Dinner/ Recipes

baingan bharta

Baingan Bharta is, hands down, my absolute favorite thing to order at Indian food restaurants.

It’s creamy (without any cream!), spicy, hearty and just plain delicious. The thing I crave late at night and almost am tempted to drive to Torch of India in my pajamas and fuzzy slippers for a to-go order. Would that be weird? Don’t answer that. I seriously can never get enough of it’s roasted eggplant goodness.

Just look at that golden caramelized color!

Little eggplants are saying “eat me! eat meeeeee!”

If you’re an Indian food newbie, this recipe is a great way to start! It’s probably the easiest/least time consuming of any of my Indian recipes (channa masala and tikka masala) and you’ll never believe it’s actually vegan. I always think there’s secret cream in my baingan bartha but really, the secret is just pureeing everything together at the end!

Serve this with naan bread and channa masala for a deliciously vegetarian Indian feast. It’s quite a tasty way to eat your veggies, indeed!

Yum. Make this very, very, very soon. I promise you won’t regret it!

Baingan Bharta

serves 4-6

Print this recipe!


1 large eggplant

1 T olive oil

1 T canola oil

1 yellow onion

1 jalapeno pepper

1 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, minced

1 15-oz can diced tomatoes

3 tsp garam masala

1 tsp cumin seeds (not ground cumin)

1 tsp salt

1 tsp turmeric

1 bunch cilantro, chopped


Preheat oven to 400. Slice eggplant lengthwise and sprinkle salt on the fleshy side. Rub both sides with olive oil and roast, skin side up for 25-30 minutes until tender. When the timer goes off, switch oven to broil and roast another five minutes until caramelized and golden.

While the eggplant is roasting, chop your onion, jalapeno and ginger. Heat up the canola oil in a large skillet and add the onion. Saute for five minutes until tender then add jalapeno and ginger and saute another five minutes. Add spices and stir well.

When the eggplant halves have cooled enough, scoop out the flesh into a bowl and remove as many seeds as you can but don’t stress out over it. Then, add the eggplant and diced tomatoes to the onion mixture and stir together.Β  Cook for five minutes.

Carefully ladle mixture into blender or food processor and process until smooth. Serve with brown rice or naan bread with cilantro scattered on top.


1 hour


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  • Baking 'n' Books
    June 10, 2011 at 4:45 am

    I’m not sure how I feel about eggplant yet. I’ve had mixed results, but it’s good grilled. Have you tried Eggplant Hummus?! That’s good too – but I find a spice tinge – so perhaps that’s what Indian food is mostly like though?

    • Laura (Blogging Over Thyme)
      June 10, 2011 at 9:36 am

      Baby/Italian eggplant is so much better (less seeds, less bitter) than the normal big variety!

      • Baking 'n' Books
        June 10, 2011 at 10:52 am

        Thanks! I’ll have to look for those…

  • Victoria C.
    June 10, 2011 at 4:48 am

    OMG! This is my absolute favorite Indian dish but it is rarely on menus around these parts. If I ask the server, they always make it for me though. Thanks for posting!

  • Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga
    June 10, 2011 at 4:52 am

    I love this recipe for Baingan Bharta because pretty much the only way I can cook eggplants that don’t result in disaster is extreme roasting and then turning it into a spread or dip like this. Me and eggplant…are NOT friends. I suck at them! I make them too rubbery or too mushy…but in this case, mushy is ok πŸ™‚

    Lovely recipe, Jenna! And the colors just POP off the page…great photography!

  • Molly @ RDexposed
    June 10, 2011 at 4:54 am

    I just had this at and Indian restaurant and it was to die for! I’m thinking I’ll make it Sunday night! This may have just made my day…

  • Jessica @ How Sweet
    June 10, 2011 at 4:55 am

    Never had Indian food. I’m so behind the time.

  • Heather (Heather's Dish)
    June 10, 2011 at 4:59 am

    my mouth is watering so bad right now…this looks ridiculous! so yummy!

  • jenna
    June 10, 2011 at 5:06 am

    i’ve never had indian food! i thought it just didn’t appeal to me…but this may change my mind. it looks so good!

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat
    June 10, 2011 at 5:07 am

    Oooh yum! Creamy and spicy in the same dish are awesome if you ask me. And thank you for the reminder that I haven’t made Indian in far too long.. time to fix that!

