Eggplant is so underrated. It’s an amazing, hearty veggie to start with, and we especially love it as a main ingredient in classic Italian dishes. You can finally enjoy your favorite flavors without feeling like you have a brick in your tummy afterward. Our baked eggplant Parmesan is a lighter version of a heavy dish without compromising the savory, cheesy vibe you desire.
It’s easy enough to prepare on a weeknight, in addition to being a great home-style dish to serve company. We left the peel on our eggplant for the flavor and texture, and imbibed in supermarket marinara for ease of use. This recipe is W-I-N-N-I-N-G.
To ensure a smooth process while preparing this recipe, bring all of your supplies into your workspace so everything is within reach. This will make it easier (and less messy) during the drudging process. Samesies when it’s time to layer the ingredients into the baking dish. Now, just get in the kitchen!
Baked Eggplant Parmesan Recipe
- 2 lbs eggplants, medium, about 1 lb each
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 cups breadcrumbs, Italian-style
- 24 oz jar marinara sauce
- 1 lb mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, torn
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees then coat a large baking sheet and a 9" x 13" baking dish with cooking spray. Slice the ends off of each eggplant and cut each one crosswise into ½" discs. Season both sides of each eggplant slice with salt then set aside.
- Place beaten egg into a shallow dish and breadcrumbs onto a large plate.
- Blot each eggplant slice to remove any moisture from the surface then dip in beaten egg. Allow excess egg to drip off then dredge in breadcrumbs, pressing gently to adhere, then shake off excess. Place eggplant on the baking sheet then repeat with remaining slices. Bake 25–30 minutes or until lightly golden then remove from oven.
- Place about ¾ cup of marinara in the bottom of the prepared baking dish and add as many eggplant slices as necessary to completely cover the bottom of the dish. (This should take about half of the eggplant slices, so just layer or shingle them as necessary.) Spread half of remaining marinara sauce over eggplant then sprinkle with half of the shredded mozzarella as well as half of the Parmesan and half of the basil.
- Repeat the layers one more time then cover tightly with aluminum foil. Bake for 40 minutes then remove foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until sauce is bubbly and center is hot. Remove from oven and let rest 10 minutes before serving.
Some people like to peel the eggplant, but we love the flavor and texture with the skins on.