Mushroom Cuban Quesadillas


At New York City's Golden Diner, chef Samuel Yoo roasts dry-brined mushrooms to build big flavor into his crispy, cheesy quesadillas. "The taste is very similar to a meat-based Reuben, that's why we love it," Yoo says. Here, we've channeled his roasting technique to create a vegetarian Cuban, spiked with tangy pickles and mustard. Keeping the mushrooms uncovered during brining helps them release more liquid, leading to a more concentrated flavor.

Mushroom Reuben Quesadilla
Photo: Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Torie Cox / Prop Styling by Prissy Lee Montiel
Active Time:
30 mins
Refrigerate Time:
8 hrs
Total Time:
9 hrs


  • 8 large fresh portobello mushrooms (about 1 pound 9 ounces), stemmed and gills removed

  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt

  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1 teaspoon grated orange zest

  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided

  • ¼ cup whole-grain Dijon mustard, plus more for serving

  • 4 (9 1/2-inch) flour tortillas

  • 16 (3/4-ounce) Swiss cheese slices

  • 1 cup hamburger dill pickle chips, plus more for serving

  • Sliced scallions, for garnish


  1. Place mushrooms on a rimmed baking sheet. Stir together salt, cumin, garlic powder, pepper, and orange zest in a small bowl. Sprinkle mixture evenly over both sides of mushrooms; arrange mushrooms cavity side up. Refrigerate, uncovered, at least 8 hours or up to 14 hours.

  2. Gently blot mushrooms dry using paper towels, being careful to not remove salt mixture. Drizzle mushrooms all over with 2 tablespoons oil.

  3. Preheat a gas grill to high (450°F to 500°F). Place mushrooms on oiled grates; grill, covered, until slightly charred, 3 to 5 minutes per side. (Alternatively, preheat oven to 450°F. Place mushrooms on a clean large rimmed baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven until mushrooms are browned, about 15 minutes, flipping once halfway through cook time.)

  4. Thinly slice cooked mushrooms; set aside. Heat remaining 1/2 cup oil in a large skillet over medium. Spread 1 tablespoon mustard over 1 tortilla; top with 4 cheese slices, about 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms, and 1/4 cup pickles. Fold tortilla in half. Cook in hot oil until golden brown and crispy, 1 minute and 30 seconds to 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Repeat process with remaining tortillas, mustard, cheese, mushrooms, and pickles.

  5. Cut quesadillas into wedges. Garnish with scallions. Serve with mustard and pickles.

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