Crisp fall nights remind me just how much I love roasted veggies. Flavorful, satisfying plus easy to make—this roasted eggplant is a perfect example. Tender and delicious served both warm and cold, try it on top of your next salad!
Eggplant for One
So, full disclosure, my husband Doug is mildly allergic to eggplant. But I’m not! So I make this dish mostly just for me. A simple roasting recipe is easy to make for one. It’s also easy to make another sheet pan of different veggies and everyone’s happy.
I love eggplant because of the luscious way that it absorbs the olive oil. This is a great time to use the good stuff. A little salt, some simple seasoning, and the eggplant is good to go to the oven.
It’s so, so good warm and I’m delighted to tell you that it’s also great cold or room temp–transform your leftovers into a cold dish. Don’t worry, I’ve got ideas for you.
For eggplant so good, you won’t want to share. – Linds x
How to Pick the Perfect Eggplant:
- What to look for: Start with firm, heavy, shiny-skinned eggplant. Avoid eggplants with bruises, soft spots, or light in weight (this often means they’re dry).
- Can I use any variety of eggplant? Yup! Although each variety has a different flavor profile and texture–for example, Globe/American eggplant (what you’ll find most often at the grocery store) has a mild flavor and meaty texture. Chinese/Japanese eggplant has thin skin and a creamy texture. (More about eggplant varieties here). I most often use Globe eggplants.
- How to prevent bitter eggplant? Eggplant traditionally was salted to reduce its bitterness. That said, current-day eggplant has been bred to remove most of its bitterness. The only time you may still have a bitter eggplant is if your eggplant is old, or really large.
How To Cut Eggplant
- Remove the top and bottom.
- Cut into 1 1/2″ thick strips.
- Slice strips into cubes.
- When slicing, if you find any bruised pieces, discard them.
Do you peel an eggplant before roasting?
Eggplant skin is totally edible, AND it prevents the eggplant from getting mushy. In fact, when roasted, the skin is my favorite part as it carmelizes. Keep in mind that larger eggplants have tougher skin, while the skin on smaller ones is easier to eat.
If you do want to peel your eggplant, I suggest doing this with a sharp knife and only removing the skin in stripes to keep the eggplant more intact.
Other Ways to Season Eggplant
Eggplant is great at absorbing all the flavors of your favorite oil, spice or sauce, so feel free to use whatever you love. Here are some ideas for you…
- Mediterranean roasted eggplant: oregano, allspice, and a touch of cinnamon.
- Chipotle eggplant: paprika, lime juice, and cumin.
- Italian eggplant: Italian seasoning and garlic powder. Or douse in parmesan, similar to my parmesan roasted broccoli or smashed brussel sprouts.
How to Make Roasted Eggplant
Looking for roasted eggplant that’s legit crispy? I’ve got you. The trick is to keep your cubes 1″ in size and not over-cook them. You also want to make sure each slice is touching the pan, rather than layered on top of each other. Here are step-by-step pics:
1. Slice your eggplant (tips above).
2. Toss together with oil and seasoning in a large bowl.
3. Spread slices out onto a baking sheet. Bake until just tender.
4. Toss eggplant halfway through baking.
What To Do With Roasted Eggplant
Aside from serving this as a side dish, you can use roasted eggplant a handful of delicious ways:
- With toppings: Such as balsamic glaze, labneh, or a dollop of Greek yogurt.
- Spread: Discard the skin, mash, and use it as a spread on toast.
- Curry: Add it to your next chicken curry.
- Stir fries: Delicious way to soak up your keto chicken stir fry sauce.
- Eggs: Mix them into your next omelet, scramble, or egg muffins.
- Salads: A delicious mix-in for keto salads.
- Make a platter of roasted veggies: Alongside other classics like roasted brussels sprouts, roasted cauliflower, roasted onions, or roasted broccolini.
More Eggplant Recipes
Roasted EggplantPrint Recipe Pin Recipe
- 1 1/2 pounds eggplants about 2 medium
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- Preheat oven to 450F. Option to line a baking sheet with parchment paper for easy cleanup (also the best way to keep the sugars that will carmelize on the surface of the eggplant).
- Remove the top/bottom of the eggplant. Slice it into 1" strips. Cut the strips into cubes. Place in a large bowl, and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss to combine with your hands.
- Spread eggplant cubes onto the prepared baking sheet in a single layer. Be sure not to overcrowd the slices, you may need to divide them on to 2 sheets. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes. Toss the eggplant on the baking sheet, and bake for another 10 minutes. You'll know they're done once their texture has softened to your liking (be sure not to overbake, otherwise the eggplant will become mushy)
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