This Crispy Baked Eggplant Parmesan is healthy, easy and delicious. A different way of slicing the eggplant allows it to stay super crispy even though it is baked in the oven.
Do you love crispy eggplant parmesan? Although eggplant parmesan is a beloved classic dish, one thing people tend to struggle with is how to make eggplant parmesan that isn’t soggy.
I decided to take on the challenge with this Crispy Baked Eggplant Parmesan. First of all, I wanted to create a baked eggplant parmesan recipe because baking is easier and healthier than frying.
Second of all, I had to figure out how to get the eggplant to stay crispy after adding sauce and cheese. In my very scientific poll on instagram, most of you said you prefer eggplant parmesan that is more crispy rather than more saucy.
In order to create baked eggplant parmesan that is crispy but still has enough sauce and cheese, I decided to change how the eggplant was cut. Rather than slicing it into rounds, which is what most recipes do, I decided to slice the eggplant vertically into long planks. This gives the eggplant more surface area and allows enough room for sauce and cheese while the edges can still stay crisp.
Do you salt eggplant before making eggplant parmesan
Yes, salting the eggplant before making eggplant parmesan draws out some moisture. This can help the eggplant stay crisp after cooking because it removes some moisture before it has a chance to create sogginess. Salting the eggplant before cooking can also remove some bitterness.
Do you peel eggplant before making eggplant parmesan?
You do not need to peel the eggplant before cooking, although you can if you want to. I like the color and texture that the skin of the eggplant gives this dish, so I left it on.
How to make Baked Eggplant Parmesan
After slicing and salting the eggplant, allow it to sit for at least half an hour while the salt draws the moisture out of the eggplant. Then blot the liquid off of the eggplant slices with a paper towel.
Brush a baking sheet with olive oil and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Dip each slice of eggplant in egg, then coat with breadcrumb mixture.
Bake for 20 minutes, then flip and bake for another 20 minutes.
When eggplant is tender and the outside is golden, remove from oven and top with marinara sauce and cheese.
Return to the oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly. Finish under the broiler for 1-2minutes if desired to get cheese brown and bubbly.
What sides go with Baked Eggplant Parmesan?
Although Baked Eggplant Parmesan can be served on it’s own as a main course, you may want to serve it with sides. A simple pasta with marinara sauce or even zoodles would work perfectly. If you want more vegetables, try this Parmesan Roasted Broccoli.
If you like this recipe be sure to try my popular Oven Baked Chicken Parmesan recipe!
- 2 medium sized eggplants about 2 pounds total
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 eggs beaten
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese fresh grated
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 and 1/2 cups marinara sauce
- 1 ½ cups shredded mozzarella
- 2 tablespoon minced parsley optional for garnish
- Move oven rack so that is in the second from the top space. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Brush 2 Tablespoons of olive oil on a large baking sheet and set aside.
- Cut the eggplant into lengthwise into planks about 1 inch thick. Sprinkle salt on both sides. Let sit for 30 minutes or longer.
- After 30 minutes, pat the eggplant dry with a paper towel, then season with salt and pepper.
- In one shallow dish, mix together panko bread crumbs, grated parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, garlic powder, oregano, and black pepper.
- In another shallow dish, whisk eggs.
- Dip one eggplant slice into the egg, allow excess to drip off. Then dip it into the bread crumb mixture until fully coated in the crumb mixture, and gently press with your hand to help the crumbs stick to the eggplant. Place on the prepared baking sheet, repeat with remaining slices of eggplant.
- Place baking sheet in oven on the second from the top rack. Bake for 20 minutes, then flip and bake for another 20 minutes, or until eggplant is tender and breading is golden.
- Pour 1/4 cup of marinara sauce over each piece of eggplant, then top with cheese. Place back in the oven and bake 10 more minutes, or until cheese it melted. Turn on broiler and broil for 2-4 minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbly.
- Garnish with chopped parsley if desired.
Loved this recipe!! It turned out crispy and full of taste. My husband would never eat eggplant, however he kept eyeing it on the table and decided to give it try. Success! he though it was was delicious and ate 2 pieces. This recipe is a keeper, thank you.
Wow, so happy to hear that!
Yum!! I used crushed nuts in place of the breadcrumbs and it still turned out delish! Loved how simple this recipe was to follow too!
Vasa Sramek says
Beautiful! Just like Mama used to make!
The slice of the eggplant does provide more room for sauce and cheese! Many thanks for a great recipe from a great Italian cook!
So glad you loved it!
Samantha B says
Very easy to make! Made this tonight for my family and everyone loved it!! I paired it with a lemon arugula Parmesan salad and garlic bread. So so so goood! My husband is Italian and is very picky, he said this was a 10/ 10
That sounds delicious, So glad you all loved it!
We grow eggplant in our garden but I had never found a great recipe for them. This fills the bill, excellent, pretty easy and my husband and I both loved it!
Oh yay, so happy to hear that!
We loved this!!! I will always make eggplant parm this way from now on. Easier, lower fat because it uses far less oil, and we loved the crunch, rather than the soggy texture from traditional eggplant parm. Yummy!!!
I’m so glad to hear that!
Well, I walked away from the broiler, so unfortunately I burnt my cheese. Since I was the only one eating this meal, I ate the eggplant, burnt cheese and all. It was actually quite tasty and I went back for seconds! I will make this again but not walk away from the broiler.
I’m glad you liked it!
Jo Ellen says
Just finished eating this & I must say it was very, very good. I got yum, yum from my family. They loved it. Thank you for the recipe.
So glad you loved it!
Loved it! Finally made eggplant that tasted good! Only issue is l think l added too much salt during the salting process and so the eggplant was a bit salty. How much salt do you recommend to ensure the moisture is drawn out?
Hi Julia – I don’t measure but I just sprinkle pinch on – maybe about 1/2 a teaspoon for all the slices.
make sure you’re also rinsing off the salt and patting dry with a paper towel before cooking it!
PJ Tonkin says
This was absolutely fantastic! Our local farm stand (Pearce’s) had 2 eggplants that were exactly the right size. I had never left the skin on before, but it was great. I cut the skin off my serving, and my hubby ate the skins. I used Barilla pasta sauce, and low fat mozzarella for a healthy and delicious dinner. We had a bagged salad with cabbage and kale for more veggies.
I’m so happy you loved it!
YUM! Even my grandson loved it and he doesn’t like egg plant
So glad you loved it!