Lebanese Baba Ganoush recipe with pomegranate seeds and pine nuts is an elegant, modern version of an authentic Middle Eastern recipe.
Modern Baba Ghanoush
I grew up in Israel, where the Lebanese baba ganoush recipe is basically the ULTIMATE baba ganoush recipe to try. I grew up eating, breathing and making this delicious eggplant tahini dip!
In my basic 4-ingredient for Lebanese baba ganoush, I follow the traditional Lebanese moutabal very closely - but with a major improvement. I top it with fresh pomegranate seeds, pine nuts and diced parsley, which gives it a beautiful look and a fresh, zesty and vibrant taste.
What is Baba Ganoush?
Baba ganoush is a smoked eggplant dip. Along with hummus, zaalouk and lavosh crackers, it often makes up a delicious part of a typical mezze platter.
My baba ganoush is an easy 4-ingredient dish that I learned to make when I lived in the Middle East. Grilled eggplant, tahini, garlic and lemon juice come together in this simple, vegan and gluten-free appetizer. They are then topped with pomegranate seeds, pine nuts and parsley for a beautiful, elegant and modern appetizer.
What’s in a name
Baba ghanoush, baba ganouj, baba ghanouj or baba ganoush - they are all the same dish!
Baba ganoush vs. Moutabal
The Baba ganoush origin is Lebanon, where it is actually almost universally called moutabal! I know, I know, confusing, but let me try to break it down simply:
Moutabal is usually a Lebanese eggplant dip made with tahini Lebanese baba ganoush is often made without tahini (see my baba ganoush without tahini).
What’s so special about this Lebanese baba ganoush recipe?
This simple baba ganoush Lebanese recipe is yours to try if you want a recipe that is:
- Authentic - I grew up on Lebanese baba ganoush, so you can bet I know an authentic baba ghanoush recipe!
- Easy to make - requires no special ingredients or equipment (no food processor required!)
- 4 basic ingredients (and a few optional garnishes)
- Adaptable - you can play with the quantities and toppings you like
- Elegant - when topped with pomegranate seeds and pine nuts, this humble Middle Eastern eggplant dip becomes the star of the feast!
You need the following ingredients to make my Lebanese baba ganoush recipe:
- Eggplant - as the main ingredient in this smoked eggplant dip, the eggplant you choose needs to be at the peak of freshness! Choose firm, glossy eggplant with a green fresh top and without any blemishes.
- Tahini - arguably, good tahini is as important as eggplant in making epic baba ghanoush. Go for 100% sesame seed tahini without any additives.
- Lemon juice - fresh is best, but bottled lemon juice is also fine
- Garlic - optional, but good for a tasty Lebanese baba ganoush
The following things are optional when making Lebanese baba ganoush, but will go a long way towards making this the BEST baba ganoush youve ever had:
- Parsley - you can use either parsley or cilantro
- Pomegranate seeds - fresh pomegranate seeds add a burst of sweetness and freshness that goes really well with this smoked dip
- Pine nuts - they add a nutty flavor and beautiful look to our baba ganoush recipe
- Olive oil - for drizzling on top of this Lebanese baba ghanoush
- Baking sheet
- Chef's knife
- Big mixing bowl
How To Make Modern Lebanese Baba Ganoush
Preheat oven to 450F. Prep a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
Wash the eggplants well. Arrange eggplants on the baking sheet, and transfer to the oven to bake for 15-20 minutes. Let cool. When cool enough to handle, remove flesh from the skin.
In a large mixing bowl, combine flesh from eggplant, tahini, salt, lemon juice and, if using, minced garlic and finely diced parsley. Mix very well to combine (you can use an immersion blender for this as well).
Cover with plastic wrap and let Lebanese baba ganoush sit in fridge for at least 1 hour for flavors to meld.
After an hour, mix everything again, taste and correct seasoning.
For serving, drizzle Lebanese baba ganoush with olive oil, and top with pomegranate seeds, pine nuts and more parsley.
How to make grilled baba ghanoush?
The basis of traditional Lebanese baba ganoush is char-grilled eggplant. This gives the dish a special smoked flavor.
