Eggplant puttanesca is a perfect blend of tender eggplant, spicy red pepper flakes and salty olives and capers, with a slight touch of sweetness from the sauce. It’s absolutely a meal to fulfill all your senses, leaving you wanting more!
It’s been years since I’ve had eggplant, and I’m so glad I gave this Eggplant Puttanesca recipe a try. Both hearty and healthy, this eggplant pasta sauce is absolutely delicious!
This is a warm and cozy eggplant pasta meal with a rustic feel that I love. Ready in 30 minutes and only 8 ingredients, it makes an easy vegan weeknight meal the whole family will love. And the leftovers are even better!
To add a little freshness to your pasta meal, this Vegan Caesar Salad is a perfect starter or side to eggplant puttanesca with pasta!
Ingredients You’ll Need
Eggplant is simmered with onion, olives, capers and tomato sauce creating a wonderfully flavorful and hearty eggplant pasta sauce that’s perfect with your favorite pasta.
Here is everything you’ll need:
- Olive oil (or use water for water saute)
- Pasta sauce (make marinara sauce or use your favorite)
- Olives (kalamata, green or medley)
- Red pepper flakes
- Pasta (penne, rigatoni, rotini, elbow, etc.)
How To Make Eggplant Puttanesca
This eggplant puttanesca recipe is so easy to make and will be ready for the table in about 30 minutes!
- Simply saute the onion and eggplant, add the pasta sauce, olives, capers and red pepper flakes, simmer for 15 – 20 minutes. Sauce is ready when eggplant is fully tender.
- While the sauce is simmering, cook the pasta, once done, combine the pasta with the sauce.
- Serve with chopped basil and almond parmesan.
And that’s it, this hearty eggplant puttanesca with pasta is seriously delicious!
This savory eggplant pasta dish is great as is, but can be made even tastier with a little help from any of these suggestions.
- Topping: Top with a light dusting of Almond Parmesan and chopped basil.
- Bread: Pair with fresh homemade Artisan Bread, breadsticks or soft and chewy Vegan Naan.
- Salad: Serve with a portion of this Vegan Caesar Salad or simple leafy green salad with Healthy Flax & Evo Balsamic Vinaigrette.
- Soup: Serve with a side of Vegan Minestrone Soup or Vegetable Quinoa Soup.
How To Store Leftovers
- Refrigerator: Leftovers will keep for 5 – 6 days in the refrigerator, stored in a covered container.
- Freezer: This eggplant puttanesca is freezer friendly and freezes well for up to 2 – 3 months. To freeze, let cool completely and store in freezer safe containers (affiliate link), leaving 1/4 inch head space for expansion. Let thaw before reheating.
- Reheat: Simply re-warm on the stovetop over low heat until warmed through, add a little sauce or water so it doesn’t stick to the pan. Alternatively, reheat in the microwave using 30 – 60 second intervals, stirring after each, until warm.
More Recipes You’ll Love
If vegan pasta dishes are your thing, you must try this:
- Spinach and ‘Ricotta’ Vegan Stuffed Shells
- One-Pot Penne Pasta with Mushrooms & Sausage
- Spaghetti & Italian Vegan Meatballs
- Vegetable Vegan Lasagna
- Or see all vegan Italian recipes on TSV!
If you try this eggplant puttanesca recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment and rate it below. I love to hear what you think, or any changes you make.Print
An easy pasta dish with a flavorful blend of spicy from the pepper flakes, salty from the kalamata olives and slight touch of sweetness from the tomato sauce.
- Prep Time: 5 min
- Cook Time: 25 min
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: Serves 6
- Category: Entree, Pasta
- Method: simmer
- Cuisine: Vegan, Italian
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil or 1/4 cup water for water saute
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 medium eggplants, cut into 1/2 – 3/4 inch cubes
- 1 (25oz) jar pasta sauce (or homemade Marinara Sauce)
- 1/2 cup pitted olives (kalamata, green or greek)
- 2 tablespoons capers
- 1/2 – 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 16 oz. pasta of choice
In large skillet/saute pan heat olive oil over medium heat, saute onion and eggplant until tender, about 8 – 10 min. Add sauce, olives, capers, red pepper flakes, cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 – 20 min. Sauce is ready when eggplant is fully tender.
Cook pasta according to package directions.
Serve eggplant sauce over pasta with a light dusting of Almond Parmesan over top. Pairs well with a slice of crusty bread.
If you like a little garlic, add 2 – 3 cloves, minced, when sauteing the eggplant and onion.
Keywords: eggplant puttanesca
Updated: Eggplant Puttanesca was originally published in September 2012. It has been updated with new photos and helpful tips in February 2020.
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Fantastic over cauliflower steaks! I also used Japanese eggplant so it didn’t take that long to cook (I did need to add water to keep the sauce from getting too thick). Ricotta salata for the finishing touch….
I made this with japanese eggplants as well as doubling the capers and adding caper brine. I am not a fan of olives, but I find since becoming vegan I do find capers a suitable “stand in”. One day I hope to develop a taste for olives…becoming a vegan has helped me to appreciate so many other wonderful tasty plants! Don’t leave off the vegan parm for a delicious addition! Great recipe!
Hi! This looks amazing; I’ve not yet tried it but didn’t want to send this in with zero stars in case it registered as such! Question: What type of pasta is pictured? I know we can use any pasta, but that looks like a fun one!
I would give this 10 stars! Made with some small Japanese eggplants and regular pitted black olives and pimento stuffed green olives because that’s what’s I had. My own spaghetti sauce. Went very light on the hot pepper as I’m not much on spicy. Will definitely make again… thanks for the great recipe.
We love this recipe! We added a few mushrooms yum!
Wonderful!! I added diced tomatoes (so salt), zucchini, garlic and fresh basil. Zero complaints, and LOW SODIUM!!!!
Delicious! Made it twice this week!