Aubergines are fantastic foods full of goodness and nutrients. On top of how good they are for you, they taste absolutely fantastic too!
This food is delicious as the main element of a meal like moussaka or perfect stuffed and served with a topping of cheese. It’s even great added to salads and stews!
Curiously, whilst you can find aubergines in the supermarket’s vegetable sections, they are actually considered a fruit. When cooked well, the whole aubergine is perfectly cooked, tender on the outside and soft in the middle.
However, it isn’t easy to get this perfect consistency at home. The skin can easily end up rubbery and difficult to eat, which is why you might be wondering whether or not you can even eat aubergine skin!
You can eat aubergine skin. You do need to cook it to perfection, or you risk chewing on rubbery, leather-like skin. But if you can cook it well, then you will easily be able to enjoy aubergine skin.
Unfortunately, it is easy to get put off because of how tough it can get. This is why many people choose to peel aubergines before cooking them. But, you don’t have to, and the skin offers some great nutrition, and, when cooked well, they can be lovely too.
What Does Aubergine Skin Taste Like?
Aubergine skin tastes the same as aubergine itself, a little like a courgette but with a stronger, earthy flavour. Depending on the aubergine, there can be a little bitterness which adds to the depth of the flavour.
When you cook the aubergine, this bitterness will become a little milder. The skin tastes similar to this, although it may be a little more bitter and the texture does make quite a big difference to how you experience the taste of the aubergine.
You can, of course, rub a range of spices on the outside of the aubergine to mask the bitter flavour profile of the skin.
How to Eat Aubergine Skin
If you plan to eat the aubergines with the skin on them, your best bet is to pick out the smaller aubergines. These will have a much better chance of being soft and easy to eat.
The larger aubergines tend to have developed a much tougher skin on them. Pick out the smaller aubergines that look and smell fresh and have lovely glossy skin. These are the veggies that will have the best taste and the best skins to eat.
Once you have picked out the perfect aubergines, then you can cook and eat them however you prefer. Roast them, grill or even chop them up and fry for a delicious side order of healthy vegetables.
Benefits of Eating Aubergine Skin
If you focus on health, then we all know a good variety of vegetables in your diet is essential to get all the vitamins, minerals and nutrients you need. Aubergines are a fantastic source of some of these vitamins, including B1, B6, Manganese and Magnesium.
All of these help to provide your body with the building blocks it needs to be healthy. On top of all this goodness, the skin, in particular, contains nasunin. This gives aubergine its beautiful purple colour, and it is a strong antioxidant that helps protect your cells. In particular, your brain.
Of course, the other benefit is time. If you eat the skin then you don’t have to spend time removing it, either while prepping it or while eating it.
Should You Eat Aubergine Skin?
For many years it was thought that aubergine was unsafe to eat. The Romans considered it poisonous, and this reputation seemed to have followed the aubergine for a long time.
It is part of the nightshade family which does have a bit of a reputation for having some deadly varieties, but the aubergine is not one of these, and it is safe to eat.
It even provides you with some extra nutrients that are hard to get from other fruits and vegetables!
So, as long as you can find a way you enjoy eating aubergine skins, then you can keep eating this delicious food safe in the knowledge that it is great for you and delicious too.
Aubergine Skin FAQs
If you’ve got other specific questions about eating aubergine skin then these might help:
You certainly can. You’d be there for hours and hours picking each individual seed out of each individual slice of aubergine. Instead, eat them along with the rest of the vegetables – skin and all!
Although you can eat aubergine skin raw, you won’t want to. It will be incredibly tough and will have a strong, bitter flavour that’s unpalatable for most people.
Lewis is the founder and editor of Let’s Foodie alongside other food-related platforms including FreezeIt and SubstituteIt. He launched Let’s Foodie to provide aspiring cooks with one place to get the answers to some of the most commonly asked cooking questions.