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Karnıyarık Recipe - Classic Turkish Stuffed Aubergine

Karnıyarık is a Turkish stuffed aubergine (eggplant) dish that is a classic & also really tasty. Simple to make, you can serve it on its own or with a side of rice or bulgur pilaf.
Course Main
Cuisine Turkish
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 500kcal
Author Turkey's For Life


  • 4 medium aubergines aka eggplants
  • 200 g minced lamb or beef
  • 1 medium onion peeled & finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic peeled & grated or finely chopped
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes 400g
  • 4 long green peppers see notes
  • 4 cherry tomatoes or 1 large tomato, sliced
  • 1 dessert spoonful tomato paste or red pepper paste, plus 1 tsp for the oven later
  • 5 tbsp sunflower oil 1 for cooking for your meat, 4 for your aubergines
  • handful fresh chopped parsley to garnish
  • salt & pepper to season


  • Heat a little sunflower oil in a large saucepan and add your onions.
  • As the onions start to sweat, add your lamb and stir around.
  • Add your garlic.
  • Give it all a stir and sauté until the meat is browned (around 10 minutes).
  • Now add your tomatoes, salt & pepper, then simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Stir in your tomato paste (salça), remove from the heat and place to one side.
  • Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Celsius.
  • Take your aubergines and peel stripes off them. Leave the stems at the top.
  • Heat 4 tbsp sunflower oil in a frying pan on a medium-high heat.
  • Place your aubergines in the pan and fry for 10-15 mins, turning occasionally so they brown on all sides and are partly softened.
  • Now place your aubergines into an oven dish or baking tray.
  • In each aubergine, make a slit down the centre from close to the top, almost to the bottom, making sure not to slice the aubergine in half.
  • Part each aubergine so that they resemble canoes.
  • Now stuff your aubergines with the meat filling.
  • Place sliced tomato over the top of the meat and lay your green pepper over the top.
  • Brush your pepper with a little oil.
  • Dissolve a teaspoon of tomato paste in 100mls of water and pour that into your oven dish
  • Place your karnıyarık into the centre of the oven for 20 minutes until the pepper is cooked.
  • Top your karnıyarık with the chopped parsley before serving.


  • In Turkey, we use long thin peppers known as sivri biber (pointed peppers). They're called carliston peppers. If you can't get those for your stuffed aubergine, you can use strips of any type of green capsicum.
  • Traditionally, karnıyarık recipes use minced lamb but you can use beef if you don't like lamb.
  • Serve your karnıyarık on its own or with a side of rice or bulgur pilaf.
  • As with all of our recipes, calories are meant as a rough guide. They will differ depending on your choice of meat, its fat content and how much oil you use.