Slow Cooker Coconut Curried Eggplant

Eggplant and zucchini slow cooked in a creamy tomato sauce with Indian spices. Serve with cauliflower rice for a flavorful vegan and gluten-free meal! 

It’s time to break out your slow cooker (yet again) because I have a another tasty recipe to share. It’s inspired by Baingan Bharta, one of my favorite vegetarian dishes to order when we go out for Indian food.

Coconut rice with slow cooker coconut curried eggplant in a white bowl sitting on a white washed board.

Naturally this make-at-home version involves Indian spices, but I’ve changed it up a bit by using a combo of eggplant and zucchini. And I also added coconut milk to make it extra creamy. I’m all about the coconut milk lately.

Eggplant and zucchini slow cooked in a creamy tomato sauce with Indian spices.

After cooking for hours the eggplant and zucchini get melt-in-your-mouth tender and soak up tons of flavor from the spicy sauce. So delicious!

And did I mention it’s super easy? You literally throw everything in your slow cooker, stir, cover and go about your business while the veggies cook to perfection.

Cauliflower rice and coconut curried eggplant in a white bowl on a whitewashed wood table.

For serving I love pairing the curried eggplant with rice — I used cauliflower rice but basmati rice would work great as well. I also recommend adding in a little protein. Chickpeas would be awesome for a vegetarian meal or you can do chicken or even shrimp.

White bowl of coconut curried eggplant and cauliflower rice sitting on a whitewashed board. Slow cooker in the background.

Oh, and it would be absolutely amazing served with naan! Seriously, garlic naan is one of the things I miss most since going gluten-free. I’m making a note to myself right now to find a gluten-free naan recipe so I can stop feeling naan-deprived. If you have a good one, please share.

If you try this curried eggplant please leave a comment and star rating down below to let us know how it turned out. Your feedback is super helpful for the EBF team and other EBF readers!

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Slow Cooker Coconut Curried Eggplant


  • Author: Brittany Mullins
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 hours
  • Total Time: 5 hours 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4

Description

Eggplant and zucchini slow cooked in a creamy tomato sauce with Indian spices. Easy, healthy, vegan and gluten-free. Serve with cauliflower rice for a veggie packed meal!


Ingredients

  • 4 cups chopped eggplant (peeled, if desired)
  • 4 cups chopped zucchini (or more eggplant)
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6 oz can of tomato paste
  • 15 oz can coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup vegetable broth (optional)
  • chopped fresh parsley or cilantro for garnish

Instructions

  1. Place onion and garlic in a food processor or chopper to finely chop.
  2. Add chopped onion and garlic mixture, eggplant, zucchini, spices, tomato paste and coconut milk to your slow cooker. Stir everything together. At this point if the mixture seems too thick you can add in a little vegetable broth. Cook on low for 4-5 hours. Garnish with fresh parsley or cilantro. Serve warm with rice and naan.
  • Category: Lunch/Dinner
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: Indian

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/4 of recipe
  • Calories: 321
  • Sugar: 16g
  • Fat: 24g
  • Carbohydrates: 27g
  • Fiber: 5g
  • Protein: 6g

Keywords: curried eggplant

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    49 comments
    1. Anne
      January 3, 2021 AT 5:20 pm

      Thanks for this great recipe! I also added carrots as some suggested. I am not eating garlic and onion so instead used ginger and the green parts of scallions. Flavor was on point! I also added a can of diced tomatoes. Super excited to eat this all week and will probably add chickpeas when I want to make it a complete meal!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        January 3, 2021 AT 8:00 pm

        So glad you enjoyed this recipe! Thanks for the review, Anne. I so appreciate it!

    2. Debbie Dreyfuss
      October 26, 2020 AT 5:47 pm

      Strange question – do you think if I don’t have Aubergine, this would work with butternut squash?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 26, 2020 AT 9:04 pm

        I bet it would! Let me know if you try it!

