Many recipes will call for "1 cup of cubed eggplant" but it is not always easy to figure out actually how many eggplants are in a cup. In order to help make cooking easier we did some experiments to help tell you exactly how many eggplants you need to buy.
Worldwide, there are many different varieties of eggplant which greatly vary in weight (1 ounce to several pounds each), size (1.2 to 12 inches in length) and shape (for example pear, egg and elongated). The purple globe American eggplant is readily available in basic grocery stores. Often less common types can be found in your local ethnic stores.
To answer How many eggplants in a cup we went to the store to check out the vegetable section. After surveying the produce we selected 1 medium globe eggplant that weighed 1 pound for our testing sample. This eggplant is on the "smaller" side of the medium size on purpose; larger ones tend to have a stronger, bitter taste. However, when peeled and cubed, our eggplant still yielded 4.5 cups. When eggplant cooks, it reduces in quantity by about half.
Did you know that like tomatoes, eggplants technically are not vegetables, they're really a fruit. China is the top eggplant producer in the world.
Next time your recipe calls for a cup of chopped eggplant you'll feel confident knowing what size you need. You can also use our conversion tool below for any custom measurements you need.
To start cutting an eggplant, cut off the stem end and the blossom end. Other than very young and small eggplants, most people peel it before cooking or eating.
You can cut eggplant into cubes, dices, slices, matchsticks, to name a few. You can also chop, shred or grate eggplant. This fruit is handled the same as many other fruits and vegetables.
The cut size recommended for this fruit in a recipe makes a difference. It affects not only how long it cooks, but also the general texture and taste of the final dish. Since a larger piece takes longer to soften than a smaller one, uniform cut pieces help with determining the correct length of time to cook.
Once the eggplant is cut, the flesh turns brown rather quickly, so many cooks peel the eggplant right before using it. If you need to cut it earlier, you can either put them in a bowl with enough salt water to cover the eggplant. A lot of people seem to use about 1 teaspoon of salt dissolved in the water.
Another method folks use to avoid discoloration is to squeeze lemon juice over the pieces. Both methods will work as long as you keep the air away from the eggplant flesh.
There is a huge variety of eggplants out there, so the exact number per pound and other measurements can be pretty hard to generalize.
That said, 1 medium globe eggplant weighs about 1 pound (450 grams) and is a good example. If you use eggplants that are bigger or smaller, you can scale accordingly.
Chopping up an eggplant will result in about 4½ cups of cubes, about 1 liter. It will depend on the size of the eggplant and the size of the cubes, but that’s a good estimate to start with.
By weight, this is about 1 pound or 450 grams of eggplant. So if you only need a single cup, you can get by with a quarter pound of eggplant (118 g).
One medium eggplant will make about 3 cups of sliced pieces. Due to the large size of some of the rounds, it is a little hard to measure exactly.
Oftentimes eggplant is used in sliced slabs, particularly when making a dish like eggplant parmesan.
Pureed eggplant is slit in half and roasted, then the pulp is scooped out. The quantity of cooked eggplant is about ½ of what you would get when raw. You’ll be able to get about 1½ to 2 cups of puree from 1 medium eggplant.
Some varieties of eggplant naturally have thin skins and those are really peeled before using. However, the American or Standard Globe eggplant most commonly found in basic grocery stores in the United States have thicker tougher skin.
In general, both large eggplants and older ones tend to have tougher skin that tastes more bitter. In these cases, it is best to peel an eggplant. Small and young ones have tender thin skins which do not need to be peeled.
It’s normally advisable to look at each eggplant and decide whether you want to peel or not to peel it! When in doubt, most people tend to peel an eggplant before using it.
To peel an eggplant, a regular hand-held vegetable peeler is quick to use and works great. First cut off the stem and the blossom end of the eggplant, then use the peeler to remove the skin. Your eggplant is now ready to use with your recipe.
Some recipes call for leaving the peel on during the cooking process and then scooping out the cooked flesh when finished.
A word of caution: the flesh of an eggplant turns brown shortly after being exposed to the air. This is similar to what happens with apples or potatoes after cutting. To help prevent the eggplant from turning a dark color, put the cut pieces into a bowl of water with about a teaspoon of salt dissolved into it. The water should completely cover the eggplant.
If you leave the cut eggplant in this water for 15 to 20 minutes, it will not only keep it from turning brown but it will also reduce the bitter taste of the eggplant at the same time. Dry off the eggplant and you’re ready to use it with your recipe.
An often used general cutting term is to chop food. This term is a more casual cut and is used with a wide variety of foods when uniformity and shape are not that important. You are roughly cutting the eggplant into bit-sized pieces.
To chop an eggplant begin by removing both ends with a knife, then skin the remaining large section with a vegetable peeler.
