Eggplant Parmesan

This baked eggplant Parmesan recipe will become one of your family favorites! Crispy eggplant is layered with herbs, tomato sauce, and cheese.

Eggplant parmesan recipe

Growing up, my mom’s eggplant Parmesan recipe was one of my favorite things to eat. My family ate dinner together every night, and my mom always cooked it from scratch. Tomato sauce never came from a jar, and cheese was never pre-shredded because convenience foods like that were simply not worth the extra expense. Dinnertime was a sound routine for all of us… unless it was summer.

Then, my sister and I had more important matters at hand. We had to keep lookout for the ice cream man, hold swing set jumping contests, and run relays in our jelly shoes. When my mom called us in for dinner, we rushed in and ate as fast as we could so that we could get back outside to play. Food was fine, but play was life. That is, unless the meal she was cooking was eggplant Parmesan. The amazing waft of saucy, cheesy goodness coming out of the oven was something to really get excited about… even if it meant coming in and savoring it for a few extra minutes before heading back out to play.

My Eggplant Parmesan Recipe

When Sub Zero, Wolf, and Cove asked me what living deliciously means to me, my mom’s eggplant Parmesan and those warm summer family memories immediately came to mind. Because eggplant’s in peak season, I thought it was the perfect time to develop an eggplant Parmesan recipe of my own. It’s a delicious, lighter ode to my mom’s classic recipe.

Just like my mom, I make my own marinara sauce by simmering crushed tomatoes over my Wolf cooktop for about 20 minutes. Then, for fresh, herbaceous flavor, I add generous pinches of oregano and thyme to the eggplant’s Parmesan and panko coating. Instead of frying the breaded eggplant slices, I bake them until nicely crisp and golden brown. Finally, I layer them with the homemade marinara sauce and slices of fresh mozzarella. And of course, I can’t resist topping the whole thing with big leaves of basil from our garden once it’s out of the oven!

Dredging eggplant slices

How to Make Eggplant Parmesan

Ready to make eggplant parm? Here’s what you need to do:

  • Bread the eggplant. Mix together the herb, Parmesan, and panko coating in one shallow bowl, and whisk 2 eggs with a dash of almond milk in another. Dip each eggplant slice into the egg mixture before tossing it in the panko. Make sure the eggplant is well-coated on all sides!

Breaded eggplant slices on a baking sheet

  • Bake the eggplant. Arrange the breaded eggplant slices in a single layer on 2 parchment-lined rimmed baking sheets. Drizzle with olive oil and bake at 400° until tender and golden brown. If you have a convection setting on your oven, I highly recommend using it here. When I use convection bake on our Wolf oven, the panko gets deliciously browned and crisp. I don’t miss the traditional fried eggplant at all!
  • Layer it up! Spread some tomato sauce in the bottom of a large casserole dish. Add a layer of eggplant slices, more marinara, and half the sliced mozzarella. Repeat the layers, finishing it off with any remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses.

Hand spreading marinara sauce in a baking dish with a measuring scoop

  • Bake! Bake at 400° for about 20 minutes, or until the cheese is starting to bubble. Then, turn on the broiler for a couple of minutes, so the cheese starts to brown in places.
  • Garnish and serve. Let the hot eggplant Parmesan rest for a few minutes before slicing and serving. Then, top it with fresh basil leaves and dig in!

Breaded eggplant slices in a baking dish

Baked Eggplant Parmesan Recipe Tips

  • Slice the eggplant as evenly as you can. Even slices mean even cooking, so try to cut your eggplant slices to a consistent width. You don’t want some pieces to overcook before others get tender! The same goes for the fresh mozzarella – cut it to a consistent thickness to get even melting and browning.
  • Freshly grate the Parmesan cheese. Your eggplant Parmesan will have more flavor if you get a nice chunk of Parmigiano Reggiano (or even pecorino cheese) and grate it yourself.
  • Get a nice, thick panko coating on the eggplant slices. In this recipe, some of the best texture and flavor come from the mix of panko, Parmesan, herbs, and red pepper flakes, so don’t skimp on that yummy crispy coating!
  • Don’t forget the olive oil! Make sure to drizzle the breaded eggplant slices with oil before they go in the oven. It’s essential for getting the panko nicely golden brown and crisp.
  • Season between the layers. The overall seasoning of your eggplant Parmesan will depend on what marinara and Parmesan cheese you use. With my homemade marinara sauce, I like to add a sprinkle of salt and a few grinds of pepper between the layers of eggplant and cheese so that the final dish comes out well-seasoned.

