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Crispy Eggplant with Marinara Sauce

Crispy Eggplant with Marinara Sauce

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Japanese eggplants (long variety of eggplant)

Salt and pepper, to taste


cup bread crumbs or panko


grated Parmesan cheese


cup Muir Glen™ organic Cabernet marinara pasta sauce

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  • 1

    Preheat the oven to 450°F. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.

  • 2

    Wash and dry the eggplant.

  • 3

    Cut off ends, and later cut each eggplant into 4 pieces.

  • 4

    Beat the egg with salt, pepper and oil.

  • 5

    On a plate, mix the bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese.

  • 6

    Dip each piece of eggplant in the egg and then coat with the bread crumb mix. Arrange slices of eggplant skin-down on the baking sheet.

  • 7

    Bake for 11 minutes, flip slices over and bake for 5 additional minutes. The eggplant should be golden-brown and thoroughly cooked.

  • 8

    Serve hot and with marinara sauce.

Expert Tips

  • I also recommend using garlic mayonnaise as a dipping sauce.

No nutrition information available for this recipe

More About This Recipe

  • My family and I participate in a weekly vegetable basket program offered by an urban farm. The vegetables are fresh, sustainable and cultivated 10 minutes from our home. My daughters and I have visited the farm many times and we know the farmer and his family. If you have the opportunity to participate in this kind of program, these initiatives are fantastic.Each week as we’re putting the vegetables away, we figure out what we’re going to make with them. The truth is my daughters weren’t at all pleased when they saw the eggplants. It’s not the most popular vegetable, and we mothers know it; however, when prepared crispy and served with their favorite sauce, marinara, the dish truly hits the mark.I invite you to try this crispy eggplant recipe.

Healthy Crispy Baked Eggplant with Parmesan

Eggplant parm is the kind of stick-to-your-ribs Italian fare that makes you feel warm and happy…and bloated and like you need a nap.

If you want to enjoy the flavors more often without those latter feelings, here’s the way to do it.

Instead of breadcrumbs, we created a yummy, gluten-free coating made with almond flour and spices. Bake until crispy, and then layer on delish marinara and parmesan for classic flavor.


1 teaspoon dried rosemary

1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Slice the eggplant into ¾ inch disks, and lay in a single layer on a baking sheet, sprinkling each side with salt. Let rest for 10 minutes.
  3. Using a paper towel, blot extracted water from each disk.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs.
  5. In another clean bowl, mix together the almond flour, rosemary, garlic powder, basil, and parmesan cheese.
  6. Dip each eggplant disk into the egg, and then cover generously in the dry mixture, arranging the breaded eggplant back into a single layer on the baking sheet.
  7. Bake for 30 minutes, flipping halfway through, or until lightly browned.
  8. To serve: While still warm, spoon marinara onto each disk, and top with a small piece of basil. Enjoy!

Eggplant is a hearty veggie that makes a great base for a filling plant-based meal. This one’s easy to make in a big batch for a quick family dinner or for leftovers to enjoy all week long. It also contains eggs and parmesan for added protein and vitamin-rich tomato sauce.

How To Cut Your "Fries"

There is no right or wrong way to cut your eggplant. If you want short, fat fries, great! Long, skinny fries? No problem. Just remember to adjust your baking time accordingly. The thicker the fry, the longer they will need!


Cutting Option #1

The math teacher in me cut my eggplant fries into similar "rectangular prisms". The chef in me cut my eggplant fries into "batons". Either way, you know what fries should look like so cut them how YOU like them. I think the fries look better when they are all the same size and shape (See photo). You can see how I trimmed off the top and bottom of the eggplant first, then I shaved off the round 'belly' of the eggplant creating a more rectangular piece to work with giving me 6 flat sides.

Once you have a long brick-like shape, it's pretty easy to cut into sticks. Just keep cutting the eggplant in half until you have the size you want. The dimensions of my fries are 1" x 1" x 1". But who's measuring? *Just don't cut your fries TOO thin or the ratio of breading to eggplant will be off.

With that said, because eggplants are NOT rectangular, you will have some waste if you are looking for perfectly rectangular "batons". Keep reading if you want minimal waste.

Cutting Option #2

If you want to use up as much of the eggplant as possible, first start by trimming off your ends.

Then cut your eggplant into round discs that are about 1" thick. Finally, cut each disc into long sticks. These will be your fries.

