Quick and easy grilled eggplant is a delicious and healthy side that takes minutes to make. This vegan side is the perfect accompaniment to grilled meats at cookouts.
This simple grilled eggplant recipe is a wonderful addition to so many main meals and makes for a great vegan side dish. It takes minutes to prep and cook, and it looks so pretty on the plate!
How to grill eggplant
Slice the egg plant lengthwise and place on a baking sheet. You can also slice them into rounds if you’d like.
Salt the eggplant on both sides and place paper towels on the top. Let it rest for 30 minutes to soak up excess moisture.
Combine the olive oil with the seasonings and brush over both sides of the eggplant slices.
Grill on both sides and serve with pine nuts and fresh parsley, for a Mediterranean flare!
Tips for grilling eggplant
- Salt the eggplant to remove excess moisture. This technique is something I always do when cooking with eggplant because of its high water content. To avoid soggy eggplant after cooking, I highly recommend salting the eggplant and allowing it to rest and release its moisture.
- Use a broiler if you don’t have a grill or grill pan. This recipe works great under a broiler. Once the broiler is preheated, place the eggplant on a sheet pan coated with cooking spray or lined with parchment paper. Broil for 2-3 minutes, then flip and broil for another 2-3 minutes; watching it closely so it doesn’t burn.
- Cut the eggplant slices into even thicknesses so that they cook evenly. If they are different thicknesses, some will be overcooked and others will not be cooked all the way through.
- Don’t add any more oil to the eggplant than the recipe suggests. Eggplant is very absorbent and it can become very greasy if you add too much oil.
Frequently asked questions
I like to keep the skins on the eggplants when grilling, but you can remove it with a vegetable peeler if you prefer. The skin on smaller eggplants is thinner, so you really don’t have to, but if it is larger, then it can be tough to eat.
I prefer to serve these eggplants as soon as they ready. They have a quick cook time, so they can be made just before serving. I find that they can become a little soggy if made to far in advance. If you have leftovers or wan to make them ahead of time, place them in single layers, separated by parchment and keep in the fridge. You can reheat them in the oven.
I like to sprinkle the eggplant slices with pine nuts and fresh parsley and then serve with with yogurt or labneh. You can serve the eggplant as an appetizer or as a side with grilled meats and salads.
This grilled eggplant is such a wonderful addition to any weeknight meal or family cookout. It’s so quick and easy, and a great way to get some more veggies into your meal!
For more recipes with eggplant:
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- 2 medium eggplants
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Chopped fresh parsley for serving
- Toasted pine nuts for serving
- Slice eggplant into ¾” thick slices either lengthwise or crosswise.
- Place the eggplant slices on a baking sheet, salt the eggplant on both sides, then apply another clean paper towel on top of the eggplant; let it rest of 30-45 minutes. Then dab the eggplant to remove any excess moisture.
- Combine the olive oil, garlic powder and black pepper in a small bowl. Use a brush to spread the olive oil mixture on both sides of the eggplant.
- Preheat the grill to medium-high heat. Grill for 5 minutes on one side without moving. Then flip the eggplant and grill for 3-4 more minutes.
- Serve with toasted pine nuts, fresh parsley and yogurt, if desired.