This Chinese Eggplant Recipe with Garlic Sauce features crispy eggplant bites coated in a sticky, spicy, savory-sweet garlic sauce ⏤ simple but packed with flavor! Perfect for weeknight dinners, this recipe is better-than-takeout and naturally Vegan!
Chinese Eggplant With Spicy Garlic Sauce
Today I’m sharing with you this Chinese Eggplant Recipe!
These eggplant bites are pan-fried until perfectly crispy on the outside and tossed with a spicy, savory-sweet sticky sauce. I love topping this dish with fresh spring onions and toasted sesame seeds and serving it over rice.
This classic Chinese dish is quick and easy to make but packed with flavor: it’s garlicky, spicy, sticky, slightly sweet… it truly has it all!
No more takeout eggplants for me 🙂 .
Let’s get started!
How To Make Chinese Eggplants
Step-by-step instructions included in the recipe card below 🙂 .
- Prepare the eggplants. Chop the eggplants into bite-sized pieces, place them into a colander, sprinkle them with salt, and set them aside. This step will remove some of the natural bitterness that eggplants usually have, so don’t skip it! Make sure to drain the eggplants and bloat them dry before moving onto the next step.
- Cook the eggplants. Stir-fry the garlic and ginger in hot oil until fragrant, remove them from the skillet and stir-fry the eggplants until thecrispy on the outside and fully cooked through. Make sure they’re sitting in a single layer (no overlapping) when pan-frying, so use a large skillet or work in batches if necessary. If the skillet is too crowded, the eggplant won’t crisp up. Remove the eggplants from the skillet and place them on a plate line with kitchen towels to absorb the excess oil.
- Make the sauce. Combine together the water, soy sauce, rice vinegar, brown sugar, and cornstarch to the same skillet, cook the sauce until thickened, then toss with the eggplants and serve.
1 Tip For Success
Use Chinese/Japanese eggplants for best results! Long Asian eggplants have a slightly different flavor & texture and work best for this recipe but I’ve successfully used regular eggplants so don’t stress if you can’t find them!
What to serve with Chinese eggplants?
- Vietnamese Fried Spring Rolls with Dipping Sauce
- Crispy Buffalo Cauliflower Wings
- Scallion Pancakes with Soy Ginger Sauce
- Easy Healthy Chinese Lemon Chicken
- Best Mochi Brownies
Can you store Chinese eggplants with garlic sauce?
This dish is best eaten fresh. You can store it if necessary but the eggplants will lose the crispiness and turn soft so I don’t recommended. If you do need to store it, place it in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days.
You can reheat the eggplants on the stovetop but you might need a splash of water to loosen up the sauce a bit.
HAPPY COOKING! I hope you’ll love these Chinese Eggplant Recipe With Garlic Sauce as much as I do!
PS: Please leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating ⭐️ if you make it! I LOVE hearing from you! 💘
- Chinese Scallion Pancakes with Soy Ginger Sauce
- Easy Healthy Chinese Lemon Chicken
- Spicy Honey Garlic Glazed Carrots
- Spicy Lebanese Potatoes (Batata Harra Recipe)
Chinese Eggplant Recipe With Garlic Sauce
For The Eggplants
- 2 eggplants chopped into bite sized pieces
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 2 tbsp peanut oil or vegetable oil
For The Stir Fry
- 1/2 tbsp peanut oil or vegetable oil
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tbsp ginger minced
For The Sticky Sauce
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 and 1/2 tbsp soy sauce use gluten-free soy sauce for GF eaters
- 2 and 1/2 tbsp rice vinegar
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- Place the chopped eggplants in a colander, sprinkle with salt and allow to rest for 30-40 minutes. Pat dry, then transfer to a large shallow bowl and add in the cornstarch. Toss until evenly coated on all sides.
- In a large non-stick skillet over medium heat, add the peanut oil and heat until hot. Add in the eggplants and spread them into a single layer (they shouldn't overlap or they will turn soggy). Cook one side at a time until the eggplants are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside (about 8-10 minutes in total), then remove them from the skillet and transfer them to a clean plate.
- In a small bowl, add the water, soy sauce, rice vinegar, brown sugar and cornstarch. Mix until combined and the cornstarch is completely dissolved. Set aside.
- Add the peanut oil to the same skillet, place over medium heat and heat until hot, then add in the garlic and ginger. Stir fry until fragrant (don't let the garlic turn brown). Immediately add in the eggplants, give another whisk to the sauce, then pour it in. Stir until the eggplants are coated evenly and the sauce thickens (you're looking for a sticky maple syrup-like consistency). Turn off the heat and serve immediately! Serve hot as a side or over rice or noodles as a main.