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Roasted Greek Eggplant with Plant-Based Feta on white platter

roasted greek eggplant with plant-based feta


  • Author: Jackie Newgent
  • Total Time: 42 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to stomp into a restaurant kitchen and tell them that no matter how delicious my entrée might have been, my side dish was second-rate, at best. (I haven’t yet done this … yet!!!) Sides shouldn’t be thought of as afterthoughts. They deserve as much culinary love and attention as the main dish, even for home cooks. If you’re looking for a wow-worthy side dish, this roasted eggplant recipe is it. The finishing touches of fresh herbs, plant-based feta, and lemon zest make this side more like the star of the plate.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 3 tablespoons no-sugar-added marinara sauce of choice (or try DIY Simple No-Sugar-Added Marinara Sauce below)
  • Juice and zest of 1/2 small lemon (1 tablespoon juice), divided
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 small (14-ounce) eggplants, each quartered lengthwise, stems removed
  • 3 tablespoons chopped, fresh, flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint or 1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 3 tablespoons finely crumbled plant-based feta cheese*

*Note: Ideally, choose vegan cheese products based on tree nuts.


Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. In a small bowl, whisk together the marinara sauce, lemon juice, oil, garlic, salt, and cinnamon. Arrange the eggplant wedges, skin side down, on a baking sheet lined with a silicone baking mat, or unbleached parchment paper- lined baking sheet. Generously brush the cut surfaces of the eggplant wedges with the marinara mixture.
  2. Roast the eggplant wedges until fully cooked, about 30 minutes.
  3. Transfer to a platter, sprinkle with the parsley, mint, plant-based feta, and lemon zest, and serve. (Hint: For an extra-luscious appearance, consider spritzing the roasted eggplant with organic olive oil cooking spray before garnishing.)

Notes

Tip: Enjoy a saucier side? Simply double up on the mixture of marinara sauce, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, sea salt, and cinnamon!

Note: I use plenty of fresh basil to make my DIY Simple No-Sugar-Added Marinara Sauce. But in the actual Roasted Greek Eggplant with Plant-Based Feta recipe, you’ll be using parsley and mint.

DIY Simple No-Sugar-Added Marinara Sauce: In a medium saucepan, cook 2 minced garlic cloves in 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil over medium heat for 1 minute. Add 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes and a few pinches of sea salt; bring just to a boil over high, then re- duce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in 2 tablespoons (or more!) finely chopped fresh basil. That’s it. Enjoy it! (Makes 3 cups.)

Salt, Pepper, and Cinnamon: Stash cinnamon next to your salt and pepper shakers. You can use cinnamon to add flavor and a touch of intriguing sweetness to both savory and sweet dishes instead of adding more salt or sugar. Try it.

Recipes for Roasted Greek Eggplant with Plant-Based Feta and DIY Simple No-Sugar-Added Marinara Sauce are reprinted from The Plant-Based Diabetes Cookbook by Jackie Newgent, RDN, CDN (HCI Books, October 2023).

Diabetes Choices/Exchanges: 2 1⁄2 vegetable, 1 fat

(Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.)

  • Prep Time: 12 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Roasting
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean, Greek

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 2 wedges
  • Calories: 110
  • Sugar: 6g includes 0g added sugars
  • Sodium: 250mg
  • Fat: 6g
  • Saturated Fat: 2.5g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 13g
  • Fiber: 5g
  • Protein: 2g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg

Keywords: eggplant, roasted eggplant, greek cuisine, side dish, vegan side dish, plant-based side dish, The Plant-Based Diabetes Cookbook