Abidal was given a standing ovation at the Nou Camp when he replaced Gerard Pique in the 70th minute, with the hosts leading 5-0.
The 33-year-old defender had not played for Barca's senior side in over a year after undergoing a liver transplant last April, having previously had surgery to remove a tumour in March 2011.
Abidal started training again last October and was then able to rejoin his team-mates for squad sessions in mid-December, but it was not until February 21 that he was given the green light to return to competitive action.
The France international featured for the Catalan club's reserve side in a friendly last month, playing 65 minutes against French second division side Istres at Barca's training ground.
Abidal's comeback provided the league leaders with a further boost, with coach Tito Vilanova having returned to the dugout earlier this week following two months in New York undergoing cancer treatment.
Vilanova was on the bench at the Parc des Princes as Barca drew 2-2 with Paris St Germain in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final tie on Tuesday, having spent time in the United States for chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment following surgery on his parotid gland in December.