    3. Richard
      October 25, 2020 AT 4:00 am

      Delicious.

      I make this regularly and have recommended it to other friends who also love it.

      Amazing flavours!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 26, 2020 AT 12:09 am

        Ahh yay, so glad you’ve been loving this recipe, Richard! Thanks so much for making it and for coming back to leave a comment + star rating. I really appreciate it. 🙂

    4. DeeDee
      May 25, 2020 AT 7:07 am

      Wow this is tasty!! So easy and healthy as well. I used light coconut milk and added a can of chickpeas, otherwise followed the recipe as is – and it turned out great. Eating leftovers as we speak 🙂 This is going into my regular recipe rotation!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 25, 2020 AT 11:24 pm

        Ahh yay!! I’m so glad you enjoyed this dish, DeeDee! Thanks for trying it an for coming back to leave a comment + star rating. I really appreciate it. <3

    5. Hannah
      April 17, 2020 AT 10:44 am

      This is a very delicious hearty meal. I added 2 x carrots and I kept the skin on my eggplant which gives an added texture, it also keeps the eggplant together as it could turn into mush.

    6. B
      April 5, 2020 AT 4:10 am

      What are the UK measurements please? Would like to try your recipe 🙂

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 5, 2020 AT 11:53 pm

        Hey Beth – If you pull up a conversion chart online you should be able to figure out the exact measurements you’d need. 🙂

    7. Lisa
      November 2, 2019 AT 5:37 pm

      I haven’t made this yet, but it looks easy and yummy. One clarification, though: I think you mean garam MASALA and not marsala. I was a bit confused when I first read the recipe.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        November 3, 2019 AT 3:04 pm

        Yes, garam masala! So sorry for the confusion, Lisa and thank you for catching that. I just fixed it on the blog! 🙂

    8. Allison
      October 14, 2019 AT 9:16 pm

      If I were to add chickpeas, do you recommend during the slow cooking process or to add-in when serving? Thanks!

      1. Brian Smith
        February 10, 2020 AT 6:52 pm

        i literally came here to ask this, and was so happy to see someone else did!

      2. Brittany Mullins
        October 15, 2019 AT 7:51 am

        Hey Allison! If you’re adding canned chickpeas, I’d add them to the slow cooker after the eggplant is done cooking, with just enough time for them to get warm before serving.

    9. Sydni Barker
      October 8, 2019 AT 2:32 pm

      Hi! Do you have an idea of how long this will keep in the fridge or freezer?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 8, 2019 AT 6:14 pm

        I haven’t tried freezing this dish yet, but it’ll keep in the fridge for about 5 days.

    10. MILDA FISHER
      June 19, 2019 AT 6:03 pm

      Omg, it is soooo good!!! I have made it at least 4 times already and I love it every time! I just top it with sour cream for a complete meal. It is delicious and meatless! 🙂

    11. Talya
      April 2, 2019 AT 4:56 pm

      Tried this today, it was spicy! I love the spice but my 17 month old… Not so much! Sadly I had to make an alternate meal for him (good thing for leftovers 😊) I did find it needed something. Maybe I missed a spice? Will definitely make it again with some meat 👍

    12. Toni
      February 11, 2019 AT 4:31 pm

      I love this recipe! I had an eggplant and a yellow squash one day and found this recipe – I’ve made it five or six times. Thank you!!

    13. Erica
      December 6, 2018 AT 12:35 pm

      This was excellent- velvety, flavorful and filling. I added carrots
      and sweet potato. Strongly encourage not adding coconut milk until the last hour so that it doesn’t break.

    14. Carly
      August 4, 2018 AT 12:36 am

      I tried this recipe exactly as per instructions, and after 4 hours it came out smelling awful – the coconut milk had gone rancid! I’ve made recipes before where the coconut milk goes in at the end, so I should have trusted my instincts and put it in at the end. I don’t know why this didn’t work for me but seems to have worked for others. A full pot of veggies ruined and time wasted!

