Baked Baby Eggplant Parmigiana is a delightful dish that's incredibly easy to make! Begin by oven-roasting small, hollowed-out mini eggplants and generously stuffing them with a trio of cheeses. Then, bake in the oven until all the cheese is melted and gooey. This dish is breadless, making it gluten-free and low-carb.
These petite eggplants are the size of eggs and have tender flesh. What's more, their skin is entirely edible.
What You Need
Baby Eggplant Parmigiana begins with small eggplants, which might be a bit challenging to find. Consider checking your local specialty shop; I found these at the Redland Market Village, a sprawling produce bazaar located in the northern part of Homestead, Florida.
You can also try Indian grocery stores or Chinese grocery stores.
- Baby eggplants
- Olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Parmesan or Romano (Locatelli) cheese
- Marinara Sauce
- Fresh basil for garnish
How to Make Baby Eggplant Parm
Carefully wash the small eggplants, making sure to either cut the stems off or clean them under the stem to remove any dust trapped inside.
As you cut the eggplants in half, they will start to discolor. Don't worry about it!
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Slice each little eggplant in half. Scoop out the seeds with a small spoon or melon baller.
Brush each eggplant lightly all over with olive oil.
Place all eggplants with the cut side down on the pan.
Roast for 10 minutes or until tender.
In a medium bowl, mix ricotta with chopped parsley and parmesan cheese.
Stuff each eggplant half with the cheese mixture.
Hand-grate mozzarella cheese with a box grater for best results.
Top each eggplant half with a tablespoon of shredded mozzarella.
Place back in the oven for 4 or 5 minutes until cheese is hot and melted.
When cool enough to handle, plate the eggplant.
Serve with marinara sauce and garnish with fresh basil leaves.
Hint: Serve these tiny eggplants as an appetizer or side dish. When they come out of the oven they are very hot and soft. Let the pieces cool for 5 minutes so the filling tightens a bit and they become more manageable.
This eggplant parm is gluten-free, grain-free, and vegetarian.
I seasoned the ricotta cheese with parsley. You can also use chopped basil leaves.
EGGPLANTS There is another variety of tiny eggplants called Fairy Tale Eggplants. They are about 3 inches long and have white stripes. They could be used in place of the purple eggplants for eggplant parm.
SPICE For a little extra spice, you can top each eggplant half with chili pepper flakes or some hot sauce.
CHEESE I made this recipe with Locatelli Cheese, an Italian grass-fed Romano cheese made with sheep's milk. You can use your favorite Parmesan cheese in its place.
MARINARA I use Carbone Marinara Sauce. There is no sugar added to the recipe and it's all natural. It also tastes great! You can pick it up at Publix in Florida and most large grocery chains.
Store the eggplant in a single layer in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Avoid freezing these eggplant appetizers.
These keto baby eggplant Parmigiana appetizers are ready in 20 minutes.
I serve the eggplant with marinara sauce.
Small eggplants are the size of eggs and are sometimes hard to find. You can check gourmet stores and/or Indian or Chinese markets.
This eggplant recipe is fun to make and even more fun to eat.
Check out my complete post How To Roast Vegetables at 400 Degrees for more easy roasted vegetable ideas.
Mini eggplants are typically around 2 to 4 inches long, smaller than regular ones.
Yes, baby eggplants are not only good to eat, but they also have a tender texture and a mild, slightly sweet flavor. They can be used in various dishes, such as stir-fries, curries, grilling, roasting, and stuffing.
Baby Eggplant Parmigiana
- 1 pound baby eggplants, 8-12 pieces halved
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
- 1 cup ricotta
- 1 cup freshly grated mozzarella cheese
- ¼ cup parmesan or Locatelli cheese
- cup marinara sauce
- fresh basil leaves
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit with rack set in v=center of oven.
- Prepare a large sheet pan with parchment paper.
- Slice each little eggplant in half. Scoop out the seeds with a small spoon or melon baller. Brush each eggplant lightly all over with olive oil. Place all eggplants with the cut side down on the pan. Roast for 10 minutes or until tender.
- In a medium bowl, mix ricotta with chopped parsley and parmesan cheese. Season with a little salt and pepper. Stuff each roasted eggplant half with the cheese mixture.
- Top each eggplant half with a tablespoon of shredded mozzarella. Place the pan back in the oven for 4 or 5 minutes until the cheese is hot and melted.
- Let cool on baking sheet until cool enough to handle. Serve with warm marinara sauce and garnish with basil leaves.
More Fun Vegetable Recipes
Looking for some easy sides? Try these: