This vegan eggplant parmesan is so rich and creamy that you won’t believe it contains no cheese or dairy and is oil-free, too!
I haven’t had eggplant parmesan in so many years that I’ve literally forgotten what it tastes like, so I can’t promise that this tastes like the “real thing,” but I can promise that it is delicious–rich and creamy inside and a little crunchy outside.
The method I used is taken from a recipe by Bryanna Clark Grogan that I found online. Actually, I messed up the layering a little, but I think I like the results. When putting the dish together, I forgot to add the second layer of bread crumbs and wound up putting them on top, where they browned nicely and got a little crunchy. Try it my mistaken way or put most of the bread crumbs inside and save a few for the top.
If you don’t have vegan parmesan, feel free to leave it off. The cheese sauce provides most of the flavor anyway. Or instead of parmesan, try finely ground almonds; just put a quarter cup of almonds in your food processor and pulse to finely chop.
Vegan Eggplant “Parmesan”
- 1 large eggplant sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 2 pieces of whole grain bread toasted and made into breadcrumbs
- 2-3 tablespoons soy parmesan or 2 tbsp. ground almonds mixed with 1 tbsp. nutritional yeast
- fresh basil leaves chopped or torn
- olive oil spray optional
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced or pressed
- 1 16-ounce can diced tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon basil
- 1/2 cup vegetable broth
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- salt and pepper to taste
- Salt the eggplant slices and put them in a colander to drain.
- Prepare the tomato sauce by sautéing the onion in a non-stick saucepan until it becomes translucent (you may use a little water if you like). Add the garlic and sauté for one more minute. Add the remaining tomato sauce ingredients, and cook for 15-20 minutes.
- Prepare the cheese sauce: Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until completely smooth. Blend again right before using to make sure that the ingredients haven’t separated.
- Rinse the eggplant slices and pat them dry with paper towels. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place the slices on it (you may have to do this in two batches). Place under the broiler. Watch carefully, and remove when the slices start to brown, about 3 minutes.
- Assemble the casserole: Preheat the oven to 350. Spray or wipe an 8×8-inch non-metal baking dish with a small bit of olive oil or line it with parchment paper.
- Place half of the eggplant slices on the bottom of the dish, edges overlapping. Sprinkle with half the breadcrumbs. Spoon half the tomato sauce and pour half the cheese sauce over the breadcrumbs and sprinkle lightly with soy parmesan. Repeat the process with the remaining ingredients (reserving some bread crumbs for on top, as mentioned above).
- Bake uncovered for about 20 minutes, until slightly browned on top. Sprinkle with fresh basil just before serving.
Nutritional info is approximate.
Thanks to Bryanna for helping me figure out how to put together a dish I haven’t eaten in so long!