  • Liv @ The Salty n' Sweet
    June 10, 2011 at 5:10 am

    Indian food is something that I have to be in the mood to want to eat. When I am, though, nothing beats tandoori chicken and garlic naan!!! I’ve never tried this eggplant dish before, but I’ve gotta give it a shot!

  • HilaryJo
    June 10, 2011 at 5:14 am

    This looks TASTY. Is it pretty filling or does it leave you hungry though? I have a hungry hubby to feed who definitely needs more than I do!! πŸ™‚

  • Kulsum at JourneyKitchen
    June 10, 2011 at 5:15 am

    LOVE this bhaigan ka bharta πŸ™‚ We actually have two ways of making it – one the way you did and another is yogurt based as this one on my blog http://www.journeykitchen.com/2010/10/bhaigan-ka-bharta-with-dahi-seasoned.html

  • Amy
    June 10, 2011 at 5:20 am

    Woah. This looks great! I love finding sneaky, delicious ways to cook veggie meals for my husband πŸ˜‰

  • Lauren at Keep It Sweet
    June 10, 2011 at 5:26 am

    Yum! I have some indian spices and barely know what to do with them…. looks like a great recipe to try!

  • Alexia (Dimple Snatcher)
    June 10, 2011 at 5:31 am

    I totally thought that was a pumpkin dish at first glance! He and I are lovers, while eggplant…I don’t know…he looks like the player type!

  • Laura
    June 10, 2011 at 5:33 am

    THIS IS MY ABSOLUTE FAVORITE INDIAN DISH ON EARTH!!!! haha thanks so much for the recipe!!

  • amy walters, aDESIGNdock
    June 10, 2011 at 5:38 am

    Looks really yummy Jenna! And easy…that’s a must for me. Love it πŸ˜‰

    Happy weekend to you!

  • Evan
    June 10, 2011 at 5:39 am

    This post got me craving Indian food on an impossibly hot day. Quite the feat, Jenna, QUITE the feat. πŸ™‚

  • Emily the Lady Pastor
    June 10, 2011 at 5:42 am

    Yum yum. Indian food. And this recipe looks very possible! Thank you.

  • Running With Mascara
    June 10, 2011 at 5:45 am

    Wow that dish looks awesome! I’m a huge Indian food fan, but have always been scared by making it at home. But I’m totally trying your recipe!

  • kristina@beancakes
    June 10, 2011 at 5:48 am

    i love indian food! and this is a good one, thanks for posting the recipe, will try and make πŸ˜‰
    xoxo~ kristina

  • Khushboo
    June 10, 2011 at 5:48 am

    Despite being Indian by blood and living in Mumbai, I am not a fan of this dish at all…yet it makes me feel proud to see it on your blog πŸ™‚

  • emily
    June 10, 2011 at 6:15 am

    yum! i cannot wait to make this, as a tried, tested and approved version… i was looking for a good recipe, so i’ll run with yours. thank you!

  • Holly @ The Runny Egg
    June 10, 2011 at 6:17 am

    I haven’t had Indian food in years and to be honest I don’t even remember what I used to order! This looks delicious although I have horrible luck roasting eggplant — it always turns to rubber!

  • Cait's Plate
    June 10, 2011 at 6:19 am

    That just gave me SUCH a craving for Indian. I’m a sucker for chicken tikka masala myself but this looks amazing as well. Add a little naan and you’ve got yourself a pretty darn good meal!

  • Urban Wife
    June 10, 2011 at 6:20 am

    Seriously, Indian cuisine rocks. I crave it all the time! One thing: eggplant isn’t my friend. But this dish (which I haven’t actually ever tried) might just give me a change of heart. πŸ™‚

  • Jenny @ Fitness Health and Food
    June 10, 2011 at 6:41 am

    mm that does look wonderful, I don’t think that I have had bharta before!

    My indian favs are chana masala, sag paneer, and butter chicken mm mmm! πŸ™‚

  • emily
    June 10, 2011 at 6:56 am

    Oooh, that looks amazing! I’ve been on an eggplant kick recently too.

  • Michelle @ The Cooking Life
    June 10, 2011 at 6:58 am

    I love that you love ethnic food! That looks delicious. If you ever need any Filipino recipes, give me a shout! πŸ™‚ Have a blessed Friday!

  • dana @ my little celebration
    June 10, 2011 at 7:02 am

    Yum, I’ve never even heard of this dish. I’ll have to look for it the next time I’m at an Indian restaurant. Beautiful photos, as always.

