Eggplant pizzas are a healthy eggplant recipe to help you and your family eat more kid-friendly vegetables! Vary the flavors with fun toppings and sauces of choice!
Hey-o! Check out these cheesy little morsels of eggplant! If you and your family love pizza-type flavors, like oregano, tomato sauce, and cheese, these eggplant pizzas are for you.
I'm on a mission to add more vegetable variety to my, my family's, and my clients' days. See, my nutrition philosophy centers around adding MORE to our lives for easier, healthier habits.
One thing I've always noticed with both my family and with clients is how easy it can be to get into a veggie rut. Meaning you tend to gravitate to the same few veggies over and over. And for the record, I'm totally guilty of this, too. Especially with an almost two-year-old who loves to say no to even her favorite things sometimes, I'm always keeping her vegetable favorites (cucumbers and canned green beans) on hand. But it's really important to always offer yourself (and your family) a variety for even more health and nutrition benefits.
Plus have you ever noticed that it's super easy to get burned out on veggies and eat less when you're just eating the same few week after week? Obviously this can be a big hindrance in overall vegetable intake! And given most adults don't eat enough vegetables (the CDC says only 9% of adults meet vegetable intake recommendations), we need all the help we can get (1)!
How to Make Eggplant Pizzas
As you can see in the above image, learning how to make eggplant pizzas isn't complicated at all. I like to follow four simple steps:
- Salt the eggplant, then rinse and pat dry.
- Add seasonings and tomato sauce.
- Add shredded cheese and any other desired toppings.
You can keep it as simple as you want, or you can get wild with all your favorite traditional pizza toppings.
How do You Salt Eggplant, and Why?
To salt eggplant, I sprinkle the cut sides of my eggplant with salt, then place on an absorbent paper towel or clean kitchen towel for at least 15 minutes and up to one hour.
Now if you've never salted your eggplant before, you may be wondering why salt eggplant? Wouldn't that make it less healthy?
Actually - no! Salting the eggplant draws excess moisture out of the eggplant, which makes it less spongy. A less spongy eggplant means it won't absorb things like oils and sauces as easily. So if you're cooking eggplant in oil, it will absorb less oil. In the case of these eggplant pizzas, it allows more of the sauce to stay on top of the pizza, more resembling the look of traditional pizza.
Salting the eggplant can also help modify the taste slightly so it's less bitter.
Don't be as concerned about excess sodium here, because when your eggplant has salted you'll want to rinse it with water and then pat dry with a clean kitchen towel or paper towel.
What type of tomato sauce should I use?
You can use whatever type of tomato sauce is your favorite! I just like to check the ingredient labels to make sure there is no added sugar and minimal, if any, added oils.
Can I make these eggplant pizzas dairy-free or vegan?
Definitely! You can either skip the cheese entirely and load up on other dairy-free toppings, like caramelized onions, dairy-free pesto, and prosciutto. You can add a creaminess with something like hummus, or find a dairy-free shredded cheese substitute (I've seen ALDI stores carrying their own vegan mozzarella recently and can also find dairy-free brands like Daiya at most grocery stores!).
Isn't this like a low-carb pizza recipe?
Technically yes, but as you can see above - it's all about your intention. My intention is eating more veggies. And here's the deal - if you're truy craving a legit slice of pizza, this won't meet that craving. But sometimes I just want to eat more vegetables, plus I enjoy the flavors of pizza, and this is a great way to add some variety to our veggie rotation!
Do you think my picky eater will try this?
Maybe! The thing to remember, both for yourself and if you have kids that have particular preferences, is to just consistently continue to offer a new food. It can take dozens of times of seeing a food before even trying it! And sometimes you need to try offering the foods in different ways before finding a way that becomes more curious for you or your child to try. (Case in point: my daughter LOVES applesauce and fresh apples, but always refuses baked cinnamon apples - and that's okay, I'll just keep offering them whenever we make them!)
Consider these eggplant pizzas just another tool in your eggplant recipe arsenault. 😉 And you can also try peeling the eggplant before offering the first time, too!
Looking for more easy vegetable recipes? Try these!
- Chicken & Spinach Spaghetti Squash Bake
- Creamy Cucumber Salad
- Cranberry Crunch Broccoli Slaw
- Coconut Cauliflower Rice
- 5-Minute Balsamic Thyme Tomato Salad
- Prosciutto Green Beans
If you make these eggplant pizzas, be sure to snap a pic and share to social media (tag @nutritiontofit and #nutritiontofit)! And of course, rate and leave a comment on the recipe below! Let me know if you go crazy with any fun toppings or different sauces! Be well!
- 1 eggplant (medium-sized)
- 2 teaspoon oregano
- ½ cup shredded mozzarella
- ½ cup tomato sauce
- Optional: toppings of choice
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Remove the top off the eggplant, then slice into 8 rounds. (You can remove the peel if you desire/ have picky eaters, but I left it on.)
- Place paper towels or clean, dry kitchen towel on a cutting board. Sprinkle cut sides of eggplant with salt and place on paper towels for at least 15 minutes. (This will draw out some of the moisture from the eggplant.) After 15-60 minutes, rinse the eggplant in water and pat dry with a paper towel or clean, dry kitchen towel.
- Place eggplant rounds on a nonstick cookie sheet or on a piece of parchment paper.
- Sprinkle each eggplant round with oregano.
- Top each eggplant round with 1 tablespoon sauce and 1 tablespoon cheese. If adding any additional toppings, add now.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 20-22 minutes, or until eggplants are tender and cheese is bubbling and melting.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2017, November 24.) Only 1 in 10 Adults Get Enough Fruits or Vegetables.