When it comes to Paleo cooking, there is no shortage of items that you can stuff. There are a pleathora of recipes out there for stuffed avocados, stuffed mushrooms, stuffed squash, and now…stuffed eggplant.
I had never really thought about stuffing an eggplant until last summer when I had a few on hand that I didn’t know what to do with. The eggplants ended up making a great vechicle for stuffing. They held up pretty well in the oven and were quick to absorb any flavors that I packed them with.
In this case, I use a mixture of ground chicken, mushrooms, and roasted red peppers. I also throw the eggplant that you carve out into the mix to help create a rich texture. After baking, the eggplants are drizzled with a simple balsamic reduction for an extra boost of flavor. Overall, it’s a simple process that produces a satisfying result.
Start by cutting the eggplant in half and carving out the center (I’ve found a pairing knife works pretty well for this). Give the eggplant innards a rough chop.
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add some diced onion, and sauté until it is translucent, 5-6 minutes.
Add the chopped eggplant, mushrooms, and garlic. Cook until the eggplant starts to get tender, about another 6-7 minutes.
Add the ground chicken, dried oregano, salt, and pepper. Sautee until the chicken is no longer pink, then stir in some chopped roasted red peppers and basil.
Stuff the mixture into the eggplant halves, and drizzle a little olive oil on top. Bake in a preheated 400°F oven for 30-35 minutes.
While the eggplants are baking, bring 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar to a low simmer. Simmer for about 10 -12 minutes until it turns thick and syrupy and has reduced by about half.
After removing the eggplants from the oven, top with the balsamic reduction and some more fresh basil. Enjoy!
Balsamic Chicken Stuffed Eggplant
- 1 large eggplant
- 1 pound ground chicken
- 1/2 onion diced
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1/3 cup roasted red peppers roughly chopped
- 1 cup Baby Bella Mushrooms sliced
- 1/4 cup fresh basil chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
Preheat the oven to 400°F
Cut the eggplant in half length wise, and carefully hollow out each half. Roughly chop the removed flesh.
In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the onion sauté until tender, about 5-6 minutes.
Add the chopped eggplant, mushrooms, and garlic. Cook until the eggplant is tender, about 7-8 minutes.
Add the ground chicken, oregano, salt and pepper. Cook until the chicken is no longer pink, about 10 minutes.
Stir in the roasted red peppers and basil and remove the skillet from the heat.
Place the eggplant halves in a baking dish and stuff them with the chicken mixture. Drizzle a little olive oil on top and bake for 30-35 minutes until tender.
Meanwhile add the balsamic vinegar to a small sauce pan. Bring to a low simmer and cook until it has thicken and reduced by about half, about 10-12 minutes.
Remove the eggplants from the oven and top with the balsamic reduction and additional basil before serving.