Hand layering fresh mozzarella on eggplant slices in a baking dish Hand sprinkling cheese on eggplant Parmesan in a baking dish

Serving Suggestions

This eggplant Parmesan recipe is hearty enough to be a meal on its own, but if you’re looking for something to go with it, you can’t go wrong with pasta (or spaghetti squash or zucchini noodles!) or good crusty bread. When I make it for friends or family, I also like to pair it with a simple veggie side dish like roasted broccoli, cauliflower, or tomatoes, grilled zucchini, or any of these salad recipes:

For more salad ideas, check out this post!

Baked Eggplant Parmesan Recipe

More Favorite Dinner Recipes

If you love this baked eggplant Parmesan recipe, try one of these delicious dinner recipes next:

Love eggplant? Find more of my favorite eggplant recipes here.

Baked Eggplant Parmesan

Eggplant Parmesan

rate this recipe:
5 from 133 votes
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 40 mins
Total Time: 1 hr
Serves 6 to 8
Learn how to make eggplant Parmesan with this delicious, lighter baked Eggplant Parmesan Recipe. It's perfect for serving a crowd, so make it for your next gathering or family dinner!

Ingredients

  • 2 large eggplant, cut into ¼-inch thick rounds
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • cups panko breadcrumbs
  • cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt, more for sprinkling
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • 28 ounces Marinara Sauce
  • 2 large balls fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
  • cup fresh basil leaves

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • In a medium-sized shallow dish, whisk the eggs and almond milk.
  • In another medium-sized shallow dish, combine the panko, 1 cup Parmesan cheese, oregano, thyme, red pepper flakes, salt, and several grinds of pepper.
  • Dip the eggplant slices into the egg mixture and then into the panko mixture. Place onto the baking sheets, drizzle with olive oil, and bake for 18 minutes or until tender and golden brown.
  • In an 8x12 or 9x13-inch baking dish, spread ½ cup marinara, layer half the eggplant, and top with 1 cup of marinara and half the mozzarella. Repeat with the remaining eggplant, the remaining marinara, and the remaining mozzarella. Sprinkle with the remaining ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with a few more pinches of sea salt. Bake for 20 minutes or until the cheese is nicely melted. Turn the oven to broil and broil for 2 to 4 or until the cheese is browned and bubbling.
  • Remove from the oven and top with fresh basil.

Special thanks to Sub Zero, Wolf, and Cove for partnering on this post!

15 comments

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Rate this recipe (after making it)




  1. Dana
    01.25.2022

    5 stars
    This recipe is so delicious. My family is obsessed-one of the best eggplant parms we’ve ever had!

  2. Jonathan
    01.20.2022

    This recipe looks great. I am going to make it this weekend. My question is, do you flip the eggplant at any point while baking it so both sides turn golden brown?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      01.20.2022

      Hi Jonathan, I didn’t but you can if you’d like.

  3. Kelly
    01.09.2022

    5 stars
    This has long been a favorite at Italian restaurants. It turned out delicious 👌 Hubby who is not an Eggplant fan really liked it.
    This will be a repeat for sure.

  4. Rhonda
    01.09.2022

    5 stars
    Love this recipe!! Wish it had nutritional info ….

  5. Michelle
    01.09.2022

    5 stars
    So this has got to be the best recipe for eggplant parm ever! My Italian boyfriend was so impressed he loved it. Said it was the best eggplant he ever tasted and considering I’m not 1% Italian that says a lot!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      01.09.2022

      Hi Michelle, that’s high praise! I’m so glad you both loved it.

  6. Shorty
    01.04.2022

    You do not do the salting & drying step w/the eggplant, typical of a frying recipe. Is this because the baking will serve the same function or might it benefit from that step. Making tonight.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      01.04.2022

      Hi Shorty, you can salt and dry it, if you’d like. I don’t find it necessary in this case and there are already quite a few steps to the recipe.

    • Bob
      01.16.2022

      I may not be correct, but I believe the salting/drying thing is a throw back from when often the egg plants you’d get were old and bitter, the salting and drying removed some of the bitterness. I don’t think it’s important nowadays because we tend to get fresher and selectively breed egg plants that are less bitter.

  7. Veronique
    12.28.2021

    5 stars
    First time cooking with eggplant and my family loved this! My 2 year old absolutely loved this so much he had seconds!! I added a layer of ricotta to kick it up a bit and it was delicious.

  8. Flo
    12.02.2021

    5 stars
    Really good! You could add some bechamel sauce in between layers and it takes it to another level!

  9. Chris
    11.25.2021

    Making it for my vegetarian children today-Thanksgiving. Looks lovely and can’t wait to try it!

  10. Jim
    11.22.2021

    5 stars
    I followed directions to the letter. It was delicious eggplant Parmesan!!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      11.23.2021

      I’m so glad you loved it!

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.