These Sweet Potato and Vegan Mince Quesadillas are fast becoming a favourite in my household. They are very much like having a fried, flat taco. If you serve them straight out of the pan, the bread will also have a satisfying crunch as you bite down or cut into it. Sweet, spicy and dripping with vegan cheese, this is good quality street food served right out of your own kitchen.
The great thing is that you can make the mix ahead of time (a few days if you wish), and then simply knock up the quesadillas to order, putting dinner on the table in a matter of 15 minutes or so. You can get your wraps from the supermarket, but I got mine from a store local to me that sells Turkish flat bread. They are slightly more substantial than the standard wraps, sort of like a large, round pitta. Supermarket wraps work just as well, so it’s fine to use those.
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To keep this dish as fast and as easy as possible I have used a lot of convenience ingredients, such as frozen green beans and garlic puree. You can also use frozen sweet potato instead of peeling and dicing your own, which will cut the time down further. There are also a lot of sauces in this, such as ketchup and BBQ sauce. This might not be a meal for purist, but it isn’t meant to be. This is fast, dirty and fun food made the vegan way.
What you need to make these Sweet Potato and Vegan Mince Quesadillas.
Fresh or frozen, sweet potato is at the heart of this dish. Frozen sweet potato can be obtained from a lot of supermarkets in bags containing about 700 grams worth. You’ll either want to use half a bag of frozen for this recipe, or two medium-sized fresh potatoes.
There are many varieties of vegan mince available now, with new brands being introduced often. Some are gluten-free if you have an intolerance or are coeliac. Most are not, so you do need to check the label. I used a frozen mince from Plant Revolution in mine, but fresh is just as good.
Frozen Green Beans:
I always have frozen vegetables in my freezer, and green beans are the ones I turn to most often. They are a fantastic convenience food that you can add to stir-fries, curries and many other dishes. I try to always make sure that I don’t overcook them, so that they still retain some bite when the meal is served.
This is another great convenience food. I keep a regular stock of pureed garlic and ginger, which you can buy either in jars or frozen into cubes. They are perfect for when you want to add them quickly and don’t feel like peeling and chopping. Your local supermarket will more than likely have both.
Tomato ketchup, barbecue sauce, soy sauce and liquid smoke are all used in this dish to get sweetness and depth of flavour fast. Liquid smoke is the only one that might be hard to find. You can easily get it online, however.
This dish is entirely possible to make gluten-free, but you will need to tweak a few things. The mince and the wraps are the obvious ones, but some of the sauces also contain gluten and these will need to be replaced. Swapping the soy sauces for Tamari will work, and check the labels on your ketchup and BBQ sauce.
If you want more vegan mince recipes, try this Vegan Bolognese.
Sweet Potato and Vegan Mince Quesadillas
Can be made gluten-free
For the Filling:
- 3 tbsp oil
- 350 g frozen diced sweet potato (or 2 medium fresh, peeled and diced)
- A large handful of frozen green beans
- 1 x 400g pack vegan mince
- 2 tsp garlic puree
- 100 g tomato puree
- 1 can chopped tomatoes
- 200 ml water
- 50 ml dark soy sauce
- 3 tbsp liquid smoke
- 75 ml tomato ketchup
- 50 ml BBQ sauce
- 2 tbsp smoked paprika
- 2 tbsp BBQ seasoning
- 1 tbsp mild chilli powder
- A good pinch of salt
- A large handful of fresh coriander chopped
For the Quesadillas:
- A little oil for frying
- 8 tortilla wraps
- 200 g vegan cheese grated
- To make the filling, heat the oil in a large saucepan or wok and cook the sweet potato pieces, on a medium heat, for about 5 minutes, until they are just starting to brown. Now add the frozen green beans and cook for another 5 minutes.
- Put in the mince and continue cooking, stirring often, until it had browned (about 6-7 minutes). Stir in the garlic pure and give it couple of minutes more, until the aromas come through.
- Now add all of the other filling ingredients, bring to the boil and simmer for about 20 minutes, until most of the liquid has evaporated. Once this stage has been reached, turn off the heat and set the sauce aside.
- To make the final quesadillas, heat a little of the frying oil in a frying pan, until quite hot, and place one of the wraps into the pan. While it is cooking, spoon some of the filling onto one half of the wrap, so that it’s about 1 ½ cm high. Sprinkle on some of the grated cheese and the fold the empty half of the wrap over the top. Cook for a couple more minutes on a medium heat and then use a spatula to gently flip the quesadilla over. Cook again for about another 5 minutes, until it has browned and the cheese has melted, then transfer the quesadilla over to a baking tray.
- Repeat this process until the mixture is used up. You can keep the cooked quesadillas warm in a low oven while you are finishing off the others. Serve 1-2 per person.
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