Easy Air Fryer Eggplant

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Looking for a vegetable side dish that is easy to make and a nice change of flavor? Air fryer eggplant is the way to go!

With one eggplant, a few common spices, and your trusted air fryer, you can make an eggplant that is flavorful and crispy on the outside and perfectly tender on the inside!

Air fried eggplant makes a great veggie side dish… it’s also something you can snack on with hummus!

air fried eggplant with spices in bowl on counter
Delicious air fryer eggplant!

Recipe Tips/Substitutions

Before you make air fried eggplant, have a look at these recipe tips:

  • If you don’t like the spice combination we use in this recipe, feel free to modify it. However, make when it comes to spices, make sure you add a little bit at a time. You can always add more spices – like salt, pepper, or cayenne pepper – to the cooked eggplant but it’s really difficult to remove that spice again!
  • Regardless of the size of your eggplant pieces, make sure they are cooked to tender right through. Raw eggplant can be slightly harmful if eaten – it may cause nausea, etc. – so it’s important to make sure that the eggplant is cooked.

We use this air fryer for our recipes and it has been great.

Step by Step Instructions

For step-by-step photos on how to air fry eggplant, stick around this section.

If you’re confident you know what you’re doing, you can skip to the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

raw eggplant cut into pieces on white cutting board
Cut the eggplant.

First, wash the eggplant and cut the ends off.

Next, cut the eggplant in half lengthwise, then cut each half into thirds (see photo above). Now cut these sticks into pieces, approximately 1 inch thick.

raw eggplant in orange bowl with spices on top
Add oil and spices.

Place the cut-up eggplant into a bowl. Then add the oil, paprika, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper.

raw eggplant pieces in orange bowl coated in oil and spices
Make sure the eggplant is evenly coated.

Toss until the eggplant cubes are evenly coated. Don’t add the salt yet.

eggplant pieces covered in spices in black air fryer tray
Place the eggplant pieces into the air fryer.

Preheat the air fryer to 380 degrees Fahrenheit. When hot, add the eggplant.

It should fit into the air fryer in one layer with little overlap. If you have a very small air fryer, you might have to cook this amount of eggplant in two batches.

cooked eggplant pieces in black air fryer tray
Cooked eggplant.

Cook the eggplant for approximately 15 minutes total or until tender.

Shake every 5 minutes to make sure the eggplant pieces cook evenly. Since every air fryer is slightly different, your cooking time can vary.

roasted eggplant in pieces in bowl on counter
Look at that perfectly tender eggplant!

Remove the cooked eggplant from the air fryer, add it to a bowl and sprinkle with salt to taste. Enjoy!

Storage Tips

Eggplant in the air fryer tastes best when you eat it fresh. However, you can toss any extra pieces into a sealed container and store them in the fridge.

They’ll get a little moist but will keep for up to 3 days. You can eat them cold or choose to reheat them in the air fryer or microwave – that’s really up to you.

What to Serve Air Fryer Eggplant With

You can serve this air fried eggplant it in a number of different ways. As a general rule, eggplant goes really well in/with Middle Eastern or Mediterranean dishes.

You can enjoy the eggplant pieces as an appetizer and dip them in hummus for a really nice texture/flavor combo.

Air fryer eggplant makes a nice summer side to go with meals consisting of grilled meats from the barbeque and pasta sides (like cold and creamy pasta salads).

In fact, you could also use it as an ingredient in a cold orzo salad.

Related Recipes

If you loved this eggplant air fryer recipe, check out these other great air fryer vegetable recipes!

roasted eggplant in pieces in bowl on counter

Air Fryer Eggplant

Yield: 2
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Cooking eggplant in the air fryer is the best way to enjoy it. With just a few simple spices and one fresh eggplant, this flavorful and easy-to-make vegetable side dish is a delicious addition to any meal!

Ingredients

  • 1 medium-sized eggplant
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder (more to taste)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Wash the eggplant and cut the ends off. Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise, then cut each half into thirds (see process photo for visuals). Then cut these sticks into pieces, approximately 1 inch thick.
  2. Place the cut-up eggplant into a bowl. Then add the oil, paprika, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper. Toss until the eggplant cubes are evenly coated. Don't add the salt yet.
  3. Preheat the air fryer to 380 degrees Fahrenheit.
  4. When hot, add the eggplant. It should fit into the air fryer in one layer with little overlap. If you have a very small air fryer, you might have to cook this amount of eggplant in two batches.
  5. Cook the eggplant for approximately 15 minutes total or until tender. Shake every 5 minutes to make sure the eggplant pieces cook evenly. Since every air fryer is slightly different, your cooking time can vary.
  6. Remove the cooked eggplant from the air fryer, add it to a bowl and sprinkle with salt to taste. Enjoy!
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 164Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 294mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 7gSugar: 9gProtein: 3g

This nutritional information has been estimated by an online nutrition calculator. It should only be seen as a rough calculation and not a replacement for professional dietary advice. The exact values can vary depending on the specific ingredients used.

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