Crispy Baked Eggplant (+VIDEO)

Crispy oven baked eggplant cutlets are the perfect Italian side dish. Sliced eggplant is coated in a breadcrumb and parmesan cheese mixture and crisped to perfection.

Crispy eggplant slices are plated on a gray plate with fresh parsley and a couple of forks.

Baked Eggplant Cutlets

If you love easy Italian recipes, check out my penne alla vodka, easy red wine pasta, or my popular 30 minute linguine with clams!

I have eaten far too many sloppy and mushy eggplant parmesan dishes and thought I had sworn off eggplant forever. The breading gets soggy, it falls off the eggplant, and you’re left with a mushy, seedy piece of eggplant that just flops off your fork. Gross.

Here’s the thing- eggplant is in season and I actually enjoy eating a wide variety of produce, so I had no choice but to get over it. I set out to make baked eggplant cutlets that would be tender on the inside, crunchy on the outside, and have breading that actually sticks.

Now that I have perfected this recipe, gone are the days that the eggplant will never see the light of day outside of my fridge. There are no more rotting eggplants that serve as kitchen decor. Dramatic, I know.

In all seriousness, this recipe really just gave me an excuse to whip up my all-time favorite recipe- Red Wine Pasta Sauce. I grabbed my own bowl of sauce so I could double-dip these extra crispy eggplant slices however much I liked.

Top this eggplant with a little (or a lot) of parmesan cheese and you have yourself a whole dish- eggplant parmigiana. These bad boys didn’t make it to become an eggplant parmesan because they were being eaten right off the baking tray. *slaps hands creeping up on my counter with spatula*

Baked and Crispy eggplant slices have simple ingredients like eggplant, parmesan cheese, egg, breadcrumbs, and Italian seasoning.

Ingredients for baked eggplant slices

  • Eggplant– You can choose whatever variety of eggplant you would like, I like to vary this recipe up by using varieties like Thai eggplant, Italian eggplant, or graffiti eggplant.
  • Egg– The egg is whisked, then the eggplant is dunked in the egg before it’s dipped in the breadcrumb mixture. The egg helps bind the breadcrumbs to the eggplant.
  • Italian breadcrumbs– I opted for Italian breadcrumbs because they are already seasoned perfectly!
  • Parmesan cheese– Grated parmesan is perfect for this recipe because it’s the fine texture is similar to the breadcrumbs and helps blend in. If you have shredded parmesan, put it in a blender to make grated parmesan cheese.
  • Italian seasoning/salt– A pinch of Italian seasoning and salt add the perfect layer of flavor!
Eggplant is sliced so it can expel excess water.

Chef’s tips

Prepare the eggplant

You will want to drain the excess liquid from the eggplant slices so the breading will stick to it. This process takes about 30 minutes, so make sure you plan ahead of time.

Slice the eggplant into 1/4 inch slices. This is a perfect size to easily bake them and allow them to expel water evenly. You want uniform pieces so they bake evenly and at the same time.

Slice, salt, and rest. Slice the eggplant, then put them in a single layer on a cooling rack. Salt the eggplant slices, then let them rest for 15 minutes. This allows the eggplant to expel some water which makes the breadcrumb mixture stick better. This also prevents the eggplant from becoming soggy, so it’s a very important step!

Flip the eggplant slices, salt, and rest again. Allow the other side to expel water for 15 minutes.

Dab the eggplant slices with a paper towel. Soak up all the excess water with a paper towel.

Use grated parmesan cheese

Grated parmesan cheese has a similar texture and size as the Italian bread crumbs. Using grated parmesan will allow the cheese to blend better with the breadcrumbs and create a more even breading, resulting in a crispier crunch!

Crispy eggplant slices are in the rpocess of being made. They are breaded and plated on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.

Baked Parmesan Eggplant

How to make Baked Italian Eggplant Cutlets:

  1. Slice the eggplant, salt it, and let it rest. Allow each side to rest for 15 minutes to help expel excess water. Dab the water off the eggplant slices.
  2. Whisk the egg. Set to the side.
  3. Combine the breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, and Italian seasoning.
  4. Preheat the oven to 400 ° F.
  5. Dunk the eggplant slice in the egg, then into the breadcrumb mixture. Press the breadcrumb mixture onto the eggplant slices to help it stick.
  6. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 15 minutes, then flip the eggplant slices and bake for 7 more minutes.
  7. Remove from the oven. Serve the baked eggplant slices immediately. Mangia!