  • val
    June 10, 2011 at 7:10 am

    I ordered this a year ago at an Indian restaurant and haven’t turned back since. It is amazing! I tried to make it once with a different recipe and blew it, due to over charring the eggplant.

    Did you know Trader Joe’s came out w/ a frozen version of this? Their channa masala is amazing, so I’m waiting to try this!

  • Gina @ Running to the Kitchen
    June 10, 2011 at 7:13 am

    Just had Indian on Wednesday and got this. Love it. One of my favorites too πŸ™‚

  • Kelsey @ A Piece of Kelsey
    June 10, 2011 at 7:13 am

    This looks delicious! I just made tikka masala for the first time this week and loved it. This will definitely be next!!

  • Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday
    June 10, 2011 at 7:15 am

    I love roasted eggplant….usually as baba ghanoush.

  • Angharad
    June 10, 2011 at 7:20 am

    I love baingan bharta although when I’ve made it before it definitely looks different. I’m kind of jealous of this version! Indian food = absolute favourite.

  • Sarah
    June 10, 2011 at 7:22 am

    I really want to make this. Coriander (as well call it here) and I had a bad break up a couple of days ago though. It got stuck in the back of my throat and I swear it is still there. Hopefully we can work out our differences and regain the close relationship we once had.

  • Fit Chick Britt
    June 10, 2011 at 7:24 am

    I’ve never tried baingan bharta but it sounds and looks so good. Maybe I’ll attempt it!

  • Andrea @ The Skinny Chronicles
    June 10, 2011 at 7:25 am

    I just planted an eggplant! Now I know what to make with it once the eggplants ripen. Last year, I got stuck in an eggplant parmesan rut. Spicy Indian food is my fave.

  • Trish
    June 10, 2011 at 8:37 am

    This is always my absolute favorite dish when dining out for Indian. Thanks for bringing it home. Sounds delish πŸ™‚

  • amyt @ Chicken Nugget Momma
    June 10, 2011 at 8:44 am

    I’ve never tried Indian food…or eggplant – guess I need to bite the bullet?

  • Melissa @ Journey to Marvelous
    June 10, 2011 at 8:48 am

    I’m an indian food newbie…I’ve only had it two or three times in my life! I’ll have to head down to Sizzling Tandoor and try this out! Thanks for the recommendation!

  • Heidi @ Food Doodles
    June 10, 2011 at 9:02 am

    I’ve never even heard of that before and Indian food isn’t anything new for me. I can’t wait to try it, it looks fantastic and the spices sound so yummy πŸ™‚ I haven’t had Indian in way too long.

  • jenna k
    June 10, 2011 at 9:05 am

    there’s a great sushi place about 100 yards from my apartment, and i’ve been in there in ALL sorts of crazy dress! πŸ™‚
    this looks like a great way to get some veggies in!

  • Mellie
    June 10, 2011 at 9:08 am

    I’ve never had Indian food, but every time you post an Indian recipe it looks amazing and I want to try it.

  • Lauren
    June 10, 2011 at 9:35 am

    wowie! this looks amazing! and I don’t even like eggplant that much. I thought it was pumpkin/sweeet potato by the pic. A def try I think!! I don’t ever remember having Indian food before :O

  • Sonia (the Mexigarian)
    June 10, 2011 at 9:39 am

    The husband loves Indian food but hates eggplant. But since this is blended, he would be none the wiser. mua ha ha. I will try not to burn the apartment down when making the naan πŸ˜€

  • Ingunn
    June 10, 2011 at 9:50 am

    One of my all-time favorite meals! I’ll have to try your recipe, thanks πŸ˜€

  • Lindsey@Lindselicious
    June 10, 2011 at 10:03 am

    Who knew this was so easy to make! This is one of my favorites too- and a good excuse to pick up some garlic naan. =)

  • Gina (Yogattude)
    June 10, 2011 at 10:16 am

    That looks great! Any excuse to eat Naan…I’m in!

  • Cassie
    June 10, 2011 at 10:19 am

    This looks delicious! I love eggplant dips. Yum yum

  • Karen
    June 10, 2011 at 10:26 am

    I find eggplant to be a bit of a finicky vegetable in my hands, but this looks amazingly yum! And, if it’s anything like your Chana Masala recipe…

  • Maria
    June 10, 2011 at 10:31 am

    I know I will love this! Yum!

