Grilled Eggplant

Here’s how to make perfectly grilled eggplant! These tricks make it come out tender every time. Top with sauce as a summer side dish or appetizer. Eggplant can be under appreciated, but this Mediterranean-style vegetable is one of the tastiest around. You’ve got to try this grilled eggplant: it comes out smoky and tender, lightly charred and full of flavor. Top it with a sauce and you’ve got a killer summer side dish or appetizer! We went for two different sauces: a fresh tomato salsa fresca, and a creamy, lightly spicy white BBQ sauce. The combination of the two is spot on. You’ll need to know a few tricks for grilled eggplant to get it just right: here’s what to know! Ingredients for grilled eggplant You don’t even need to top this eggplant with sauces: especially if you’re serving as part of a sandwich or part of a grilled veggie platter. But they’re extra festive, so feel free to add them if you like. Otherwise, the ingredients for grilled eggplant are very basic: Globe eggplant Olive oil Salt Trick 1: make 1/2-inch rounds! There are two tricks you need to know for grilled eggplant. First: slice it into 1/2-inch slices! […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Here’s how to make perfectly grilled eggplant! These tricks make it come out tender every time. Top with sauce as a summer side dish or appetizer.

Grilled eggplant

Eggplant can be under appreciated, but this Mediterranean-style vegetable is one of the tastiest around. You’ve got to try this grilled eggplant: it comes out smoky and tender, lightly charred and full of flavor. Top it with a sauce and you’ve got a killer summer side dish or appetizer! We went for two different sauces: a fresh tomato salsa fresca, and a creamy, lightly spicy white BBQ sauce. The combination of the two is spot on. You’ll need to know a few tricks for grilled eggplant to get it just right: here’s what to know!

Ingredients for grilled eggplant

You don’t even need to top this eggplant with sauces: especially if you’re serving as part of a sandwich or part of a grilled veggie platter. But they’re extra festive, so feel free to add them if you like. Otherwise, the ingredients for grilled eggplant are very basic:

  • Globe eggplant
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
Grilled eggplant

Trick 1: make 1/2-inch rounds!

There are two tricks you need to know for grilled eggplant. First: slice it into 1/2-inch slices! Any thicker and the eggplant comes out charred on the outside, but tough on the inside. Trust us: we tried it (not delicious). You can place half-inch slices right on the grates and they come out perfectly tender.

Trick 2: add olive oil right before grilling!

The other tip for grilled eggplant: add the olive oil right before you cook it! Here’s the thing about eggplant: it sucks up oil like a sponge. If you add the oil too soon, the eggplant sucks it all up and then becomes dry. But if you add it right before grilling, it will stay oiled enough for the grill.

Grilled eggplant

Salt to taste, until the flavor pops

Another thing to note about this recipe: typically we specify exactly how much salt to use. For this recipe, you’ll salt the eggplant afterwards (so salt doesn’t fall off on the grill). Because the size of eggplants can vary, the recipe below indicates simply to add salt to taste. Give it a good sprinkling of kosher salt, then taste and see if the flavor pops. If not, add a little more and taste until it tastes delicious but not salty.

How to grill eggplant: time and temperature

All you really need to know about grilled eggplant, besides those two tips, is the grill temperature and timing. Memorize those few things, and then make this recipe on repeat all summer! Here are the basic steps for how to grill eggplant (or jump to the recipe):

  • Preheat a grill to medium high heat (that’s 375 to 450 degrees Fahrenheit).
  • Thinly slice the eggplant into 1/2-inch rounds.
  • Directly before grilling, rub with olive oil.
  • Grill 4 to 5 minutes per side, until tender and charred. Add salt to taste and enjoy!
Grilled eggplant

Sauces for grilled eggplant

Here’s the fun part: serving your eggplant! Eggplant works with lots of different flavors, from American to Mediterranean. Here’s what we used, and then a few more ideas:

  • Fresh tomato sauce: We went with a salsa fresca to bring in bright tomato flavor; you could also use pico de gallo.
  • White BBQ sauce: Ever tried this? White BBQ sauce is unique and great for drizzling on grilled veggies.
  • Tahini sauce: Eggplant is great with Mediterranean flavors. Try this Tahini Sauce and top with chopped parsley and pomegranate seeds.
  • Pesto: Spoon over Basil Pesto and top with sliced cherry tomatoes. Perfection!
Grilled Eggplant & Tomato Stacked Sandwiches

Or, serve it as a sandwich!

Another great way to serve grilled eggplant: as a sandwich! This Eggplant Sandwich with Pesto is one of our favorite summer grilled meals, inspired by a stop in a hidden sandwich shop on a trip to Italy. It layers up some tasty Italian ingredients like:

  • Grilled eggplant
  • Ripe, juicy tomatoes
  • Fresh mozzarella cheese
  • Basil pesto Make your own if you have basil or get your favorite store bought jar.
  • Kalamata olive spread Full of big flavor! Buy store bought tapenade or make your own.

