Breaded and Baked Eggplant Rollatini
This recipe came about by accident, when I started to make my baked eggplant parmesan and I realized that I actually didn't have any mozzarella cheese in the house (in the middle of quarantine, when the eggplant was just about ready for the mozzarella topping - so a quick trip to the grocery store was not an option)! So, I had some fresh ricotta from a local farm and I improvised - and this is now a dish that is going to be in our regular rotation! The base of the dish is very similar to my eggplant parmesan recipe, since I planned to make that dish when I started cooking. However, the few changes at the end of the recipe truly make this a new dish and it's a bit lighter tasting, which makes it a great option for the warmer months. I also included a very simple swap to make this recipe suitable for a gluten free diet, for those who need. I hope you love this easy baked eggplant rollatini!
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 60 minutes
Ingredients (yields about 18 pieces or 6 servings):
2 large eggplant (about 16 oz each)
1 1/2 C whole wheat breadcrumbs, unseasoned
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp oregano
3 eggs, scrambled, raw
1/4 C oil (I like to use avocado oil)
50 oz tomato sauce (about 2 25-oz jars - I like to use Rao's brand, Hoboken Farms brand, or my own homemade tomato sauce)
1 C ricotta cheese
Nonstick cooking spray
4 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped (optional, for garnish)
*This recipe can be made to be gluten free if you swap the breadcrumbs for a suitable gluten free variety (I like Aleia's brand unseasoned GF breadcrumbs). I recommend using certified GF products if all potential sources of cross contact need to be minimized, such as in the case of celiac disease.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
Wash eggplant, pat dry with paper towel and slice into ~1/2 inch thick slices (there should be about 18 slices, although the exact amount will vary depending on the size of the eggplant.)
Combine breadcrumbs and spices (salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano) in a medium bowl.
Spray large casserole dishes (you will likely need at least 3 for this recipe) with nonstick cooking spray. Dip each eggplant slice into the eggs to coat, then dip in the breadcrumb mixture and place in casserole dish. Repeat until all eggplant slices are breaded and placed in a casserole dish.
Drizzle about half of the oil over eggplant slices. Bake in oven for about 30 minutes, flip eggplant slices with a spatula and drizzle remaining oil over eggplant slices. Add more oil if needed, depending on the amount of slices the eggplant yields. Bake for an additional 20-25 minutes, until golden brown and crispy (*oven times may vary). Remove from oven (but keep the oven on).
Use a spoon to scoop a spoonful of ricotta cheese onto one slice baked eggplant. Then, use the spoon to gently fold the eggplant in half. Be careful to make sure that the eggplant does not break. Press down with the spoon for a few seconds, so the eggplant stays folded. Repeat this step until each eggplant slice has a spoonful of ricotta and is folded. I recommended moving the eggplant to one casserole dish (or two, if needed), in order to condense the rollatini and keep them close together, since you will have more space in the casserole dish once they are folded. If any eggplant slices unfolded during this process, simply press down again.
Pour sauce over the folded eggplant. Sprinkle chopped basil over the sauce and bake in oven for another ~10 minutes, until sauce is bubbly. Enjoy!
Nutritional Analysis Per Serving (1 serving = about 3 pieces)
Calories 420 calories, Total Fat 20 g, Saturated Fat 5 g, Cholesterol 114 mg, Carbohydrates 44 g, Fiber 9 g, Protein 17 g, Sodium 1126 mg, Calcium 279 mg
*Nutrient analysis uses whole milk ricotta cheese and tomato sauce from a jar that has 410 mg sodium per 1/2 C serving. Nutrient analysis will vary depending on the fat content of these products and specific brands used.