They will be all different sizes but that's okay. Just keep in mind that if some of your fries are TOO small, they will cook faster than the others so ditch the small ones or just take them out of the oven earlier.

Recipe Summary

  • cooking spray
  • 2 eggplants, peeled and sliced crosswise 1/4-inch thick
  • 2 teaspoons salt, or as needed
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1 ½ cups panko bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons dried Italian herb seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups prepared pasta sauce
  • 2 cups shredded Italian cheese blend
  • ⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Spray an 11x13-inch baking dish and 2 baking sheets with cooking spray.

Place eggplant slices on racks over the sink or paper towels and sprinkle both sides of slices lightly with salt. Let eggplant drain for 30 minutes, rinse, and pat dry with paper towels. Place eggplant slices on prepared baking sheets.

Bake in the preheated oven until eggplant is soft, about 15 minutes.

Pour beaten eggs into a shallow bowl combine panko bread crumbs with Italian seasoning in a separate shallow bowl. Dip eggplant into beaten egg and press into panko crumbs to coat. Place breaded eggplant back on the baking sheets and spray the slices with cooking spray.

Set oven rack about 6 inches from the heat source and preheat the oven's broiler.

Broil eggplant slices until tops are golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes remove slices, turn, and spray other sides with cooking spray. Broil until golden brown 2 to 3 more minutes. Remove eggplant and turn oven temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat and cook and stir onion and garlic until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in prepared pasta sauce and remove from heat.

Spread 1/3 of the pasta sauce into bottom of the prepared baking dish. Top with half the eggplant slices, half the Italian cheese blend, and half the Parmesan cheese. Spread another 1/3 of the sauce over the layers layer the remaining eggplant, remaining pasta sauce, Italian cheese blend, and Parmesan cheese.

Bake casserole in the 350 degree oven until cheese is melted and bubbly, about 30 minutes. Let stand about 10 minutes before serving.

How to make eggplant parmesan

  1. Prep: Generously salt the eggplant rounds on both sides. Let them sit on sheets of paper towel for 1-2 hours to draw out the moisture. Press the rounds dry with paper towel. Preheat the oven to 425F. Brush two sheet pans with 1 tbsp olive oil in each one.
  2. Assemble the dredge: Grab 3 shallow bowls or plates. Add the flour to one, eggs to the second, then breadcrumbs, Italian seasoning, and 1/4 cup of the parmesan cheese to the third. Season each bowl with salt and pepper and mix well.
  3. Dredge the eggplant: Take an eggplant round and dredge it in flour, then toss in the beaten egg, and finally coat with the breadcrumb mixture. Place the round on one of the prepared baking sheets, and repeat with the remaining rounds. Drizzle the remaining olive oil over the rounds.
  4. Bake the eggplant: Bake the rounds for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Reduce the heat in the oven to 375F after taking the eggplant rounds out.
  5. Assemble: Spread 1 cup of marinara sauce over the bottom of a 9吉″ baking dish. Lay half of the baked eggplant rounds in a single layer over the sauce, then top with 1 1/2 cups of marinara sauce followed by 1 cup of mozzarella and 1/2 cup of parmesan. Layer the remaining eggplant rounds, marinara sauce, and cheeses in the baking dish. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and browned.
  6. Serve: Garnish with fresh basil and serve.

    : This tangy and sweet Sicilian appetizer features eggplant with sautéed bell pepper, celery, tomatoes, olives and capers. : Hummus-like in texture, this Mediterranean dip is made with eggplant, tahini, olive oil, lemon and garlic. : Sicilian pasta dish with eggplant, marinara and basil. If you love eggplant Parmesan, you have to try this recipe. : Classic end-of-summer French stew. I roast the vegetables to reduce the moisture and bring out their flavor. : A fun late summer pasta salad that is fully loaded with veggies.

Please let me know how this turns out for you in the comments. For more comforting casserole dishes, try my Spinach Artichoke Lasagna and Lentil Baked Ziti.

The Best Ever Vegan Crispy Fried Eggplant Bites That Are To Die For


Let me start by saying I am not a doctor. Please consult your physician if you have any health concerns.

FIBROUS – because eggplant is high in fiber, the roughage is good for the digestive system and has been shown to relieve constipation.

