This Roasted Eggplant Parmesan is much lighter and easier to make than a traditional version. My crispy garlic-butter breadcrumbs provide so much flavor and texture, you won’t miss the fried eggplant.
- 2 medium eggplants (about 2lbs), trimmed, peeled and sliced lengthwise (1/4-1/2 inch thick)
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 28 oz can whole, peeled tomatoes
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3–4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 2 sprigs of basil, plus more leaves for garnish
- 1–2 pinches hot red pepper flakes
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2–3 anchovy fillets (optional)
- Zest of 1 lemon
- ¼ cup finely chopped parsley
- 8oz fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
- ½ cup freshly grated parmigiano reggiano cheese or domestic parmesan
- Bake eggplant: Preheat oven to 450F. Divide sliced eggplant between 2 sheet trays. Drizzle each tray with 2 tablespoons of oil. Season with salt. Toss to coat evenly. Bake on upper and lower thirds of oven for 15 minutes. Rotate trays to opposite racks. Continue to bake for 10-15 minutes or until eggplant is tender. Keep oven on for baking the eggplant parm.
- Make sauce: While eggplant roasts, cook the sauce. Add ¼ cup of oil, sliced garlic, basil sprigs and red pepper to a medium sized sauce pan. Turn heat to medium. Once garlic comes to a sizzle, add canned tomatoes. Season with salt. Bring to a simmer and cook, partially covered, for 25-30 minutes or until sauce thickens and deepens in flavor. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
- Toast breadcrumbs: While sauce cooks, prepare the breadcrumbs. Add oil, butter, garlic and anchovies to a large pan. Turn heat to medium. Breakup anchovies as mixture heats up. Once butter melts and garlic starts to sizzle, add breadcrumbs to the pan. Season with salt. Stir to coat in oil/butter mixture. Toast breadcrumbs over medium heat for about 5-7 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to a bowl. Stir in lemon zest and chopped parsley.
- Layer and bake: Gather a 9×13 inch baking dish. Spoon half of the tomato sauce into the bottom of the pan. Layer with half the roasted eggplant, followed by half the breadcrumbs, half the grated parmesan and half of the sliced mozzarella. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Bake, uncovered for 15-25 minute or until hot and bubbly. If mozzarella doesn’t brown as desired, place under broiler for about 2-4 minutes, taking care that the breadcrumbs don’t burn. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes before slicing. Top with basil leaves before serving. Enjoy.
I don’t find the need to salt the eggplant, but you might want to if you use 1 large globe eggplant instead of two medium sized ones. The larger eggplants with more seeds tend to be more bitter.
To save time, feel free to use your favorite store bought marinara.
Add more mozzarella for a thicker layer of cheese if desired.
You can make the sauce and roast the eggplant the day before assembling and baking, if desired.
Store in the fridge for up to 5-7 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour
- Category: Casserole
- Method: Roast, Bake, Saute
- Cuisine: Italian
- Serving Size: 1/4 of bake
- Calories: 740
- Sugar: 35g
- Sodium: 775mg
- Fat: 45g
- Saturated Fat: 11g
- Unsaturated Fat: 34g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 63g
- Fiber: 17g
- Protein: 34g
- Cholesterol: 33mg
Keywords: roasted eggplant parmesan, baked eggplant parmesan, eggplant parmigiana