Easy Eggplant Stir-Fry


This eggplant stir-fry is easy to make. We call for long and tender Japanese eggplant, but regular eggplant will work well too, cut into 1-inch pieces. Jalapeño peppers can vary from mild to very spicy. If you need to cut the heat, opt for small sweet peppers in their place.

Active Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
15 mins
6 servings

What Eggplant Is Best for Stir Fries?

While any type of eggplant will work in a stir fry, we prefer Japanese eggplants for this recipe. Sometimes referred to as Chinese eggplant or Asian eggplant, this type of eggplant is usually long and slender with tender purple skin and sweet, meaty flesh. They have fewer seeds than rounder varieties which gives them a nice, firm texture and a less bitter flavor. Japanese eggplants are readily available at well-stocked supermarkets, Asian grocery stores or farmers markets. They are easiest to find in mid to late summer. If you can't find Japanese eggplant, a regular globe-shaped eggplant will work too. Just cut the eggplant into smaller 1-inch pieces so it holds up better while cooking.

How to Stir Fry Eggplant Perfectly

The trick to perfectly cooked eggplant is getting a good sear on the outside, with tender, silky flesh on the inside. We do this by cooking the eggplant in batches as opposed to throwing it all in the pan at once. This extra step allows the eggplant to brown instead of steam, which adds flavor and prevents the eggplant pieces from falling apart. Simply transfer the first batch to a bowl and cover it to keep warm while the second batch cooks. When the second batch is finished, add it to the first followed by the other ingredients, then toss it with the sauce. Viola! Perfect stir-fried eggplant.

Additional reporting by Hilary Meyer


  • 4 Japanese eggplants (about 1 1/2 pounds)

  • 5 tablespoons canola oil or peanut oil, divided

  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce

  • 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce

  • 1 tablespoon plum sauce

  • 2 jalapeño peppers, cut into thin rings

  • 1 small yellow onion, sliced into 1/4-inch wedges

  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic

  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger

  • 1 cup packed fresh basil leaves


  1. Cut eggplants into quarters lengthwise, then into 2-inch pieces. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large cast-iron skillet over high heat. Add half of the eggplant and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and browned in parts, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Repeat with 2 tablespoons oil and the remaining eggplant. Cover the eggplant to keep warm and set aside.

  2. Meanwhile, whisk hoisin, soy sauce and plum sauce in a small bowl. Set aside.

  3. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in the skillet over high heat. Add jalapeños and onion; cook, stirring often, until slightly softened, 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and ginger; cook, stirring often, until softened and fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add the onion mixture and basil to the eggplant and stir in the sauce. Serve immediately.

    Easy Eggplant Stir-Fry

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

161 Calories
12g Fat
13g Carbs
2g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Serving Size 2/3 cup
Calories 161
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 13g 5%
Dietary Fiber 2g 6%
Total Sugars 6g
Added Sugars 2g 3%
Protein 2g 5%
Total Fat 12g 16%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Vitamin A 451IU 9%
Vitamin C 11mg 12%
Folate 37mcg 9%
Sodium 298mg 13%
Calcium 31mg 2%
Iron 1mg 4%
Magnesium 28mg 7%
Potassium 348mg 7%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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