How to store and reheat

Store the baked eggplant slices in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to five days.

Do not freeze the baked eggplant, it will get very mushy.

To reheat, place the eggplant slices on a baking sheet and place in the oven at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. To reheat in the microwave, place the eggplant slices on a plate and warm and cook for 1-2 minutes until they are warmed through.

Baked eggplant slices are plated on a white plate and topped with fresh parsley to show texture.

What goes with crispy baked eggplant

  • This easy five-minute marinara sauce is made with vine-ripened crushed tomatoes, basil, garlic, and onion to deliver the best tasting pasta sauce ever!
  • This classic vegetarian minestrone soup is the perfect bowl to warm up to! It’s packed with hearty vegetables and pasta for a filling and healthy meal.
  • Authentic Italian beef braciole (braciola) is made with tender skirt steak that is rolled with bread crumbs, provolone cheese, and prosciutto, then simmer in a red wine tomato sauce. This is perfect for a hearty Sunday dinner!
  • Roasted Italian vegetables with creamy parmesan polenta is a delicious vegetarian meal that is healthy, filling, and packed with flavor!
  • This authentic bolognese sauce is a traditional Italian meat sauce is made with crushed tomatoes, veal, ground beef, and tons of fresh flavor! This sauce is perfect with any pasta!

Be sure to follow me on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram to stay in touch! I love to see your creations! Tag me at #SeaSaltSavorings to show me what you’ve made!

Baked eggplant slices are plated on a white plate and topped with fresh parsley to show texture.

Crispy Baked Italian Eggplant

Sea Salt Savorings
Crispy oven baked eggplant cutlets are the perfect Italian side dish. Sliced eggplant is coated in a breadcrumb and parmesan cheese mixture and crisped to perfection.
4.74 from 152 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 22 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 6
Calories 85 kcal

Equipment

  • Baking sheet (parchment paper lined)
  • Cutting Board
  • Sharp knife
  • 2 bowls
  • whisk

Ingredients
  

  • 1 eggplant sliced into 1/4 inch disks
  • 1 egg whisked
  • 1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese grated
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Instructions
 

  • Prepare the eggplant. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Slice the eggplant into 1/4 inch disks. Lay the eggplant out in a single layer on a cooling rack. Sprinkle with salt, and let sit for 15 minutes. Dab with a paper towel to absorb the expelled water, then flip to the other side. Salt the other side, let sit for 15 minutes, then dab again to remove excess water.
  • Prepare the dunking station. In a small bowl, whisk an egg. Set to the side. In another bowl, mix the Italian breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, and Italian seasoning.
  • Bread the eggplant. Dip the eggplant in the egg first, then hover over the eggplant over the bowl to let the excess egg drip off. Dunk in the breadcrumb mixture, and lightly apply pressure so the breadcrumbs adhere better.
  • Bake the eggplant. Arrange breaded eggplant in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes. Flip the eggplant, then bake for another 5-7 minutes. Remove the eggplant from the oven and serve. Mangia!

Video

YouTube video

Nutrition

Calories: 85kcalCarbohydrates: 12gProtein: 5gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 30mgSodium: 406mgPotassium: 208mgFiber: 3gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 109IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 84mgIron: 1mg

Nutrition values are estimates, for exact values consult a nutritionist.

Tried this recipe?Mention @seasaltsavorings or tag us #seasaltsavorings!

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4.74 from 152 votes (130 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating




44 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    First time making eggplant and it was a hit! Great recipe, baked mine on a wire rack which alleviated the flipping- worked great!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      I am so glad you enjoyed this recipe! Thanks for the tip! I will put that in my blog for readers to try, as well!

  2. Jennifer Ross says:

    This was so easy and delicious ???? I did think it needed a little salt which we added afterwards

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Yay! So glad you liked it!

  3. Suzanne De Grâce says:

    5 stars
    First time I make eggplant, family loved it!!! So easy to make and delicious!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Yay! So glad your family enjoyed! Mangia!

