Meet eggplant noodles! These vegan dan dan eggplant noodles are a fun and spicy way to enjoy eggplant!
I'm sharing this recipe despite the fact that my hubs totally hated it. He's not an eggplant fan. I am. Since I do most of the cooking, I make it anyway ;)
I saw this idea for eggplant noodles on The Kitchn and kinda fell in love with it before I even tried it. Asian eggplant dishes are one of my favorites - spongy eggplants soak up all that yummy saucy flavor!
Instead of using a spiralizer to make these noodles, use a mandoline with the julienne attachment or a julienne slicer if you've got one. In the spiralizer, the eggplant would just fall into mush since they are so soft. If you don't have either, just slice it into planks and then into thin noodles using a sharp knife.
For sauce, I went with this play on dan dan noodles. It's a traditional Sichuan Chinese dish made with noodles tossed with spicy chili oil and peanut sauce and ground pork. I swapped tahini for the peanut butter and used crumbled tempeh in lieu of pork to keep it meatless. Feel free to use either in this recipe.
I served these noodles over brown rice, because carbs. While using vegetables as noodles is a fun way to enjoy vegetables in a new way, you still need carbs. Read my thoughts on carb alternatives here (plus get a bomb recipe for summer spaghetti with crispy garlic and prosciutto!)
Feel free to use different sauces with these eggplant noodles. Scroll down to the bottom of this post for a few recipes from my archives that would be really tasty made with eggplant noodles swapped in!
Dan Dan Eggplant Noodles
- 2 large eggplants
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil, canola oil or other neutral flavored oil
- 1 1/4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons tahini
- 3 tablespoons chili oil
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 8 ounces tempeh, crumbled
- 3 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- Cooked brown rice, for serving
- Chopped toasted peanuts, for serving
- Chopped scallions, for serving
- Using a mandoline or julienne slicer, cut eggplant into long "noodles."
- Heat avocado oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add eggplant, season with salt, and cook, flipping occasionally, until tender and lightly browned, about 7-10 minutes. Remove from skillet and set aside in a large bowl.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together broth, soy sauce, tahini, chili oil, vinegar, sugar and pepper.
- Wipe skillet clean. Heat sesame oil on medium-high heat. Add tempeh and cook until lightly browned, stirring occasionally, about 3-4 minutes.
- Stir in ginger and garlic and cook until fragrant, about 60 seconds. Pour in sauce and simmer 2-3 minutes. Add eggplant noodles, toss to combine and cook a minute or two to warm through. Season with salt and more black pepper to taste (I like it with lots of pepper).
- Serve eggplant noodles over a scoop of brown rice. Garnish with peanuts and scallions.