The Best Sloppy Joe Quesadilla Recipe

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This Sloppy Joe Quesadilla recipe is the best way to use up leftover sloppy joe meat from the night before! Oozing with cheese, it’s a high-protein, flavor-packed meal you can whip up in minutes for a family-friendly lunch or dinner. 

A stack of sloppy joe quesadilla wedges on a white plate topped with shredded cheese.

What Are Sloppy Joe Quesadillas? 

A sloppy joe quesadilla is exactly what it sounds like – a cheesy quesadilla stuffed full of sloppy joe meat! A fun twist on the classic Tex-Mex recipe, this quesadilla is made with minimal prep time, a quick cook time, and is a fun meal the whole family will be excited to eat. 

Ingredients You Need

Up close photo of a bowl of sloppy joes, a bowl of cheese and tortillas.
  • Sloppy Joe Meat – This is a great way to use up leftover sloppy joe meat you have on hand! 
  • Shredded Cheese – I like cheddar cheese, but any cheese you like best will work great. Mozzarella, pepper jack, or Monterey jack cheese all taste great. 
  • Tortillas – Use large tortillas for the best results. I use flour tortillas but feel free to use whatever soft tortillas you like best. Just make sure to avoid corn tortillas as they’ll break and fall apart! 
  • Optional Toppings – I like to top my quesadilla with pickles and a dollop of sour cream, but this is totally optional. 

Flavor Variations

  • Meat – If you aren’t a fan or don’t have sloppy joe’s on hand, feel free to use cooked ground beef, ground turkey, or even leftover shredded chicken instead. 
  • Tortillas – For a snack option or if you’re feeding little ones, use smaller tortillas to make these quesadillas. They make for fun appetizers or finger foods for parties! 
  • Spice – Kick up the heat with a dash of red pepper flakes if you prefer your food a little on the spicier side. 
  • Veggies – Add a boost of nutrients by including sautéed veggies such as onions, bell peppers, or mushrooms. Your picky eaters won’t even notice they’re there! 

How to Make a Sloppy Joe Quesadilla

  1. Heat a pan over medium-low heat. 
  2. Place a tortilla on the heated pan, and sprinkle a layer of cheese on top. Then, add a layer of the sloppy joe mix, and top it with more cheese. Place a second tortilla on top. 
  1. Cook for several minutes or until the tortilla is lightly browned on the top. Then, flip it over, and cook the other side until it is browned and the cheese is melted. Be careful not to let your tortillas burn! 
  1. Transfer the quesadilla to a plate, allow it to cool slightly, and slice it into four pieces. 
  2. Add your toppings of choice, and serve warm! 

Tips for Success

  • Avoid burning – This sloppy joe quesadilla recipe cooks quickly. So, keep a close eye on the stove, and remove your quesadilla as soon as it is golden and the cheese is gooey. 
  • Don’t overstuff the tortillas – Leave a border of open space around the tortillas to prevent the contents of your quesadilla from oozing out of the shell. 
  • Use a cooling rack – If you’re making lots of quesadillas at once, try transferring them to a wire rack to cool as you cook. This allows the air to distribute evenly and prevents the bottoms from becoming soggy! 
Four sloppy joe quesadilla wedges stacked on top of each other topped with shredded cheese.

What Should I Serve with My Sloppy Joe Quesadilla? 

You can easily enjoy this recipe on its own as a complete meal. It’s super filling! 
Or, pair your quesadillas with sides like: 

How to Store and Reheat

Once cooled, leftovers can be transferred to an airtight container and stored in the refrigerator for four to five days

Reheat in a skillet over medium-warm heat. Or, warm your quesadillas in 30-second intervals in the microwave. We have also used our air fryer on the “reheat” setting to warm these quesadillas.

Up close photo of four sloppy joe quesadilla wedges stacked on a plate.