  4. Very easy and delicious! The first time using my airfryer cover with my instant pot.

  5. 5 stars
    Delicious and easy recipe to prepare. Makes a great topping for homemade pizza too!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Hey Jeff,
      So glad you enjoyed this recipe! I love the pizza topping idea!

  6. 5 stars
    This is one of the best egg plant recipes I have ever tried. My kiddos even loved it and that is rare.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      My heart explodes when I hear kids are enjoying veggies! YAY

    2. sherry brubaker says:

      LITERALLY CHACHA DANCING RIGHT NOW!

  7. 5 stars
    I just love eggplant! This looks delicious. 🙂

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Thank you so much!

    2. sherry brubaker says:

      It’s one of my faves now, too!

  8. 5 stars
    These eggplants look so delicious. Perfect for meatless Monday!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Totally agree, this is a perfect meatless meal option!

  9. 5 stars
    They look so crispy, just the way I like them. Cooked in the oven are so much healthier than fried

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      I agree! The flavor and crunch are on point!

  10. 5 stars
    I absolutely love eggplant. This looks like a great option for a meatless main!

  11. Can’t wait to try this! Peel the eggplant or no?

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      You do not need to peel the eggplant, I hope you enjoy!

  12. I grew up eating this. The only difference is before baking the slices were quick sauted in olive oil, drained and put in oven. The taste is so comforting to me. Coming from an Italian family, yummy memories are special.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      I am so glad this was memory provoking for you!

  13. First time making, turned out delicious, would not change a thing. I used silicone baking sheet, eggplant crispy, breading stayed on.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      YAY! So glad you enjoyed this recipe! Mangia!

  14. 5 stars
    Easy excellent recipe! Thanks.

  15. Marian McManus says:

    Mine did not come out crispy for some reason. I wish I knew what I did wrong.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      oh no, I am so sorry to hear that, did you sweat the eggplant for 15 minutes using salt?

  16. Cindy Leimsider says:

    Absolutely delicious and they have so many options. Easy to make!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      I am so glad you enjoyed this recipe!

  17. 5 stars
    Had an eggplant left over from last week and served it as a side dish tonight. Made recipe per your instructions and the eggplant was delicious. Nice and crispy, tender and tasty! And healthy with baking rather than frying in oil. Thanks!!!

  18. Laura McCormick says:

    Look delicious and will try to make them tonight.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Thank you! You are going to love this eggplant recipe!

  19. Hi, I just found this recipe we love eggplant and I was weary of the salt on the eggplant and how much to use. .was it much? I tasted one and it was good , my bf said it was salty. So I added cheese and served them with my meatballs and sauce. Delicious!! So good, thank-you for the recipe.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Hi Kathleen, you want to just sprinkle the eggplant with a pinch of salt, the purpose is to help draw out to excess liquid. After you have sprinkled with salt and allowed it to rest for 15 minutes, use a papertowel to blot the eggplant, which will remove most of the salt and excess liquid. Hope this helps!

  20. 1 star
    Turned out dry and undercooked. Tossed it out.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      I would love to help you trouble shoot, as hundreds of people have had great success with this recipe. Did you slice the eggplant thinly and make sure to salt them and let then rest for 15 minutes? Did you use a papertowel to help absorb the excess liquid before you battered it? I’m here to help you!

  21. bad recipe, missing fat to help the eggplant crisp up

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Hi Suhan, I do not believe you tried this recipe, because if you did, you would recognize the yolk is fat, and this recipe is baked, not pan fried, therefore eliminating any need for oil. Many people have had great success with this recipe, which is why it is popular and well loved. I hope you have a terrific day.

  22. Been trying to make eggplant look like frenchbread diagonal cuts, then use them as a base for small low carb pizzas… got some good gouge from your recipe here, the recipe i was using just said to slice them dry them and cook them at 425 for 15 mins.. but it was mushy… next try… i will try your idea to get them dried out more. THANKS!

  23. Tried first time and a bit dissapointed because in the oven it took too long. In the end I made it on then pan with a bit of oil. Maybe my oven is not good enough. 🙁 But very nice idea recipe , Thank you

  24. I have successfully frozen these after making them. I layer them in a freezer container, each layer separated by freezer paper. Then I toss them in the Air Fryer for just a few minutes when we want them. I also like these spicy so I have added smoked paprika or just a pinch of cayenne pepper. They are so yummy!