Chicken quesadillas is one of those meals that is quick and easy to prepare and usually gets eaten up even faster by the family. When I was a kid, I used to call quesadillas “Mexican grilled cheese”.
Essentially, that is exactly what they are except with the addition of shredded chicken, some spices, and maybe some roasted vegetables.
You can make buffalo chicken quesadillas in a fairly plain way with just some shredded cheese and chicken in between two flour tortillas.
However, if you want to elevate the light snack to be more of a meal, then there are plenty of things to add to the fan-favorite. One of my favorite things to do is sauté off some onions and red bell peppers, then add those to the chicken mix.
I will also add some Mexican spice flare such as chili powder, garlic powder and oregano to add some flavor.
When all these ingredients are added together and pressed between a couple of flour tortillas, the end result is amazing!
Even though chicken quesadillas are fantastic and could be a meal all in their own, sometimes you want to serve them with something else as well.
Well, this question really can be answered with some many different choices to choose from.
For the most part, you can serve your buffalo chicken quesadillas with salsa and some sour cream, but the side dish is also just as important.
Finding something to serve with chicken quesadillas is not going to be very hard to do. You can literally serve just about any kind of side you would find on a Mexican restaurant menu and it will do the trick just fine.
However, there are a few sides to choose from that will work in the best way to complement your buffalo chicken quesadillas.
If you are wanting to go with starch to accompany your meal, then you could go with any number things like rice, beans or chips. These are always going to be the main staple in Mexican cuisine that will work with just about any entrée.
On the other side of things, you may want to go with something a little bit healthier than having a carb overload. For this direction, you could go with a fresh salad from your garden, a wholesome Pico de Gallo made from scratch or even a cold salad made from corn and black beans. Any of these would be a great addition to the meal.
If you wanted to have something a little more substantial or maybe something that isn’t served cold then there are a few options as well. If you have never had chicken tortillas soup or green chili stew, then you absolutely need to. These soups go wonderfully with chicken quesadillas that should always be considered.
- Top 8 Side Dishes To Serve With Chicken Quesadillas
- What To Serve With BBQ Chicken Quesadillas?
- Best Wines To Serve With Chicken Quesadillas
- What Dessert Should Be Served With Chicken Quesadillas?
- Final Words
Top 8 Side Dishes To Serve With Chicken Quesadillas
This is a side dish that is usually the main “go to” when it comes to Mexican cuisine. In fact, if you are ever at a Mexican restaurant, 9 times out of 10, every entrée on the menu is going to be served with rice.
That does not mean that the side dish needs to be just plain old rice. You can always add a few small ingredients to elevate the rice.
One type of rice to go with is going to be cilantro lime rice. This is a healthy and lighter version of some Mexican rice versions that will really make the meal pop!
Once you make the rice, just add some chopped cilantro, salt and lime juice. Mix everything up well and in just seconds you have a wonderful side to accompany the meal.
If you are not a fan of cilantro, like most people, then you can always take a traditional route.
Try going with a Mexican-style rice of ground cumin, tomato, garlic and chili powder. Or you can even just go with plain white rice or wild rice if you are not into all the extra added spices.
Either way, rice is a great side to go with your chicken quesadillas.
2. Mexican Cabbage Slaw
Another great traditional side dish to go with your chicken quesadillas is a fresh cabbage slaw.
The side dish is incredibly easy to make and is also very cheap to purchase as well.
The freshness from the vegetables really makes you feel better about stuffing your face with melted cheese and flour tortillas.
Also, the crunchiness from the vegetables adds a whole other texture to the meal.
The slaw is very easy to make and can really consist of any vegetables you like. But you need to at least have some kind of cabbage like green cabbage, red cabbage or napa cabbage.
Other ingredients like carrots or green onions are also excellent additions. You can also go with a vinaigrette, mayo-based dressing, or just some light vinegar and oil to coat the vegetables.
3. Black Bean, Corn And Tomato Salad
If you are not a fan of leafy greens or crunchy cabbages, then maybe try and go with a salad of black beans, corn, and tomato.
This is a great way to add some freshness to the meal without having to muscle down a bunch of lettuce.
You can also add some fresh chopped cilantro, diced onions and some lime juice to the salad to bring a bit of brightness to the side dish.
4. Pico De Gallo
Just like the black bean and corn salad, another great condiment to try out is Pico de Gallo. If you are someone who likes to have a really chunky salsa, then this is going to be your best bet.
It is not really a side dish so much as it is an accompaniment for the chicken quesadillas.
It is a great option to try out and it does bring some freshness to the meal and the table for the whole family to enjoy!
5. Hatch Pepper Chili Verde Stew
This is one of my favorite things to eat. It is kind of hard to source the peppers at the store considering they are a seasonal vegetable if you live anywhere that is not in the southern states or farther down.
