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Eggplant Parmesan Pasta is a baked casserole made with whole wheat spaghetti and baked (not fried) eggplant parmesan. This dish is a healthier alternative to the real thing, and yes, it still tastes amazing. The whole wheat spaghetti adds some extra fiber to this dish. I promise you won’t be able to tell the difference. Chef’s Kiss all the way!

Baked Eggplant Parmesan Pasta topped with cheese and julienned basil.
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★★★★★
“Tried this dish and it came out excellent! The entire family loved it and it was my first attempt at cooking with eggplant. I love your blog – I will definitely be trying more recipes.”
– Anonymous


Eggplant Parmigiana is one of those dishes I refrain from ordering in a restaurant due to the unforeseen calories and fat. For this reason, I have my mom’s healthier Baked (not fried) Eggplant Parmesan recipe on the blog.

I took the “original” eggplant parm recipe one step further, added whole wheat spaghetti in Rao’s Homemade Marinara, and baked it all together. The end result is a mindblowing baked casserole dish with a fraction of the calories.

Similar Pasta Recipes

If you love a baked pasta casserole, you must have my Vegetable Lasagna which is out of this world. A quick and easy casserole option is my Baked Ziti with Spinach. Want a low-carb option, try this Baked Eggplant Spinach Rollatini. For everyone’s favorite 8-ingredient pasta dish, try my World’s Best Spaghetti with Rao’s Homemade Marinara.



Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Baked Eggplant, NOT Fried. Get all that deliciousness without the extra fat and calories.
  • Made with whole wheat spaghetti which adds extra fiber and protein.
  • Prepared with store-bought Marinara sauce so it’s easy and cuts down prep time.
  • Tastes just like the real thing and is the ultimate comfort food on a cold day.
  • Enjoy leftovers for up to 2 days and it still tastes amazing.

Ingredients

Ingredients for Eggplant Parmesan Pasta.

For the Eggplant Bake

  • Eggplant – Slice the eggplant into 1/4″ slices. Anything larger, and I find the eggplant won’t bake all the way.
  • All-Purpose White Flour – Use regular white flour, or for a gluten-free option, use white gluten-free flour.
  • Eggs – You’ll need eggs to bind the flour and panko crumbs. If you prefer eggless, use milk instead.
  • Panko Crumbs with Seasonings – For the breadcrumb mixture, add panko crumbs and season with dried oregano, dried basil, garlic powder, salt, and black pepper. Mix well.

For the Spaghetti & Sauce

  • Spaghetti (whole wheat) – I love using whole-wheat pasta, however feel free to use white pasta or gluten-free. Additionally, linguine, rigatoni, and penne would all work well here.
  • Marinara Sauce – I used 24 ounces of store-bought Marinara sauce since there are some great options nowadays. I love Rao’s Marinara Sauce.
  • Garlic – A few cloves of chopped garlic.
  • Onions – You’ll need chopped white onions.
  • Olive Oil – You’ll need a couple of tablespoons of olive oil to enhance the flavor of the sauce.
  • Spices – Crushed Red Pepper Flakes, Salt, and Black Pepper.

For Assembling

  • Cheese – Sliced Burrata and freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
  • Fresh Basil – Julienned fresh basil leaves.
  • Marinara Sauce – You’ll need an additional 2 cups of jarred Marinara sauce to top over the eggplant slices and for the base of this dish.

*See the recipe card below for full information on ingredients and quantities.*


Substitutions

  • For gluten-free – use gluten-free white flour instead of all-purpose white flour. Use the gluten-free panko crumbs and gluten-free spaghetti.
  • For dairy-free – use non-dairy parmesan cheese and burrata. If you can’t find non-dairy burrata, use non-dairy mozzarella cheese instead.
  • For egg-free eggplant parmesan – use almond milk or regular dairy milk in place of eggs.
  • For cheese – you may substitute fresh mozzarella cheese for burrata cheese. You should definitely use parmesan cheese though.
  • For whole wheat spaghetti – Instead of whole wheat spaghetti, you may use rigatoni or penne. Additionally, you can use whole wheat pasta of your choice.

