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Kalyn's Kitchen

Pan-Fried White Eggplant with Onion, Caper, and Herb Sauce

If you find white eggplant at the farmer’s market, this Pan-Fried White Eggplant with Onion, Caper, and Herb Sauce is a tasty way to use it. Use Eggplant Recipes for more ideas for cooking eggplant.

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Pan-Fried White Eggplant with Onion, Caper, and Herb Sauce is an interesting dish I made recently, but let me start by saying that of course you can make this with regular purple eggplant if you choose ones that are on the small side. I used white eggplant after I fell in love with eggplant last year and for this year’s garden I planted both Black Beauty and white eggplant. I’m really liking the white eggplant, which seems just a bit sweeter than the purple ones.

Even though this eggplant is fried, it doesn’t take a huge amount of oil, and the sauce was delicious, although it possibly could have been more photogenic. If you like eggplant, this is an easy and delicious way to cook it.

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This recipe was adapted from one in a book I received called Two Dudes One Pan, and they recommended salting the eggplant. I’ve heard mixed reviews about whether salting is needed, but I confess, I kind of like watching the eggplant ooze out water so I sprinkled sea salt both sides and let it sit about 20 minutes.

The dudes called it pan-roasted eggplant, but it seemed fried to me, so I went with that for my recipe title. Apparently these dudes were on Iron Chef. I must apologize for my lack of TV watching because I’ve never heard of them, (sorry dudes!) but I do like the looks of a lot of their recipes.

The dudes used shallots, which I knew a lot of blog readers weren’t going to have, so I used very finely minced red onions. If you have shallots, even better, but whichever you use, be sure they’re very finely chopped.

Make it a Low-Carb Meal:

This would taste great with something like Very Greek Grilled Chicken for a delicious low-carb meal!

More Tasty Ideas with Eggplant:

Grilled Chinese Eggplant with Garlic and Ginger Sauce from Andrea’s Recipes
Spicy Grilled Eggplant with Red Pepper, Parsley, and Mint from Kalyn’s Kitchen<
Cold Aubergine Salad with Black Vinegar from The Perfect Pantry
Grilled Eggplant with Garlic-Cumin Vinaigrette, Feta, and Herbs
Sicilian Eggplant from A Veggie Venture

Pan-Fried White Eggplant with Onion, Caper, and Herb Sauce

This Pan-Fried White Eggplant with Onion, Caper, and Herb Sauce is a tasty way to serve eggplant!


  • 3 small or 2 medium white eggplants (purple or Asian eggplant will also work)
  • salt, for drawing water out of eggplant
  • 3 T olive oil, divided (may need a little more if you don’t have a non-stick pan)
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped red onion (or shallots)
  • 1 tsp. minced garlic
  • 2 T capers
  • 2 T fresh lemon juice
  • 1 T balsamic vinegar
  • 2 T chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 T chopped fresh basil (or use a bit more parsley if you don’t have basil)


  1. Wash eggplants and cut off both ends.
  2. Cut eggplants into 3/4 inch thick pieces and arrange on cutting board in a single layer.
  3. Sprinkle both sides of eggplant with salt, then let sit about 20 minutes, or until you see some water that has been drawn out by the salt.
  4. Blot both sides of eggplant with paper towel. (Some people feel that salting eggplant is completely unnecessary, so skip this step if you’d like.)
  5. Heat 1 T olive oil in large non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat until oil starts to shimmer.
  6. Add eggplant and cook on first side until starting to brown, about 5-6 minutes.
  7. Turn over and cook on other side until eggplant is cooked through and browned on both sides. You may have to cook the eggplant in two batches if you don’t have a big enough pan.)
  8. Remove eggplant to serving dishes.
  9. While eggplant cooks, chop onion, garlic, parsley, and basil.
  10. Put capers, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, parsley, basil, and 1 T olive oil in food processor and pulse a few times. (I used the bowl of my immersion blender. You can also skip this step if you want a chunkier sauce.)
  11. Add last tablespoon of olive oil to pan, heat about 30 seconds, then add onion and saute 2-3 minutes.
  12. Add minced garlic and saute another minute or two.
  13. Add caper mixture and heat about a minute, then pour sauce over eggplant and serve immediately.


Recipe adapted slightly from Two Dudes One Pan.

All images and text ©

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
This recipe is great for any phase of the South Beach Diet, or any other low-glycemic or low-carb eating plan, and the recipe is also meatless, gluten-free, dairy-free, Whole 30, or Paleo.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Nutritional Information?
If you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into this nutrition analyzer, which will calculate it for you. Or if you’re a member of Yummly, you can use the Yum button on my site to save the recipe and see the nutritional information there.

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    36 Comments on “Pan-Fried White Eggplant with Onion, Caper, and Herb Sauce”

  1. Wow..What a flavor. I bought my first white eggplant today and came across this recipe. I did not have capers in the house, so I looked around and found frozen edamame. I steamed them and popped the beans out replacing the capers. I chopped them up and used them. It came out really good. What a different flavor. I love this recipe and will be making it again.

  2. I'm not really sure, but I'd guess that salting might reduce the cooking time. You could also try grilling the eggplant; I've had good luck with that.

  3. OK, tried the recipe to mixed success. The sauce was great and end result tasted wonderful. I did not salt the eggplant since I wanted them to stay somewhat firm after cooking. When I put them in the pan, they splattered excessively and soaked up the oil almost immediately. I turned down the heat to medium and added more oil. I still feel like the pieces maybe cooked too fast. Any suggestions?

  4. Kz, how fun to hear we have the same taste in so many things. Hope you will continue to enjoy the blog.

  5. Kalyn,

    I found your blog when it showed up at the top of a google search for white eggplant. I haven't tried the eggplant recipe yet, but I've perused your blog thoroughly. A few of your "Popular Posts" caught my eye. Then I found that I have about one-third of "Kayln's Picks" in my cupboards right now. I'm hooked!

  6. wow…i've seen green n purple eggplants but not white till now…i've gotta try this…it's easy to make and it looks yum-yum :))

  7. So glad you liked it.

  8. I'm always looking for different ways to fix eggplant and I really enjoyed this recipe, thank you!

  9. WOW this is great!!!!

  10. Thank you for the recipe!! What a surprise when I went to my garden expecting purple eggplant and finding white I wasnt quite sure what to think? Sounds delicious!

  11. I just made this with a serving or so of tofu added in with the onions to make it a meal and it was amazing! Thanks for the recipe!

  12. Tom, I bought plants at the garden center, so I don't know where you would get the seeds.

  13. Where can I buy the seeds for white eggplant

  14. Gonancy, I think tomato pesto sounds great in this! Great adaptation.

  15. I’m a single empty nester mom and I struggle to cook meals for myself. I happened to buy a small white eggplant this week and googled for a recipe. I found this one and had everything on hand except the capers. I halved the recipe (just eyeballing it) and added about a 1/2 tsp of tomato pesto instead of the capers. I wasn’t sure about the taste, but once the puree was mixed with the onions and garlic, it was incredible! Easy to make and very tasty.