This grilled eggplant recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free.

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Grilled eggplant

Grilled Eggplant (Perfect Every Time!)


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Here’s how to make perfectly grilled eggplant! These tricks make it come out tender every time. Top with sauce as a summer side dish or appetizer.


Ingredients


Instructions

  1. Preheat a grill to medium-high heat (375 to 450 degrees Fahrenheit).
  2. Directly before grilling (not in advance), slice the eggplant into thin rounds about 1/2” thick (size is important!). Place the slices on a baking sheet and rub both sides with the olive oil. Don’t do this step in advance: the eggplant soaks up lots of the olive oil, so make sure to do it right before grilling.
  3. Place the eggplant directly on the grill grates and grill for about 4 to 5 minutes per side (8 to 10 minutes total), until charred and tender.
  4. Remove from the grill and season generously with kosher salt to taste, until the flavor pops. Serve topped with salsa fresca or pico de gallo and/or white BBQ sauce.

  • Category: Side Dish / Appetizer
  • Method: Grilled
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean

Keywords: Grilled eggplant, How to grill eggplant

More eggplant recipes

Eggplant is one of our favorites because it’s so versatile! There are so many ways to use this nutritious veggie. Here are some of our top eggplant recipes for serving it:

  • Oven Roasted Eggplant Baking until it’s tender makes for unreal flavor. Serve it as a side dish, or toss with pasta!
  • Eggplant Pizzas Eggplant makes the crust of these mini pizzas, covered in garlicky sauce and gooey cheese.
  • Roasted Eggplant Pasta Flavor-packed with roasted eggplant & zesty marinara sauce!
  • Eggplant Caponata Eggplant and Mediterranean vegetables make a tangy, garlicky spread that’s perfect over crusty bread.
  • Grilled Eggplant Parmesan Smoky breaded and grilled eggplant, doused in warm marinara sauce.

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Quick Dinner Idea: 5 Minute Tacos

Need a quick dinner idea? These epic 5-minute tacos are done in a flash, featuring a savory chorizo-style egg filling. Prepare to be amazed! Oh, hi. We see you, hungry eater in need of a quick dinner idea. Do we have the recipe for you! Alex and I are obsessed with finding meals that are three things: quick, delicious, and healthy. But we wanted to push ourselves even further. Is a 5-minute dinner recipe possible? Well, we think we’ve nailed it with this recipe. Of course, you’ll need to be the judge! The star is “chorizo-style eggs”: eggs whisked with spices that magically turn meaty. Top with salsa fresca, red onion, cilantro and well: WOW. You’ve got to try these. Video: Dinner in 5 minutes…really. Best quick dinner idea: 5 Minute Tacos! It all started with a challenge from my sister. I asked her what kind of recipes she’d like to see from A Couple Cooks next. And she asked, “Can you make a 5-minute dinner recipe?” Of course, that got our wheels turning. Because the recipes we get asked about, again and again, are not how to make the best chocolate cake or chocolate chip cookies. Nope, the question […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, Vegetarian Recipes

Need a quick dinner idea? These epic 5-minute tacos are done in a flash, featuring a savory chorizo-style egg filling. Prepare to be amazed!

Quick Dinner Idea: 5 Minute Tacos

Oh, hi. We see you, hungry eater in need of a quick dinner idea. Do we have the recipe for you! Alex and I are obsessed with finding meals that are three things: quick, delicious, and healthy. But we wanted to push ourselves even further. Is a 5-minute dinner recipe possible? Well, we think we’ve nailed it with this recipe. Of course, you’ll need to be the judge! The star is “chorizo-style eggs”: eggs whisked with spices that magically turn meaty. Top with salsa fresca, red onion, cilantro and well: WOW. You’ve got to try these.

Video: Dinner in 5 minutes…really.

Best quick dinner idea: 5 Minute Tacos!

It all started with a challenge from my sister. I asked her what kind of recipes she’d like to see from A Couple Cooks next. And she asked, “Can you make a 5-minute dinner recipe?” Of course, that got our wheels turning. Because the recipes we get asked about, again and again, are not how to make the best chocolate cake or chocolate chip cookies. Nope, the question we’re asked again and again is: What are your top quick dinner ideas?

Since Alex and I often make tacos or quesadillas as quick dinner recipes on weeknights, we settled on a taco. And for the filling? The chorizo-style eggs in our Veggie Burrito Bowl consistently get rave reviews. Magically, whisking cumin, chili powder, and garlic powder into scrambled eggs and cooking them on low heat forms a meaty substance that we make often. So why not use them as a taco filling? We whipped up a batch and served our 5-minute tacos to my sister.

