baked stuffed eggplant parmesan

★★★★★ 2
a recipe by
Nor Mac
The Berkshire’s, MA

I've been making stuffed eggplant for years. This time around I decided to make it into a stuffed Eggplant Parmesan. Enjoy!

Blue Ribbon Recipe

This is a very hearty dish full of Mediterranean flare. The cubed eggplant, tomatoes, peppers and onions are well complemented by the ground beef. Layering the seasoned bread crumbs, marinara, and cheeses, give a great mix of Italian (and some Greek) flavors. Served in a baked eggplant shell, it's an impressive presentation. Spoon the filling and serve with pasta, or dig in and eat it right from the shell. Either way, you'll be pleased with this warm, hearty and delicious meal.

— The Test Kitchen @kitchencrew
★★★★★ 2
serves 4
prep time 25 Min
cook time 1 Hr
method Bake

Ingredients For baked stuffed eggplant parmesan

  • 1 lb
    lean ground beef or cubed chicken breast; cooked and drained
  • 1
    large eggplant sliced in half lengthwise
  • 3/4 c
    chopped onion
  • 1/2
    red bell pepper, chopped, about 3/4 cup
  • 1 tsp
    garlic salt
  • 1 tsp
    basil, dried
  • 1/ 2 tsp
    ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp
    parsley flakes
  • 1/2 tsp
    oregano, dried
  • 3 Tbsp
    olive oil
  • 2
    firm tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 c
    parmigiano reggiano divided (parmesan cheese)
  • 3/4 c
    seasoned panko bread crumbs
  • 2 Tbsp
    melted butter
  • 24 oz
    marinara sauce, divided
  • 1-2 c
    mozzarella cheese (low-fat or part-skim), grated

How To Make baked stuffed eggplant parmesan

  • 1
    Heat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Cutting eggplant in half.
    Cut eggplant in half lengthwise.
  • Cutting around the outside of the eggplant.
    Cut around inside of each half with a knife. Cut about 1/4-1/2 inch away from outer edge of eggplant. Cut all the way around inside perimeter. Be careful not to slice through the eggplant skin.
  • Cutting the inside of the eggplant into cubes.
    Slice into the inner part of eggplant in rows making 3-4 cuts lengthwise and widthwise in a checkerboard pattern. Spoon out the cubed eggplant. You may need to cut some more to make each one about the size of a sugar cube. Set aside.
  • Heating marinara sauce in a bowl.
    Pour marinara sauce into a bowl and heat in the microwave until hot.
  • Pouring half the marinara into a baking pan.
    Into a 9x13 inch baking pan, place about 1/2 of the marinara sauce in the bottom of the pan. Set aside.
  • Poking the tops of the eggplant with a knife.
    Place the hollowed out eggplant halves cut side down. Poke with a sharp knife randomly through the flesh in several areas.
  • Placing eggplant in marinara sauce.
    Place eggplant cut side up into the pan of marinara sauce.
  • Covering pan with foil.
    Cover tightly with foil. Place in oven and bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.
  • Browning ground beef in a pan.
    Cook ground beef or cubed chicken breast. I broiled my beef in the oven ahead of time. You may choose to fry or bake the meat until cooked thoroughly. Salt and pepper to taste. Add to a large bowl.
  • Sauteeing eggplant cubes and tomatoes.
    While the eggplant is baking, add 2 Tbsp olive oil to a pan. Sauté the eggplant cubes with the diced tomato. Cook until eggplant softens (about 10 minutes). Remove from pan and add to a bowl.
  • Sauteeing onion and peppers.
    Into the pan add the remaining olive oil. Sauté the onions and peppers together until the onion is golden.
  • Combining onion and peppers with eggplant.
    Add mixture to bowl with eggplant mixture.
  • Adding seasoning to the mixture.
    Season the mixture with the basil, oregano, parsley, garlic salt and black pepper.
  • Adding ground beef to eggplant, onion, and pepper mixture.
    Add in the cooked beef or chicken. Toss together.
  • Adding Parmesan cheese.
    Add in 1/4 cup Parmesan Reggiano cheese.
  • Tossing mixture together.
    Toss mixture together.
  • Stuffing eggplant with the ground beef mixture.
    Remove eggplant from the oven. Divide vegetable mixture and stuff into eggplant halves. Cover and bake an additional 20 minutes.
  • Combining Panko bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, and melted butter.
    In a bowl, mix Panko bread crumbs with remaining Parmesan cheese. Add in the melted butter. Toss crumbs well with cheese and melted butter.
  • Sprinkling bread crumb mixture on top of eggplant.
    Top the eggplant with the bread crumb mixture. Bake uncovered until crumbs are golden brown.
  • Adding remaining marinara sauce.
    Pour remaining marinara sauce over bread crumbs.
  • Sprinkling mozzarella cheese.
    Top with the mozzarella cheese.
  • Mozzarella cheese melted on eggplant.
    Bake until cheese is melted.
  • Eggplant stuffed with ground beef and cheese.
    Cut each eggplant in half widthwise and serve.