Sautéed Eggplant with Honey and Thyme –  This melt-in-your-mouth tender and savory-sweet recipe is sure-fire way to create eggplant converts.

Sauteed eggplant

Our Past Nemesis – Sautéed Eggplant

We all have a certain food that is our life-long nemesis.

Well, I used to dislike eggplant. Although the color and shape was appealing, the texture reminded me of makeup sponges, something I wasn’t keen on eating. 

Fried Eggplant is a dish people tend to have strong opinions about. Today I’ll show you how to cook eggplant in a way everyone will enjoy.

Eggplant and honey drizzle

The Secret Restaurants Don’t Tell You

In the past, no matter how I (or anyone else) prepared it, eggplant always seemed to make my nose wrinkle in disapproval.

Then I learned a restaurant secret that changed everything… Apply milk to makeup sponges, I mean, eggplant.

To magically remove the bitterness from the eggplant and greatly improve the texture, soak the eggplant in milk overnight. Once the slices of eggplant have taken a long, luxurious, milky bath, they are tenderized and primed for frying.

Simply tap off the extra moisture, dust the eggplant slices with sea salt and flour. Then pan-fry them in a large cast iron skillet until golden brown. Then serve piping hot.

Easy eggplant recipe

Sautéed Eggplant Recipe Ingredients

  • Large Eggplant
  • Whole Milk
  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Olive Oil
  • Honey
  • Fresh Thyme Leaves
  • Sea Salt

How to Fry Eggplant

  1. Start off the night before cooking the eggplant by peeling the skin from the eggplant and slicing it into circular pieces. Place the slices in an airtight container. Pour in just enough milk to cover the eggplant pieces and then put it in the refrigerator overnight. 
  2. On day two: In a shallow dish, mix together the flour and salt. Heat some oil in a large skillet for pan-frying. Make sure to have a large plate lined with paper towels near the stove, to absorb the excess oil. 
  3. When the oil is ready, dip the eggplant pieces into the flour and cover generously. Make sure to tap off the extra flour before placing in the hot oil. Let them cook for about 2 minutes per side then set on the paper towel-lined plate to cool off and drain. Then sprinkle the eggplant with sea salt. 
  4. Finish cooking all the eggplant and add oil to the skillet as needed. 
  5. Serve warm with a honey drizzle and some thyme. 

This my friends… Is how to cook eggplant. 

This is how to get the reluctant eggplant-eater on board. Tender layers of fried eggplant, with the uncanny custard-like texture of good French Toast

It is crispy on the outside, moist and supple on the inside. Drizzled with honey and sprinkled with fresh thyme and sea salt. This sautéed eggplant is one irresistible veggie.

Sautéed Eggplant with Honey and Thyme will make a believer of you, guaranteed!

Get The Full (Printable) Recipe Below For How To Make Sauteed Eggplant. 

Pan fried eggplant

Frequently Asked Questions

Should you salt eggplant before frying?

Yes, whether you put the salt in the flour mixture or just sprinkle it before placing it in the oil, the salt really helps the flavor of the eggplant develop as it cooks. Also, add a little salt at the end of the frying process to further enhance the flavor. Holding off on some of the salt, until the end, will help keep the eggplant from getting mushy or soggy. 

Do you have to peel the eggplant before frying?

No. Eggplant skin is definitely edible. Yet because the texture of this dish is so soft and luxurious, I prefer it without the skin.

Could you use almond flour instead of wheat flour?

I have tried it with almond flour and it works, but not nearly as well. A better suggestion might be coconut flour or gluten-free baking mix.

More Summer Veggies:

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Sautéed Eggplant with Honey

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 32 minutes
How to cook eggplant: Fried Eggplant with a crispy outside and moist tender inside.
Servings: 4



  • Peel the eggplant and slice it into thin 1/8-inch rounds. Place the eggplant slices in an airtight container and pour the milk over it. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  • In a small pie pan, mix the flour with 1 teaspoon salt. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Line a plate with paper towels.
  • When the oil is hot, dredge a few slices of eggplant in the flour and tap off the excess. Gently place them in the skillet and pan fry for 2 minutes per side. Remove and place on the plate to drain.
  • Repeat with the rest of the eggplant, adding oil to the skillet as needed. Sprinkle the slices with a little more sea salt as they come out of the skillet. Serve warm, drizzled with honey and sprinkled with thyme.


Serving: 1serving, Calories: 304kcal, Carbohydrates: 38g, Protein: 7g, Fat: 15g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 12mg, Sodium: 56mg, Potassium: 461mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 23g, Vitamin A: 390IU, Vitamin C: 8.1mg, Calcium: 162mg, Iron: 1.7mg
Course: Appetizer, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Author: Sommer Collier
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