Crispy Eggplant Bacon Breakfast Bowl

Crispy Eggplant Bacon Breakfast Bowl recipe by @beardandbonnet on

I have 3 little words that are going to change the way you think about breakfast forever: CRISPY EGGPLANT BACON!  

Crispy Eggplant Bacon Breakfast Bowl recipe by @beardandbonnet on

So sorry I shouted that, but I’m really excited and you should be too because veggie bacon alternatives don’t get any more bacon-y delicious than this. 

Crispy Eggplant Bacon Breakfast Bowl recipe by @beardandbonnet on

I have professed my love for coconut bacon on so many occasions that I cannot even begin to count them all, but when it comes to satisfying a craving for an epic BLT or just fulfilling the urge to hold a crispy baconesque strip in your hands first thing Saturday morning nothing can compare to this eggplant bacon – NOTHING! 

Crispy Eggplant Bacon Breakfast Bowl recipe by @beardandbonnet on

As for the rest of the bowl it’s pretty much all of my favorite things thrown together, which is usually how our weekend morning breakfast goes. A little leftover quinoa tossed with a simple massaged kale salad, half of an avocado and a fried egg with homemade dukkah sprinkled on top. I can’t think of a tastier way to start the day!

Crispy Eggplant Bacon Breakfast Bowl recipe by @beardandbonnet on

Crispy Eggplant Bacon Breakfast Bowl

  • Author: Beard and Bonnet
  • Prep Time: 20 mins
  • Cook Time: 17 mins
  • Total Time: 37 mins
  • Yield: 2-2 1/2 dozen pieces of "bacon"


This eggplant bacon makes brilliant BLT’s and is great chopped up and sprinkled over cooked greens too!


For the crispy eggplant bacon

  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Tamari
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon liquid smoke
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3-4 small Japanese eggplant, sliced into thin strips with a mandoline

For each of the breakfast bowls

  • 1 cup finely shredded Lacinato kale
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 of an avocado, sliced
  • 3-4 strips eggplant bacon
  • 1 fried egg
  • 1/2 teaspoondukkah


Make the bacon

  1. Combine the water, salt, maple syrup, vinegar, olive oil, Tamari, paprika, garlic powder, liquid smoke and pepper in a bowl and whisk to combine.
  2. Layer the eggplant slices into a shallow dish and pour the marinade over the top. Let the eggplant marinate for 15-30 minutes, being sure to rotate the eggplant slices at least once so that all of them are submerged in the marinade.
  3. Preheat the oven to 425°F with a rack in the middle of the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment and place a wire baking rack on top. Lay the marinated eggplant, reserving the marinade, in an even layer on the rack and bake for 12-14 minutes until the eggplant starts to caramelize, remove from the oven and let the eggplant cool on the rack.Once the eggplant has cooled and crisped, about 2 minutes, dip each eggplant bacon slice back into the marinade again and place back onto the baking rack. Sprinkle with additional salt and pepper ( I like Maldon salt for this, but kosher salt works great too!) Bake an additional 2 minutes, then remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on the rack before serving.

Build a breakfast bowl

  1. in a large serving bowl combine the kale, olive oil and lemon juice. Massage with your hands until the kale begins to tenderize. Fold in the cooked quinoa until incorporated then top with avocado slices, strips of bacon, a fried egg and a sprinkle ofdukkah. Serve immediately.




    • The wire rack, a super thin slice and the double dip in the marinade are totally the tricks 🙂 I’m obsessed with baconizing veggies too and while I adore coconut bacon they are so small like bits, I wanted a BLT worthy slab of veggie bacon!

  1. Elizabeth

    Thank you for this recipe! I had one very large eggplant, and needed to double the marinade to get enough to cover. I did not achieve crispness, but they are delicious nonetheless!

    • I’m so glad you like the flavor Elizabeth! I event had much luck getting the large globe eggplants to crisp either which is why I used the smaller Japanese egglplant sliced super thin. I’m glad to know that the flavor is still desirable in the larger eggplants even though the crispness isn’t there.

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Meg van der Kruik is the writer, mother, photographer, designer, cook and creative spirit behind This Mess is Ours. After her infant son was diagnosed with a gluten allergy, she dedicated herself to learning to make meals the whole family would love. It’s a bit of a mess – cooking for a vegetarian and three meat-eaters with a range of gluten + dairy sensitivities, but she manages to bring them together every night around their little family table.