As they get older, my kids are becoming a little more tolerant of big flavours, spices and are better at trying new things.

Recently, my nine-year-old came home from childcare and informed me that she now enjoys a chicken wrap.

So, of course, I invested in some wraps, thinking if she likes a chicken (goujon) wrap, she would probably like other types of toritilla dishes.

These days, with work, school and farm, we have very little time to prepare school-night meals. Wraps can come in handy for a quick, tasty dinner and you can change things up with them - you don't need to make a chicken wrap every time.

Flour tortillas make great mini-pizzas (they bake up in just five minutes) or, as you'll see with this recipe, they also make great quesadillas.

While this recipe is far from a traditional Mexican-style quesadilla (no fresh salsas, no traditional cheeses), it does what it needs to do on a school night: it fills bellies - young and old - and comes together in 20 minutes.

You can use regular chicken mince for this or use chicken breast or thigh cut into small pieces.

I didn't have either of these things on hand, but I did have some pre-made chicken burgers (made from fresh chicken mince). I used them the same way I would a regular chicken mince, into a hot pan and broken up with a wooden spoon.

You can use any kind of cheese you like with these - I really like them with mozzarella, cheddar or a tangier crumbled feta.

When they're ready, serve them warm with a side salad or, if your kids are anti-salad, a side of carrot sticks and sliced apples.

You can use minced beef or pork here too or grilled peppers and courgette to keep it vegetarian.

Quick chicken quesadillas

Janine's recipe for chicken quesadilla. / Janine Kennedy

Serves four


500g minced or diced chicken

2 tbsp rapeseed oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 green chilli pepper, finely chopped (optional)

Juice and zest of one lime (optional)

1 tsp each: chilli powder, cumin, oregano

200ml hot chicken stock

2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

Large handful of washed baby spinach leaves (optional)

4 vine tomatoes, sliced

250g shredded or crumbled cheese (mozzarella, cheddar, or feta)

8 medium sized flour tortilla wraps


1 Preheat your oven to 200°C and line a large baking tray (or two) with parchment.

2 In a large skillet, heat the oil on medium-high and add the onion. Cook for three to four minutes, until lightly softened, then add the chicken and continue to cook for an additional eight to 10 minutes.

3 Add the garlic, chilli (if using), spices and juice and zest of the lime. Cook for an additional two to three minutes, then add the hot chicken stock and simmer until the sauce has reduced.

4 Season with salt and pepper and add the spinach, if using. Cook until the spinach has melted.

5 On the baking trays, arrange four of the tortillas. Sprinkle a bit of cheese on each tortilla, then evenly distribute the chicken filling. Layer on some sliced tomato and then sprinkle some more cheese on top before placing the remaining tortillas on top, making four little tortilla sandwiches.

6 Place another baking tray over the tops of the tortillas and weigh it down with a heavy, oven-safe dish (to press the tortillas down as they bake).

7 Bake the tortillas in the preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes, with the weighed down top pan on top of them the whole time. When they're finished, the cheese should be melted and they should be a golden brown colour.

8 Serve hot with a side salad, apple slices, or carrot sticks and a dollop of plain yoghurt for dipping (or sweet chilli sauce for the kids).

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