Baba ganoush and mutabbal: differences and traditional recipes of Middle Eastern eggplant cream

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Carlos Laforet Coll
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Mutabbal or Baba Ganoush? Let's discover the differences and the traditional recipes of both these delicious dishes


Baba Ganoush or Baba Ghanoush, also known as Mutabal / Mutabbal / Moutabbal, is the Middle Eastern sauce made from eggplant that teases the palate. A delicious cream, of which there are widespread variants in both North Africa and Eastern Europe, which sees the aubergines as protagonists.

But there is some confusion about the two terms, often used interchangeably despite indicating two slightly different dishes. According to Meejana, moutabbal or mutabal is prepared with smoked aubergines and tahini, while baba ganoush does not traditionally include the use of tahini sauce, but only smoked aubergines mixed with onions, tomatoes and other vegetables. 

Below we offer both ideal recipes also for vegetarians and vegans, perfect to serve as an appetizer together with pita bread, with croutons or together with falafel, to remain in the Middle Eastern theme. 


Mutabbal: the recipe 

The recipe Mutabbal, or Mutabal, that we propose, comes from the Youtube channel of Don Imran Family Kitchen which explains, step by step, how to prepare it. 


  • 1 eggplant;
  • 3 tablespoons of Greek yogurt;
  • 3 tablespoons of tahini sauce;
  • 1 clove of garlic;
  • 3 tablespoons of lemon juice;
  • sale qb;
  • extra virgin olive oil;
  • sumac (available in ethnic shops);
  • pomegranate seeds;
  • parsley;
  • mint leaves.


  1. Place the aubergines on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper after having pricked them and cook them for about forty minutes at 190 °. Otherwise, roast them on the stove using a grill pan;
  2. Once soft, with a spoon remove the pulp and drain it to eliminate excess water;
  3. Cut the pulp thin with a knife, pour it into a container. In the meantime, pour the Greek yogurt into a bowl and mix well, add the tahini sauce and the minced garlic;
  4. Mix well until the mixture is homogeneous and pour the aubergines, lemon juice and salt into the bowl, continuing to mix;
  5. Go to the decoration after having served the sauce, enriching it with mint leaves, pomegranate grains, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and sumac.

Baba Ganoush: the recipe 

In the video by Maalss Vlogz you can see the difference between Mutabbal and Baba Ganoush, the first enriched with tahini sauce, the second with diced vegetables. Here the aubergines are cooked in direct contact with the flame of the stove but it is better to avoid this technique and prefer the oven. Below are the ingredients of Baba Ganoush.


  • 1 eggplant;
  • 1 clove of garlic;
  • Red pepper;
  • 1/4 onion;
  • half a tomato;
  • pomegranate grains;
  • olive oil;
  • lemon juice;
  • salt.


  1. Prepare the aubergines following the same procedure as the Mutabbal, you can bake them for about forty minutes at 190 ° after having pricked them, then remove the pulp and shred it;
  2. Chop the different vegetables and pour them into a bowl together with the aubergines and pomegranate seeds, add the salt and lemon juice, then mix well;
  3. Finally, serve, add a sprinkling of parsley, a few pomegranate grains and olive oil. 


Prefer dark and long aubergines, avoiding those of light purple color, which are not suitable.

To give the aubergines the typical smoky flavor, instead of cooking them directly on the flame of the stove which is absolutely not recommended, you can roast them on the stove using a grill pan. 

Read also:

  • Eggplant hummus
  • Hummus: the traditional recipe and 5 tasty variations
  • How to prepare chickpea falafel at home
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