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Sheikh El Mahshi (شيخ المحشي ), stuffed eggplant, is one of the most popular recipes in the Middle East. It’s eggplant stuffed with ground beef and pine nuts and it is usually served with a side of traditional vermicelli rice. It’s super delicious and different than your everyday meals.

sheikh el mahshi

Sheikh el Mahshi (شيخ المحشي ), stuffed eggplant, may not be the easiest recipe you may prepare, but it’s definitely worth the work if you love eggplant recipes. My version of this recipe is a bit different than the traditional recipe. Usually, the dish is made with baby eggplants, but I can never find them in the area I live in. So I just opt on doing them with slices of eggplants and roll them up. Another thing I do differently is the way I prepare the beef stuffing. I love the flavor of the final product much better this way. Which every way you decide to cook the Sheik el Mahshi, traditional way or this way, the final product is always DELICIOUS! This is one of my top Lebanese recipes.

شيخ المحشي

HOW TO COOK SHEIKH EL MAHSHI (شيخ المحشي )

The very first thing I always do it start on the eggplant. I buy about 4 large eggplants.  I slice them into about 1/2 inch thick and place them on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Sprinkle some salt on each side and let them rest for about 10 minutes. Pat them dry and generously brush them with vegetable oil. Bake in a pre-heated 400 degree oven for 15 minutes. Let them cool down while you prepare the meat. Another thing you can do is actually fry them half way through. I love frying them as well but the healthier way will be to bake them.

sliced eggplant

Now to prepare the meat stuffing, finely dice a medium onion. You will also need to finely dice a red bell pepper, chop some cilantro, and mince some garlic. Heat some oil in a frying pan and sauté the onions until translucent in color. Add in the garlic, cilantro and bell pepper. Sauté on medium-low heat for about 2-3 minutes and then add in the ground beef, salt and spices.

ground meat stuffing

Mix everything together to break up the ground beef and continue cooking the beef until it’s fully cooked and the water has dried down. Turn off the heat and add in some toasted pine nuts. This is completely optional if you don’t want to add any nuts. I like adding just a little bit at least because my husband likes it, but my kids don’t like pine nuts.

FINALIZING THE DISH

At this point, you are ready to wrap the eggplants. But before you do that, you need to create the tomato base. Slice some onions and tomatoes, along with some finely chopped garlic and cilantro. In a skillet, heat a couple tablespoons of oil, any kind, and fry the onions until they start obtaining a golden color. Add in the garlic and cilantro and continue stirring to cook those for another 30 second. Add in the tomato and cook until tender, then add in the tomato paste,, 2 cups of water and tomato sauce. Season with salt, black pepper, and 7 spices. If you don’t have 7 spices, you can use a tiny bit of all spice (about 1/2 tsp. along with 1/2 tsp. of cinnamon). Let the sauce simmer for about 3-5 minutes on low, then turn off the heat.

Now, you can cook this 2 ways. Bake in the oven or on the stove. I usually make it in the oven but in some countries, electricity might be an issue or the use of gas ovens can also run them a lot. But starting with the baking way, pour over the sauce into a baking dish. Place a slice of the eggplant on a cutting board or flat surface and top with some ground beef.

stuffed eggplant

Roll the eggplant carefully to prefect rupture because the eggplants are very tender after cooking. Place the eggplant roll into the baking dish and repeat to finish the rest.

stuffed eggplant rolls

Once you are done with that, bake in a pre-heated oven for 30 minutes. Remove and garnish with some fresh chopped parsley and pine nuts. Serve the dish along side with vermicelli rice or white rice if you don’t have the vermicelli needed for the vermicelli rice.

شيخ المحشي

  • If you are cooking on a stove, you will go ahead and stuff the eggplants and wrap them. Place in a larger shallow skillet, use the same for cooking the sauce, and place all the eggplant rolls onto the sauce. Cover and cook on medium-low heat for 30 minutes, without moving the rolls around. Once that is done, you can remove, garnish as mentioned above and serve with vermicelli rice. شيخ المحشي

It may sound overwhelming, but I promise you this dish is so special, especially if you love eggplants and all Middle Eastern cuisines. If you try this Sheikh El Mashi (شيخ المحشي ), stuffed eggplant recipe and like it, please use my hashtag to share it with me on INSTAGRAM for a chance to be featured! Follow me at Cookin’ With Mima on FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | PINTEREST for all of my latest social posts and recipes.

