Roasted Eggplant – Healthy Recipes Blog

There’s so much flavor in this roasted eggplant! Seasoned with garlic and cooked in ghee, it’s meaty and flavorful.

Salting it to draw water out and pan-frying it before placing it in the oven prevent sogginess and concentrate its unique flavor.

Roasted eggplant is served on a white plate.

Eggplants are marvelous. I love their tender, creamy texture and intense flavor. I use them in several recipes, including grilled eggplant, eggplant casserole, and eggplant pizza.

Roasted eggplant is especially good. It’s one of my simplest eggplant recipes and one of the best. It works well as a side dish but is substantial enough to be served as a meatless main course.

Jump to:

Ingredients

The ingredients needed to make roasted eggplant.

You’ll only need a few simple ingredients to make this recipe. The exact measurements are listed in the recipe card below. Here’s an overview of what you’ll need:

  • Eggplant: I use one large eggplant in this recipe.
  • Kosher salt: Used to draw water out of the eggplant before baking it.
  • Ghee: Used for pan-frying the eggplant before roasting it. Ghee is clarified butter, simmered to separate the milk solids and water from the fat. It has a high smoke point, making it ideal for high-heat cooking.
  • To season: Black pepper and garlic powder.

Variations

  • You can use another type of fat suitable for high-heat cooking instead of ghee. Good options include avocado oil, refined coconut oil, and refined olive oil, marked as suitable for high heat.
  • Add more spices. I tried adding ½ teaspoon of onion powder, ½ teaspoon of smoked paprika, and a pinch of ground cumin. I liked all of these additions!

Roasted Eggplant Instructions

Here’s an overview of the steps needed to make this recipe. The detailed instructions are included in the recipe card below.

Prepare the Eggplant:

Halve the eggplant lengthwise; slice a thin strip off the rounded edges to create flat eggplant halves. 

Cutting the eggplant.
Slicing a thin strip off the rounded edges of the eggplant.

Make shallow cuts in a crosshatch pattern on the flesh side. Sprinkle the eggplant halves with kosher salt and let them rest for 30 minutes.

Making shallow cuts in a crosshatch pattern on the flesh side of the eggplant.
Salting the eggplant.

After 30 minutes, the eggplant will have visible water droplets on its surface. Pat it dry using paper towels.

Blotting the eggplant.

Cook the Eggplant:

Preheat the oven to 450°F. Heat the ghee over medium-high heat in a large, 12-inch, oven-safe skillet. Place the two eggplant halves in the skillet, flesh side down.

Placing the eggplant in the pan.

Cook the eggplant for about 5 minutes until the bottom is browned. Turn the heat off. Flip the eggplant. Sprinkle it with black pepper and garlic powder.

Flipping the eggplant.

Transfer the skillet to the preheated oven. Roast the eggplant for 25-30 minutes until tender.

Placing the eggplant in the oven.

Serve immediately.

Serving the eggplant.

Expert Tips

  • If the pan becomes too hot when you cook the eggplant, reduce the heat to medium.
  • Add more ghee if the pan becomes too dry. Eggplant has a spongy texture that absorbs oil rapidly; salting it helps, but it’s still possible that you would need to add an extra tablespoon of ghee to the pan. It happens to me every once in a while.
  • It might be tempting to skip salting the eggplant, but please don’t. This step is essential to the success of this recipe.
  • The same goes for pan-frying the eggplant before roasting it. While not as important as salting the eggplant, it dramatically improves the outcome.
  • There’s no need to season the eggplant with additional salt after the initial step of salting.

Recipe FAQs

Why do you salt the eggplant?

The salt draws water out. The crosshatch pattern helps the salt penetrate the eggplant. This process eliminates excess water, prevents sogginess, and helps the eggplant brown and caramelize.

Should I peel the eggplant before roasting?

There’s no need to peel it. The peel of a mature eggplant can be slightly bitter, but salting and roasting it removes that bitterness.

How do you prevent an eggplant from being bitter?

Salting the eggplant and roasting it at a high temperature help mitigate any bitterness.

What is better, grilled or roasted eggplant?

Both are excellent! I love this recipe for grilled eggplant, and it’s quicker than this one, but if I had to choose, I would go with this roasted eggplant because it’s so wonderfully caramelized.

Serving Suggestions

I typically serve roasted eggplant as a side dish. Since I cook it in a 450°F oven, I like to serve it with a main dish that I can cook in the same oven, such as:

As mentioned above, eggplant is substantial and meaty enough to be served as a main course. You can create an eggplant sandwich with almond flour bread. Condiments that go well with eggplant are sriracha mayo, tahini sauce, and tzatziki.

Storing Leftovers

You can keep the leftovers in the fridge, in an airtight container, for up to four days. Enjoy them cold, like antipasti, or reheat them in the microwave, covered.

Roasted eggplant is served on a white plate.

More Eggplant Recipes

Foodie Newsletter

Subscribe to get a weekly recipe plus news and tips!

We won’t send you spam. Unsubscribe at any time.

Recipe Card

Roasted eggplant is served on a white plate.

Pin Recipe Share on Facebook Print Recipe

Roasted Eggplant

There’s so much flavor in this roasted eggplant! Seasoned with garlic and coated in ghee, it’s meaty and flavorful.

Prep Time40 minutes

Cook Time30 minutes

Total Time1 hour 10 minutes

Course: Side Dish

Cuisine: Mediterranean

Servings: 2 servings

Calories: 192kcal

Prevent your screen from going dark

Instructions

  • Halve the eggplant lengthwise and then slice a thin strip off the rounded edges in the same direction to create flat eggplant halves.

  • Make shallow cuts in a crosshatch pattern on the flesh side. Sprinkle the eggplants with 1 teaspoon of salt and let them rest for 30 minutes. The salt will draw water out. The crosshatch pattern helps the salt penetrate the eggplant.

  • After 30 minutes, the eggplant will have visible water droplets on its surface. Pat it dry using paper towels.

  • Preheat the oven to 450°F.

  • Heat the ghee over medium-high heat in a large, 12-inch, oven-safe skillet. I use a cast-iron skillet.

  • Place the two eggplant halves in the skillet, flesh side down. Cook the eggplant for about 5 minutes until the bottom is browned. If the pan becomes too hot, reduce the heat to medium. Add more ghee if the pan becomes too dry.

  • Turn the heat off. Flip the eggplant. Sprinkle it with black pepper and garlic powder.

  • Transfer the skillet to the preheated oven. Roast the eggplant for 25-30 minutes until tender.

  • Serve immediately.

Notes

  • It might be tempting to skip salting the eggplant, but please don’t. This step is essential to the success of this recipe.
  • The same goes for pan-frying the eggplant before roasting it. While not as important as salting the eggplant, it dramatically improves the outcome.
  • There’s no need to peel the eggplant before roasting. The peel of a mature eggplant can be slightly bitter, but salting and roasting it removes that bitterness.
  • There’s no need to season the eggplant with additional salt after the initial step of salting.
  • You can keep the leftovers in the fridge, in an airtight container, for up to four days. Enjoy them cold, like antipasti, or reheat them in the microwave, covered.
  • When calculating the nutrition info, I assumed half the salt remains in the dish. 

Add Your Own Notes

Nutrition per Serving

Serving: 0.5eggplant | Calories: 192kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Sodium: 285mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 8g

SubscribeI send out a weekly newsletter with a recipe and tips. Want these recipes in your inbox? Subscribe today! You can unsubscribe at any time.

Pinterest icon Facebook icon Youtube icon Instagram icon Twitter icon Tiktok icon

DisclaimersMost of our recipes are low-carb (or keto) and gluten-free, but some are not. Please verify that a recipe fits your needs before using it. Recommended and linked products are not guaranteed to be gluten-free. Nutrition info is approximate, and the carb count excludes non-nutritive sweeteners. Nutrition info may contain errors, so please verify it independently. Recipes may contain errors, so please use your common sense when following them. Please read our Terms of Use carefully before using any of our recipes.

❤️ Let’s connect! Follow me on Pinterest, Facebook, TikTok, YouTube, Instagram, or Twitter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *