The #1 Book for All Things Vegetable

This review is part of our community-driven book tournament, The Big Community Book-Off. With your help, we’re finding the best books across categories (from bread to pasta, one-bowl to weeknight-friendly, and cake to cookies, to name a few), and putti…

This review is part of our community-driven book tournament, The Big Community Book-Off. With your help, we’re finding the best books across categories (from bread to pasta, one-bowl to weeknight-friendly, and cake to cookies, to name a few), and putting them through a series of rigorous reviews—considered, tested, and written by none other than you. And so, let’s hand it off to our community members Erin, Ruth, and Shereen. Here are their reviews of your five favorite vegetable-forward books—and their nail-biting verdict on which one reigned supreme.


When a Food52 editor connected the three of us over email, we quickly figured out what we had in common. Nope, we’re not vegetarians, not one of us. But we’re all obsessed with fresh produce and cook vegetarian much of the time.

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16 Red Cabbage Recipes That Are Anything but Boring

I have my husband’s grandmother Violet to thank for introducing me to my favorite holiday side dish: Danish red cabbage, which is a mix of vinegar, sugar, lots of butter, a jar of red currant jelly, and two heads of chopped red cabbage. I’ve neve…

I have my husband's grandmother Violet to thank for introducing me to my favorite holiday side dish: Danish red cabbage, which is a mix of vinegar, sugar, lots of butter, a jar of red currant jelly, and two heads of chopped red cabbage. I’ve never seen Violet make it, but I’ve heard that when she does, she tends to it all day, dipping a fork into her Dutch oven often to taste and adjust and season. Apparently, no one in the family makes it as well as Violet.

Every year in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving, I look forward to pulling out her handwritten recipe card and attempting to replicate this old family standby. I love it so much, in fact, that I associate red cabbage with only this dish. And as soon as the holidays pass, I don't want to think about any other cabbage preparation besides this one, the following fall.

So when heads of red cabbage (also called purple cabbage) show up in my CSA box, I struggle to put them to use, often shoving them in the vegetable bin where they sit for weeks until I shred them into a basic slaw or simply roast them in wedges. Both are preparations that always leave me wanting.

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The 5 Books That Made Vegetables Cool Again

This post is part of our new community-driven book tournament, The Big Community Book-Off. With your help, we’re finding the best books across categories (from bread to pasta, one-bowl to weeknight-friendly, cake to cookies, to name a few), and putting…

This post is part of our new community-driven book tournament, The Big Community Book-Off. With your help, we're finding the best books across categories (from bread to pasta, one-bowl to weeknight-friendly, cake to cookies, to name a few), and putting them through a series of rigorous reviews—considered, tested, and written by none other than you.


Last month, F52ers Reba, Margaret, and Jen sourced, baked, and consumed a very impressive amount of flour and sugar in determining the ultimate cake book.

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Baked Eggplant Parmesan

This baked Eggplant Parmesan is truly incredible: coated in a crispy crust that’s magically gluten free. You’ll never make it another way! Here’s one of the ultimate Italian comfort foods, done easier and healthier: eggplant Parmesan! Typically this baby is fried, but we have a secret for you. It’s even better baked, and this version is incredible. It’s from our friend Charlotte Smythe’s new cookbook One Pot Keto Cooking and you will be truly amazed by the flavor and texture. The eggplant is coated in an impossibly crispy coating that’s also magically gluten free and low carb. The secret? Almond flour. It’s a genius trick and you’ll never make this recipe another way. Here’s more about Charlotte’s baked eggplant Parmesan and the book! The secret to crispy baked eggplant Parmesan This baked eggplant Parmesan has the most crispy, flavorful coating and tender interior that every bite is a revelation. We made this recipe for my parents when they were in town visiting, and everyone kept exclaiming: wow! (True story.) The secret to the crispy exterior? Here’s what to know: Almond flour and Parmesan cheese make the perfect crispy coating. Almond flour has the perfect fluffy texture for breading, and it […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

This baked Eggplant Parmesan is truly incredible: coated in a crispy crust that’s magically gluten free. You’ll never make it another way!

Baked eggplant Parmesan

Here’s one of the ultimate Italian comfort foods, done easier and healthier: eggplant Parmesan! Typically this baby is fried, but we have a secret for you. It’s even better baked, and this version is incredible. It’s from our friend Charlotte Smythe’s new cookbook One Pot Keto Cooking and you will be truly amazed by the flavor and texture. The eggplant is coated in an impossibly crispy coating that’s also magically gluten free and low carb. The secret? Almond flour. It’s a genius trick and you’ll never make this recipe another way. Here’s more about Charlotte’s baked eggplant Parmesan and the book!

The secret to crispy baked eggplant Parmesan

This baked eggplant Parmesan has the most crispy, flavorful coating and tender interior that every bite is a revelation. We made this recipe for my parents when they were in town visiting, and everyone kept exclaiming: wow! (True story.) The secret to the crispy exterior? Here’s what to know:

  • Almond flour and Parmesan cheese make the perfect crispy coating. Almond flour has the perfect fluffy texture for breading, and it crisps up like a charm in the oven. Alex and I don’t eat gluten free, low carb or keto exclusively, but this method is our new favorite.
  • Make sure to buy grated Parmesan. That’s the cheese with the texture of snow: not the kind that looks like long sticks (that’s shredded). Grated has a similar texture to almond flour, and makes the perfect gluten free breading.
Baked eggplant Parmesan

Choosing eggplant: long and thin is preferred!