How to Make Eggplant Parmesan Pasta Recipe

Step 1 – Bake the Eggplant

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees while you prep the eggplant. Add a tablespoon of olive oil to a large baking tray. (Image 1)

2. Brush the olive oil all over. (Image 2)

Brush olive oil on a baking tray.

3. Slice eggplant into 1/4-inch pieces. (Image 3)

4. Dip the eggplant slices in all-purpose flour on both sides. Coat it well. (Image 4)

5. Now dip the eggplant slice in eggs on both sides. Again, coat it well. (Image 5)

6. Finally, dip the eggplant slice in the seasoned panko bread crumbs on both sides. Make sure to season the panko crumbs with garlic powder, dry oregano, dry basil, salt, and black pepper. (Image 6)

Dip sliced eggplant on both sides in flour, eggs, and panko crumbs.

7. Place the eggplant pieces on the greased baking tray. Bake for 35 minutes at 400 degrees – flipping halfway. (Image 7)

8. Once done, the eggplant should be slightly golden brown. (Image 8)

Place eggplant on a baking tray and bake.

Step 2 – Prepare the Sauce & Spaghetti

1. Boil a pot of water for the pasta. (Image 1)

2. Once boiling, season well with salt. Add whole wheat spaghetti to the large pot of salted water. Follow the instructions on the back of the pasta box and cook pasta until al dente. (Image 2)

Boil water for pasta, then add spaghetti and cook until al dente.

3. Heat up a Dutch castiron on medium heat. Once hot, add two tablespoons of olive oil. (Image 3)

4. Once the oil is hot, add crushed red pepper flakes. Cook for 30 seconds.(Image 4)

5. Now add chopped garlic. Cook for 45 seconds or so. (Image 5)

6. Add chopped onion and season with salt. Saute for 2-3 minutes until the onions are golden-brown. (Image 6)

Prepare the sauce - saute crushed red pepper, garlic, and onions in olive oil.

7. Add 24 ounces of Marinara sauce – I used Rao’s Marinara. (Image 7)

8. Season with black pepper. You really don’t need salt since the sauce has enough. Cover and simmer the sauce for about 5 minutes. (Image 8)

9. Once heated through, add the spaghetti to the sauce and toss until well coated. (Image 9)

10. This is what you should have. (Image 10)

Add store-bought marinara sauce and toss with cooked spaghetti.

Step 3 – Assemble Eggplant Parm Pasta Bake

Note: You’ll need some additional ingredients – grated parmesan cheese, fresh burrata that’s been sliced, freshly julienned basil, and another 2 cups of Marinara sauce straight from the jar (again, I used Rao’s Homemade Marinara).

1. Add 1/2 cup of Marinara sauce to the bottom of the baking dish. (Image 1)

2. Transfer all the spaghetti to the baking dish. (Image 2)

3. Place 6 crispy eggplant slices (or more if your baking dish is wider) over the spaghetti. (Image 3)

4. Top each slice of eggplant with a spoonful of jarred Marinara sauce. (Image 4)

Assemble pasta by layering marinara sauce, then spaghetti, then eggplant, and top each eggplant with more marinara sauce.

5. Top each slice of eggplant with burrata cheese and about a tablespoon of grated parmesan. (Image 5)

Repeat steps 4-6 one more time with another layer of eggplant slices. Then add Marinara sauce followed by burrata and parmesan cheese. (Image 6)

7. Add the remaining eggplant, cut them in half if you need to, and place them in sections over the spaghetti where there is room. (Image 7)

8. Top the eggplant pieces with Marinara sauce and both cheeses as follows. Place the dish in the oven and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees – uncovered. (Image 8)

Top each eggplant with parmesan and burrata cheese, repeat process one more time so we have 2 layers of eggplant.

9. Once done, this is what you should have. (Image 9)

10. Top with julienned basil leaves. Serve immediately because this dish is best eaten hot. (Image 10)

Bake eggplant parmesan pasta and top with julienned basil leaves.

Expert Tips

Sliced Eggplant – Slice the eggplant no more than a quarter inch thick. Any thicker, and it’ll not bake through properly. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees to bake the eggplant. Make sure to bake the eggplant for 35 minutes – flipping halfway for the best results.

Baked Casserole – Preheat the oven to 350 degrees to bake the entire dish. This dish will be baked uncovered for 30 minutes.

