Eggplants are a healthy vegetable for any diet. But, can you eat eggplant seeds? Yes, eggplant seeds are beneficial to health and completely safe to eat. Unlike many vegetables, where the seeds are often removed before eating, eggplant seeds are edible and nutritious.
However, eggplant seeds are often very bitter, so most people avoid eating them raw. This article features safe and simple ways of eating eggplant seeds. Let’s explore!
Simple Ways to Eat Eggplant Seeds
There are easy ways to remove eggplant seeds before cooking. Once removed, the seeds can be consumed or used to grow your eggplant at home.
Cook the eggplant seeds.
Like pumpkin or sunflower seeds, you can remove eggplant seeds to cook separately—Bake eggplant seeds with some salt for a quick snack. Otherwise, cook eggplant seeds with the rest of the vegetables.
Add spices to eggplant seeds.
Eggplant seeds taste best when spices are added. Eggplants come from areas like India, known for their spices. These spices like red pepper, turmeric, and cumin can add flavor to otherwise bitter eggplant seeds.
Eat eggplant seeds.
Eggplant seeds are also good when cooked with the rest of the vegetables. Adding spices will add a unique flavor because the seeds are more bitter than the vegetable flesh.
Roast eggplant seeds.
This is one of the easiest ways to cook eggplant. You need a hot oven, olive oil, salt, and pepper to transform eggplant seeds into a rich, soft, and creamy treat.
How to Extract Eggplant Seeds
If you want to eat eggplant seeds, you’ll need to extract them properly.
Scrape out eggplant seeds using a metal spoon.
Hold the eggplant in your hand and stab the tip of the spoon into the top end of the seedy core. Then, drag the spoon along the flesh to scrape the seedy core out.
Slice eggplants in half lengthwise.
Place the eggplant on a slicing board and hold it still with your hand. Carefully cut it in half lengthwise using a kitchen knife with your dominant hand.
Be careful not to slice towards the hand holding the eggplant steady. And always keep your fingers away from the knife.
If you cut the eggplant into slices instead of horizontally, you can slide the spoon’s edge or the tip of a knife around the soft seedy core of each slice to remove seeds instead of scraping them out.
Can You Eat Brown Eggplant Seeds?
Yes, it’s common to see brown spots on eggplant seeds, and they’re safe to eat. You can eat tan or brown colored eggplant seeds by sautéing. But if you notice black eggplant seeds, it’s best to throw them out. Also, it’s not safe to eat eggplant seeds if the eggplant flesh is more brown than white.
What type of Eggplants Are Seedier?
Some eggplants have more seeds than others. So, how can you tell if an eggplant has many seeds? Eggplants have a dimple at the end. The dimple can either be round or oval. Usually, round ones contain more seeds than oval dimpled eggplants.
Are Eggplant Seeds Poisonous?
As mentioned earlier, eggplant seeds are good for health and not poisonous at all. However, the leaves and flowers of the eggplant can be toxic. Plants in the nightshade family, including eggplants, potatoes, peppers, and tomatoes, contain an alkaloid called solanine, which in high doses can be poisonous.
Benefits of Eating Eggplant Seeds
Eggplant seeds have many health benefits found in the eggplant.
Promote healthy digestion
Eggplant seeds are rich in dietary fiber, an essential part of a balanced diet. Fiber plays an important role in promoting bowel movements, preventing constipation, and stimulating the secretion of gastric juices that encourage food processing and nutrient absorption.
Promote Bone Health
Eggplant seeds are rich in phenolic compounds that can help strengthen bones, increase bone mineral density, and lower the symptoms of osteoporosis.
Also, eggplant seeds have potassium and calcium, which work together to improve bone health and strength.
Potassium improves calcium absorption in the gut, while calcium helps build and maintain strong bones.
Iron is another important bone-health mineral present in eggplant seeds.
Contains Powerful Antioxidants
Antioxidants help prevent cell damage when oxygen reacts with free radicals in the body. This cell damage can disrupt normal cell function and cause inflammation, triggering different chronic conditions.
Consuming seeds rich in antioxidants will help neutralize harmful substances, thus preventing oxidation and its negative effects.
Nasunin is an abundant type of anthocyanin antioxidant contained in eggplant seeds. It helps fight oxidative stress, which is a foundation for most diseases. Additionally, it protects against cell mutations, cell death, and cell membrane damage caused by oxidation.
Promotes Skin and Hair Health
Eggplant seeds are rich in vitamin C, which helps prevent free radicals from damaging your skin cells.
This helps promote youthful skin while preventing premature signs of aging like fine lines, wrinkles, dark spots, age spots, and saggy skin.
The anti-inflammatory effects of eggplant seeds also minimize different skin conditions, including dermatitis and eczema.
Also, the minerals in eggplant seeds increase blood circulation to the scalp, strengthening hair strands, improving scalp health, and promoting the growth of new hair follicles.
Final thoughts on the health benefits of eggplant seeds:
Eggplant seeds are highly nutritious with beneficial vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants. Regular consumption of eggplants with seeds may improve digestion, promote strong bones, aid weight loss, improve digestive health, prevent anemia, reduce the risk of developing cancer and improve brain function.
You can enjoy eggplant seeds in different recipes such as soups or stews, roasted, sautéed, or baked.
How to Prepare Eggplant Seeds
It is normal to see some brown spots on the seeds of the eggplant, but if you notice that the seeds are completely black, it would be smart to throw it all out. Black seeds are usually a sign that the eggplant is spoiled and may have some harmful bacteria.
If you cut into the eggplant and the seeds are more brown than white, the eggplant may be close to spoiling.
Raw eggplant seeds are a little tough to consume and considered slightly bitter, so it’s best to cook the eggplant seeds if you choose to consume them this way. Even though eggplant seeds are tastier than most vegetables, they blend easily into recipes when cooked thoroughly.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are eggplant seeds tough to digest?
Eggplant seeds are easy to digest and ensure good digestive health. However, eating large amounts of eggplant seeds can be difficult to digest and strain the liver.
Can I eat eggplant when the seeds are brown?
If the eggplant seeds and tan or brown, it is edible. But if you notice the eggplant flesh is more brown than white, it may be spoiling and should be discarded.
How can I tell if eggplant has fewer seeds?
Male eggplants usually have fewer seeds and are less bitter. If you want to differentiate between male and female eggplants, you should inspect the flower end. The male eggplant has a small, round, smooth end, whereas the female has an irregular, less smooth end.