals my kids learned how to make on their own. They’re just so simple!
The great thing about these pepperoni pizza quesadillas are that everyone can customize them to their own tastes. Keep them simple or add more favorite ingredients, it’s up to you!
A tasty twist on a traditional quesadillas recipe that combines the favorite flavors of pizza, they are perfect for a snack or light dinner. Pair it with a salad and you’ve got a simple, healthy meal for your family!
What is a Quesadilla?
Living in Tex-Mex country, we’ve been eating quesadillas for as long as I can remember. If you’re not familiar with them, they are simply two tortillas filled with cheese and sometimes meats, vegetables, beans and spices.
Then, they are grilled in a sauté pan. Kind of like a more American traditional sandwich, the grilled cheese sandwich. We usually prefer flour tortillas but corn tortillas are not uncommon for quesadillas.
The ingredients to make pizza quesadillas are all fairly simple to find at your local grocery store.
I like to buy store brand when I can because that helps me save money on our grocery budget.
We also prefer the turkey pepperoni because it’s a bit healthier by being lower in sodium and fat. My local grocery stores seem to store the pepperoni packages in different places so that can sometimes make it challenging to find.
Most often, I find it on the pasta and pasta sauce aisle as there is often a small pizza ingredients section. Sometimes I find it near the deli and specialty cheese section. If you don’t find it right away, ask a store employee to help.
The pizza seasoning can be found in the herbs and spices aisle of the grocery store.
Frequently, I will buy a whole block of mozzarella cheese and shred it using my food processor (affiliate link). By shredding the cheese myself, it saves me money and I can freeze any extra for later.
What About the Sauce?
Some people have asked me about this recipe and ask “Where’s the sauce?” Rather than putting it IN the quesadilla like you would add to a traditional pizza crust, we serve the sauce for dipping.
You can use something like my Slow Cooker Homemade Spaghetti Sauce or purchase a prepared sauce at the grocery store.
I think that the pizza flavors really pop this way! Maybe because they’re not overpowered by a bunch of sauce.
How to Make These Easy Quesadillas
Depending on who wants what, I will sometimes sauté all the vegetables together in the same pan (1). Otherwise I will cook them separately, one at a time.
To soften them a bit before adding them, I will saute’ them in a little butter or even olive oil. Remove from pan and set aside.
Cooking the quesadillas is simple. Start by melting a bit of butter in a sauté pan (affiliate link) over medium heat (2).
You can assemble the pizza quesadillas on a cutting board (affiliate link) or directly in the pan. Note, if you choose the latter method, you’ll want to move quickly so the tortilla does cook too fast and burn.
To start, first lay out one tortilla then sprinkle on a bit of the cheese and add the pizza seasoning herb mixture (3).
From there, everyone can add what they like. Some of my family keeps things simple with just pepperoni, cheese and herbs. While others of us will fully load it up by adding the sautéed vegetables (4). You can even add other ingredients like black olives or other toppings.
Once you’ve added the cheese and toppings, carefully transfer the bottom tortilla to the pan. If you are building them in the pan, you are already one step ahead.
Cook on medium high heat. As the cheese begins to melt, add the second, or top, tortilla.
PRO TIP: I usually use a flat spatula to “smoosh” the top and bottom tortillas together so that all the ingredients melt into each other and the quesadilla stays together. Check the bottom of the quesadilla semi-frequently to avoid burning.
Once it has a golden color, use your flat spatula to flip it over. You only need to cook it on the second side for a couple of minutes because the melting of all the ingredients has already been done. Basically, you’re just getting that crispy, golden color on both sides at this point.
Make Ahead Tips
Prepping some of the ingredients in advance for these pepperoni pizza quesadillas will help you save time in the kitchen.
You can chop the vegetables ahead of time and store in the refrigerator for up to one day. Sometimes I even use the frozen onions or bell peppers from the grocery store to save even more time. They’re often less expensive too!
I’ll often take it one step further and sauté the vegetables then store in the refrigerator until I’m ready to assemble my pepperoni quesadilla.
Making the dipping sauce ahead of time is easy too. Just assemble and store in the refrigerator until serving time.
How to Shred and Store Mozzarella Cheese
As I mentioned earlier, I usually buy mozzarella cheese in the big blocks vs. already shredded. Not only does this save me money per ounce it also means there is no anti-caking ingredient in the cheese.
To do so, I cut it into smaller chunks then use my food processor (affiliate link) shredding attachment to shred it all up. It literally only takes minutes!
Then I spread the shredded cheese on a lined baking sheet (affiliate link) lined with a silicone baking mat (affiliate link) or wax paper or aluminum foil. Lining the pan makes it less likely for the cheese to stick to the pan.
I almost always have a stash of shredded mozzarella cheese in my freezer ready for all kinds of recipes.
More Easy Quesadilla Recipes and Recipes Using Pepperoni
If you’re a fan of quesadillas like we are, be sure to check out my other quesadilla recipe ideas like Grilled Mango Poblano Pepper Quesadillas or Greek Quesadillas too! We love experimenting with new flavor combinations.
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If you’ve tried this recipe, let me know how much you enjoyed it by coming back and leaving a comment below and a rating. I love hearing from you!
Pepperoni Pizza Quesadilla
- 8 flour tortillas 8-inch size, may substitute whole wheat flour tortillas
- 2 cups mozzarella cheese shredded
- 1 teaspoon pizza seasoning or substitute ½ teaspoon oregano, ¼ teaspoon basil and ¼ teaspoon garlic salt
- 1 cup pepperoni sliced
- ½ cup onions diced
- ½ cup green bell peppers diced
- ½ cup mushrooms diced
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 8 ounces tomato sauce
- ½ teaspoon pizza seasoning
- Heat non-stick skillet to medium-high heat.
- Place tortilla in skillet and layer cheese, pizza seasoning and toppings on one tortilla.
- Top with another tortilla and heat until crispy, about 3-4 minutes.
- Press down top tortilla into melted ingredients so it will stick together then flip over and grill another 3-4 minutes.
- Let the quesadillas sit for a minute before you slice each into six wedges and serve them with pizza sauce.
For Pizza Dipping Sauce
- In small bowl, combine tomato sauce with ½ teaspoon of pizza seasoning.
- You may also use prepared pizza sauce purchased at the grocery store.
This post originally appeared here in June 2013. It was updated in April 2020 with additional photos, content and video to make it more user friendly!