Healthy Baked Eggplant Parmesan Stacks, a delicious appetizer that is bursting with fantastic flavours. A lot lighter than the classic eggplant parmesan, but as yummy.
While I do agree that frying does make anything taste nicer, baking is not only healthier, but, done properly, can be as delicious. Aubergines tend to suck up oil like a sponge, and this is one reason I’m so against the idea of frying them. They will be too greasy for my taste, so, why not enjoy them baked?
This traditional Italian dish is absolutely beautiful. Melanzane alla parmigiana, what’s called in Italian, is incredibly satisfying for a vegetarian dish. Whoever said that vegetables are boring, clearly didn’t try this eggplant parmesan. Jam-packed with rich flavours, it’s fancy enough to be served on a special occasion as an appetizer, or even as a side with your favourite roast.
How TO make a lighter baked eggplant parmesan
It might not take less time to cook, but it’s definitely healthier.
- slice the eggplant (aubergines) keeping the skin on
- lightly season with salt and pepper, and brush with olive oil
- bake in the preheated oven at 200 degrees Celsius (390 Fahreneheit) for about 20 minutes or until golden and tender
Now, because the eggplant slices are baked without a flour coating, there is no reason not to bake them straight away. You would normally have to add some salt to the eggplant, and leave the slices around for a while so they can release some of the liquid.
- Once they slices are baked, spread a thin layer of tomato sauce over the bottom of a baking dish, then arrange one layer of eggplant slices.
- Top with plenty of grated parmesan and tomato sauce, then add another layer of eggplant slices and so on, until you finish them up. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the cheese is fully melted.
I had 6 stacks of 4 eggplant slices each, so depending on how thick you slice the eggplant up, you should get about the same number of stacks.
What sauce works best with the eggplant stacks?
I didn’t go for a specific sauce for this recipe, I had some leftover tomato and basil sauce, and that was absolutely perfect for my healthy eggplant parmesan. So just go for your favourite sauce, and add some Italian herbs to it, if it’s plain, otherwise you are good to go.
As for cheese, obviously parmesan is the star of the show, but you can mix it with any other hard cheese of your choice, for an extra cheesy goodness. The eggplant parmesan is beautifully tender, and it simply melts in your mouth. For more eggplant goodness, how about my Greek Moussaka Recipe with Potatoes, Eggplant and Turkey?
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Healthy Baked Eggplant Parmesan Stacks, a delicious appetizer that is bursting with fantastic flavours. A lot lighter than the classic eggplant parmesan, but as yummy. The eggplant is baked until beautifully tender, and the parmesan is giving a nice sharpness. No need for deep frying and soggy eggplant, this recipe is healthy and a big hit with everyone.
- 3 eggplants (aubergines)
- 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup tomato sauce
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp black pepper
- 1 tbsp fresh parsley or basil
Preheat the oven at 200 degrees Celsius (390 Fahreneheit).
Slice the eggplants, and spread them over 2 baking trays.
Season lightly with salt and pepper, and brush some olive oil over.
Bake for 20 minutes or until golden and tender.
Spread a thin layer of tomato sauce over the bottom of a baking dish, arrange one layer of eggplant slices, top with tomato sauce and parmesan, then another layer of eggplant slices until you finish them all up.
Make sure you end with tomato sauce and cheese on top.
Bake for a further 20 minutes until the eggplant stacks are tender, and the cheese is melted.
Garnish with fresh parsley or basil.