Slice down the length of the eggplant flesh into slices. Stack the slices on the cutting board flat side down and cut down the length again so you have sticks. Cut across the sticks to make square-ish chopped pieces.
Slicing is a general term that means to cut across the grain into uniform pieces. For eggplant you can make whatever thickness you want but they tend to be wider cuts than with many other fruits and vegetables.
To slice an eggplant, remove both ends and peel it. Slice down the length of the eggplant into long slices of whatever thickness you are wanting to use.
If you don't slice the eggplant right before cooking it, then you will want to submerge it in a salt water bath to prevent it from turning a brown color. As a side benefit, the bitterness will also be milder.
An eggplant cube is similar to, but usually larger than, a diced cut in that it has uniform sides. In addition, the process is the same for both a cube and a dice cut.
After the flesh is prepared by removing the stem and blossom ends and peeling the eggplant, you are ready to make it into cubes.
Place the eggplant flesh on the cutting board and with a knife cut it lengthwise into slices that are a uniform width apart. Place the stack of slices flat side down and once again cut down the length of the slices at the same thickness as the previous cuts. Turn the pile of resulting sticks 90 degrees and once again using that width, cut across them into cubes.
If you are not going to cook them right away, you can preserve their whitish color by submerging them in a salt water bath until needed.
A dice cut creates uniform squares with all sides being the same length. This helps facilitate even cooking and it gives your dish a more polished appearance.
Since eggplant shrinks some when cooking, make your dice cut a little wider than you want your cooked pieces to end up at.
Prepare your eggplant for cutting into diced cubes by removing both the stem and blossom ends and peeling when appropriate.
Cut the eggplant lengthwise into slices the width you want. Next, stack the slices flat side down on the cutting board and once again make long cuts the same width as your first series of cuts. Now you have a stack of sticks. Turn the stack 90 degrees and cut crosswise the same width as the previous 2 cuts. You now have your eggplant in uniform diced cubes.
Once eggplant is cut, it turns brown rather quickly. You can prevent this by putting the diced eggplant into a bowl with about 1 teaspoon of salt dissolved in enough water to cover them. This keeps eggplant looking good until you’re ready to cook it.
Get your eggplant ready as usual by first cutting off both ends of the fruit then peel it with a simple vegetable peeler.
Cut the eggplant flesh into long, wide pieces that are easy for you to handle on a grater. Select the grater with the appropriate hole sizes for your recipe. With medium firmness, press the eggplant against the side of the grater as you move the fruit down over the sharp edges. Be sure to keep your fingers out of the way as you can easily cut your fingers!
Another grating option may be a standing mixer or food processor. Some brands have grating attachments that you could use.
Yes, you can juice it raw or if you do not care for the bitter taste of eggplant, some folks steam it first for a milder flavor.
To steam an eggplant, first cut off both ends and peel it. Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise and place in a steamer. It takes about 20 minutes for the flesh to feel soft and moist. Once cooled off, it’s ready to juice.
Due to the makeup of an eggplant, it’s almost impossible to juice one with your hands - a quality juicer is needed. Even with the best juicers, 1 medium eggplant only gives up about ¼ cup of juice.
Cut the steamed flesh into pieces that will fit into your juicer hopper. Place the pieces into the machine along with other fruits or vegetables of your choice and make juice.
In addition to being nutritious, eggplant juice can be delicious as well when mixed with a combination of other fruits or vegetables. Apples, bananas, pears, strawberries are often used to help sweeten eggplant juice.
Eggplant is a delicate fruit that doesn't store very well. Depending on its freshness, it is best to use it within 3 or 4 days of purchasing it. Picking it from your own garden can give you an extra day or two leeway.
People are undecided on the best way to store whole eggplants, which also partially depends on the type you select. Most estimates are that they will last for 3 to 5 days either on the counter or in the refrigerator, depending on the variety and ripeness.
For safety reasons, cooked eggplant should always be stored either in the refrigerator for reheating soon or put in the freezer for long-term storage.
Sometimes your best option is to store the whole unwashed eggplant in the vegetable crisper of your refrigeration. This usually gives you 3 to 5 days in which to use the eggplant before losing freshness and starting to get mushy.
You can store cut uncooked eggplant in a plastic container or just in plastic wrap and put in the vegetable crisper. It usually remains fresh for 3 to 4 days. To prevent the flesh from turning brown, sprinkle lemon juice on it to prevent the air from oxidizing it.
With cooked eggplant, if you store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator, you can reasonably expect it to last about 3 to 5 days.
Three common ways folks freeze eggplant are made into the final dish, pre-cut pieces or pureed.
Many people like to prepare a meal ahead of time and freeze it uncooked in the baking dish. Then, depending on the recipe, they just pull it out of the freezer and either put it directly into the oven or thaw it in the refrig before cooking.