Pasta – Do not overcook. the spaghetti, but rather, cook until al dente. Keep in mind, that the spaghetti will be baked for 30 minutes in the oven.

Marinara Sauce – For the best results, use a good sauce. I love Rao’s Marinara Sauce or the Arrabiata version works great too. You can make your own homemade marinara too, but use a good sauce because it makes all the difference.

Soggy Eggplant – To avoid soggy eggplant, don’t drench the eggplant with Marinara, simply add a spoonful of marinara followed by cheese.

Serve HOT – Enjoy this dish immediately because it tastes best hot.

Serving Suggestions

→ Enjoy this Baked Eggplant Parmesan Pasta hot. Serve immediately once out of the oven.

→ Pair this dish with a glass of red wine such as Chianti.

→ This dish is pretty carb-heavy so serve bread only if you are cooking for a crowd. Garlic Bread is always a great option prepared on a baguette of French or Italian bread.

→ A simple Arugula Salad prepared with a Balsamic dressing is elegant and delicious.


Recipe FAQs

What kind of pasta works best with this dish?

If you don’t want to use spaghetti, linguine, rigatoni, or penne would all work great.

Is this dish gluten-free?

No. For a gluten-free version, use gluten-free panko crumbs, gluten-free white flour, and gluten-free pasta.

What cheese can I substitute for burrata?

Feel free to use mozzarella cheese in place of burrata, however you must use parmesan cheese for this recipe.

How do I store the eggplant parmesan pasta?

Storage – Store eggplant parmesan pasta in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Once you’re ready to eat, microwave individual portions for 2 minutes. Make sure you separate the eggplant when warming it up for the best results.
Freeze – Eggplant parmesan pasta freezes well, so you can freeze this dish for up to 1 month.

Can I make this dish ahead of time?

Yes. Prepare the eggplant parmesan pasta up to 2 days in advance. Cover with a plastic wrap and place it in the fridge. Once you’re ready to bake, remove plastic wrap and bake in the oven for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.


A large spoon holding baked spaghetti with baked eggplant and cheese.


Tried this recipe? If so, please leave a comment & rate this recipe. That would mean so much to me. If you’re on Instagram, please tag me so I can see your creations. I’m happy to share and mention you. Thank you!


4.91 from 10 votes

Eggplant Parm Pasta (Baked Casserole)

By: Nisha
Eggplant Parmesan Pasta is a baked casserole made with whole wheat spaghetti and baked (not fried) eggplant parmesan. This dish is a healthier alternative to the real thing, and yes, it still tastes amazing.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 50 minutes
Servings: 8 servings

Ingredients 

For the Baked Eggplant

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups panko crumbs
  • 2 tsp dry basil
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 large eggplant, sliced into 1/4″ rings

For the Spaghetti

  • 12 ounces whole wheat spaghetti, cook until al dente
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 1/2 tbsp garlic, chopped
  • 1 cup white onion, chopped
  • 24 ounces Marinara sauce, I love Rao’s Marinara
  • salt to taste
  • black pepper to taste

To Assemble Casserole (2 layers of eggplant)

  • 1/2 cup Marinara Sauce, for bottom of the tray
  • add cooked spaghetti tossed in sauce
  • baked eggplant
  • 1 1/2 cups Marinara Sauce, top over each eggplant
  • 8 ounces burrata cheese
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, freshly grated
  • fresh basil, julienned
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Instructions 

Step 1 – Bake the Eggplant

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees while you prep the eggplant. Add a tablespoon of olive oil to a large baking tray and brush all over.
  • Slice the eggplant into 1/4-inch pieces. Dip each eggplant slice in all-purpose flour on both sides. Coat well. Now dip the eggplant slice in eggs on both sides. Coat well. Finally, dip the eggplant slice in the seasoned panko bread crumbs on both sides. Make sure to season the panko crumbs with garlic powder, dry oregano, dry basil, salt, and black pepper. 
  • Place the eggplant pieces on the greased baking tray. Bake for 35 minutes at 400 degrees – flipping halfway.

