Eggplant Green Curry

Quick and EasyVeganCurryEggplant

Thai green curry with sautéed asian eggplant, red bell peppers, lemongrass, and coconut milk.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Please welcome guest contributor Garrett McCord as he shares a favorite recipe for green curry eggplant. This is as good as any I’ve had a restaurant! ~Elise

When I was learning to cook in college a Thai friend’s mother told me that there are two particular tricks you need to be aware of to craft a truly outstanding curry.

The first is that if you’re using eggplant you have to blister and sear it in order to enhance its unique taste.

The second is that you have to lightly fry your curry paste in order to reveal its true potential. Only then will you have a curry worth eating.

Green Curry Eggplant

Utilizing these rules this basic green curry is as simple as they come, and that will easily match or beat any green curry you’ve had in a restaurant. While I love the flavor of eggplant in this dish you could just as easily use chicken or shrimp.

I highly encourage you to use makrut lime (aka kaffir lime) leaves if you can find them as they add a certain floral-citrusy flavor that can’t be substituted. You can do this recipe without them, and though it will lack a truly authentic flavor it will still be completely yum-worthy.

Eggplant Green Curry Recipe

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

There are a lot of special ingredients in this curry. We've provided links to Amazon for some of the harder-to-find items, and most can be found at an Asian market if there is one near you. Also most of these ingredients can usually be found at Whole Foods.


  • Vegetable oil
  • 2 Japanese eggplants, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded, sliced into sticks
  • 1 can of bamboo shoots
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons green curry paste
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 3 makrut lime (kaffir lime) leaves
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, cut into three pieces and bruised
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup Thai Basil or Sweet Basil leaves
  • 1-3 Thai chilies, depending on your heat preference
  • Lime for garnish (optional)


1 Stir-fry the eggplant: Place a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a wok or deep pan over high heat. Add eggplant and stir-fry until skin becomes lightly brown and blistered, and the eggplant insides begin to soften and get a slight sear, about 3 to 4 minutes.

The eggplant will absorb the oil, if some of the eggplant pieces don't get any, add a little more oil.

Remove from heat and set aside in a bowl.

Stir Fry eggplant for green curry

2 Heat curry paste, add half of the coconut milk: Place another tablespoon of vegetable oil in the wok heat over medium heat. Add the curry paste - be careful, as it will cause the oil to spit - and sauté over medium heat until fragrant, about 20 to 30 seconds.

Add half of the coconut milk and mix, simmer for 2 to 3 minutes.

3 Add the lemongrass, makrut lime leaves, fish sauce, brown sugar, and remaining coconut milk and bring to a boil.

4 Add the bamboo shoots, cooked eggplant, and bell pepper. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes until softened a bit.

5 Stir in basil and chilies and remove from heat.

Serve over rice with lime wedges on the side.

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Green Curry Eggplant

Garrett McCord

Garrett McCord is a professional writer and recipe developer whose work has appeared in many print and online publications such as Gourmet Live, Saveur, Huffington Post, Smithsonian, and NPR. Past clients also include numerous food companies, wineries, and distilleries. Garrett writes about cocktails on his website, Coupe de Grace.

More from Garrett

31 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Donna

    How is this vegan when it calls for fish sauce??? I’m not vegan, but I’m cooking for a strict one. This could have wrecked the meal…

    Show Replies (1)
  2. Kim

    Loved it. Added mushrooms!


  3. MM

    I also forgot to add to my previous comment that I added two cans of coconut milk for more liquid to accommodate the extra veggies.


  4. MM

    This was amazing!!!!! Probably the best meal I’ve ever made, and I can cook some pretty good meals. I did not follow the recipe exactly. I omitted the fish sauce, bamboo shoots and Thai chilies. This was personal preference and ingredient availability.

    I used a regular eggplant and fresh sweet basil. I did not find the lime leaves so I added a tablespoon of lime juice.

    For veggies I cooked the chopped (and previously sweated in salt for 30 min) unpeeled eggplant, an orange bell pepper, a Vidalia onion and a container of fresh mushrooms. I just sautéed everything together until soft.

    I cooked everything in olive oil. I used the Thai Kitchen green curry paste. The resulting dish was not spicy, which was actually perfectly fine because the sweetness and delicate flavors were absolutely delicious!! I did notice the taste change significantly for the better after everything was simmered together for 20-30 min. If you’re not big on spice, try this version. If you are big on spice like me, try it anyways! It’s phenomenal!!!


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