Freezing cut fruits and vegetables into usable sized pieces ahead of time can be a great time saver on the actual cooking day. Depending on the dishes you enjoy, you can cut eggplant rounds, matchsticks, and diced cubes just to name a few. These should last in the freezer for about 8 months and still have its freshness.
To freeze pre-cut eggplant pieces, place the cut fruit into a large pot of boiling water with about 1/2 cup of lemon juice in it. The lemon juice helps prevent the flesh from turning brown. Blanch the pieces for about 4 minutes. Immediately remove and place in cold water to prevent the eggplant from overcooking. Place the dried off pieces onto a baking sheet and put into the freezer until solid. Put the frozen eggplant pieces into a Ziploc freezer bag and put into the freezer until needed.
Freezing puree for use down the road is another popular trick for quickly making dips, sauces and fillings when you want. With skin left on, cut the eggplant in half lengthwise. Place flesh side down on a baking sheet. Roast them in the oven at about 400 degrees for 35 to 45 minutes or until the flesh is soft. Once the eggplant has cooled off some, scoop out the flesh and put it into freezer containers. The puree will last up to 8 months in the freezer. Depending on the recipe, you can either just use the frozen puree directly into a sauce or defrost it in the refrigerator first.
You never know where you'll find eggplant. They're fried, grilled, roasted, braised, boiled, pureed and they're made into stews, fritters, sauces, casseroles, dips, and the ever popular eggplant parmesan.
Many recipes start out by putting salt on the eggplant's flesh to remove some of its moisture and reduce some of the bitterness before cooking.
Lay the cut pieces of eggplant on paper towels and sprinkle salt on all sides. Place more towels on top to absorb the moisture. After about 20 minutes they are ready to rinse in running water and you're ready to continue with the recipe.
A popular eggplant preparation is making the outsides caramelized and real crispy while the inside flesh becomes soft and smooth. When baking these, be sure to leave a little space between the eggplant pieces on the baking pan so they can crisp up to perfection.
Since the eggplant's flesh has a sponge-like texture, it will absorb the liquids and flavors it's cooked with.
Once the skin is punctured the eggplant flesh starts to turn brown, so most cooks recommend cutting it right before using it.
Remove both ends from the eggplant, peel if needed, cut it into 1” cubes and mix with some spices and oil. Spread out the eggplant cubes in a single layer on a baking pan. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes at about 400 degrees until browned and tender. Mash the cubes with either a hand potato masher or a food processor. Normally some lemon juice is added along with shallots, garlic or other tasty vegetables.
Besides eating as a side dish with a meal, mashed eggplant makes a nice spread on crostini and serves as an appetizer.
Place the whole eggplant on a baking pan and roast for 45 to 60 minutes at 425 degrees until completely soft. Some folks prefer to use their broiler instead of baking; either works fine. Rotate the eggplant several times during the cooking cycle so all sides are evenly done.
Once cooled off, cut the eggplant in half lengthwise and remove the seeds. Scoop out the flesh and puree it in a food processor until mush. You’re ready to proceed with your recipe.
First remove both the stem and blossom ends of the eggplant. Depending on the recipe and the condition of the skin, peel off the skin if needed. Depending on the appearance you prefer, either cut the eggplant lengthwise elongated ovals or crosswise into rounds.
Many folks brine eggplant before cooking it to both reduce the amount of liquid in the fruit and to reduce the bitter taste.
Sometimes the rounds are dipped in an egg mixture and breaded before placing them on a baking pan in a single layer and put into a 375-400 degree oven for 25 to 30 minutes. Normally these are turned once while they cook.
Remove both ends of the eggplant and peel if needed. Using lengthwise cuts about ½” to 1” thick slice the eggplant. Turn the stack of slices so the flat side is down. Make lengthwise cuts at the same width so you end up with a uniform stack of sticks. Turn the stack 90 degrees and move the knife crosswise making the cuts once again the same thickness. You now have a pile of uniform eggplant cubes.
Brining the raw eggplant cubes prior to cooking is a good option for reducing the water content and the bitter taste.
Place the cubes in a single layer on a baking pan so they will brown up nice and even. Turn them over during the cooking process.
Chinese eggplant are long and slender in shape with a light pastel lavender colored thin skin and a sweeter taste than most other market varieties. The Chinese variety flesh contains fewer seeds than American globe eggplants.
They're well suited for stir-fried, grilled and sautéd dishes.
Chinese and Japanese eggplants can easily be substituted for each other.
Japanese eggplants have a long narrow shape and thin skin but the same dark purple color as American varieties. These are normally smaller and not quite as sweet as Chinese eggplant.
These don’t need to be peeled and are delicious when quickly grilled or broiled.They have a delicate, spongy texture that works well in stir-fries and a creamy, slightly sweet taste.