  • French Heart
    June 10, 2011 at 10:31 am

    Looks delicious. Love anything with cilantro and eggplant….and Indian. I miss being in San Francisco when think of Indian or any ethnic food…so many great choices.

  • Prerna@IndianSimmer
    June 10, 2011 at 10:50 am

    My MIL makes some OUT OF THE WORLD baigan bharta and its very much similar to the way you made yours with a few minor changes. I worship her recipe for baigan bharta so you can only imagine how much I must dig recipes that come close to that of hers.
    Love it!

  • Jessica
    June 10, 2011 at 10:54 am

    My favorite Indian dish ever!!!! I’ve always wanted to make it. Thanks for posting delish recipe. On the menu tonight!!

  • Meghan @ StruggleMuffins
    June 10, 2011 at 11:07 am

    I love Indian food but hate that I never really know what I’m eating – I’m definitely an Indian food novice. Thanks for ‘splaining this one – I love that its vegan and will have to check ‘er out next time I go to an Indian restaurant. Mmmm eggplant…

  • Moni'sMeals
    June 10, 2011 at 11:27 am

    Also on of my favorite dishes! I like how yours is much healthier than going out too. You don’t want to know how much oil an eggplant can absorb!

    Great Recipe Jenna!

  • Maris (InGood Taste)
    June 10, 2011 at 11:28 am

    I have not heard of this but it sounds very interesting and looks delicious1

  • Liz
    June 10, 2011 at 11:29 am

    I recently had baingan bharta for the first time and was BLOWN AWAY! It’s my new favorite!

  • kaila @ healthy helper!
    June 10, 2011 at 11:52 am

    WOW that is so easy…..and DELICIOUS looking! I can’t believe how smooth and creamy it looks without having any added cream or even soy! How awesome…..gotta try this after I get an eggplant at the farmers market!

  • K
    June 10, 2011 at 12:22 pm

    My Mom used to make the other version of bharta when we were growing up and we loathed it! Now that we’re all grown up, when we visit home and Mom makes it, we call it “bangin” bharta!

  • katie @KatieDid
    June 10, 2011 at 12:29 pm

    indian food always intimidates me to cook but your recipes make it seem pretty simple! Indian is definitely one of my favorite cuisines so I really should get going on trying one of your recipes. The colors are gorgeous, I just want to spoon up it right through the screen.

  • Justeen @ Blissful Baking
    June 10, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    I haven’t had much Indian food, but I do love the flavors and the spice! The baingan bharta looks like it would be amazing on warm naan!

  • Jill (JBean Cuisine)
    June 10, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    This looks absolutely delicious – cannot wait to add it to my Indian repertoire!
    Gorgeous photos too!

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  • Lori Lieberman, RD, CDE, MPH, LDN
    June 10, 2011 at 2:30 pm

    I absolutely love baigan bartha and this looks like an easy recipe for it. It often is very oily in restaurants, but your recipe appears on the lighter side. Looking forward to testing it out.

  • Amanda @ Still Life with Duck
    June 10, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    I love baingan bharta! When I was in India last year, I was eager to try an authentic version but I was shocked to find it wasn’t on ONE menu there. I asked a local friend about it and she said it’s like “home food,” like only something your Mom would make at home and not something you’d ever see in a restaurant. And yet it’s on every Indian restaurant menu in the US. So funny!

  • Nadia
    June 10, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    I was just looking for a baingan bharta recipe 2 nights ago, and didn’t pick one, I think I’ll have to make this! I tried some when a friend ordered it, and not being a usual fan of eggplant, I loved it! I’m so excited that you posted this!

  • Rachel
    June 10, 2011 at 7:09 pm

    I just made this, because I had an eggplant that was on its way out. It is completely delicious. I didn’t have cumin seeds, so I used 3/4 t ground cumin, and it still turned out. Thanks for the great recipe!

  • Kat
    June 10, 2011 at 7:29 pm

    thank you thank you thank you for this recipe! I order Baingan bharta every time I visit Indian restaurants and have been waiting for a fabulous blogger to finally post their recipe. I knew it would be you πŸ™‚ love your blog more everyday.

  • Hannah (tickledtofu)
    June 10, 2011 at 8:21 pm

    Thank you SO very much for this recipe!!!! Indian food intimidates me, but I love to eat it!

  • Angela (Oh She Glows)
    June 11, 2011 at 5:40 am

    OMG this looks good! I’ve been meaning to try this for ages now.

