Armenian Stuffed Eggplant (Imam Bayildi)


Served as an easy vegetarian side dish or entree, this eggplant will delight even the most picky eater. The eggplant becomes tender in the oven and absorbs the flavors of tomato, onion, and bell pepper for a wonderful Middle Eastern dish. I made this dish for Thanksgiving; it was a big hit with my Armenian grandmother! Serve with sides of tabuli salad, hummus, and a whole wheat pita. I hope you enjoy this taste of Armenia from my family to yours!

Prep Time:
30 mins
Cook Time:
45 mins
Additional Time:
5 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 20 mins
4 servings


  • 2 large eggplants

  • ¼ cup olive oil, divided

  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch strips

  • ½ onion, sliced

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 tomatoes, chopped

  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce with no salt added

  • teaspoon salt

  • teaspoon ground black pepper

  • 1 pinch chopped fresh parsley, or to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).

  2. Cut eggplants in 1/2, then cut each 1/2 into thirds, leaving 12 eggplant spears total. Place on a baking sheet and brush with 2 tablespoons olive oil.

  3. Roast in the preheated oven until fork tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

  4. While eggplants are cooking, heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat in a medium to large pan. Add bell pepper, onion, and garlic to the hot pan and cook until onions become tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside to cool.

  5. Remove eggplants from the oven and let cool slightly, 5 to 10 minutes. Transfer eggplants to a 9x13-inch baking dish. Slice each spear vertically using a fork and knife, being careful not to cut through skin. Pry each open and fill with 2 to 3 tablespoons of tomato filling. Cover with tomato sauce.

  6. Bake in the preheated oven until bubbling, about 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Garnish with parsley.

Cook's Notes:

You can use a green bell pepper instead of red or a combination of both.

Once you fill eggplants, you can alternatively pour 1/2 the tomato sauce over eggplants and cover the dish with plastic wrap to chill, 8 hours to overnight. Before baking, cover with remaining tomato sauce.

This stores well in the refrigerator for lunch the next day.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

249 Calories
14g Fat
30g Carbs
6g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 249
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 14g 18%
Saturated Fat 2g 10%
Sodium 332mg 14%
Total Carbohydrate 30g 11%
Dietary Fiber 15g 54%
Total Sugars 11g
Protein 6g
Vitamin C 55mg 277%
Calcium 47mg 4%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 1024mg 22%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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