    15. Emily
      January 10, 2018 AT 10:19 pm

      Hi- I was wondering if you think the slow cooker could be left on for 8-10 hours on low instead of the 4-5 hours in the recipe, or would the entire dish be too mushy?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        January 11, 2018 AT 12:38 pm

        Hi Emily! I haven’t tried it, but I think doing it on low for 8-10 hours would be fine. Let me know if you try it!

    16. ida
      November 14, 2017 AT 11:14 am

      Going to make this but just wanted to note that it’s hard to tell you mean 1 X 6oz tomato paste and not 16oz.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        November 14, 2017 AT 1:51 pm

        Good point! I just updated the recipe. I hope you enjoy it. 🙂

    17. justin
      October 24, 2017 AT 12:33 pm

      Would you add the chicken raw?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 24, 2017 AT 7:53 pm

        Hi Justin. Yeah, I would cut back on the amount of veggies a bit (just so you have enough sauce) and add chopped raw chicken to the slow cooker. Let me know how it turns out.

    18. Jenna
      May 1, 2017 AT 8:31 pm

      This looks delicious. How do you prepare the eggplant before putting it in the slow cooker? Thanks!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 2, 2017 AT 11:17 am

        Hi Jenna. All you have to do is chop it. You can peel it if you’d like, but it’s not necessary. 🙂

    19. Umm Salma
      April 10, 2017 AT 2:04 am

      Husband loved it. I’m Asian so I think it needs more spice for me but I will definitely save it and make again. Thanks a bunch

    20. liz henstridge
      March 21, 2017 AT 9:31 pm

      This sounds fantastic! I don’t have a slowcooker, any ideas on how long this would need to simmer to get all the flavours correctly on a stove top?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        March 22, 2017 AT 8:34 am

        I haven’t tried it on the stove top yet, but I’d cook it on medium for at least an hour. This should give the eggplant sufficient time to cook down and get soft. Let me know if you try it. 🙂

    21. French Lizzy
      February 7, 2017 AT 12:28 pm

      This is cooking in the slow cooker right now! We had rice yesterday, so I’ll serve it with whole-wheat pasta and grilled chicken breast. I’ll let you know how it turns out 🙂

    22. Emily Reph
      August 12, 2016 AT 9:19 am

      Thank you so much for this recipe. It is super hot and humid here today and I have 4 eggplants ready in my garden along with about 5 zucchini so this will help use at least some of them up. My kids LOVE ‘indian food’.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        August 12, 2016 AT 11:11 am

        It’s really the perfect way to use up your eggplant and zucchini! I hope the whole fam loves it, Emily! 🙂

    23. Leslie Moore
      July 13, 2016 AT 5:08 pm

      This was sensational. I substituted boneless chicken breast for zucchini. I did not add any broth as the chicken provided enough liquid. Will definitely make this again.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        July 13, 2016 AT 6:18 pm

        Hi Leslie! I’m so glad that you liked this recipe. And, thanks so much for coming back to leave a comment letting me know. 🙂

    24. Emma
      January 10, 2016 AT 10:34 am

      Excellent dish. I made it for dinner yesterday but also added garbanzo beans. Big hit! Thank you for sharing.

    25. Barb
      January 3, 2016 AT 11:57 am

      Aloha from Hawaii! I made this last night and it was delicious! I made my own garam marsala and added carrots. I think when I make it again I’ll use different veggies and maybe tofu. The sauce is so delicious, I think there are a lot of different veggie combinations that can be used with this. I made cauliflower rice to go with it. This is a keeper!! Thank you for a great recipe ????

      1. Brittany Mullins
        January 3, 2016 AT 9:26 pm

        Hi Barb. I’m so glad that the dish turned out to be tasty. I think it would be delicious with tofu and veggies as well. Enjoy experimenting. 🙂

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