It is a stew that is made from hatch green chili peppers, fresh tomatillos, garlic cloves and yellow onions.
Occasionally some hotter peppers will be added such as jalapenos or habaneros. The stew is usually made with some shredded pork or shredded chicken as well but it really does not have to have it.
Sometimes, this will be used as a sauce instead of stew as well. You may see it covering a large burrito or over some scrambled eggs and chorizo in the morning.
If you are a lover of avocados, then guacamole should be a no-brainer to accompany the chicken quesadillas at the table.
This really is not necessarily a side dish but it could be if you love avocados that much!
Guacamole is a great condiment to eat with quesadillas and really does not take a lot of work to make.
It’s cheap to make, brings a nice fresh element to the meal and has lots of healthy fats and essential vitamins that your body craves on a daily basis.
7. Shrimp Ceviche
If you have never had shrimp ceviche, don’t let it deter you from something quite amazing.
It is very easy to make and the process may scare you but I can assure you that this is how it has been done for centuries.
It’s a delightful combination of chopped shrimp, tomatoes, cilantro and onions that is literally cooked in lime juice and zest.
The acid from the lime juice will actually cook the shrimp completely and add a wonderful bright-tasting flavor.
Make sure the shrimp has been fully cooked before eating it first though. If the idea of cooking shrimp with lime juice scares you, then you can always boil the shrimp first and then add all the other ingredients afterward.
8. Chicken Tortilla Soup
This is another great soup to try with your buffalo chicken quesadillas.
This soup is perfect for a cold winter day or if you are just wanting a little more than just chicken quesadillas for dinner.
The soup is fairly light in terms of consistency so you won’t feel bloated or overly full when finished with dinner either.
Sometimes there are some roasted vegetables like onions and red bell peppers in the soup.
But one thing the soup always needs to have are thin strips of fried tortillas on top to finish off the soup for garnish.
What To Serve With BBQ Chicken Quesadillas?
Barbeque chicken quesadillas are really not all that different from Mexican-style chicken quesadillas.
The only real difference between the two is the barbeque sauce. So, in all honesty, any of these side dishes that I have mentioned already will still work great with this dish.
However, if you wanted to take a different approach and steer clear from the Mexican sides, then just go with your gut.
Try and pair the barbeque chicken enchiladas with sides you would normally eat with barbeque chicken. Any side starch like rice or roasted potatoes will work great.
You can even just roast up some vegetables or go with a nice fresh garden salad on the side.
But if you wanted to stick to a barbeque theme, try making a baked beans side or a light potato salad to accompany the main dish.
Best Wines To Serve With Chicken Quesadillas
If you are trying to pair a wine with your chicken quesadillas, just try to think what type of wine would work best with chicken.
Since you really will not see wine paired with a chicken quesadilla, this is the best way to go about it.
Some great wines to try out will be white wines with a slightly acidic and crisp finish to not overpower the main dish. Pinot Grigio or Rieslings are going to be the best options to go within this case.
If you are not a wine person, then I would suggest go with alcohol that would normally be paired with Mexican food.
You can always try a margarita made with some nice tequila or even an ice-cold beer such as Modelo Negra or Dos Equis.
You can never go wrong with these choices as they go well with all types of Mexican foods.
What Dessert Should Be Served With Chicken Quesadillas?
There really is not a specific type of dessert to pair with chicken quesadillas in all honesty.
Since the main dish is really not very light and it is not all that heavy either, just about any type of dessert will work well to finish off the meal.
There are a lot of fried desserts to choose from in Mexican cuisine and most of them are very similar.
Although some can be a little more difficult than others to execute, there are a couple that are fairly easy.
Sopapillas are a light and air-fried dough that have been covered in cinnamon and sugar and drizzled with honey.
Churros are also very similar with a more wet batter that is fried and served with a rich chocolate sauce.
You could go with something that is not fried and try out a Tres Leche cake. This is basically a basic poke cake that has been soaked in a concoction of milk.
It is a basic white or vanilla cake made from corn or flour that has holes poked in it with a fork.
Then a mixture of condensed milk evaporated milk and cream is poured over the cake to soak in all the sweet goodness. It is really a great ending to a fulfilling meal!
So, when you make a final decision on what to serve with your chicken quesadillas, try not to overthink it too much.
Chicken quesadillas are still a very simple and easy dish to make so the side should reflect that as well.
You don’t want the side dish to become the star of the plate and overshadow the chicken quesadillas.
Anything you decide to go with on this list is sure to be a fan favorite for the whole family!
Kevin has spent 20 years as an Executive Chef, focused heavily on recipe construction and menu development. Today his focus is on writing, consulting to restaurants, and teaching culinary arts. In his spare time, Kevin loves to cook with his lovely wife and kids.