Sweet and Spicy Eggplant Recipe

post featured image
This post may contain affiliate links, which means that I make a small commission off items you purchase at no additional cost to you. Please read my policy page.

Weeknight meal planning can easily get repetitive. It’s easy to fall into a trap of making pasta every night while forgetting that there are so many other foods that are just as simple to prepare! This sweet and spicy eggplant recipe by author and vegan chef Debbie Adler is just the trick to getting out of your recipe rut! 

In her new cookbook, Sweet, Savory, and Free: Insanely Delicious Plant-Based Recipes Without Any of the Top 8 Food Allergens, Debbie Adler shares more than 100 plant-based recipes free of the top eight food allergens—dairy, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, wheat, fish, and shellfish—plus free of refined sugar and oils. This sweet and spicy eggplant recipe is one of her favorites and we’re so excited to share it with you today.

Sweet and Spicy Eggplant

Author: Debbie Adler
5 from 7 votes
With patience, this sweet and spicy eggplant dish comes together so well texturally and flavorfully. The key is to simmer the eggplant long enough so that it practically melts. In conjunction with the firm chick peas and the bite of the juicy tomatoes it is something special to behold. And if you can bear to share it, this vegan Lebanese eggplant recipe is a sure crowd pleaser.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 3 -4


  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar, (maple syrup or sugar can also be subbed here)
  • 2 large heirloom tomatoes, diced
  • 2 medium eggplants, about 1 pound each, diced into ½-inch pieces
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • ¾ cup fresh basil, chopped
  • topping: 3 tablespoons of flat leaf parsley, finely chopped 


  • Heat the diced onion in a medium sauté pan over medium heat and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  • Add the soy sauce, garlic, curry powder, turmeric, cumin, and black pepper, stirring occasionally, until the spices become fragrant, about 2 minutes.
  • Add the agave nectar, tomatoes, eggplant, and chickpeas and stir to incorporate.
  • Simmer for about 35 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and add the basil. Top each serving with the parsley, and serve over brown rice, quinoa or kasha.


Calories: 174kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0.2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Sodium: 2176mg | Potassium: 1203mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 21g | Vitamin A: 1424IU | Vitamin C: 30mg | Calcium: 87mg | Iron: 3mg
Course dinner
Cuisine Lebanese
Keyword gluten-free Lebanese recipe, sweet and spicy eggplant, vegan eggplant recipe, vegan lebanese recipe

Ehh, Eggplant?

While its name may contain the word “egg” in it, eggplant is a member of the nightshade family and is technically a fruit! Known also as “aubergine,” eggplant is widely consumed all over the world and can be prepared in a variety of delicious ways. Whether you like your eggplant fried, sautéed, or baked, this tasty food contains a hefty dose of health benefits.

  • Building Strong Bones – Eggplant may be one of the prettiest foods out there but did you know that the coloration resulting from natural plant compounds has actually been linked to a reduction in osteoporosis? Eggplant is also naturally high in calcium and iron which aids in improved bone health.
  • Vitamins Abound – Eggplant contains various vitamins including vitamins B6, C, and K along with thiamine, niacin, folic acid, potassium, and more!
  • Full of Fiber – Eggplant is naturally high in fiber which aids in healthy digestion! 

How to Serve Up Your Sweet and Spicy Eggplant Recipe

This sweet and spicy eggplant is perfect atop rice, quinoa, orzo, or other small grains but can also be enjoyed a few other ways! 

  • Never Enough Noodles – You can enjoy this sweet and spicy eggplant recipe with a variety of different noodle shapes and types. Brown rice noodles would be great to sauté in with this recipe but penne and farfalle could also be delicious!
  • That’s a Wrap – This recipe is perfect for enjoying in a pita sandwich along with some falafel or eating with some lavash bread.
  • Party With Peppers (or Mushrooms) – Stuffed peppers pair wonderfully with this recipe and are sure to be a crowd-pleaser! Not so into peppers? Try these stuffed mushrooms instead!

Storing Your Sweet and Spicy Eggplant

This recipe should last 3-5 days in the fridge when kept in an airtight container, should you find yourself with leftovers! If you’d like to freeze your sweet and spicy eggplant, allow it to cool completely before dishing it out into freezer-safe containers where it will stay fresh for up to three months.

More Delicious Eggplant Recipes to Try:

Vegan sweet and spicy eggplant recipe and photos by Debbie Adler from Sweet, Savory, and Free: Insanely Delicious Plant-Based Recipes Without Any of the Top 8 Food Allergens. Article written by Michelle Cehn and edited by Amanda Meth. Please note that this article may contain affiliate links which support our work at World of Vegan.

newsletter offer

Get Our FREE Vegan Shopping List

Whether you love it or hate it, we all have to go grocery shopping, and it can be a little intimidating when you first start eating vegan. Our beginner-friendly shopping list includes all the grocery essentials you'll need make many satisfying vegan meals! You'll also receive a blank shopping list you can customize yourself, plus our weekly e-newsletter with delicious plant-based recipes.

Thank you for subscribing!

Leave a Comment

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

Recipe Rating

  1. Beatriz Buono-Core says:

    5 stars
    This recipe is so good! Best way to eat eggplant 😀

  2. Andrea White says:

    5 stars
    I actually don’t think I’ve ever tried eggplant before, but this recipe makes me want to give it a go!

  3. 5 stars
    Yummy looks so good and I know my family would love this one 🙂

  4. 5 stars
    A recipe I know my husband would love! We’re both looking forward to trying out this recipe. We’ve never eaten Lebanese food or eggplants before so it’ll be a doubly new experience for us. Sounds amazing!

  5. 5 stars
    This is fabulous. We love eggplant and this dish is flavorful with great texture contrasts.
    A winner!

  6. 5 stars
    I’m usually not into eggplant but this recipe is really good!

  7. 5 stars
    Eggplant is one of those foods that I’m quite fond of but don’t find myself cooking at home much. This recipe looks great!

Stay Inspired!

Thank you for subscribing!