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Eggplant Rollatini with Grilled Tomato Sauce {Vegan, Paleo}

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5 from 1 review

  • Author: Ingrid DeHart
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


This Eggplant Rollatini is a great summertime dish that’s vegan and paleo.  It’s light, yet satisfying and has a fresh, mild smoked flavor.



For the Rollatini:

  • 2 medium eggplant sliced lengthwise ¼” thick, 12 slices (use a mandoline)
  • Celtic sea salt
  • Olive oil for grilling
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil

For the Tomato Sauce:

  • 56 plum tomatoes, about pounds, cut in half
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus a little for grilling the tomatoes
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (a few shakes)
  • Celtic sea salt and fresh pepper
  • ¼ cup finely shredded basil leaves

For the Cashew Cheese

  • 1 cup raw cashews (soaked for 4 hours if possible)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • ½ teaspoon thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon oregano
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon Celtic sea salt
  • Black pepper
  • ¼ cup water, approximately


For the Rollatini:

  1. Slice eggplants length-wise into 1/4-inch thin slices (it’s easiest to do this using a mandoline ) You should have about 12 slices of similar size (reserve end pieces that are shorter or odd-shaped for a stir fry).
  2. Salt the eggplant on both sides and let sit to “sweat” for 10 minutes – this makes the eggplant less bitter. (optional if you’re short on time)
  3. Preheat the grill on medium.
  4. Clean and oil the grill, once it’s hot.
  5. Pat the eggplant dry with a paper towel or kitchen towel.
  6. Brush the eggplant lightly with olive oil and grill over medium heat turning until tender and lightly charred, 3 minutes per side.

For the Tomato Sauce

  1. Turn the grill up to medium high.
  2. Brush the tomatoes with a little bit of the olive oil. (If your grill is well seasoned you can skip this step).
  3. Place the tomatoes onto the grill, cut side down.
  4. Grill about 2 minutes.
  5. Turnover and grill until tender and lightly charred about 3-4 minutes.
  6. Transfer tomatoes to a blender and puree until smooth.
  7. Heat the olive oil in a medium sauté pan.
  8. Add garlic and red pepper flakes, sauté on low heat 1 minute until garlic is softened.
  9. Pour in the pureed tomatoes and sprinkle with salt.
  10. Simmer until sauce is thickened 10-15 minutes.
  11. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. Turn off the heat.
  12. Stir in basil.

For the Cashew Cheese

  1. Drain and rinse the cashews.
  2. In a blender or food processor add the cashews, garlic, thyme, oregano, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, mustard, salt, pepper and water.
  3. Blend or process to form a thick paste. Add more water if necessary, but not much, you want it to be thick like ricotta cheese.

To Assemble and Serve:

  1. Spoon enough of the tomato sauce to cover the bottom of a serving
  2. Spoon 1 heaping tablespoon of the cashew “cheese” onto one end of each eggplant slice. Roll into a tight log. Repeat with remaining eggplant slices.
  3. Place the rolled eggplants on top of the tomato sauce in a pinwheel design.
  4. Garnish with thinly sliced basil leaves.
  5. Serve warm or at room temperature.
  6. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat before serving.
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Main Dish, Side Dish
  • Cuisine: Vegan, Paleo, Whole30, Italian