The Best Sloppy Joe Quesadilla Recipe

This Sloppy Joe Quesadilla recipe is the best way to use up leftover sloppy joe meat from the night before! Oozing with cheese, it’s a high-protein, flavor-packed meal you can whip up in minutes for a family-friendly lunch or dinner. 
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time7 minutes
Total Time12 minutes
Course: Leftovers, Lunch, Main Dish
Cuisine: All American
Keyword: leftovers, quesadilla, shredded cheese, sloppy joe, sloppy joe quesadilla, tortilla
Servings: 4
Calories: 601kcal
Cost: $5.00

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 2 to 3 cups sloppy joe mixture, warmed
  • 4 to 5 cups shredded cheese
  • 8 tortillas (flour, corn, rice, or any gluten-free option)
  • chopped dill pickles optional topping
  • sour cream optional topping

Instructions

  • Heat a pan, large enough to fit the diameter of your tortillas, over low-medium heat.
  • Place the first tortilla on the hot pan. Sprinkle a light layer of shredded cheese. Then add a layer of the warmed sloppy joe mixture. Top the meat with another light layer of cheese. Lastly, add the 2nd tortilla to finish.
    2 to 3 cups sloppy joe mixture, warmed, 4 to 5 cups shredded cheese, 8 tortillas
  • Allow the quesadilla to cook for several minutes. You may need to turn down the heat to low if the cheese is not melting but the tortilla is browning too quickly. Cooking low and slow will produce the best result!
  • Flip the quesadilla once the bottom layer of cheese is melted and the tortilla has slightly browned. Cook another few minutes until the cheese on this side is fully melted. Remove the quesadilla from the pan. Allow to rest and cool for a couple minutes. Use a pizza cutter to slice into several wedges. Top with chopped pickles or dip in sour cream if desired!
    chopped dill pickles, sour cream

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 601kcal

23 Comments

  1. The “and their extra sloppy”. is from Billy Madison and I say the same thing. That or a line from Bob’s Burger “they’re all sloppy and no Joe” 🙂

  2. I love sloppy joes but I would have never thought to serve this way! Brilliant!

    Thanks for sharing (and for linking up to the #SHINEbloghop). I hope you’ll join us again tomorrow!

    Wishing you a lovely evening.
    xoxo

  3. I bet my kiddos would enjoy these. 🙂 They love quesadillas – or cheese moons, as they call the. 😉 Thanks so much for sharing these with us at Savoring Saturdays, Sammi! 🙂

  4. Hi Sammi, Sounds like a great filling for quesadillas – I look forward to trying this! Thanks for sharing. Blessings, Janet

  5. This is such a great idea! My family will love this, thanks for sharing, Pinned 🙂

  6. I’m Mexican and I love quesadillas. But I also love sloppy joes. And now I find a recipe for sloppy joe quesadillas. Could it get any better??? Lol 🙂 I’m sure my kids will love this! Greeting from the Blogger’s Pit Stop.

    -Fabi at myheartofmexico.wordpress.com

  7. Your Sloppy Joe Quesadillas sound delicious and what a great way to use up leftover Sloppy Joe filling! Pinned. Thank you for bringing this delicious recipe to the Hearth and Soul Hop.

  8. Yum! These Sloppy Jo Quesadillas look super delicious! Pinning and stumbling!

  9. You have such a cute blog. This would be perfect dish for my kids. They would love it.

  10. This is a great idea that I’m certain will be a hit with my not-so-little-anymore kids. Thanks for the tip!
    Blessings, Leigh

  11. Great twist on Sloppy Joes!

  12. Yay! I’m so glad to see this “recipe” up on the blog. It’s a winner, folks!

    I have to give a shout out to my friend Kim Bishop for inspiring me to make this tasty creation for the first time. I was at her house one afternoon while she was preparing dinner, and she asked me if I’d ever used leftover sloppy joe meat to make quesadillas. Um..no….but that is BRILLIANT!

    Been hooked ever since.

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