EGGPLANT PARMESAN – BEST !!

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Thin slices of eggplant are lightly fried in a crispy Parmesan breadcrumb mixture and baked with marinara sauce and mozzarella cheese. This will be the BEST Eggplant Parmesan recipe you’ll ever try. Be sure to check out my make-ahead tips!

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Thin slices of eggplant are lightly fried in a crispy Parmesan breadcrumb mixture and baked with marinara sauce and mozzarella cheese.

Ingredients

  • 3 medium eggplants, ripe
  • Salt
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1-2 splashes milk, optional
  • 2 cups Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese, separated
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 cups marinara sauce
  • 8 oz. Part Skim Mozzarella, grated
  • Basil, to garnish (optional).

Instructions

Bread the Eggplant

  • Slice the eggplant into ¼ inch slices. Season each side with salt and lay them in between paper towels. Let them sit for one hour to allow the paper towels to absorb excess moisture.
  • Create an assembly line to bread the eggplant:
  • Station #1: Combine the flour, seasoned salt, and pepper on a large plate.
  • Station #2: Whisk the eggs in a medium bowl. Add an optional splash of milk to thin it out slightly. It’s easier to dunk and lightly coat the slices this way.
  • Station #3: Combine the breadcrumbs, garlic powder, and ½ cup Parmesan cheese on a large plate.
  • Dip each slice into the flour and ensure it’s thoroughly covered. Next, dip into the egg mixture, and then into the breadcrumbs. Stack the breaded slices on a plate as you go.
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To Fry:

  • Add vegetable oil to a skillet over medium heat. Use just enough to submerge each slice by half. Add more as needed while they cook.
  • Use kitchen tongs to gently place about 4 slices at a time into the heated oil. Fry for a few minutes on each side, until golden brown.
  • Continue to fry the remaining batches. Reduce the heat if the pan starts to get too hot.

To Bake (Alternative Method to Frying):

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line the breaded eggplant on lightly greased baking sheets and bake for 20 minutes, flipping them halfway through.
  • Set the cooked slices on a wire cooling rack to allow air to circulate and keep them crisp.
  • Note: You can stop here if you are preparing this ahead of time. Let the eggplant slices cool completely and refrigerate for up to two days, or flash freeze for an hour before stacking them in a freezer bag.
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Assemble and Bake

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  • Lightly grease a 9×13 baking dish and spread a light coating of marinara on the bottom. Top it with a layer of breaded eggplant slices.
  • Top the eggplant with marinara sauce, then with grated mozzarella. Repeat with another layer of eggplant slices, then with marinara, then with mozzarella. Continue until you’ve used all of the eggplant.
  • Sprinkle the top of the mozzarella with the remaining Parmesan cheese.
  • Bake, uncovered, for 20-25 minutes, until the top is hot and bubbling.
  • Top with chopped basil or parsley if desired and serve!
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