Eggplant Shakshuka

This eggplant shakshuka adds tender sautéed eggplant and Moroccan spice blend, ras el hanout, to this classic poached egg and tomato sauce meal.

A cast-iron skillet filled with eggplant shakshuka made with poached eggs in a tomato and eggplant sauce, with feta scattered over the top.

This eggplant shakshuka may change your feelings about eggplant. Forever. The sultry, smoky flavor of the ras al hanout spice blend does the heavy lifting here, and the sauce that results just may inspire you to put down your fork and ponder other uses for it. And that eggplant? Almost becomes an afterthought.–Jenny Howard

Eggplant Shakshuka

  • Quick Glance
  • Quick Glance
  • 35 M
  • 45 M
  • Serves 3
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Ingredients

  • For the eggplant shakshuka
  • For serving

Directions

Make the eggplant shakshuka

Preheat the oven to 400°F (204°C).

Trim the stem end of the eggplant and then cut the eggplant in half lengthwise. Quarter each half lengthwise to create 8 full-length wedges.

Tester tip: You can always thickly slice the eggplant crosswise into circles and then slice them in half if you prefer a presentation that’s a little less visually stunning and a little easier to scoop from the skillet.

In a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat, warm 3 tablespoons of oil until shimmering but not smoking. Working in batches if necessary to keep from crowding the pan, fry the eggplant until well-browned, 4 to 5 minutes per side. It may be necessary to add an additional tablespoon oil between batches. Transfer the eggplant to a plate.

Reduce the heat to medium and add the onion to the skillet along with another tablespoon of oil. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.

Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Add the ras el hanout, smoked paprika, tomato paste, and sugar and stir well. Pour in the tomato passata and season generously with salt and pepper.

Tester tip: If the sauce seems a touch too thick at this point, simply stir in a little water to loosen it slightly. Figure up to 1/3 or even 1/2 cup water as needed.

Arrange the eggplant wedges in the sauce and simmer until the eggplant is fork-tender but not mushy, 5 to 10 minutes.

Remove the skillet from the heat. Taste the sauce and, if desired, adjust the seasoning.

Make 6 small gaps in the sauce between the eggplant wedges.

Working with 1 egg at a time, crack the egg over a bowl, allowing a little of the white to fall away. Place the egg in a small bowl or saucer and pour it into a gap in the sauce. Repeat with the remaining eggs. Reserve the remaining egg whites for another use.

Sprinkle half the feta over the eggs and sauce. If desired, drizzle a little more oil over everything.

Slide the skillet in the preheated oven and cook until the eggs reach the desired doneness, about 5 minutes if you like the yolks still runny and about 7 minutes for eggs cooked to medium.

To serve

Scatter with the remaining feta. If desired, drizzle the shakshuka with a little more olive oil, sprinkle with the cilantro and/or chiles, add a pinch of salt, and don’t forget some toasted sourdough bread to mop up every last bit of sauce.

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    Spicier Eggplant Shakshuka

    • Tux variation

      To warm things up in this shakshuka, we like to spike it with a modest (or maybe not-so-modest) dollop of harissa or a sprinkle of dried chile such as Aleppo pepper directly into the sauce as it simmers. The optional fresh chile slices at the end are, of course, still optional. You do you.

    Recipe Testers' Reviews

    Shakshuka is a favorite at our house. This recipe appealed to me because of the spicy and smoky flavor profile and the excuse to bring out my ras el hanout. This recipe did not disappoint. The flavour was complex and warming and the aromas filled my kitchen with the expectation of a great meal!

    The eggplant texture was meaty with a bit of creamy. The eggs were the usual sinful offering of soft, creamy yolk mixing with tomato-y and cheese-y neighborings. I liked that not all the egg white was used as this increased the richness of the sauce. The final sprinkling of cilantro and fresh feta freshened up the flavors in a complimentary way.

    Of course, I served this on slices of toasted sourdough bread! My family of three feasted on this for dinner and I still had a leftover portion for my work lunch the following day. I just added a fresh egg which cooked while the shakshuka warmed up in the microwave. Very successful leftover shakshuka and great eggplant dish!

    I’ve always wanted to try shakshuka but I tend to be at a brunch restaurant when I see it on the menu and French toast will always be my order in the morning. This is a lovely, flavorful dish. It’s surprisingly easy to make and simple to clean up, which is a bonus.

    I used store-bought ras al hanout and wish I'd invested in a premium one or made my own as this dish deserves it. Deep flavors and exotic aromas filled the house. We dove right in and had this hearty meal with sourdough. A visually stunning dish that can be easily individualized with ramekins to switch from homey casual to dinner party chic.

    The smoky eggplant is lovely and, for some fussy eaters, chopping it smaller may help with the texture. We used lovely fresh eggs that really shone in this dish. I cooked the eggs over easy for fussy eaters. I used cilantro and 1 small green jalapeno, which I julienned.

    This is a meal you want to cook with your friends so they can see how these flavors can build in complexities. Then, devour it all, sopping up with great bread.

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