Pureed eggplant isn’t just for baba ghanoush: This finger-licking-good sauce gets its creamy-fluffy texture from the versatile purple veggie. Roasted red peppers lend delicate sweetness and a beautiful red hue to the peanut-based dressing, while sambal oelek kicks things up a notch. Toss this oil-free sauce into salads, serve it as a dip with spring rolls, or use it as a base for pad Thai. The sky’s the limit when you have a go-to Thai peanut dressing up your sleeve!


  • 1 medium eggplant, peeled and cut into large pieces (12 oz.)
  • ½ cup jarred roasted red bell pepper, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1½ teaspoons sambal oelek
  • 1½ teaspoons tamari or soy sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil


  • In a nonstick skillet combine eggplant and ¼ cup water. Cover and cook over medium 10 to 15 minutes or until eggplant is tender, stirring occasionally and adding water, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time, as needed to prevent sticking. Let cool for 10 minutes.
  • Transfer eggplant to a blender. Add the next seven ingredients (through garlic). Cover and blend until smooth. Season with salt and black pepper. Stir in basil.
  • Transfer dressing to a glass jar. Cover and chill for up to 5 days.

Comments (3)

(5 from 4 votes)

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This was such a sweet delight! I loved how the eggplant worked into this recipe. I like mine a little thinner for my Nappa Cabbage salad. I will be adding in some rice vinegar to that dressing. Thank you Darshana for this awesome, versatile recipe!!!


I loved this sauce! It was super smooth and creamy. I used it as a dip and on my toast for breakfast! I made a few adjustments: I didn't peel the eggplant as I have a great blender and the cooked skin pureed just fine. I used Franks Hot Sauce as I didn't have sambal oelek. I also added 2 tsp of grated fresh ginger root as this added a bit more complexity to the flavor and made it much tastier! Thanks for this great recipe!


Need ideas for my new life plate

About the Author

Headshot of Darshana Thacker

About the Author

Darshana Thacker Wendel

Darshana Thacker Wendel is a whole-food, plant-based chef and former culinary projects manager for Forks Over Knives. A graduate of the Natural Gourmet Institute, she is the author of Forks Over Knives: Flavor! She created the recipes for Forks Over Knives Family and was a lead recipe contributor to the New York Times bestseller The Forks Over Knives Plan. Her recipes have been published in The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook, Forks Over Knives—The Cookbook, Forks Over Knives: The Plant-Based Way to Health, and LA Yoga magazine online. Visit DarshanasKitchen.com and follow her on Instagram for more.
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