Stuffed with quinoa and chickpeas, roasted eggplant is a perfect, warming, winter meal. I don’t eat meat, but I’ve found that even non-vegetarians love this hearty recipe! Meatless meals are anything but boring, and this dish has a unique ingredient that makes it stand out. Za’atar is a savory Middle Eastern spice blend of sesame seeds, a variety of herbs, and salt. It is growing in popularity and is easy to find at speciality grocery or spice shops. Za’atar is a perfect compliment to roasted eggplant and chickpeas, along with a fresh lemon and tahini sauce. You’ll definitely want to make this dish again!
Further Food Nutritionist Commentary:
Tahini provides a healthy, satisfying dose of good fats, and compliments the sesame seeds in the the Za’atar perfectly. The paste, made from sesame seeds, is a great substitute for creamy sauces. It’s subtle, nutty flavor adds dimension to any dish. The splash of lemon kicks up the vitamin C, and the flavor.
By Casey Giltner, Nutritionist
Quinoa Stuffed Za’atar Eggplants with Lemon-Tahini Sauce
3 medium eggplants (cut in half)
3 tablespoon olive oil (divided)
3 tablespoons za’atar (divided)
salt + pepper
½ cup multi-color quinoa (rinsed well to remove saponins)
1 cup water
1 medium onion (diced)
2 cloves garlic (diced)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
1 15-ounce can of chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
1/4 cup tahini paste
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 garlic clove (minced)
1/4 – 1/3 cup water
For the eggplant:
- Preheat oven to 400° F.
- Place eggplant cut side up on a sheet pan and drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil, season with salt, pepper, and 1 tablespoon za’atar.
- Roast until fork-tender, 25-35 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
For the filling:
- While eggplant is baking, bring quinoa to a boil with 1 cup water and a pinch of salt. Simmer, covered, until water has evaporated, approx. 12 minutes.
- Heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil a large skillet on medium heat. When shimmering, add onion and diced garlic. Saute for 2-3 minutes, until translucent and soft. Reduce heat to low.
- Add cumin, paprika, remaining za’atar and cayenne pepper, and cook 1-2 minutes to bloom spices.
- Add chickpeas and cooked quinoa, heat through.
- Using a spoon, carefully hollow out each eggplant half.
- Add this to the quinoa mixture, and stir to combine.
- Stuff each eggplant with quinoa mixture, and place on a sheet pan. Return to oven for 10 minutes.
For the Tahini-Lemon Sauce:
- In a small bowl, whisk tahini paste, lemon juice, minced garlic and 1/4 – 1/3 cups of water until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
- Drizzle stuffed eggplant with lemon-tahini sauce and serve.
Per Serving: Calories: 312; Total Fat: 15g; Saturated Fat: 2g; Monounsaturated Fat: 7g; Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 624mg; Potassium: 858mg; Carbohydrate: 40g; Fiber: 15g; Sugar: 7g; Protein: 10g
Nutrition Bonus: Iron: 32%; Vit C: 14%; Calcium: 10%
You Might Also Like
If you’re looking for a quick and easy, fuss free yet incredible flavorful way to spice up your fish to add to your weekly lunch or dinner rotation then look no further friend, this sweet and spicy, sugar free, 6 minute chipotle BBQ salmon is exa...
By Mackenzie Burgess
This Massaged Kale Salad with Chicken is the perfect, protein-packed dish. Featuring fall produce of your choice so you can customize with your favorites. Add this recipe to your meal prep routine, holiday table, or party platter!...
Make this colorful dish for dinner any day of the week! Mahi Mahi is so easy to make plus it's tender and delicious. The homemade mango salsa is the perfect topping and bursts with flavor. Incorporating more fish into your diet is great for heart hea...
By balance with b
The first time I made the salmon burgers, I seared them in my cast iron for a few minutes on each side, ensuring crispy edges and a juicy middle. This time I decided to bake them in the oven, they were still really juicy and just as flavorful, but we...
By Ruby Arter
Meatballs are a crowd pleaser. These take 10 minutes to assemble and require minimal attention while cooking. We often have a batch of these in the freezer, ready to reheat. They’re low FODMAP and gluten free and are best enjoyed with rice, glut...
By Linda Cho
Bibimbap is the closest Korean food gets to a salad. It literally translates to "mixed rice". Traditionally, it is made with rice, mix of marinated vegetables, beef, sunny side egg and red bean paste. But it can really be any mix of ingredients and r...