Congratulations! You clicked on this recipe despite the fact that you’re asking yourself “How could anyone ever want to combine bacon and eggplant together? Yuck!” But let me just tell you, this is absolutely delicious! And I mean it – even the meat eaters in your house will be asking for seconds, or who am I kidding? They’ll be coming back for fourths!
Now let’s make one thing clear – no one ever decided to become vegetarian because they didn’t like bacon. Everybody loves bacon – or at least most walking, breathing, living humans do. People become vegetarian because they want to protect those pigs who become bacon. So, how do we get all that bacon flavor without eating a gross,
stinky pig butt? You can thank Mother Nature for the invention of the eggplant!
Eggplants work perfectly in this recipe because they’re similar to tofu in that they absorb seasonings and flavors really well. So, if you top it with all (healthy) bacon themed ingredients, it basically becomes bacon! I didn’t include any maple syrup or soy sauce in this recipe because I wanted to make it as natural as possible. But if you’re craving more sweetness, feel free to opt these in!
The internet’s been exploding with bacon themed recipes! Bacon mac and cheese, bacon wrapped potatoes, bacon ice cream, bacon doughnuts, bacon stuffed tater tots, it never ends! If I see one more bacon wrapped anything I’m unplugging my computer cord and logging off
forever – or for at least a few minutes until I prove my point! Anyway, I felt I needed to hop on this bacon train vegetarian style. That’s right, we’re veganizing this yummy dish! Soon you’ll be eating this “bacon” in all your sandwiches, breakfasts, even in your salads!
If there’s anything I needed to make sure this recipe had, it’s crispy bacon. Not the soft, chewy, rubbery inedible bacon. Although some of these will turn out on the softer side, you can sautée them in a pan to get them to your desired crispiness. I prefer my food to be charred and crunchy – yes, I’m the one who keeps burning their marshmallows on purpose. When I was little, we would keep a frozen box of turkey bacon in the freezer. Let’s just say it was definitely an acquired taste. Its consistency fell somewhere along the lines of eating calamari and dried cement. So, keeping up with my promises to not poison anyone today, I made these eggplant bacon strips crispy. I’m not sure if there’s even a way to make them chewy, I mean just think about it…chewy eggplant bacon? Ewww!
I’m definitely topping these strips from flavortown on my next breakfast bowl, sweet potato hash, including it in a veggie BLTA, and of course just eating it as is because who doesn’t do that? I’d love to see how you use this “bacon” too! If you make this recipe, please tag me in a photo on Instagram @myplantedplate or shoot me an email at email@example.com! I’ll make sure to feature your photo in my next weekly newsletter, which you can subscribe to my clicking the “Click Here to be Updated with Every New Post!” Button on the top and bottom of this page 🙂 Enjoy your veggie bacon!!
Yield 15 Eggplant strips
This healthy vegan eggplant bacon is delicious! Made with no sweeteners, gluten free, and completely good-for-you - this is exactly what your breakfast needs!
- ½ eggplant (medium)
- tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1.5 tsp liquid smoke
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp chili powder
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- ¼ tsp onion powder
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF
- Slice off the top and bottom of the eggplant, then slice the eggplant in half. Save one half for later (ratatouille, anyone?) and make very thin slices lengthwise along the other half (see photos above).
- Line a baking tray with parchment paper, pat your eggplant strips with a paper towel (to remove any water) and lay your eggplant strips on top.
- Mix together all the other ingredients to form a sauce. Brush the sauce on the top and bottom of each eggplant strip. Feel free to sprinkle on some more black pepper, then place the strips in the oven for 45-50 minutes.
- Once done, let cool for 5-10 minutes and enjoy!
- You can also add inn maple syrup and soy sauce if you’d like a sweeter, heavier flavor. I’d recommend about 1-2 tbsp of each.
- Make sure your slices are thin! Otherwise, the eggplant won’t crisp up enough, and the flavors won’t shine through.
- If your strips are still a little soft when they come out of the oven, you can either keep them in for a little longer, or throw them in a pan over medium heat to achieve your desired crispiness!
Serving Size 3 Eggplant Bacon Strips
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value
Total Fat 3.1 g
Saturated Fat 0.4 g
Sodium 5 mg
Total Carbohydrates 3.6 g
Dietary Fiber 2 g
Sugars 1.5 g
Protein 0.7 g
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.