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Eggplant Rollatini Recipe: A Delicious and Easy Italian Delight

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Eggplant Rollatini is a delicious Italian dish that combines tender eggplant slices with a cheesy filling and rich tomato sauce. Using ingredients like ricotta, parmesan, basil, and marinara sauce, this recipe is baked to perfection and offers a gluten-free option.

You’ll love how easy it is to prepare. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or just starting out, the step-by-step instructions make it simple to follow. Enjoy a tasty, homemade meal that’s perfect for any occasion.

Exact Ingredients (+ Possible Substitutes)

Eggplant

  • 2 large eggplants, sliced thin
  • Substitute: Zucchini or yellow squash

Ricotta Cheese

  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • Substitute: Cottage cheese or even goat cheese for a different taste

Parmesan Cheese

  • ½ cup grated Parmesan
  • Substitute: Grated Pecorino Romano

Egg

  • 1 large egg
  • Substitute: Flaxseed meal mixed with water (1 tbsp flaxseed with 2.5 tbsp water)

Garlic

  • 2 cloves minced
  • Substitute: ½ teaspoon garlic powder

Fresh Basil

  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • Substitute: 1 tablespoon dried basil or fresh parsley

Spinach (Optional)

  • Optional: ½ cup chopped spinach
  • Substitute: Kale or Swiss chard

Marinara Sauce

  • 1 cup marinara sauce
  • Substitute: Tomato sauce mixed with Italian seasoning

Mozzarella Cheese (Optional)

  • Optional: 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • Substitute: Provolone or Monterey Jack

Salt and Pepper

  • Salt and pepper to taste

You’ve got a lot of flexibility with these ingredients, so don’t hesitate to swap based on what you have on hand!

Instructions


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius).


  2. Prepare the eggplant:

    • Slice the eggplant lengthwise into ¼-inch thick slices.
    • Sprinkle salt on each slice and let them sit for 30 minutes to remove excess moisture.
    • Pat dry with paper towels.
  3. Bake the eggplant:

    • Lay the slices on a lightly greased baking sheet.
    • Brush each slice with olive oil on both sides.
    • Bake for 10-25 minutes until tender and slightly golden. Let cool.
  4. Make the filling:

    • In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese, grated Parmesan, Mozzarella, egg, minced garlic, salt, pepper, and fresh basil. Mix well.
  5. Assemble the rollatini:

    • Lay a slice of eggplant flat.
    • Spoon 1-2 tablespoons of the ricotta mixture onto one end of the slice.
    • Roll up the slice tightly and place it seam side down in a baking dish.
  6. Add marinara sauce:

    • Spread a thin layer of marinara sauce at the bottom of the baking dish.
    • Arrange the rolled eggplant slices in the dish.
    • Top with additional marinara sauce.
  7. Bake the rollatini:

    • Cover the dish with aluminum foil.
    • Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 20 minutes.
    • Remove the foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
  8. Serve warm:

    • Let the rollatini cool for a few minutes before serving.
    • Garnish with fresh basil if desired.

Enjoy your homemade eggplant rollatini!

Tips, Tricks & Storing

Choose the Right Eggplant: Look for firm, glossy eggplants with a smooth skin. Avoid ones with blemishes or soft spots.

Prepping the Eggplant: To remove excess moisture, sprinkle salt on the eggplant slices and let them sit for about 20 minutes. Pat them dry with a paper towel before cooking.

Avoid Sogginess: Brush eggplant slices with olive oil on both sides before baking. This helps them cook evenly and prevents sogginess.

Filling Consistency: Make sure your ricotta mixture is well-combined but not too runny. You want it to stay inside the eggplant rolls.

Baking Tray Prep: Use parchment paper on your baking sheet for easy cleanup and to prevent sticking.

Layering Sauce: Spread a layer of marinara sauce on the bottom of your baking dish before adding the rolls. This adds extra flavor and keeps the rolls moist.

Storing Leftovers: Store your eggplant rollatini in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They’ll stay fresh for up to 3 days.

Freezing for Later: To freeze, place the rollatini on a baking sheet and freeze until solid. Then transfer to a freezer-safe container. They can be frozen for up to 3 months.

Reheating Tips: Reheat leftovers in the oven at 350°F until warmed through. Add a little extra sauce if they seem dry.

Serving Ideas: Pair your eggplant rollatini with a simple green salad or garlic bread for a complete meal.

Recipe Variations & Serving Suggestions

Variations:


  • Cheese Mix: You can try different cheese combinations. Use Mozzarella, Parmesan, and Ricotta or add Goat cheese for a tangy twist.



  • Sauce Options: While marinara is popular, you can use alfredo sauce or a spicy arrabbiata for a change.



  • Herbs: Add fresh herbs like basil, parsley, or even oregano for extra flavor.



  • Add-Ons: Feel free to include spinach or mushrooms in the cheese mixture for added texture.



  • Grilling: For a smokier taste, grill the eggplant slices instead of baking.


Serving Suggestions:


  • Serve your rollatini with a side of garlic bread or crusty baguette to soak up the sauce.



  • Pair with a simple green salad tossed in vinaigrette for a fresh contrast.



  • A glass of red wine like Chianti or Merlot complements the rich flavors of the dish.



  • If you prefer a non-alcoholic option, a cold glass of lemon iced tea works well.


Benjamin Happy Muncher

Hi, I'm Benjamin. I love cooking, long walks, and my girlfriend! Here you’ll find simple and delicious recipes that you can make in 30 minutes or less.