Roasted Vegetable Spread Recipe ~ Zacusca (2024)

This post may contain affiliate links. Read our disclosure policy.

The best roasted vegetable spread with eggplant, peppers and tomatoes. Perfect as a dip on a the vegan appetizer platter, as a spread on little tea sandwiches, bruschetta, morning toast, bagels or as a savory smoky pasta pasta sauce.

Jump to Recipe

This nutritious magic spread right here is how you get more veggies in your life!

Peppers. Eggplant. Tomatoes. Onions!

Vegetable Spread

For those of you who have been asking me for more plant-based breakfast ideas, I wanted to shared this veggie garden spread for some time now. This is what breakfast and lunch looked like for me as a child. Whole wheat crusty bread slathered with a thick layer of mom’s Zacusca.

Enjoy with a sprinkling of your favorite fresh herbs, thinly sliced scallions, crisp radishes and cucumbers, go wild!

I remember jars of this delicious stuff lined up on our old wooden pantry shelves at all times, right above the homemade strawberry and apricot jam. Midnight cravings always covered!

The original recipe also known as Zacusca calls for a heavy pouring of oil, however I adapted mine to be completely WFPB, healthy as can be, good for you without sacrificing flavor. You could choose to sautee your onion in a light drizzle of olive oil if you insist but it really it isn’t necessary. This is a legit classic brimming with clean flavor you guys!

The gist of it is roasting eggplants and bell peppers to infuse them with a deep roasted smoky flavor. Chop everything up then cook them down with San Marzano tomatoes until a savory thick spread is achieved (you can use fresh blanched tomatoes or canned).

It doubles down as a pasta sauce and gluten-free dip on the appetizer platter served with pita bread or bruschetta. As you can see the possibilities are endless with a jar of this magic in your pantry.

Roasted Vegetable Spread Recipe ~ Zacusca (7)

5 from 1 vote

Roasted Vegetable Spread (Zacusca)

The best roasted vegetable spread with eggplant, peppers and tomatoes. Perfect as a dip on the vegan appetizer platter, as a spread on little tea sandwiches, morning toast, bagels or as a smoky pasta sauce.

Print Recipe

Prep Time:10 minutes mins

Cook Time:1 hour hr

Total Time:1 hour hr 10 minutes mins


  • 8 large red bell peppers (or your favorite colors)
  • 3 medium eggplants
  • 28 oz canned whole San Marzano tomatoes (you can use fresh blanched tomatoes instead)
  • 1 large yellow onion -finely chopped
  • 6 cloves minced garlic (optional)
  • 3 leaves bay
  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp red chili flakes (or to taste)
  • 1 pinch sea salt +more to taste
  • 1/4 cup Italian parsley or basil (optional, roughly chopped)

US Customary - Metric


  • Rinse the eggplants and pierce them with a knife in a few spots. Roast them together with the bell peppers under the broiler flames (or on a large cast iron flat griddle) until charred on all sides. Flip them around a few times, then transfer to a bowl. Cover with a lid until cool enough to handle.

    3 medium eggplants, 8 large red bell peppers

  • Peel the charred skins from the peppers, discard the seeds then core and chop up the flesh. (You can puree them in a food processor too using the pulse button a few times).

  • Scoop the flesh from inside the roasted eggplants and mix together with the roasted peppers. Set aside until needed.

  • Meanwhile in a heavy bottom pot saute the onion with a pinch of sea salt, pepper flakes and a splash of water (or a drizzle of olive oil) until translucent. Stir in the garlic cook 10 seconds until fragrant then and the tomatoes breaking them up with a flat wooden spoon.

    1 large yellow onion, 6 cloves minced garlic, 1 tsp red chili flakes, 1 pinch sea salt, 28 oz canned whole San Marzano tomatoes

  • Stir in the roasted pepper, eggplant, smoked paprika and bay leaves and bring to a simmer. Partially cover with a lid and cook down until most of the juices from the tomatoes have cooked down into a thick spread / sauce, about 35 minutes or so.

    8 large red bell peppers, 3 medium eggplants, 1 tbsp smoked paprika, 3 leaves bay

  • Add the chopped parsley and season to taste with more sea salt and extra pepper flakes. (At this point you can use a potato masher for a smoother consistency If you prefer, I like the rustic texture of the sauce.)

    1/4 cup Italian parsley or basil

  • Refrigerate until chilled and serve as a spread on crust bread, or toss with whole wheat noodles or in a cold pasta salad.(Traditionally a very large batch of this recipe is prepared and canned for the winter).

  • Roasted Vegetable Spread Recipe ~ Zacusca (8)


note: If you insist on using olive oil in your spread, then just make sure to use a good quality cold pressed variety, sauce in just a drizzle and if desired add it at the very end after the sauce has been cooked for richness.


Calories: 49kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 1g | Sodium: 155mg | Potassium: 380mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 2730IU | Vitamin C: 92.2mg | Calcium: 50mg | Iron: 1.8mg

Course: Sauce

Cuisine: Italian, Romanian

Keyword: Roasted Vegetable Spread

Servings: 8 people

Calories: 49kcal

Author: Florentina

Roasted Vegetable Spread Recipe ~ Zacusca (2024)


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Catherine Tremblay

Last Updated:

Views: 5528

Rating: 4.7 / 5 (47 voted)

Reviews: 94% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Catherine Tremblay

Birthday: 1999-09-23

Address: Suite 461 73643 Sherril Loaf, Dickinsonland, AZ 47941-2379

Phone: +2678139151039

Job: International Administration Supervisor

Hobby: Dowsing, Snowboarding, Rowing, Beekeeping, Calligraphy, Shooting, Air sports

Introduction: My name is Catherine Tremblay, I am a precious, perfect, tasty, enthusiastic, inexpensive, vast, kind person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.