Step 2 – Prepare the Sauce & Spaghetti

  • Boil a pot of water for the pasta. Once boiling, season well with salt. Add whole wheat spaghetti to the large pot of salted water. Follow the instructions on the back of the pasta box and cook pasta until al dente. 
  • Heat up a Dutch castiron on medium heat. Once hot, add two tablespoons of olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add crushed red pepper flakes. Cook for 30 seconds. Now add chopped garlic and cook for 45 seconds. Add chopped onion and season with salt. Saute for 2-3 minutes until the onions are golden-brown. 
  • Next add 24 ounces of Marinara sauce. Season with black pepper. You really don't need salt since the sauce has enough. Cover and simmer the sauce for about 5 minutes. Once heated through, add the spaghetti to the sauce and toss until well coated. 

Step 3 – Assemble Eggplant Parm Pasta Bake

  • Add ½ cup of Marinara sauce to the bottom of the baking dish. Transfer all the spaghetti to the baking dish.
  • Place 6 crispy eggplant slices (or more if your baking dish is wider) over the spaghetti. Top each slice of eggplant with a spoonful of jarred Marinara sauce. Top each slice of eggplant with burrata cheese and about a tablespoon of grated parmesan. Repeat these steps one more time with another layer of eggplant slices. Then add Marinara sauce followed by burrata and parmesan cheese.
  • Add the remaining eggplant, cut them in half if you need to, and place them in sections over the spaghetti where there is room. Top the eggplant pieces with Marinara sauce and both cheeses as follows. Place the dish in the oven and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees – uncovered. Once done, top with julienned basil leaves. Serve immediately and enjoy hot!

Notes

  • Sliced Eggplant – Slice the eggplant no more than a quarter inch thick. Any thicker, and it’ll not bake through properly. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees to bake the eggplant. Make sure to bake the eggplant for 35 minutes – flipping halfway for the best results.
  • Baked Casserole – Preheat the oven to 350 degrees to bake the entire dish. This dish will be baked uncovered for 30 minutes.
  • Pasta – Do not overcook. the spaghetti, but rather, cook until al dente. Keep in mind, that the spaghetti will be baked for 30 minutes in the oven.
  • Marinara Sauce – For the best results, use a good sauce. I love Rao’s Marinara Sauce or the Arrabiata version works great too. You can make your own homemade marinara too, but use a good sauce because it makes all the difference.
  • Soggy Eggplant – To avoid soggy eggplant, don’t drench the grilled eggplant with Marinara, simply add a spoonful of marinara followed by cheese.

Nutrition

Calories: 502kcal | Carbohydrates: 69g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 90mg | Sodium: 1330mg | Potassium: 796mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 1150IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 399mg | Iron: 5mg

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Diet: Vegetarian
Tried this recipe?Mention @honeywhatscooking or tag #honeywhatscooking!

Hi, I'm Nisha!

I'm a foodie who is passionate about healthy-ish living and mindful eating. You'll find a bit of everything here. I use mostly organic real ingredients and incorporate seasonal produce in my cooking. I believe food is medicine. Join me on this soul-searching journey as I share my love for good food, and I hope I inspire you to eat better somewhere along the way.


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Recipe Rating




18 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Made this last night .. my family loved it .. the eggplant baked to perfection . I prefer baking rather than frying .. it was delicious .. thank you for sharing such a great recipe ,you were so precise with it . Appreciate that ..

  2. 5 stars
    Just made this dish for the family and wow! The eggplant baked perfectly and was so soft. I honestly couldn’t tell the difference between baked and fried, and neither could my family. I used gluten free spaghetti and it was just wonderful. Thanks for a phenomenal recipe!

  3. 5 stars
    I replaced linguine with lasagna sheets and skipped frying the baked eggplants. It's yum. Only prob is, needed a lot sauce.

  4. 5 stars
    I made this dish twice and loved it. Next thing I am going to make the mexican vegetarian lasagna. Your step by step recipe with pictures helps a lot. Thank you so muchRia

    1. Ria – I'm so glad you enjoyed this dish. The Mex Veg Lasagna is awesome. I'm sure you'll love it. Thanks so much for your feedback! Much appreciated.

  5. 4 stars
    Perfectly awesome!! Eggplant is not my favorite but this was okay, I didn't mind it at and actually would make it again! 🙂