Eggplant Parmesan is my hubby’s favorite dinner. Since I hate to add all that oil by frying the eggplant, I always bake it. The lightly breaded eggplant turns out just as crispy and golden, but without all the extra fat, calories, and grease. In the past I have used this recipe from Martha Stewart. We always thought it was good, but then I tried the recipe below and dh’s response? “I love this. I’m serious, I mean I really love it.” And I did too. The addition of a ricotta and mozzarella layer makes all the difference and makes it almost lasagna-y (there’s a new word for you). I assembled this when I had time (nap time) and baked it just before dinner.

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crisp golden eggplant rounds sit atop creamy ricotta and fresh mozzarella

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Tomato sauce, sauted mushrooms, cheese

baked eggplant parmesan recipe

Serves 8

Olive oil cooking spray

2 eggs

1 tablespoon water

1 cup breadcrumbs

1 large eggplant, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch thick slices

2/3 cup olive oil plus 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided

Salt, to taste

6 ounces mushrooms (cremini, portobello, white, etc.), sliced

1 (26-ounce) jar marinara sauce, divided

15 ounces part skim ricotta cheese, divided

2 cups fresh mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced and divided

1 1/2 cups Parmigiano-Reggiano or Grana Padano cheese, grated and divided

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Lightly spray a baking sheet with olive oil cooking spray or brush with olive oil. Beat eggs with water in shallow bowl. Place breadcrumbs on small plate.

Dredge eggplant slices in egg wash first, then in breadcrumbs. Lay eggplant in single layer on baking sheet (slightly overlapping is fine). Drizzle eggplant with 1/3 cup of olive oil and sprinkle with salt.

Bake eggplant about 20 minutes until crisp and golden. Remove from oven and flip eggplant slices. Lightly salt and drizzle with 1/3 cup olive oil. Bake approximately 20 minutes more or until golden. Set aside.

Reduce oven temperature to 350°F. While cooking eggplant, heat large skillet with 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Sauté mushrooms about 4 minutes. Turn off heat and combine mushrooms with marinara.

Lightly spray a casserole dish with olive oil cooking spray or brush with olive oil. Cover bottom of dish with 1/2 the marinara. Add a layer of 1/2 the eggplant slices. Drop 1/2 the ricotta by spoonfuls and add a layer of 1/2 the mozzarella. Then, sprinkle 1/2 Parmigiano-Reggiano. Repeat layering process again with other half of sauce then rest of Parmigiano-Reggiano. Bake approximately 45 minutes.

Recipe from Whole Foods