Make Your Own Babaganoush

In the Middle East it’s traditional to find babaganoush with appetizers like hummus, tahini, pita bread and olives. Here's how to make your own.
Related To:

My family originates from the Middle East so it’s traditional to find babaganoush alongside typical appetizers like hummus, tahini, pita bread, pickled vegetables and olives. Here are the basics to making a killer babaganoush.

The Eggplant

Babaganoush is basically a pureed eggplant salad. It’s typically used as a condiment or dip for veggies and pita bread. Make babaganoush by selecting a shiny and firm eggplant that’s heavy for its size. Rev up your oven and roast it for about 30 to 40 minutes until the center is tender. Some recipes call for peeled and diced or sliced eggplant, while others tell you to bake it whole. The main goal is to get the inside of the eggplant soft enough so you can puree it.

The Flavors

I like traditional flavors mixed with my babaganoush like lemon juice, olive oil, tahini (sesame seed paste) and garlic. You may find spiced up versions with tomatoes, peppers, jalapeno, thyme or basil. Experiment with your favorite flavor combinations and make it your own. Here’s my recipe for Israeli-style babaganoush.

Traditional Babaganoush

Serves: 12

Serving size: ¼ cup
Ingredients
1 large eggplant, halved lengthwise
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup tahini
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
Salt and pepper to taste
Nonstick cooking spray
Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Place eggplant cut side up on a baking sheet coated with non-stick cooking spray. Roast for 30 to 40 minutes, turning occasionally, until soft. Remove from oven and let cool for about 10 minutes. Scoop out flesh with a spoon; discard skin.

Place roasted eggplant, lemon juice, tahini, sesame seeds, and garlic in a blender; puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Transfer eggplant mixture to a medium bowl and mix in olive oil. Refrigerate for 3 hours before serving.

Nutrition Information (per ¼ cup serving)
Calories: 60
Total Fat: 5 grams
Saturated Fat: 0.5 grams
Protein: 2 grams
Total carbohydrate: 4 grams
Fiber: 2 grams
Cholesterol: 0 milligrams
Sodium: 50 milligrams
Recipes to try:

Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. See Toby's full bio »

You Might Also Like:

Keep Reading

Next Up

How to Make Instant Croutons

To give your salad extra crunch, just toss in some chopped toasted bread. For extra flavor, rub the toast with garlic first.

An Entree Salad You’ll Enjoy Eating — Meatless Monday

For Meatless Monday dinner tonight, prepare Food Network Magazine's Big Greek Salad, an easy, no-cook meal featuring fresh lettuce, kalamata olives and capers.

The Pioneer Woman's New York-Style Chopped Salad — Meatless Monday

Set up a family-friendly salad bar for Meatless Monday dinner with this five-star recipe for a New York-Style Chopped Salad from Food Network's Ree Drummod.

5 Surprising Health Benefits of Avocados

These super fruits are not only delicious, but are also packed with nutritional and health benefits that may surprise you.

Going Green at the Steakhouse: 2 Classic Side Salads

While meat may be the star of a steakhouse-style meal, a few things will surely round it out: a crisp martini, a cool salad and hearty potato side dishes.

Green Beans 5 Ways

Dig in and grab a handful (or two) of green beans at your next trip to the market. Trim, wash and enjoy with hummus or yogurt dip ---or try one of these delicious recipes.

Top 5 Label Tricks and How To Avoid Them

Food labels are carefully worded to entice shoppers to choose certain items. A study published in the Journal of Consumer Research found dieters fall for simple labeling tricks that make them believe certain foods are healthier than they are. Find out the top 5 labeling traps and how to avoid them.

California Salad with Hard-Boiled Eggs — Meatless Monday

Upgrade your usual salad routine with this satisfying recipe from Food Network Magazine.

Updated Waldorf Salad with Apple Vinaigrette — Meatless Monday

Get the recipe for Giada De Laurentiis' easy-to-make waldorf salad from Food Network Magazine, an updated version of the classic dish.

Quinoa: Super, Super Grain

Add more quinoa to your diet with these tips and a recipe for Chipotle-Quinoa Salad With Black Beans, Corn and Cilantro.