Though this recipe has lower carbs than most eggplant parmesan recipes, but it’s still best for maintenance (i.e., after you’re not trying to lose weight).
6 servings // 312 calories, 14g net carbs
Two 28-oz cans organic diced tomatoes (no sugar added)
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoons red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons dried basil
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons dried parsley
2 teaspoons salt
EGGPLANT & CHEESES
4 lbs. eggplants (about 4) peeled, sliced lengthwise ½–¾ inch thick
1½ teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cups hard Parmesan Reggiano, grated on medium side of box grinder
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup finely chopped basil and parsley, plus basil leaves for serving
6 ounces fresh mozzarella, grated
8 ounces fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
MAKE THE MARINARA
Puree the tomatoes and olive oil in a small blender. Add up to a 1/2 cup water, if marinara is too thick. Stir in the remaining ingredients, taste, adjust as needed.
Do Ahead: Sauce can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and chill.
EGGPLANT & ASSEMBLY
Preheat oven to 350°.
Lightly sprinkle eggplant slices with salt; place in a single layer on several layers of paper towels inside a rimmed baking sheet. Top with another layer of paper towels and more slices; repeat as needed. Top with a final layer of paper towels. Let eggplant sit until it has released excess liquid, 60—90 minutes. This step gives the eggplant a creamy texture when baked. Note: If you are eating a low-sodium diet, you can skip this step. The eggplant will be firmer and more fibrous.
After the eggplant slices have released their liquid, rinse and pat dry with paper towels to reduce the salt.
Heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet, preferably cast iron, over medium-high. Cook as many eggplant slices as will comfortably fit in pan, turning once, until deep golden, about 5 minutes. Transfer to paper towels and immediately press with more paper towel to absorb oil. Working in batches, repeat with remaining slices, adding more oil and wiping out skillet as needed. Let cool. Taste and season with more salt if needed.
Toss chopped basil and parsley, low-moisture mozzarella, and ¾ cup Parmesan in a medium bowl.
Spread 1 cup sauce over the bottom of a 13×9″ baking pan; top with a layer of eggplant slices (trim as needed). Drizzle 1 cup sauce over and sprinkle with one-third grated mozzarella-basil mixture. Add another layer of eggplant, followed by 1 cup sauce and half of remaining grated mozzarella-basil mixture. Add a final layer of remaining eggplant slices, sauce, and cheese-basil mixture. Cover with foil and bake on a rimmed baking sheet for 45–60 minutes (until edges are bubbling).
Remove from oven and arrange fresh mozzarella slices over eggplant. Increase oven temperature to 425° and bake, uncovered, until cheese is bubbling and browned in spots, 15–20 minutes longer. Let rest 30 minutes. Top with basil leaves just before slicing.
Do Ahead: Eggplant Parmesan can be made 2 days ahead. Let cool; cover with foil and chill. Reheat in a 350° oven, uncovering halfway through, until bubbling gently at edges.
Serve with a large salad.