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Here’s how to make the best roasted eggplant! Baking until tender makes for unreal flavor. Serve as a side dish or toss with pasta.
The best way to cook eggplant? Try this roasted eggplant! Take one bite and you’ll be singing its praises: it’s silky and tender, seasoned simply with garlic and basil. Serve it as an easy side dish, or toss it with pasta for a tasty dinner. It transforms into this Roasted Eggplant Pasta in a flash. This method works for diced eggplant or eggplant cut into large slices. It turns out so tasty, we’ve been making it on repeat for years. Ready to roast?
How to make roasted eggplant (diced or sliced)
This roasted eggplant is very easy to make: the hardest part is simply waiting for it to come out of the oven! This recipe gets the eggplant perfectly tender and charred. You can roast eggplant diced, like we have here, or slice it into rounds or long lengthwise pieces (planks). The result is the same either way! Here’s what to do:
- Chop: Cut 2 eggplants into 1-inch diced pieces, into round slices, or oblong slices.
- Mix with olive oil and salt: Mix with ¼ cup olive oil and ¾ teaspoon salt. Eggplant soaks up the oil in an instant, so mix it right as soon as the oil hits its flesh.
- Roast at 425 degrees: Roast for about 30 to 35 minutes until the eggplant is browned and tender. Because eggplant has so much water, it will deflate quite a bit. The roasted pieces come out much smaller!
- Flavor: Mix with grated garlic and basil, or other flavors of your choice!
How to cut eggplant in this recipe
What’s the best way to dice eggplant? In this roasted eggplant recipe, you’ll need to cut the veggie into 1-inch chunks. They’ll seem larger than you expect, but that’s okay: they shrink quite a bit while roasting. Here’s the basic method for how to cut eggplant:
- Using a large chef’s knife, slice off the top and bottom of the eggplant.
- Stand the eggplant up and cut thin slices lengthwise, 1-inch thick.
- For diced eggplant, stack the slices and cut them into strips. Turn the strips and cut them crosswise to the desired size.
Is salting eggplant necessary?
Many eggplant recipes call for adding salt to the eggplant, then letting it drain for 1 hour before cooking a recipe. Conventional wisdom was that this helped to extract some of the bitterness from the eggplant. But if you’re like us, you’re starved for time already. Who has 1 hour to salt and drain their eggplant? Is this extra step really necessary?
After some research, guess what we found? Salting and draining eggplant is not necessary! According to Epicurious, this used to be standard practice with eggplants years ago because they were more bitter. Today’s eggplants are bred to be less bitter, so there’s no need to waste an hour salting the eggplant. Now you know!
Ways to serve roasted eggplant
This roasted eggplant is so full of flavor, you’ll want to make it for every meal! (We do.) The flavors are Mediterranean style, so it works especially well with meals with an Italian or Mediterranean vibe. Here are a few ways we’d serve it:
- As a side with pasta. Try it with fettuccine alfredo, baked rigatoni or vodka sauce pasta.
- In pasta! Try our roasted eggplant pasta with our best marinara sauce.
- On pizza. Throw roasted eggplant onto a cheese pizza for an even tastier pie.
- As planks served over a whole grain. Roast it as planks and cover with quinoa, like in our herbed quinoa with grilled eggplant.
More eggplant recipes
Here are a few more of our favorite eggplant recipes to serve this tasty veggie:
- Try our favorite classic recipe, Eggplant Parmesan
- Opt for stunning Eggplant Lasagna or Eggplant Rollatini
- Use eggplant for the crust in these Easy Eggplant Pizzas
- Make quick and easy Sauteed Eggplant
- Make the Best-Ever Eggplant Meatballs, which have a surprisingly juicy texture
- Go for Eggplant Caponata, an Italian appetizer that’s bursting with flavor
- Try Japanese Eggplant with Garlic & Ginger
- Opt for an Eggplant Sandwich with Tomato & Pesto
This roasted eggplant recipe is…
Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free, and gluten-free.Print
Here’s how to make the best roasted eggplant! Baking until tender makes for unreal flavor. Serve as a side dish or toss with pasta!
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 medium to large eggplants (about 2 pounds)
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon grated garlic
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil or Italian parsley
- Freshly ground pepper
- Preheat an oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Cut the eggplant into 1-inch chunks, or you can cut it into long planks or round slices. In a large bowl, quickly mix with olive oil and kosher salt and fresh ground pepper (the eggplant soaks up the oil in an instant, so mix as soon as you add it!). Pour the eggplant onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and spread it into an even layer.
- Roast for 30 to 35 minutes, until browned and very tender, gently stirring the sheet at about the 25 minute mark. (If you’re roasting eggplant planks, flip the planks at 20 minutes and cook 35 to 40 minutes total, until browned and tender.)
- Remove from the oven and gently toss with the garlic and herbs, making sure to spread out any chunks of garlic that stick together. The eggplant will be very tender so handle it gently. Serve as a side dish, or as Roasted Eggplant Pasta or in an Eggplant Sandwich.
- Category: Side Dish
- Method: Roasted
- Cuisine: Mediterranean
Keywords: Roasted Eggplant, How to roast eggplant