Introduction the BLTA. Bacon-Lettuce-Tomato-Avocado. A regular vegetarian BLT turned up a notch. If eggplant can work wonders in gyros, it’s destined to be just as dynamite in BLT’s.
For the ultimate backyard sandwich, this BLTA is layered with crispy eggplant bacon, juicy heirloom tomatoes, crisp lettuce and a super creamy avocado sauce. It’s everything that’s right about August produce.
Ironically, I don’t get the whole bacon thing. True, it’s been over a decade since I’ve eaten any type of pork product, but even when I wasn’t a vegetarian I was never that jazzed over bacon. Fast forward 10 years and it seems like bacon is everywhere: t-shirts, bumper stickers, ice cream, salt, coffee mugs. When did we all become so bacon cray-cray?
So, I hopped on the veggie bacon train and decided to create my own version. Because really, what’s the true essence over the bacon obsession? It’s fat, it’s salt, it’s meaty. Eggplant can fit all of those boxes and I was up for the challenge.
First, I just want to be the first to say that this eggplant isn’t going to fool anyone into thinking their eating real bacon. That wasn’t my intention when creating it. Yes, this is meaty, salty, and has great mouth-feel, but it’s still eggplant.
That being said, it’s such a unique way to enjoy eggplant that I would encourage even those who typically turn their nose at the purple veggie to try it.
Eggplant Bacon > Eggplant.
Just like regular bacon, you get to decide whether you want the eggplant pieces more on the crispy or tender side. Either way works, so pick your favorite. Personally, I love the eggplant tender in the center, crispy on the outside.
Make sure to pull out the good bread for this one. Since I don’t eat sandwiches that often, I like to go big or go home on my bread choices. Favorite brands include Trader Joe’s Sourdough, Dave’s Killer Bread, or Ezekiel bread. Hearty, whole-grain options stand up best to the heavy avocado sauce and thick slices of tomato.
While you can marinate the eggplant for as long as you want, I suggest to cook it right before you eat it. I tested frying the eggplant pieces and then storing the leftovers in the fridge for the next day. While the flavor was still great, the texture was soggy so make sure to only cook up what you are planning to eat that moment.
If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and tag your Instagram photos with #delishknowledge . I absolutely love seeing your creations. Happy cooking!Print
Eggplant Bacon BLT! These vegan BLTs are made with homemade eggplant bacon and an avocado cream sauce!
- 1 eggplant, sliced into rounds
- 4 tablespoons soy sauce
- 4 tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- For the sandwich:
- 8 slices 100% Whole wheat bread
- Fresh sliced tomatoes
- Avocado Cream:
- 1 avocado
- 2 tbsp. mayo (or dairy-free mayo)
- 1 tbsp. lemon juice
- Whisk together the soy sauce, maple syrup, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, smoked paprika and pinch salt/pepper. Place the eggplant in a shallow dish and cover with marinade. Cover and marinate for 30 minutes.
- Heat a skillet over medium high heat and add 1-2 tsp. oil. Place eggplant rounds in a single layer and cook for 5 minutes.
- Flip, add ⅛ cup marinade and cook another 3-5 minutes until marinade is evaporated. For a crispier piece of bacon, you will want to cook the eggplant longer.
- Continue with the rest of the eggplant slices.
- Place the avocado, mayo and lemon juice in a small food processor or blender and puree until creamy.
- Divide the eggplant bacon, lettuce, avocado cream and tomato among 4 slices of bread. Top with remaining bread and eat.