This simple yet delicious Vegan Moussaka dish is made with roasted aubergine slices and a delicious chickpea & tomato filling. Same as traditional Turkish Moussaka, it is much healthier than Authentic Greek Moussaka as it doesn't contain any béchamel sauce.
My version of this traditional moussaka dish is much healthier and is packed with Mediterranean flavors. It is not one of these quick&easy weekday meals but the finished product is definitely worth the effort.
Why This Recipe Works?
- You can prep this delicious aubergine dish a few days ahead and bake it when needed.
- It is dairy free, gluten gree and vegan.
- It is a perfect dish if you are on a low calorie diet, one portion of this Vegan Moussaka with Aubergine recipe has only 251 kcal!
- You can freeze the leftovers and keep them for up to 3 months.
Ingredients and Substitutes
- Aubergine - Pick slightly firm but not hard aubergines when buying them. Peel them in stripes like a zebra pattern and slice them 1 cm thick.
- Onions - You can use white, brown or yellow onions.
- Olive oil - I use a good quality olive oil to achieve the best flavour.
- Pine nuts - They are great for adding some texture and nutty flavour to dishes such as Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers or Rice Stuffed Chicken. Omit them if you have nut allergies or replace them with walnuts if you don't have them in hand.
- Currants - They are small dried raisins and a popular ingredient in Mediterranean cuisine. Although they are typically used for baked goods, it is common to use them in cooking in Turkish Cuisine.
- Tomatoes - Red & juicy summer tomatoes are always the best option but you can also use tinned tomatoes.
- Chickpeas - Chickpeas add an extra texture to the dish and also goes perfectly with aubergine. You can use dried or tinned chickpeas.
- Tomato paste - It is the staple of Turkish cooking. It adds an umami flavour to the dishes as well as a bright red colour. You can find it in Turkish or Middle Eastern shops. You can also buy it online from Amazon.
- Stock - I prefer using Basic Homemade Vegetable Stock but you can use water instead. You can also use stock cubes if you don't have any stock in hand. Make sure you don't add too much salt as ready-made stocks and stock cubes contain salt already.
- Parsley - It adds balance to savoury dishes and is one of the most popular herbs in Mediterranean cooking. You can omit it if you prefer.
- Cinnamon - A small amount of cinnamon adds extra flavour to this vegan dish. Skip it or adjust it to your taste.
- Sugar - It balances the acidity coming from the tomatoes.
Although the preparation takes a bit of time, making Vegan Moussaka is straight forward and there are a few easy steps that you need to follow to achieve the best results:
Prepare the Aubergines
Preheat the oven to 200 °C. Line a large baking sheet with silicone paper. Peel the aubergines in stripes and slice them 1 cm thick. Brush them with 2 tablespoon of olive oil using a silicone pastry brush and place them on the baking sheet. Bake them for 25 to 30 minutes or until they are slightly softened and brown. Remove the aubergines from the oven and set them aside until the tomatoey filling is ready. Lower the oven temperature to 180 °C.
Prepare the Filling
While roasting the aubergines, start making the tomato & chickpea filling. Place a wok or a large pan on medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil. When the pan is hot, add the onions and sauté for a few minutes, until soft. Add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds, and then add the pine nuts.
Sauté the pine nuts for a few more minutes, until lightly browned. Stir in the tomato paste and then add the currants, salt, sugar, and cinnamon, and give it a good stir.
Add the chopped tomatoes, and stir well. Add the stock along with the chickpeas, give them a good stir and cook on low heat for 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, add chopped parsley and start building the moussaka.
Assemble the Moussaka
To assemble the moussaka, layer half of the aubergines on the bottom of your oven dish. Sprinkle some salt on aubergines, spoon half of the tomatoey filling, and spread it evenly on top.
Layer the rest of the aubergines on tomatoey filling and then sprinkle some more salt. Top the aubergines up with the rest of the filling. Cover the dish with tin foil or a lid and then put it in the 180 ° C oven. Cook for 45 minutes and then remove the lid/tin foil. Cook for another 20 minutes or until the aubergines are softened and the sauce has thickened.
For other great vegan recipes why not try:
This healthy vegan dish is best served with a bowl of salad such as Greek Salad or Tomato and Walnut Salad (Gavurdagi Salatasi) and a piece of Bazlama (Turkish Bread) or Homemade Toast Bread. You can also serve mousaka with some Bulgur Pilaf, Turkish Rice Pilaf or Turkish Bulgur Pilaf with Lentils on the side.
Yes, they freeze beautifully! Let them cool down and portion them in airtight containers before freezing them. You can keep them frozen for up to 3 months.
My vegan Moussaka recipe doesn't contain any potatoes but you can replace half of the aubergines with potatoes if you wish. Potatoes work great with aubergines and add some texture to the moussaka dish. Check my Authentic Greek Moussaka dish out which is made with half aubergine and half potatoes.
Top Tip From the Chef
You can cook this vegan Moussaka dish with green lentils instead of chickpeas. Place the lentils in a pan with plenty of cold water and cook them on medium heat for 30 minutes before adding to the tomatoey filling.
I hope you enjoy the process of making this delicious and healthy vegan Moussaka dish as much as you enjoy eating it! 🙂
Bon appétit! / Afiyet Olsun!
Did you make this recipe?
Vegan Moussaka with Aubergine
- 1Size of 24cm x 17cm x 7 cm (9.5" x 6.5" x 3")
- 3 aubergines (800 - 900 grams)
- 2-3 tablespoon good quality olive oil
- 2 onions (finely chopped)
- 20 g pine nuts
- 2 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
- 1 ½ tablespoon tomato paste
- 450 g chopped tomatoes (use fresh or tinned)
- 20 g currants
- 2 tablespoon parsley (chopped)
- 1 ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- 1 tin cooked chickpeas (240 grams)
- 1 cup vegetable stock or water
Prepare the Aubergines
- Preheat the oven to 200 °C.
- Line a large baking sheet with silicone paper.
- Peel the aubergines in stripes and slice them 1 cm thick.
- Brush them with 2 tablespoon of olive oil and place them on the baking sheet.
- Bake them for 25 to 30 minutes or until they are slightly softened and brown.
- Remove the aubergines from the oven and set them aside until the tomatoey filling is ready.
- Lower the oven temperature to 180 °C.
Make the Tomatoey Filling
- While roasting the aubergines, start making the tomato & chickpea filling.
- Place a wok or a large pan on medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
- When the pan is hot, add the onions and sauté for a few minutes, until soft.
- Add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds, and then add the pine nuts.
- Sauté the pine nuts for a few more minutes, until lightly browned.
- Add the tomato paste, currants, salt, sugar, and cinnamon, give it a good stir before adding the chopped tomatoes.
- Add the stock along with the chickpeas, stir well and cook on low heat for 10 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the heat, add chopped parsley and start building the moussaka.
Assemble the Vegan Moussaka
- To assemble the moussaka, layer half of the aubergines on the bottom of your oven dish.
- Sprinkle on aubergines some salt, spoon half of the tomatoey filling, and spread it evenly on top.
- Layer the rest of the aubergines on tomatoey filling and sprinkle some more salt.
- Top the aubergines up with the rest of the filling.
- Cover the dish with tin foil or a lid and then put it in the 180 ° C oven.
- Cook for 45 minutes and then remove the lid/tin foil.
- Cook for another 20 minutes or until the aubergines are softened and the sauce has thickened.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Don’t leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
See more guidelines at USDA.gov.
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