    Happy Birthday Jenna! xo

  • Jayme @ Runner-n-Spice
    June 11, 2011 at 7:53 am

    Happy Birthday!! Have a wonderful day!

  • Kris
    June 11, 2011 at 8:00 am

    Hey Jenna, I wanted to compliment you on your photography. I see a huge difference since you went to the workshop. Really nice. : ) Have a happy birthday!

  • Corina
    June 11, 2011 at 8:53 am

    I’m a huge fan of Indian food and this looks great. I’ve never actually made an Indian dish with eggplant as the main ingredient so that’s something that’s got to change!

  • Meredith @ An Epic Change
    June 12, 2011 at 7:51 am

    My boyfriend is Indian so we’ve been eating a lot of Indian food lately (both homemade and hole-in-the-wall secret restaurants). I just don’t like eggplant so I keep avoiding this but everyone keeps telling me how amazing it is. Maybe I’ll like the texture of eggplant made like this?! I’ll be adventurous, I guess!

    But my favorite vegetarian Indian dish is Malai Kofta…. please, please, please try it.

  • A Teenage Gourmet (Sami)
    June 12, 2011 at 9:48 am

    Making this TONIGHT. πŸ™‚

  • Cat @Breakfast to Bed
    June 12, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    I am in love with eggplant. IN LOVE.

  • Aggie
    June 13, 2011 at 8:47 am

    I am SO happy you posted this recipe! I just started enjoying Indian food this past year, and this was the first dish I ordered and I keep going back to it. It’s my absolute favorite. I have a few eggplants almost ready in the garden, would love to turn them into this.

  • Julia
    June 15, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    Hi, Just wanted to say thanks for the recipe! I made it tonight and it was fab …nothing like spicy Indian food to warm the soul on a rainy evening πŸ™‚

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    June 19, 2011 at 4:24 am

    My attempts at Indian food never turn out as good as yours πŸ™
    This was a stinker for me.

  • jenna
    June 27, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    Thank you for all of your great recipes! however, the garam masala seemed to overpower everything in this dish. If i make it again, I’ll definitely cut it down by about half.

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  • BB
    July 12, 2011 at 7:49 am

    I made this over the weekend and it was just wonderful. Thanks for sharing this recipe! I’ll be making this again very soon.

  • Evi
    July 15, 2011 at 5:18 am

    One of the best Indian recipes I have ever tried! This one will have to be part of our meal plan at least once a month! Thanks so much, and I’m really enjoying your recipes.

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  • Amrita
    August 25, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    Honestly I was looking for Baingan Bharta recipe. I googled thru a few. Back home we roast eggplant on the stove as we have flamed stoves. It tastes so damn good as it has that caramalized flavor.. well when the search took me to your blog; I just loved the way you have eplained with yumm pics .. At first I didnt know this recipe is not been prepared by Indian blogger since its very authentic Indian dish .. I enjoyed reading your blog. You seem to be very happy go lucky kinda person. Good luck with your book thing!

  • Amrita
    September 12, 2011 at 12:25 pm

    check this out ..

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  • GJ
    February 16, 2012 at 2:40 pm


    Check out my oil-free version. Its too good.

  • kristin
    March 10, 2012 at 2:33 pm

    I made this last night along with your channa masala (with rice. and store-bought naan – a girl can only do so mucH! haha) – this dish stole the show. we can’t get enough! Mine isn’t as pretty of a red color as yours – I suppose mine took on the color of the eggplant more, but the taste is phenomenal. thank you for a wonderful (well, 2 wonderful!) recipes!

  • Monica
    April 9, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    I made this, so easy and delicious. I regulary cook Indian food. I used fresh tomatoes and didn’t bother to try and remove the eggplant seeds. I also only used half a jalapeΓ±o since I add the seeds, makes it nice and hot.

    I was amazed by how easy it was to scoop out the eggplant from the skin. I’ll be making this again, thanks for sharing!

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  • Emily
    January 7, 2013 at 12:14 am

    I just wanted to leave a comment for anyone browsing wondering whether to make this – DO! It was so good.
    Thanks Jenna πŸ™‚

  • Katy
    March 27, 2015 at 6:18 am

    I always return to this recipe when I want to make baingan bharta. It’s SO delicious and easy. My husband and I made it last night, and I think it could have been mistaken for something ordered at my favorite Indian restaurant. Thanks, Jenna!