The most delicious baked eggplant parmigiana recipe that you can ever make! Eggplant Parmigiana is the vegetarian twist to your usual chicken parma with layers of crispy baked eggplant topped with tangy marinara sauce and cheesy mozzarella. Whether you’re a lover or not of eggplants, this dish is a game-changer. It’s easy-to-make, delicious, and packed with veggies in it making it a healthy family-friendly meal for lunch or dinner.
WHAT’S IN THIS BAKED EGGPLANT PARMIGIANA?
- Eggplant – Go for the large, plump eggplant/ aubergines so they are thicker when cut and gives you that nice crunch when coated with the breading. Eggplants are rich in minerals and fiber in few calories which makes it a go-to meat replacement in a lot of dishes. It’s also known to help control blood sugar levels, and also in aiding weight management.
- Panko Bread Crumbs – You can also use regular bread crumbs. This will be the breading of the eggplant.
- Almond flour – I’ve used a mix of panko bread crumbs and almond flour to also add some more nutrients and fiber into this dish. Almond flour is just from ground almonds and it adds some nutty flavor into the dishes.
- Marinara Sauce – This can be homemade or the ones in the jar. If jarred sauces, be sure to read the labels and go for one with as less additives and artificial sweeteners in it.
- Mozzarella Cheese & Parmesan Cheese – Using a mix of cheeses adds depth of flavor, and the mozarella gives the gooey factor in this recipe.
- Fresh Basil – To add some freshness and flavor, we add chopped basil in between layers.
TIPS TO MAKE THE BAKED EGGPLANT PARMIGIANA
- SLICE the eggplants for about 1/4 inch thick. Any thinner and it makes it harder to crisp it up.
- SALT the eggplant slices before cooking them. This releases the excess moisture from the eggplants so you don’t get soggy eggplant when cooked. Be sure to pat dry the moisture from the eggplant before coating it with the breading.
- SPRAY some baking spray on the coated eggplants so it comes out crispy when baked. If you’re frying the eggplants, just shallow-fry them instead of deep-frying for less grease.
CAN YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE AHEAD OF TIME?
This baked eggplant parmigiana is best made on the day you serve it if you want that crispness from the breaded eggplants. However you can prep ahead the cooking of the eggplants and store them in the fridge, and then just heat the eggplants in an oven or skillet to crisp them up before assembling.
HOW TO STORE LEFTOVERS?
Leftovers can be transferred in an airtight container and stored in the fridge for up to 4 days. I haven’t tried freezing it but I think it should be fine. Just reheat it in the oven when serving and don’t refreeze.
OTHER MEATLESS RECIPES YOU’LL ENJOY:
WATCH HOW TO MAKE THIS BAKED EGGPLANT PARMIGIANA
- 2 eggplants large
- 1 egg lightly beaten
- 1/4 cup flour tapioca flour or plain flour
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1 teaspoon italian seasoning
- salt and pepper to taste
- 15 oz marinara sauce homemade or ready-to-use in a jar
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese grated
- 1 cup parmesan cheese grated, divided
- fresh basil chopped, and some more for garnish
- Pre-heat your oven to 220 degrees Celsius. Spray a baking dish with baking spray and set aside.
- Slice the eggplant to about 1/4 inch thick and lay flat on a wire rack or a flat surface. Salt both sides of the eggplant slices to release excess moisture. Leave it for about 15 minutes. Then take a kitchen towel or paper towel and pat dry the moisture from the eggplants and the salt.
- In separate shallow bowl, place the lightly beaten egg. In a second bowl, place the flour and in a 3rd bowl, combine the almond flour, Italian seasoning and panko bread crumbs, half cup of the parmesan. Take each eggplant slice and coat with flour, then egg and the bread crumbs/almond flour mixture. Transfer the coated eggplants on a lined baking tray.
- Spray with baking spray the top of the coated eggplants and bake in the oven for about 30 minutes or until golden crispy. Flip halfway through.
- Once the eggplants are out of the oven, reduce the heat to 180 degrees Celsius. To assemble the eggplant parmigiana, place about 2-3 tablespoons of the marinara sauce at the bottom of your greased baking dish. Then arrange a layer of crispy eggplant slices. Top each eggplant with about 1-2 tablespoons of marinara sauce, parmesan & mozzarella, chopped basil. Repeat for all eggplant slices. Then arrange another layer of breaded eggplants and add the same toppings of marinara sauce, cheese, and basil.
- Add more mozzarella cheese and herbs on the final top layer and bake for about 20-25 minutes or until cheese on top is bubbly and gooey. Serve warm and enjoy with a side salad or some toast.
I hope you enjoy this meatfree recipe! Be sure to tag me @fitfoodiemommy if you ever make this recipe at home. Happy cooking!