Her response: Whoa. These are SO good.

Quick dinner idea: 5 Minute Tacos

Can you really make them in 5 minutes?

That’s a good question. 5 minutes is pretty ambitious, right? Our answer: Yes, these tacos can be made in 5 minutes. Alex tried and as a speed demon, and made it happen! But here’s what you need to pull it off in 5 minutes:

  • A quick chef who’s confident in the kitchen
  • No toddlers interrupting things!
  • Memorizing the recipe before you start (we’ve made it easy to memorize using 1/2 tablespoon of all the spices and olive oil)

Depending on your environment, it may take you between 5 and 10 minutes to finish this recipe. But either way: it’s one of the quickest dinner ideas you’ll make.

5 Minute Tacos
These chorizo-style eggs not only taste like meat…they look like it!

What are chorizo-style eggs?

The filling for these quick tacos we call chorizo-style eggs. What’s that? Does it have chorizo sausage? Not at all! This quick dinner idea is vegetarian, and the eggs stand-in for meat. Adding a few magical spices to eggs makes them taste⁠—and look⁠—seriously meaty! The texture looks oddly similar to meat: but it’s only eggs. We stumbled on this trick last year and we use it all the time. Here’s how it works:

  • Whisk together 4 eggs.
  • Whisk in equal parts chili powder, garlic powder, and cumin: we’ve used 1/2 tablespoon of each to make it easy to remember. These savory spices conjure up the flavor of meat, especially the garlic and cumin combo.
  • Heat a drizzle of olive oil over medium low heat, then add the eggs. Wait for a few seconds while they start to solidify, then start to scrape them into gentle folds. As you scrape, they’ll start to form together into a meat-like texture. Don’t scrape too much or you’ll make too small of pieces: just enough for that it comes together! This process will take only a few minutes.
  • Pop into a taco and enjoy!
Quick Dinner Idea: 5 Minute Tacos

How to keep tortillas warm?

Lastly: let’s talk about keeping tortillas warm! A warm tortilla is key to a good taco. Usually we warm our tortillas over a gas flame on the stovetop (see How to Warm Tortillas). You can do that in this recipe as you’re cooking the eggs. Or you can skip it if you’re just trying to get dinner on the table fast! Tortillas start cooling the moment they’re off the flame, so they can end up brittle within minutes. Luckily, there’s an invention for this problem that’s inexpensive and does the trick.

It’s a tortilla warmer! Alex and I have not found a better way to keep our tortillas warm. It’s basically an insulated pouch traps in the heat and keeps them perfectly heated. You definitely don’t need it for this recipe, but we like having one around our household at the rate we eat tacos around here!

Get one: Tortilla warmer $14

More toppings for this quick dinner idea

Of course, you can use any toppings you’d like for these 5-minute tacos! This quick dinner idea is completely customizable to what you have in your kitchen. If you have some things laying around in your refrigerator, this is the perfect way to use them! Here are a few more adders we’d suggest: but only if you have them on hand:

  • Sour cream or cashew cream
  • Avocado slices
  • Chopped tomatoes
  • Shredded cheese
  • Sliced cabbage
  • A spritz of lime juice

This recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free.

Print
Quick Dinner Idea: 5 Minute Tacos

Quick Dinner Idea: 5-Minute Tacos


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (6 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 2 minute
  • Cook Time: 3 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings (4 tacos)

Description

Need a quick dinner idea? These epic 5-minute tacos are done in a flash, featuring a savory chorizo-style egg filling. Prepare to be amazed!


Ingredients

  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 taco sized tortillas or 8 mini tortillas
  • Purchased salsa fresca or pico de gallo
  • 1 handful thinly sliced red onion
  • Torn cilantro leaves
  • Hot sauce

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the 4 eggs. Add the chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, and kosher salt, and whisk until combined.
  2. In a skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the eggs and cook over medium low heat, scraping as the eggs solidify, about 3 to 4 minutes total. As you scrape, they’ll start to form together into a meat-like texture. Don’t scrape too much or you’ll make too small of pieces: just enough for that it comes together! 
  3. If time, warm and char the tortillas by placing them on an open gas flame on medium for a few seconds per side, flipping with tongs, until they are slightly blackened and warm. (See How to Warm Tortillas.)
  4. Top with salsa fresca (drain extra liquid before serving), thin sliced red onions, torn cilantro leaves, and hot sauce.
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Mexican Inspired

Keywords: Quick dinner idea, 5 minute dinner, Vegetarian tacos, Egg tacos

More fast and easy dinner recipes

Here at A Couple Cooks, we love fast and easy dinner recipes! Here are some of our favorite seriously fast recipes and collections:

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, Vegetarian Recipes