Quesadilla Burger

This is our healthier, copycat version of our favorite burger at Applebee’s…the Quesadilla Burger!
Quesadilla Burger. Our healthier copycat version of the popular Applebee's burger!

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!!

I’ve always loved Memorial Day.  My memories from when I was little include going to a parade in our small town, then having a cookout for lunch after the parade.  It’s the kickoff to summer…the sign that school is almost done…the weekend we usually plant flowers….Ahhhh….It’s here.

Quesadilla Burger. Our healthier copycat version of the popular Applebee's burger!

One of the best things about Memorial Day? The food.

Several years ago, my son was on an Applebee’s kick. Anytime he was choosing our restaurant, he chose Applebee’s. I found something I loved on the menu.

The Quesadilla Burger.

Then shortly after that, I heard a news report that was telling the most unhealthy things to eat at restaurants.

Guess what the most unhealthy thing to eat at Applebee’s was?

Yep, you guessed it.

The Quesadilla Burger.

Quesadilla Burger. Our healthier copycat version of the popular Applebee's burger!

That brought a challenge to me…recreate the Quesadilla Burger at home!

I didn’t try to make this burger exactly like the one from Applebee’s.  It is just inspired by my favorite restaurant burger.

In order to make it a little lighter, I used lean ground beef (96% lean), and left off the bacon.

That’s a lot of calories saved, right there.

Spray a skillet with some non-stick spray and lightly toast the flour tortillas. This gives them a great little crunch on the outside, but they are still chewy on the inside. If you’d like, you can cut down the flour tortillas a bit to fit the burger better, or just try to make your burgers big and flat. I placed a large mug upside down on the tortillas and cut around them.  Don’t worry…the scraps didn’t go to waste.  The kids gobbled them before I knew it!

Next, layer your burger, cheese, lettuce, and add a mixture of ketchup, light mayo or miracle whip and Pico de Gallo.

Put just a little more Pico de Gallo on for an extra kick.  If you don’t have a recipe you use for Pico, try ours out.  I promise you, it’s easy.  Not as easy as buying a pre-made package in the store, but the homemade taste is soooo worth the 15 minutes it takes to cut up the veggies.

Quesadilla Burger. Our healthier copycat version of the popular Applebee's burger!

Try out this Quesadilla Burger for your Memorial Day Picnic this weekend!

Quesadilla Burger
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A lighter version of my Applebee's favorite!
Serves: 6 servings
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 12 taco-size flour tortillas
  • 12 slices cheddar cheese
  • 1½ cups Pico de Gallo
  • 1½ cups shredded lettuce
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • ½ cup ketchup
  1. Form 2 pounds of ground beef into 6 hamburger patties. To make them fit the flour tortillas better, make the patties thinner, with a diameter of about 4-5 inches. Grill the burgers.
  2. While the burgers are grilling, spray a frying pan with cooking spray. With the stove on medium-low, lightly toast the flour tortillas for about 2-3 minutes on each side. They should be light brown, and still a little chewy on the inside.
  3. Put one slice of cheese on a toasted flour tortilla. Place a burger over the cheese with another slice of cheese on top of the burger.
  4. For the sauce, mix the ketchup and mayonnaise. Mix in ¾ cup Pico de Gallo to the mayonnaise/ketchup mixture.
  5. Spread some of the sauce mixture on each burger, and top with another spoonful of Pico de Gallo and some lettuce. Top with another flour tortilla.
  6. Enjoy!
I used 96% lean ground beef.

You can mayonnaise or Miracle Whip, and even use a light version.

Use taco-size flour tortillas, or the smallest ones you can find.
Nutrition Information
1 sandwich


Ever made Pico de Gallo?  This is our favorite recipe.

Pico de Gallo Fresh Salsa


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