9 Best Substitutes for Eggplant

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Eggplant is also known as aubergine, in reality, is a fruit as it flourishes from a flowering plant and comprises seeds. It assists in bringing a unique texture and subtle flavor to your everyday dishes.

Eggplant contains around 20 calories, 3g of fiber, 5g of carbohydrates, and essential vitamins and minerals. They are an excellent source of antioxidants that prevent chronic ailments like heart disease and cancer. It aids in monitoring your blood sugar levels as well.

A significant drawback for eggplants is that they belong to the family of nightshades. They contain solanine that can turn toxic and lead to heart arrhythmias, nausea, vomiting, and burning throat.

It’s a great idea to look for substitutes for eggplants to suffice your daily nutritional requirements and discover new alternatives. Make your way till the end of this article to attain handsome knowledge regarding potential eggplant replacements.

9 Substitutes for Eggplant

This segment of the article gives insights into nine eggplant substitutes that have the same nutritional value and upgrade your food intake.

Okra

Okra flourishes in warm environments like in parts of Asia and Africa. They are also known as lady’s finger and come in two variants, viz. red and green. Both types have the same flavor and nutritional composition.

Okra is rich in vitamin C and K1. Vitamin C blends with water to nourish your immune system; on the contrary, vitamin K1 dissolves in fat and contributes to blood coagulation. Okras are low in calories and fats with proteins and fiber-rich composition.

They contain antioxidants that protect your cells from detrimental free radical action. Polyphenols reinforce your brain and heart health. The mucilage in okras bind with cholesterol and leaves our body instead of permitting its absorption in the body.

As a contradiction, excess okra intake may lead to gastrointestinal issues due to fructans’ presence, a kind of carbohydrate. It may result in ailments like gas, stomach ache, diarrhea, and bloating.

Summary

Okra helps strengthen your immunity, brain, and heart functions. It secures cells from free radicals and reduces blood cholesterol levels with the assistance of mucilage gel.

Zucchini

Zucchini is also called courgette and belongs to the family of Cucurbitaceae that comprises members like cucumbers, melons, and spaghetti squash. Its variety ranges from dark yellow to deep green. It is used as a medicine to curb common colds and agonies.

Zucchinis are packed with vitamin A that boosts your vision and immune response. They are fused with antioxidants like lutein, beta-carotene, and zeaxanthin that are beneficial for your eyes, heart, and protection against cancers.

Zucchinis are hydrating compounds that aid in digestion by softening your stools. Its insoluble fiber adds volume and texture to your stools for easy excretion, while soluble fiber benefits your good gut bacteria. They reduce blood sugar levels and improves heart health.

On the downside, zucchinis contain cucurbitacins associated with food poisoning, hair loss, nausea, and vomiting. They may taste extremely bitter at times.

Summary

Zucchini is loaded with vitamin A, antioxidants, and fiber. Its intake results in improved digestion and heart health. It safeguards you against specific kinds of cancers.

Mushroom

Mushrooms are a type of edible fungi that add a meaty flavor to your dishes and can be used while on a vegetarian diet to suffice your non-veg cravings. They are accessible in various sizes, colors, and shapes. Choose a firm and moisture-free mushroom for optimal results.

Mushrooms are low in sodium and calories while free from fats and cholesterols. It contains beta-glucan, a type of soluble dietary fiber that improves heart health. It comes with vitamin B kinds, namely niacin, pantothenic, and riboflavin—their synergy helps boost heart health.

The copper mineral helps your body produce red blood corpuscles while potassium eases the heart, brain, and nerve cells’ functions. They have anti-inflammatory properties that soothe stiffness, pain, and edema. They combat cancer risks and signs of aging.

As a precautionary measure, purchase mushrooms with extreme care as particular variants are poisonous. For instance, hallucinogenic mushroom intake leads to an upset stomach.

Summary

Mushroom is low in sodium, calories, fats, and cholesterols that positively affect your heart. Copper increases RBC count, while potassium is excellent for the brain and heart.

Green Tomato

Green tomatoes are raw versions that cannot be consumed raw as they taste sour and unpleasant. In cooked form, they are delightful to taste and add vibrance to your meals. Their hue ranges from light to dark lemon green.

Acetylsalicylic acid in green tomatoes is an anticoagulant that can be used to treat varicose veins. Vitamin A and flavonoids relieve the effects of free radicals released from UV radiation from the sun and electronic gadgets. Vitamin K helps fight cancer cells.

Vitamin B3 aids in reducing blood cholesterol levels, while bioflavonoids behave like antimicrobials and anti-inflammatory agents that speed up your healing process. Vitamin C prevents premature aging and tightens your skin.

Unfortunately, excess intake of green tomatoes can lead to food poisoning with symptoms like throat and mouth irritation, dizziness, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, and mild spasms.

Summary

Green tomatoes have anticoagulant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties. They assist in curbing cancer, cholesterol deposition, and heart troubles.

Yellow Squash

Yellow squash, also known as summer squash, is packed with nutrients that promote good health. It has tons of vitamins and minerals that combat chronic ailments.

Vitamin A helps boost your vision; vitamin B6 will help refresh your mood and nullify signs of depression, while vitamin C regulates blood pressure levels and boosts immunity. Folate backs formation of red and white blood corpuscles in the bone marrow.

Magnesium boosts your metabolism rates and helps reduce weight, phosphorus strengthens your teeth and reduces post-exercise pain, potassium regulates nerve signaling and muscle contractions, while manganese is an anti-inflammatory agent.

A significant downside of yellow squashes is that they contain high oxalate levels associated with kidney stones.

Summary

Yellow squash is loaded with vitamins A, B6, and C that have their respective health benefits. Minerals present are potassium, phosphorus, manganese, and magnesium.

Tofu

Tofu is condensed soy milk converted to white-colored blocks, something similar to cheese made from milk. Tofu is a fantastic source of proteins as it contains several kinds of amino acids that build your physique.

Tofu contains isoflavones that bind and activate estrogen receptors in your body, producing a mild estrogen effect. Tofu is a derivative of soybean, a legume type; hence, it reduces heart disease risks.

Tofu consumption fights prostate, digestive, and breast cancers and isoflavones reduce diabetes-related risks by maintaining normal blood sugar levels. Other potential health benefits are better bone health and brain function, weight loss, and gorgeous skin.

To strike some variance, tofu contains antinutrients like trypsin inhibitor that hampers the with trypsin functioning dealing with digestion and phytates that restrict absorption of essential minerals in the body.

Summary

Tofu contains a game-changer named isoflavone that improves heart and brain functions, reduces signs of diabetes and cancer, assists in weight loss, and gives beautiful skin.

Turnip

Turnip is an edible root that belongs to the Cruciferous family and is cherished for its health-promoting abilities. Three prominent variants available are red, purple, and green.

Turnips are low in calories and have anti-cancer properties due to potent vitamin C. Bioactive plant compounds called glucosinolates nullify the effects of oxidative stress in the body. Flavonoids are also known to combat cancer cell formation.

Anthocyanins present in purple turnip variants help in battling harmful and chronic diseases. Turnips have anti-diabetic effects that result in improved blood sugar clearance, lowers glucose production in the liver, and reduces carbohydrate absorption.

As a precautionary step, avoid excess turnip consumption as it may cause your blood to clot faster than usual due to vitamin K. Kidney patients should also refrain from turnip intake.

Summary

Turnip has anti-cancer and anti-diabetic properties. Glucosinolates subside oxidative stress in the body while anthocyanins combat chronic diseases.

Rutabaga

Rutabagas are closely related to turnips as they both belong to the same Cruciferous family. They appear whitish-brown and are root vegetables.

They are high in antioxidants due to vitamins A and C. Vitamin C neutralizes free radicals and prevents oxidative stress and cell damage. It also plays a crucial role in boosts your immune health, iron absorption in the body, and collagen production.

Rutabagas prevent premature aging by safeguarding against the harmful UV radiations from the sun. Its fiber-rich composition aids in digestion by promoting proper bowel movements. Potassium strengthens nerve signaling and maintains normal blood pressure.

A word of caution, consult your doctor before consuming rutabaga if you are allergic to cruciferous vegetables like cabbage, spinach, and turnips.

Summary

Rutabaga is high in antioxidants and boosts your immunity, collagen synthesis, and iron absorption. Fiber aids bowel movements, and potassium normalize your blood pressure.

Pattypan Squash

Pattypan squash is the most flavorful vegetable to substitute eggplant; younger variants are yummier than old ones. It is a summer veggie with tons of provitamin A contents.

Pattypan squash is a super hydrating and refreshing veggie to consume, while its beta-carotene contents promote excellent tissue health, night vision, and immunity. Potassium improves muscle functions, nervous response, and blood pressure levels.

Antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin protect your cells from free radicals. Vitamin C prevents iron deficiency in the body and gout attacks; vitamin B9 boosts red blood cell synthesis and normal cell function, and manganese aids in reducing inflammation.

Demerits of pattypan squashes are that they contain oxalates that disrupt calcium absorption in the body and result in kidney stone formation.

Summary

Pattypan squash is a water-rich veggie that contains beta-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, vitamins B9 and C, along with manganese that are all health-promoting compounds.

FAQs

How to select an eggplant substitute?

You can either substitute one eggplant variant with another variant like Japanese, globe, striped, and baby or replace it with an alternative that matches its nutritional value.

Can I substitute pumpkin for eggplants?

Pumpkins are highly nutritious as they contain vitamin A, lutein, and zeaxanthin, along with antioxidants that boost your overall health and can act as a substitute for eggplants.

Bottom Line

Eggplants are a powerhouse of essential nutrients, but there’s always something missing that requires compensation. Make amends in your eggplant intake and substitute it with better alternatives discussed above.

We aim at delivering quality substitutes at your fingertips and hope that we were fortunate to do the same. Do let us know in the comments section regarding your ideal eggplant substitute if we failed to take it in this time.

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About Betty Ellis

Betty is a food researcher who spends most of her time analyzing the nutritional aspects of various foods. She also researches methods to enhance taste, as well as how to store certain types of foods. She enjoys cooking for herself and her three dogs even though she doesn't have a lot of free time outside work.

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