Grilling is a popular way to prepare Japanese eggplant because it absorbs a fun smoky flavor. Japanese eggplants are also delicious when basted with garlic, soy or ginger sauces.
Any eggplant variety can be used interchangeably in most recipes unless the skin color is a specific visual factor.
This is a traditional Italian dish with breaded baked or fried eggplant rounds served on spaghetti and some type of tomato sauce. It is a versatile dish where every restaurant and recipe seems to have a little different twist on it.
You will have no trouble finding recipes online. The hardest part will be narrowing down the selection to choose!
Eggplants are members of the nightshade family, the same as tomatoes, potatoes and sweet peppers. Because these 4 come from the edible parts of flowering plants, they are technically fruits, not vegetables. Regardless, for centuries these have been basic foods for many civilizations.
The nightshade family also contains many varieties of poisonous plants. There are not very many nightshade plants actually consumed as food.
The eggplant bush grows 2 to 3 feet tall with large coarse, leathery green leaves. Depending on the eggplant variety, the flowers can be anywhere from white to purple. They grow in clusters of 2 or more solitary 5-point star shaped blossoms about 2" in diameter.
Once again, depending on the eggplant variety, the fruit from the flower can be quite different in shape and color. Both the American and Italian eggplants are commonly available in U.S. grocery stores, and are large egg-shaped globes with shiny dark purple surfaces. Whereas both Japanese and Chinese eggplants are long and slender.
The Eggplant is also called Aubergine in France and England, and Brinjal in India.
Like tomatoes and green peppers, eggplant is technically a fruit. They are a nutritious option for healthy minded folks. Eggplants contain no fat, cholesterol or salt and they are low in calories and high in fiber.
Unlike some fruits and vegetables, eggplants don't specialize in high quantities of any particular vitamins or minerals. However, they do carry a smattering of most of them.
When eaten raw, eggplant tastes fairly bitter. Once it has been cooked, the taste becomes milder. A lot of people do not like to eat raw eggplant.
From a texture standpoint, raw eggplant is spongy but when cooked it has a soft and creamy mouthfeel.
When eaten raw, eggplant has a somewhat bitter, but pleasant taste and spongy texture. Once cooked, though, the taste becomes more mild and a bit richer. It also takes on a soft, creamy texture.
Some eggplant varieties like the Japanese eggplant and Chinese eggplant are known for their thin skin. Most people eat these with the peel on. Other varieties have thicker, tougher skin and most people peel them before cooking and eating them. The eggplant skin won’t hurt you but it might not be the texture and mouthfeel you’re looking for.
No matter what variety, when selecting an eggplant pick ones that feel heavy for their size with bright glossy looking skin. Avoid ones with any bruises or dark spots. Next press your finger lightly against the skin to see if it makes a slight imprint.
Eggplants that pass all of these checkpoints are ripe and would make a good purchase. As a side note, smaller eggplants have fewer seeds, thinner skin, and tend to be sweeter and more tender.
Food often causes digestive problems. FODMAP focuses on groups of sugars or carbs that often trigger digestive symptoms like stomach pain, gas and bloating.
A diet low in FODMAPs can be used to help address abdominal issues in sensitive people.
Even though eggplants are considered low FODMAP fruits, it’s always recommended to eat moderate serving sizes of any food.
Yes, eggplants are low in carbs and very high in vitamins, minerals and fiber content. This makes eggplants very keto friendly.
Guinea pigs can eat small amounts of eggplant flesh, but it is not recommended that they consume the skin. Most vets seem to recommend it as a snack a couple times a week and not as a meal routinely.
Most dogs can eat small amounts of eggplant flesh, without the skin or seeds, occasionally. Many dogs don’t like the taste of raw eggplant, but they may enjoy grilled or roasted eggplant flesh rounds.
Yes, you can eat seeds from all varieties of eggplants, but they are quite bitter.
An eggplant is a hot climate vegetable; refrigeration tends to cause soft brown spots to develop. Eggplants become bitter with age; in addition, the smaller the eggplant the sweeter.
If using within 1 or 2 days, you can store an unwashed eggplant in a cool, dry location somewhere between 45 to 50°F (4.4 to 10°C).
Wrap the eggplant in a plastic bag with a wet paper towel or cloth in it to provide humidity. The eggplant will hold for 7 days in the refrigerator.
Eggplants are good pickled.
One of the biggest hassles when cooking and working in the kitchen is when a recipe calls for "the juice of 1 lime" or a similar measurement. Often times when cooking people use bottled juices, pre-sliced vegetables and other convenient cooking time savers. Produce Converter will help you convert the "juice of 1 lime" and other similar recipe instructions into tablespoons, cups and other concrete measurements.
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