HEART HEALTH – again because of the high fiber content, eggplant has shown to reduce cholesterol which is in turn good for the heart.

PHYTONUTRIENTS – high in vitamins A and C, it has been shown to help with brain health.

IRON – eggplant is high in iron and can help with anemia.

Vegan Crispy Fried Eggplant Bites Recipe

This vegan crispy fried eggplant recipe does take some time but it is well worth it. Makes 10 to 12 bites.

Prep Time: 10 – 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 – 30 Minutes


4 medium eggplant
Salt to taste
Black pepper – 1 teaspoon
Smoked paprika – 1 teaspoon
Freshly chopped parsley 1 tablespoon or 1 teaspoon of dried parsley
Onion powder 1 teaspoon
2 cloves of grated garlic
Cornflour 1/4 cup
Coconut flour 1/4 cup


Part 1

  • Cut the ends of the eggplant off and discard
  • Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise and again horizontally so you have 4 pieces
  • In a medium pot, add water and enough salt so the water tastes salty
  • Bring the pot to a boil
  • Add the eggplant and boil till softened (5-6 mins)
  • Remove from the pot and strain
  • Let cool
Part 2

  • Once cooled peel the outer skin from the eggplant and discard
  • Squeeze out any extra water that has not drained
  • Add the eggplant pulp to a mixing bowl
  • Mix in the 2 flours to the bowl
  • Add all your spices and mix together well
  • Taste to ensure there is enough salt – since this is already cooked, you can taste it freely
  • Form into balls and flatten slightly
  • Coat the eggplant bites with cornflour
Part 3
  • Heat a medium-sized saucepan with coconut, avocado, or olive oil over medium heat until the oil is well heated
  • Gently place the eggplant into the saucepan and fry until golden and crispy 2-3 minutes per side
  • Serve with your favorite salsa, hummus, or marinara sauce

  • Roast the eggplant whole in the oven until soft
    • Let cool and peel the outer skin off
    • Squeeze out any extra liquid
    • Let cool and peel the outer skin off
    • Squeeze out any extra liquid

    Not So Vegan Crispy Fried Eggplant Bites

    If you like cheese you can add 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese or 1/4 cup of grated mozzarella

    Tips for making a quick marinara sauce

    I have two tips for making a simple marinara sauce taste like it's been simmering on the stove for hours.

    1. Add a whole can (6-ounces) of tomato paste and CARAMELIZE it well. When you put it into the pot, let it cook for 3-4 minutes to caramelize the sugars. Once it darkens and becomes sweet smelling, you'll know it's ready.
    2. Add some honey. Sugar brings out the flavor and reduces the acidity of the tomatoes making them taste fresher. I always opt for refined sugar-free honey and it does the trick just as well.

    That's it! Those two little tricks will transform your quick marinara sauce.

    What’s Oven-frying?

    Ok, ok, I know you’re wondering, “What the heck is oven-frying. ” Basically, by oven-frying, I’m referring to breading a product and then baking it in the oven at a super high heat so that it gets a nice, crispy texture that’s somewhat close to the texture you’d get when frying. I do this a lot with poultry, fish, and veggies—this is the first time I’ve tried it with eggplant.

    I think it might actually be the best version of oven-frying I’ve tried. The eggplant was super crispy on the outside and soft and creamy on the inside. Aside from eggplant Parmesan, and pita stuffing, this crispy oven-fried eggplant would also be great on homemade pizza, in a sandwich, or just munching on as a snack with marinara sauce on the side. Baked eggplant might just become your favorite snack.

    This recipe takes a little time due to the important salting stage, but isn’t particularly difficult. I recommend making a really large batch and freezing the leftovers. Freeze leftover baked eggplant slices on a sheet pan in a single layer. Once frozen, store in a gallon sized freezer bag. When you’re looking for a crispy snack, bake frozen eggplant slices in a very hot oven (at least 400 degrees) until crispy and hot (about 10 minutes.)

    Whole30 + Keto Crispy Baked Eggplant Coating

    The eggplant gets its crispy and crunchy coating from my very favorite pork rind panko. It is 0 carbs!

    First, you’ll salt the eggplant to draw out all the moisture and bitterness. Then dredge them in egg, coat in the pork rind panko, and bake. So simple!

    Watch the video: Μελιτζάνες στο φούρνο με σάλτσα ντομάτας - Paxxi E127


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