This berenjenas con miel recipe is a homemade version of classic Spanish tapa from the Andalusia region. Spanish fried eggplant with honey is a perfect starter, tapa, or even snack with the perfect blend of savory and sweet. This vegetarian tapas recipe can also be easily made vegan as well.
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What Are Berenjenas Con Miel
Berenjenas is the Spanish word for eggplant. Miel is Spanish for honey. Together, that makes eggplant and honey, in this case breaded eggplant. It’s also referred to as berenjenas fritas con miel because the eggplant is fried.
Eggplant and honey are two things I wouldn’t have thought went well together until we started traveling to Andalusia while living in Spain. The batter that coats the eggplant actually pairs perfectly with the honey.
We actually lived in Catalonia, where tapas aren’t as popular as they are in other regions of Spain, particularly in Andalusia, in Southern Spain. At tapas bars in cities like Seville, Malaga, and Cordoba, berenjenas con miel are a typical dish. We ate the best ones ever at the fresh market in Malaga – it was a dish I will never forget.
Check out our recommendations for the Best Tapas Recipes To Make At Home.
Battered And Fried Eggplant
I’ve never been great at making eggplant, but this Spanish eggplant recipe is not all that difficult to make. Plus, I use a secret ingredient that helps get the light breading on the eggplant just right. The breading is not meant to be heavy like a fried chicken or even a tempura. Instead, it’s meant just to coat the eggplant to add a bit of texture and crispiness.
Looking for vegan tapas? Check out our list of the Best Spanish Vegan Tapas Recipes.
Ingredients For This Berenjenas Con Miel Recipe
This is one of those Spanish recipes where almost all of the ingredients are right in the title – eggplants and honey. Large eggplants work best because they can be cut into sliced rounds. You can also swap out a few Japanese eggplants, which will end up with smaller pieces. I use honey, but vegans can use molasses, or sugarcane honey.
Many recipes use milk as a way to take the bitterness out of the fried eggplant. I prefer to use sparkling water (my secret ingredient) instead of milk. The sparkling water makes sure the dish can easily be made as a vegan tapa. And, the sparkling water makes the batter super light and keeps the eggplant crispy rather than soggy. I’ve also used sparkling water in some classic Italian recipes for the same reason.
The eggplant is breaded and fried in simple, all-purpose flour and cooked in olive oil. At the end, sprinkle with a bit of salt, fresh parsley for garnish, and drizzle with a bit of honey.
Check out some of our other Spanish vegetable recipes:
How To Make Spanish Fried Eggplant With Honey
Cut the eggplants into round slices, not too thick. Fill a large bowl with sparkling water. Soak the eggplant slices in the sparkling water for about 60 minutes. If it’s rather warm in your kitchen, maybe put the eggplant in the refrigerator to prevent the eggplant from getting too soggy. Drain the eggplant in a colander and pat them dry with a clean kitchen towel.
Place the flour on a large plate. Before coating the eggplant, place a large skillet on the stove over medium heat. It’s best to make the battered eggplant just before frying.
Fill with olive oil and heat until warm. Coat the slices of eggplant in the flour and place them in the olive oil, being sure not to crowd the skillet. Cook for a couple of minutes on each side or until the crispy eggplant recipe is golden brown.
Place the eggplant on another plate layered in a paper towel to soak up the excess oil. Just before serving, sprinkle the fried eggplant with salt. Serve with a small bowl of honey, or drizzle with honey. You can also add a touch of fresh parsley as a garnish.
- 2 large eggplants, sliced into round pieces
- 1 cup sparkling water, room temperature
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup olive oil, for frying
- 2 tablespoons salt
- To serve: 3 tablespoons honey, chopped parsley, salt flakes
- Cut the eggplants into round slices, not too thick.
- Fill a large bowl with sparkling water. Soak the eggplant slices in the sparkling water for about 60 minutes.
- Drain the eggplant in a colander and pat them dry with a clean kitchen towel.
- Place the flour on a large plate.
- Before coating the eggplant, place a large skillet on the stove over medium heat. Fill with olive oil and heat until warm.
- Coat the slices of eggplant in the flour and place them in the olive oil, being sure not to crowd the skillet.
- Cook for a couple of minutes on each side or until the eggplant is golden brown.
- Place the eggplant on another plate layered in a paper towel to soak up the excess oil.
- Just before serving, sprinkle the fried eggplant with salt. Serve with a small bowl of honey, or drizzle with honey. You can also add a touch of fresh parsley as a garnish.
- Fry the eggplants at the last moment before eating.
- The sparkling water is what lets us change the texture of the eggplants and make them crispy instead of soggy.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 583Total Fat: 41gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 34gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 3324mgCarbohydrates: 55gFiber: 9gSugar: 24gProtein: 5g
This nutritional data is provided by a third-party source and should not be relied on if you are on a strict diet.
Tips For Cooking Berenjenas Con Miel
It’s best to serve berenjenas con miel recipe fresh, when warm. You can reheat the eggplant by frying them in a pan, heating them on a baking sheet in the oven, or even popping them into an air fryer for a minute or two.
Also, I tend to use honey, which is the classic way to serve the dish. But, a vegan alternative to berenjenas miel is to use molasses instead of honey. Some recipes also use whole milk to coat the eggplant, but the sparkling water adds a nice texture and also makes it easier to make the tapas recipe vegan.
Lastly, you can also cut the eggplant into strips so that they look more like French fries, but I prefer the rounds. It just reminds me of the way we used to eat the eggplant in Andalusia.
FAQs – Spanish Fried Eggplant With Honey
Aubergines, more commonly known as eggplant, especially in the US are highly versatile. They can be grilled, fried, and even baked. You will find plenty of recipes for aubergines that offer these are other methods of cooking.
Frying eggplant is like frying French Fries. If you don’t pay attention you will burn and ruin them. While eggplant takes less time to fries, the most important thing with frying them is to make sure the oil is hot enough before putting them in. If the oil isn’t hot enough, the eggplant will soak in the oil turning them soggy.