To achieve this special Middle Eastern taste, grill your eggplant on an open gas flame (using thongs!), or on a charcoal BBQ. Pro Tip: Every summer, I fire up the charcoal BBQ, roast a bunch of eggplants, remove the skin, and freeze their flesh. Then I can make this baba ghanoush, baba ganoush recipe without tahini and zaalouk all year round!
Freshly made, this Lebanese baba ganoush recipe will keep in the fridge for 1 week.
It can also be frozen without any garnishes for up to 6 months.
This recipe is for a paleo, gluten free, grain-free and vegan baba ganoush. It's also Whole30 compatible and can be adapted to a low fodmap baba ganoush by omitting the garlic.
I think it's pretty perfect just as it is, but here are some variations I like to make to this epic baba ghanoush recipe:
- Smokey baba ganoush - if you have access to a gas stovetop or a charcoal BBQ, roast the eggplants over an open flame. This will give this Lebanese baba ganoush recipe a characteristic smokey flavor. Alternatively, you can also add ½ a teaspoon of liquid smoked to the mix.
- Garlic-free baba ganoush - if watching the low fodmap baba ganoush, omit the garlic.
- Tahini-free baba ghanoush - if you don’t like the flavor of tahini, try this baba ganoush with yogurt.
- Choosing the right eggplant is crucial for making epic baba ganoush. Choose a freshly cut medium-large eggplant that is firm, tight and without blemishes. The top part should still be bright green and not at all dried up. Older eggplants have more seeds and therefore, more bitterness.
- If, after roasting, you see that your eggplant has a lot of seeds in it, remove the seeds and toss them out. Those parts are bitter and will ruin your authentic baba ganoush.
- Giving baba ganoush time to rest in the fridge is crucial for deep, rich flavor that is fully cohesive and smooth.
- Taste and correct the seasonings after your baba ghanoush has had time to rest. Only then will you know if you need more salt, lemon juice or garlic.
- Serve Lebanese baba ghanoush cold or in room temperature - it’s good both ways!
- Do not use Japanese or baby eggplants when making baba ghanoush.
- For a smooth texture, use a food processor or immersion blender - though I don’t think this is necessary!
- If you don’t like tahini, try my baba ghanoush without tahini.
There are certain products I found that elevate this dish to another level. I also have an immersion blender I like linked here, but it's not at all necesary. Here are some of my favorite ingredients to use in this Lebanese baba ganoush recipe:
What to eat with baba ganoush:
You can serve baba ganoush with pita bread, gluten-free lavosh crackers, or raw vegetables like carrots and cucumbers.
You can also serve it as part of a mezze platter.
For other smoked dishes, If you don't keep kosher, you can try pairing it with a smoked pork butt.
Tried and loved this recipe? Please leave a 5-star review below! Your reviews mean a lot to me, so if you've got any questions, please let me know in a comment.
Yes! Just make sure you pack it well. It will keep for 6 months.
Yes! Muhammara is the Lebanese dip that has bread in it; baba ghanoush, when made according to this recipe, is completely gluten-free.
Yes! It’s a fantastic vegan Middle Eastern dip that can serve as the centerpiece of an entire Middle Eastern mezze platter.
Yes. Tahini is entirely keto, and so are the other ingredients of this 4-ingredient smoked eggplant dip. Just omit the pomegranate from the garnish.
For more Middle Eastern dip recipes:
You May Also Like These Eggplant Recipes:
4-ingredient Lebanese Baba Ganoush Recipe with Pomegranate seeds and pine nuts
- Preheat oven to 450F. Prep a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
- Wash the eggplants well. Arrange eggplants on the baking sheet, and transfer to the oven to bake for 20-40 minutes, until eggplants are fully softened and collapsin on themselves. Let cool. When cool enough to handle, remove flesh from the skin. If there are a lot of seeds, discard seedy parts.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine flesh from eggplant, tahini, salt, lemon juice and, if using, minced garlic and 3 tablespoons of finely diced parsley. Mix very well to combine (you can use an immersion blender for this as well).
- Cover with plastic wrap and let Lebanese baba ganoush sit in fridge for at least 1 hour for flavors to meld.
- After an hour, mix everything again, taste and correct seasoning.
- For serving, drizzle Lebanese baba ganoush with olive oil, and top with pomegranate seeds, pine nuts and more parsley.