Onion & Smoked Gouda Quesadillas with Bourbon BBQ Sauce

Holy smokes, these were delicious! I combined this recipe for Bourbon Barbecue Sauce with this recipe for BBQ Onion & Smoked Gouda Quesadillas and came up with these sweet & savory appetizers that were a hit at our friends’ Kentucky Derby party. Thankfully, the bbq sauce recipe makes enough to keep what you don’t use in the fridge and douse everything you eat in it for a week or so.


For the sauce:

  • 1/4 cup bourbon (I used 101 proof Wild Turkey)
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup ketcuhup
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 3 scallions, chopped fine
  • 1 Tbsp minced fresh rosemary leaves


For the quesadillas:

  • 6 Tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 1 pound onions, peeled, halved, thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup bbq sauce
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • 8 oz. coarsely grated smoked Gouda cheese (about 2 cups)
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro


For the sauce:

Put everything in a bowl and mix it up. That’s it. Store it in the fridge.


 For the quesadillas:

Preheat the oven to 300°F. Heat 3 Tbsps oil in large nonstick skillet over high heat. Add onions and sauté until almost soft, about 5 minutes. Add barbecue sauce and 2 tablespoons water. Stir until onions are evenly coated, about 2 minutes.

Place 6 tortillas on work surface. Sprinkle 1/6 of cheese, then 1/6 of cilantro and 1/6 of onions on each tortilla. Top each with second tortilla and press to adhere.

Brush skillet with 1 teaspoon oil; heat over medium-high heat. Add as many quesadillas as you can fit in your pan; cook until cheese is melted, about 2 minutes per side. Place on baking sheet in oven. Repeat with remaining quesadillas.

Cut each quesadilla into quarters; arrange on a plate and serve!


We were running super late and fried the quesadillas at the party a couple mint juleps in, so an after picture just didn’t happen. Imagine what you see above, but with a nice toasty tortilla on the top 🙂


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