Fried Eggplant Fans: the Easy Recipe for a Quick and Crispy Side Dish With Only 5 Ingredients!

Total time: 30 mins.
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 4 people
By Cookist

Get ready to cook up the best fried eggplants you've ever tasted with this simple yet brilliant method! Fried Eggplants Fan require just a few basic ingredients: eggplants, eggs, breadcrumbs, salt, pepper, and vegetable oil. Start by cutting and salting the eggplants, then dip them in seasoned beaten eggs followed by breadcrumbs for a perfect crunch. Deep-fry to golden perfection. Ideal for vegetarians or anyone who loves a delicious, crispy side dish, these fried eggplants are perfect for family dinners or as a special snack during gatherings.

What Are Fried Eggplants?

Fried eggplants have a rich history, dating back centuries across various cultures. Originally from India, eggplants spread across the Middle East, Mediterranean, and eventually the world, evolving into a diverse array of dishes. Today, fried eggplants come in many forms—from the thinly sliced and crisply fried Italian ‘melanzane fritte to the Japanesenasu dengaku‘, which features thick slices of eggplant brushed with miso and grilled. Each region has adapted this versatile vegetable to its tastes, creating an array of flavors and textures that showcase the global love for this simple yet delightful dish. Whether served as a side, a main course, or a snack, fried eggplants continue to be a beloved staple in kitchens worldwide.

Tips for The Best Fried Eggplant Fans

Elevate the taste by adding grated Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, or Italian seasoning to the breadcrumbs. This will give the eggplants an extra layer of flavor.

– Serve the fried eggplants with a side of marinara sauce, tzatziki, or a yogurt-based dip for a delicious contrast to the crispy texture.

– For those who enjoy a bit of heat, sprinkle some chili flakes into the egg mixture or into the breadcrumb mix.

– For a vegan option, substitute the eggs for a mixture of flour and water or unsweetened plant-based milk to help the breadcrumbs adhere to the eggplant slices.

– Use gluten-free breadcrumbs or almond meal as a substitute for regular breadcrumbs to cater to those with gluten sensitivities.

Do I Have to Soak The Eggplants Before Frying Them?

For this particular fried eggplant recipe, there's no need to soak the eggplants in water before frying. Instead, the recipe involves salting the sliced eggplants and letting them sit for 15 minutes. This process helps to draw out moisture, which is then blotted away with a paper towel.

Can I Skip the Salting Process For The Eggplants?

In this fried eggplant recipe, skipping the salting process is not recommended. Salting the eggplant slices helps draw out excess moisture and bitterness, resulting in a better texture and flavor once fried. This step ensures the eggplants absorb less oil and become more crispy. By omitting this step, the eggplants might end up soggy and oilier, which could affect the overall taste and crispiness of the dish.

Why Did My Eggplants Turn Out Soggy and Mushy?

If your fried eggplants turned out soggy or mushy, it might be due to not salting them long enough to draw out sufficient moisture or not blotting them thoroughly after salting. To fix this, make sure to salt the eggplant slices as directed, allowing them to sit for at least 15 minutes. After this, press them gently between layers of paper towels to absorb as much moisture as possible.

Additionally, ensure your oil is hot enough before frying (around 350-375°F or 175-190°C). If the oil isn't hot enough, the eggplant will absorb it, becoming soggy rather than crispy. Use a thermometer to check the oil temperature or test it with a small piece of eggplant or breadcrumb—it should sizzle upon contact. This should help you achieve crispy, delicious fried eggplants.

Can I Fry These Eggplants in The Air Fryer?

Yes, the eggplants from this recipe can certainly be adapted for an air fryer, providing a healthier alternative to deep-frying. To do this, prepare the eggplants as described—salt, blot, dip in beaten eggs, and then coat in breadcrumbs. Preheat your air fryer to approximately 375°F (190°C). Spray or brush the breaded eggplant slices with a bit of oil to help achieve a crispy texture. Arrange them in a single layer in the air fryer basket, ensuring they are not overlapping. Cook for about 8-10 minutes, flipping halfway through, until they are golden and crisp. This method reduces the oil significantly while still delivering the satisfying crunch and flavor of traditionally fried eggplants.

Can I Make These Eggplants in The Oven Instead?

Yes, you can definitely bake the eggplants in an oven instead of frying them. Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C). Prepare the eggplants as outlined in the recipe—salt, blot, dip in beaten eggs, and coat in breadcrumbs. Place the breaded eggplant slices on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and lightly spray or brush them with oil to help them crisp up. Bake for about 20-25 minutes, flipping them halfway through, until they are golden and crispy. This method offers a healthier alternative to frying while still achieving a deliciously crunchy texture.

More Eggplant Recipes You Need to Try

Eggplant Pizzaiola

Eggplant Cannelloni

Stuffed Eggplants

Eggplant Cutlets

How to Store Fried Eggplant Fans

Fried Eggplant Fans are best enjoyed fresh, but you can store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To keep them, place the cooled eggplants in an airtight container and refrigerate. When ready to eat, reheat them in the oven or toaster oven to bring back some of the crispiness. As for freezing, it's generally not recommended for this recipe.


to taste
to taste
to taste
Vegetable Oil
as much as you need

How to Prepare Fried Eggplant Fans

Start by cutting the eggplants in half.

Then, make cuts on the length of the eggplant half.

This his what your eggplant half should look like once you're done.

Sprinkle the eggplants with a generous quantity of salt, massaging it on both the pulp and the skin. Let them sit for 15 minutes.

Once the 15 minutes are up, squeeze them of all the excess water and juice, then blot with a paper towel, making sure they are thoroughly dried.

In a bowl, crack open the two eggs, then add a sprinkle of both salt and pepper. Mix together with a fork.

Dip the eggplants in the egg wash, making sure that every piece is properly coated. This will help the breadcrumbs adhere.

Coat the eggplants in the breadcrumbs, making sure that they're evenly coated.

Deep fry them in boiling hot vegetable oil, until they turn golden brown, making sure to flip them halfway during cooking.

Let them cool and dry a bit before salting and serving on a plate while still fresh. Enjoy!

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