Aubergine Chickpea Bake (تبسي باذنجان)

Nadia Bakes, dairy free, gluten free, main meals, nut free, Sauces and Dips, Vegan, Vegetarian 29 Comments


Aubergine Chickpea Bake

I seem to be going back to my Middle Eastern roots recently where food is concerned. I think Middle Eastern food is so underrated and not many people have even tried it which is such a shame because you will never get a dish that is bland or boring! Many Middle Eastern dishes can actually be quite healthy, although they’re usually heavy in red meat, oil and simple carbs – but if you take out the meat, use less oil and healthier carbs then they can easily be made very healthy! 


This aubergine chickpea bake, or ‘tepsi baytinjan’ was one of the many dished I loved growing up. Aubergine is probably one my favourite vegetables, especially in a main dish. As far as vegetables go, aubergine is one of the ‘meatiest’ veggies out there in my opinion. Like meat, they give dishes, especially those that are tomato based, lots of flavour so I always feel it’s a good option for meat eaters who are trying to eat more vegetarian meals, unless they don’t like aubergines, of course! 

I think aubergines should always be cooked in tomatoes! The hint of sweetness and sourness from the tomatoes break the bitter taste that you usually get with aubergines. 

This aubergine chickpea bake is my take on an Middle Eastern version of mousakka. Typically made with a minced lamb base, topped with fried aubergine slices then everything is covered with a tomato sauce and baked into a thick sauce, perfect with rice or bread. The main difference between the two is that tepsi is not topped with melted cheese. 

This is my meat free, version of the tepsi baytinjan which also happens to be dairy free, vegan and gluten free! Instead of frying the aubergine slices I baked them for a lighter, healthier option.


Aubergine Chickpea Bake
Serves 4
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  1. 1 medium aubergine
  2. 1 400g can chopped tomatoes
  3. 1 400g can chickpeas
  4. 1 medium onion, chopped
  5. 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  6. 3 tbsp tomato paste
  7. 1 cup vegetable stock (1 vegetable stock mixed in 1 cup boiling water)
  8. 1 tsp curry power
  9. 1 tsp cumin powder
  10. 1 tsp dried basil
  11. 1 tsp pomegranate syrup (optional)
  12. Black pepper
  13. Olive oil
  1. Preheat your oven to 200*C (180*C fan assisted)/ 400*F
  2. Slice aubergine into 1/4 inch round discs and soak in warm salt water for 30 minutes.
  3. Drain, then brush each side with olive oil and arrange on a baking sheet.
  4. Bake for around 20 minute or until browned, turning half way.
  5. While the aubergine is baking, heat a little bit of oil in a pan then sautee the onions for a few minutes until they become transparent. Add in the garlic then mix in the curry powder, cumin and chickpeas. Cook for a few more minutes then transfer to a casserole dish, then arrange the aubergine slices on top.
  6. In a small pan, add the chopped tomatoes, tomato puree, stock, pomegranate syrup, basil and black pepper. Bring to a quick boil then lower the heat and simmer for around 5 minutes.
  7. Pour the tomato sauce over the aubergines.
  8. Bake for 40 minutes.
  9. Serve with rice, quinoa or flatbread
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Comments 29

  1. This looks delicious, something that I definitely want to make in the future. I’ve never had tepsi baytinjan before but my boyfriend will know about it since he grew up in the Middle East, will ask him and see what he says..

    1. Thank you Petra 😀 he may or may not know what it is depending on where he grew up as different Middle Eastern countries have different dishes or give the same dish different names. But I’m interested to know what he thinks 🙂

        1. Yay fantastic!! Well mine is the Iraqi version but I took out the meat 🙂 they usually add green or red peppers as well but I decided to leave them out. I hope you do try the recipe 🙂

    1. I get mine from a local Asian/Indian shop. The actual pomegranate molasses is made in Lebanon but you may be able to get it on amazon 🙂 The brand is called Cortas

    1. It’s my favourite too 🙂 we need more Middle Eastern restaurants in Manchester! Ones that don’t just sell kebabs and grilled meat.

    1. Aubergines are the best 😀 I must admit I usually cook them the same way and haven’t really experimented with them much apart from in stews or curries.

  2. I LOVE THIS recipe so much! Eggplant and tomatoes baked in the oven is literally the tastiest creation in the world! I love the addition of the chickpeas! Great for fiber, protein, and an extra delicious taste!

  3. I’m always confused about the canned chickpeas.. The entire can with the liquid is 400 grams or only the chickpeas without 400 grams?
    And looks amazing, I’ll definitely try it.

    1. Post
  4. Wow, I’ve just made this and it was so tasty! Thank you so much for the recipe. And it’s good to know I can freeze the leftovers. 😁👍

  5. I’m making this today. I can find only find odysea pomegranate molasses in supermarket, has anyone used this brand? I haven’t got time to order Cortas from Internet. Or does omitting it make much difference?

  6. I am not a huge fan of aubergine but i love this dish. It tastes delicious and is so simple to make. Will definitly make this again, thankyou 😊

  7. I tried this in my effort to becoming vegetarian. Soaking aubergines always puts me off using them, so I didn’t. I didn’t use the pomegranate stuff either but threw some crumbled feta in. It was totally delicious and will become one of my regulars I think. Thank you.

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