Ali’s Eggplant Parmesan

Direct from our Operations and Harvest Manager, Ali Jacobs, who makes this recipe every year in big batches!

This recipe can be doubled, tripled, quadrupled, I usually make about 5 at once in half sheet catering pans and freeze them for the winter, freeze before baking, to cook from frozen let defrost overnight in fridge, then cook normally. This is not a school night recipe, it’s complicated and involves a lot of time and utensils, that’s why I like to make multiples so I’m only doing the effort once. It can also be a great family project to do with kids, even if they’re not big eggplant fans they’ll enjoy the breading process and layering the final casserole.


1 cup olive oil
1-2 Eggplants
2-3 cups Breadcrumbs
1 Tbsp salt (or to taste)
1 cup flour
3 eggs
1/2 cup milk
Fresh Oregano – 4-5 Tbsp
Fresh Basil – 4-5 Tbsp

2 Qt Tomato sauce or Heirloom Tomato Puree

2 lb fresh Mozzarella Cheese (can use shredded if you want, but better ingredients = better flavor)
1 Qt ricotta cheese
1-2 cups parmesan cheese


1. Preheat oven to 400F.

2. Slice eggplant into 1/4-1/2 inch slices.

3. Prepare a work area with a large plate or bowl of flour, a bowl of the egg and milk mixed together, and a plate or bowl of the breadcrumbs, herbs and salt mixed together. (You can also add some parmesan to the breadcrumb mixture for extra cheesiness).

4. In order, dip a slice of eggplant into the flour, making sure to cover all sides, then into the egg mixture, then into the breadcrumbs.

5. Place breaded eggplant slices onto a baking sheet that has been generously greased with olive oil.

6. Using a basting brush or oil sprayer to lightly oil the tops of the breaded eggplant slices. If you don’t have either of these you can drizzle oil quickly over the surface of the eggplant, however, be careful not to put too much on or they will become soggy.

7. Bake at 400 for about 20 minutes or until the breading has developed a crispy crust and the eggplant is cooked through.

8. Remove from oven and set aside.

9. Slice the mozzarella as thinly as possible, ideally about 1/4 inch thick slices.

10. In a deep 9×13 or larger casserole dish begin to layer your ingredients. Cover the bottom of the pan in a coating of sauce, this doesn’t need to be thick, just ensure it’s fully covered, then place a single layer of eggplant slices, don’t worry about holes between them, follow with a layer of cheese, I like to be a little conservative with the mozzarella so that it will get into every layer of the casserole, and fill in the gaps between with ricotta, you don’t need to have a perfectly even distribution of cheese, it’s going to melt and move, just get a slice or dollop every couple inches across the whole surface. Follow with a sprinkle of parmesan.

11. Continue layering, sauce, eggplant, cheese. I use a bit more sauce in the middle layers than I did on the bottom. You should end up with about 3 layers of eggplant.

12, On the top layer put an extra layer of sauce and then put the remainder of the parmesan (or to taste).

13. Bake in the oven at 375F, covered, for half an hour, then uncover and bake for another 15-30 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese on top is golden brown.

Leftover components can be used to make another, smaller casserole, or eggplant ricotta rolls, or anything else you can think of.

From Ali Jacobs, 2019.