Eggplant Parmesan

Translation: Melanzane alla Parmigiana

Alternate Spellings: Eggplant Parmigiano, Eggplant Parmigiana

Cuisine: Italian

Region: Campania

Recipe Type: Main Dish

Average User Rating: 0.99 / 5

Vegetarian / Vegan: Vegetarian

One of Italy's most famous dishes, Eggplant Parmesan is a very popular vegetarian entree. Our version of this classic dish uses panko bread crumbs to make the eggplant extra-crunchy.

Eggplant parmesan can be served as a main dish, with a side of pasta, or, as is commonly done in many Italian-American restaurants, served on a hoagie roll as a sandwich (with or without pasta and tomato sauce added to the sandwich).

Tip on preparing eggplant: Before using the eggplant slices, lightly salt each side of the slices and let drain over a sink for 30 minutes. Lightly press to remove excess moisture and rinse. Pat dry with paper towels before using. This method helps to remove bitter compounds from the eggplant, as well as to remove additional water, which helps with the texture after frying.


1-2 medium eggplants (about 1-1.25 lbs.), sliced into 1/2" thick slices
1/2 lb. fresh mozzarella (preferably buffalo), sliced into 1/4" thick slices
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup whole milk
1.5 cups panko bread crumbs
1/2 cup + 2 TB Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, finely grated
1 cup basil leaves, whole + basil chiffonade for garnish
2 cups basic tomato sauce or marinara
1 cup olive oil, for frying


Set up three large dishes for breading the eggplant. In the first, place the flour, salt, pepper, and red pepper. In the second, combine the milk and beaten eggs. In the third dish, mix the panko and grated parmesan. Coat each slice in the flour, shaking off excess, then the egg-milk mixture, and then finally in the panko-cheese mixture, making sure the entire slice is coated. Set coated eggplant slices aside on a wax paper-lined sheet pan while you work.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet or pan to 350°. Fry 3 or 4 slices at a time, being careful not to crowd the pan, for 2 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Remove finished batch to drain on paper towels while you cook the rest.

Pour half the sauce into the bottom of a a 8" by 16" baking dish. Layer half the eggplant slices on top of the sauce. Top the eggplant with half the mozzarella and basil and lightly cover with remaining sauce. Top with remaining eggplant slices, mozzarella, and basil, and the 2 TB of parmesan. Bake at 375° for 15-20 minutes, until bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Garnish with basil chiffonade.

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Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Servings: 4

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