OTHER LEBANESE RECIPES YOU MAY LIKE

5 from 5 votes

Sheikh El Mahshi (شيخ المحشي )

Sheikh El Mahshi is a delicious and very popular Middle Eastern dish. The eggplant is stuffed with ground meat and cooking in tomato sauce.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
0 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 8 servings

Ingredients 

  • 4 large eggplants, Sliced into ½ inch strips, see photo
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil, for brushing the eggplants

Meat Stuffing

  • 2 lbs. ground beef
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, petite diced
  • 1 medium onion, petite diced
  • 1 tbsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • ¾ tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • ¼ cup cilantro, chipped
  • 2 tbsps. garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. 7 spice

Tomato Sauce

  • 2 tbsps. olive oil
  • 3 medium tomatoes, sliced
  • 2 tbsps. garlic, minced or finely chopped
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • ¼ cup cilantro, chopped
  • 2 tbsps. tomato paste
  • 1 6 oz tomato sauce
  • 2 cups. water
  • ¾ tbsp. salt
  • tsp. black pepper
  • 3/4 tsp. 7 spice

Instructions 

  • Slice the eggplants. Sprinkle with some salt and let it rest for 10 minutes then pat them dry.
  • Place on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Brush generously with oil and bake for 15 minutes in a pre-heated 400 degree oven. Remove afterwards and let it cool.
  • Meanwhile prepare the meat stuffing. Finely dice a medium onion. You will also need to finely dice a red bell pepper, chop some cilantro, and mince some garlic.
  • Heat 1 tbsp. of olive oil in a frying pan and sauté the onions until translucent in color. Add in the garlic, cilantro and bell pepper. Sauté on medium-low heat for about 2-3 minutes and
    then add in the ground beef, salt and spices
  • Mix everything together to break up the ground beef and continue cooking the beef until it's fully cooked and the water has dried down. Turn off the heat and add in some toasted pine
    nuts. (optional, but recommended)
  • To prepare the tomato sauce, slice the onion and tomatoes, and finely chop the garlic and cilantro. In a skillet, heat a couple tablespoons of olive oil, or any kind,
    and fry the onions until they start obtaining a golden color.
  • Add in the garlic and cilantro and continue stirring to cook those for another 30 seconds. Add in the tomato and cook until tender, then add in the tomato paste, 2 cups of
    water and tomato sauce.
  • Season with salt, black pepper, and 7 spices. If you
    don't have 7 spices, you can use a tiny bit of all spice (about 1/2 tsp. along
    with 1/2 tsp. of cinnamon). Let the sauce simmer for about 3-5 minutes on low,
    then turn off the heat off
  • Transfer the sauce to a baking dish (or if you are using an oven safe skillet, you can keep them there and baking in it. Place a piece of eggplant on a cutting board or flat surface and top with some ground beef. Fold to roll carefully without ripping. Place the rolled eggplant in the baking dish.
  • Repeat the steps to finish the rest of the eggplants. Bake in a pre-heated 400 degree oven for 40 minutes. Remove and garnish with chopped parsley and pine nuts. Serve with vermicelli rice or plain white rice

Notes

If you want to make this recipe healthier, you can bake the eggplants in the oven instead of frying.
Add cayenne pepper to stuffing to make it spicy.

Nutrition

Calories: 521kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 36g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 1298mg | Potassium: 1410mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 1724IU | Vitamin C: 41mg | Calcium: 100mg | Iron: 5mg
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Recipe Rating




13 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This deserves an award!
    I tried this at my friends house and fell in love! So I got home and instantly started to research the recipe and this was the closest (appearance wise) I could find.
    It turned out so delicious, my family gave it a big thumbs up.
    Thanks so much for sharing this recipe, I shall keep this in my recipe book for a lifetime =)

  2. 5 stars
    I prepare the eggplants by microwaving them in a bowl of water for six minutes, then searing them on a hot skillet with a little bit of olive oil. This gives the eggplants a flavor and texture that is very close when it’s deep fried, but with fraction of the oils! Great recipe, we love how you chose to wrap the stuffing.

    1. Hi Nick!
      I love how you adjusted everything to your liking. Happy you enjoyed the meal. Thank you so much for the review!

  3. this recipe is amazing! i just made it in the pot and instead of frying the eggplant to make it soft i just put it on the fry pan for a couple minutes until it was done

    1. Hi Bec!
      That sounds much healthier! Glad you enjoyed the recipe. It’s one of my top favorite Lebanese recipes.

  4. Can you tell me what’ spices are in the 7 spices? I don’t have the mixture and would like to make my own.
    Thank you

    1. Hi Dina!
      You can make a small mixture by mixing 1 tsp. each of all spice,fine black pepper, fenugreek, cinnamon, clove and nutmeg. But maybe buying all these spices might cost you more than what the finished product cost on amazon or a middle eastern store near you. Just google middle eastern grocery stores near me and I am sure you will find it. Even some Indian grocery store carry it as well as Cost Plus World Market sometimes carries it. I would be happy to send you a link of it. Please email me.