Balsamic-Roasted Eggplant and Arugula Sandwiches

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: A friend texted me a photo of a recipe from Ruth Reichl's My Kitchen Year for eggplant and arugula sandwiches. She said she was in the mood for something yummy and easy and different, and this was just that. I made the sandwiches immediately for dinner that night, then made them again the following evening—I can't stop making them. The timing perfect—we've been getting a lot of eggplant in our CSA—but, moreover, the method is just so simple, so undemanding. I know I'll be making these all fall. Alexandra Stafford

Serves: 4
Prep time: 5 min
Cook time: 20 min


  • 4 Japanese or baby eggplants
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 baguettes or 4 ciabatta rolls
  • Salted or unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 bunch arugula
In This Recipe


  1. Preheat oven to 425° F. Slice eggplants lengthwise into 1/4-inch thick strips and lay strips on an oiled or parchment- or Silpat-lined baking sheet.
  2. Mix balsamic vinegar and olive oil in a dish. Brush vinegar-oil mixture across top of each slice of eggplant. Then sprinkle with salt and pepper over the top. Roast for about 10 minutes. Turn slices over, brush with oil mixture, season with salt and pepper, and roast for another 8 minutes or so. Cool.
  3. Cut baguettes lengthwise in half and spread each half generously with the softened butter.
  4. Place eggplant slices on the bread and top with arugula leaves. Close sandwiches and serve.

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Reviews (10) Questions (0)

10 Reviews

Hollis E. June 7, 2018
i might make mine with olive salad (with drizzled oil on bread surfaces, rather than butter) and provolone added, to mimic my Salad Sandwich. perhaps anchovies, too ...
stacey March 8, 2018
Made this and added a smear of port salut cheese and fresh basil and served on toasted bahn mi bread. Delicious!! Thanks for the super easy and delicious way to prepare eggplant.
Claire G. January 3, 2017
I never knew the technique for roasting eggplant/making them taste like balsamic vinegar, but now I can make my favorite supreme sandwich which is the above but added to it is green basil pesto, prosciutto, fresh sliced tomato, sundried tomato, and fresh mozzarella, all covered in a balsamic vinaigrette reduction. WHOA. You won't be sorry you made that.
Author Comment
Alexandra S. January 3, 2017
That sounds amazing!
BellaRasa October 4, 2016
As suggested, used goat cheese instead of butter.....DELICIOUS!
Author Comment
Alexandra S. October 4, 2016
Joan August 21, 2016
Thanks, Alexandra, these were amazing! I replaced the butter with softened goat cheese and dressed the arugula lightly with olive oil, balsamic and a little salt and pepper. We just finished them for lunch, but I am already craving more! So, so good!! As the seasons change, I have visions of replacing the eggplant with portobello mushroom, beets, roasted squash...the possibilities are endless. Your homemade rolls are the star here!
Author Comment
Alexandra S. August 22, 2016
So happy to hear this, Joan! Softened goat cheese sounds amazing, and yes re mushrooms, beets, squash! I have a bowl of beets getting all shriveled and wrinkly in my fridge ... maybe balsamic-roasted beet and goat cheese sandwiches are in my future?
Lynn D. August 17, 2016
I made this recipe exactly as written (except that I sliced my freshly picked large homegrown eggplant crosswise) and it was fabulous. I served it for dinner with some salmon and the next day used the leftover eggplant for a breakfast sandwich. It is so tempting to think about additions like garlic, anchovy, goat cheese or fresh tomato. They would probably be good but aren't necessary.
Author Comment
Alexandra S. August 17, 2016
I'm so happy to hear this, Lynn! I was thinking I should make a note that cutting the eggplant crosswise would work just as well ... easier to cut also. I agree about the additions, and I am sure they would all be delicious. I keep thinking about cheese, too :)