Another tip for making baked eggplant Parmesan: choose an eggplant that is on the long and thin side, if you can find it. Many large globe eggplants (the Italian variety) can have a rather fat bulb at the end. When you slice it to make an eggplant round, the rounds at the widest part of the eggplant can come out massive. We had this problem because we were working with a very large eggplant.

Try to find eggplants that are longer and thinner, to make for a more manageable size of rounds. It’s not a deal breaker: it just looks prettier. It tastes amazing no matter what the size of eggplant!

How to serve this baked eggplant Parmesan

This gluten free baked eggplant Parmesan is so tasty, you’ll want to eat the entire pan. (We almost did!) You can serve it either as a side dish or a main. If you’re serving it as a vegetarian dinner recipe, you’ll want to add some filling sides or try the casserole variation (see below). Here’s what we’d recommend:

  • Add pasta (gluten free or legume). Go Italian style and serve this eggplant Parmesan with pasta (long or short noodles). If you eat low carb or gluten free, you could try your favorite gluten free or legume pasta.
  • Add a big salad. Try it with a big salad, like Caesar Salad topped with chickpeas, or this Perfect Italian Salad.
  • Serve as a side with fish. Try it alongside lemon caper salmon, pan fried cod, or grilled tilapia.
Baked eggplant Parmesan

Try the casserole variation! (like a lasagna)

Want to turn this baked eggplant Parmesan into an even more filling vegetarian dinner recipe? Try it in the casserole style variation! This makes it into a lasagna-style baked main dish. Here are some notes about this variation:

  • Double the eggplant and breading. You’ll make the eggplant the same way, but double the quantities so you can stack it in a 9 x 13″ pan.
  • Layer the baked eggplant with marinara and mozzarella in 2 layers. You’ll need double the mozzarella cheese here. Place a layer of eggplant, then marinara and mozzarella, and do this twice.
  • Bake for 20 minutes until the cheese melts. Then top with fresh basil! More instructions are in the recipe below.

And that’s it! We know you’ll love Charlotte’s gluten free baked eggplant Parmesan as much as we did! Keep reading for more about her book.

One pot keto cooking

About the book: One Pot Keto Cooking

This baked eggplant Parmesan recipe is from the new book One Pot Keto Cooking by our pal Charlotte Smythe. Charlotte is an incredible recipe developer and photographer and the book is simply stunning. It’s full of delicious low-carb meals for the busy cook that are all cooked in one pot. It does include meat, but if you eat pescatarian like we do, there are plenty of vegetarian and seafood options. You’ll salivate over each one! Congratulations, Charlotte, on this masterpiece!

Grab a copy of the book: One Pot Keto Cooking by Charlotte Smythe

This baked eggplant Parmesan recipe is…

Vegetarian, gluten-free, keto, and low carb.

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Baked eggplant Parmesan

Baked Eggplant Parmesan


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

This baked Eggplant Parmesan is truly incredible: coated in a crispy crust that’s magically gluten free. You’ll never make it another way!


Ingredients

  • 1 medium large eggplant, about 1 pound (long and thin preferable) OR see casserole variation*
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning (or 1 teaspoon each dried basil, oregano and thyme)
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups jarred marinara sauce
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese (we used a combination of fresh mozzarella and shredded)
  • Fresh basil, to serve

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or spray with cooking spray. 
  2.  Cut off the ends of the eggplant and cut it into 3/8-inch slices. 
  3. Beat the eggs in a shallow bowl and set it aside.
  4. Combine the Parmesan cheese, almond flour, Italian seasoning, and kosher salt in another shallow bowl and set it aside. 
  5. Dip each eggplant slice into the egg and then the Parmesan cheese mixture. Transfer the coated eggplant slices to the prepared sheet pan in a single layer, about 1/2-inch apart. Use two sheet pans if you do not have one large enough to fit all the slices. 
  6. Bake the eggplant for about 20 minutes, flipping them halfway through, until tender and golden brown. 
  7. Remove the eggplant from the oven (go to Casserole Variation* if desired). Add 2 tablespoons of the marinara sauce on top of each eggplant slice and add an equal amount of mozzarella cheese on top of the sauce. 
  8. Return the pan to the oven and continue to bake for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden brown. Top with torn basil. Serve with pasta (gluten free or legume pasta) or a few side dishes, or the casserole variation makes for a more filling main dish.

Notes

Reprinted with permission from One-Pot Keto Cooking by Charlotte Smythe

*Casserole variation: Double the recipe and use 2 pounds of eggplant and double the breading ingredients. After baking for 20 minutes until tender, spread 1/2 cup marinara sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 13″ pan. Place half the baked eggplant in a layer on the bottom, then top with 1 cup marinara and 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese. Add the second layer of eggplant with another 1 cup marinara and 1 cup shredded mozzarella. Bake 20 minutes until the cheese melts, then top with torn fresh basil leaves. 

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Italian inspired

Keywords: Baked eggplant parmesan, Eggplant parmesan

More eggplant recipes

We love eggplant around here! If you do too, here are some recipes you also might enjoy:

  • Perfect Roasted Eggplant Baking until it’s tender makes for unreal flavor. Serve it as a side dish, or toss with pasta!
  • Roasted Eggplant Pasta An impressive plant based dinner, it works for weeknights or parties.
  • Easy Eggplant Pizza Use eggplant for the crust to make eggplant pizza! These mini pizzas are tasty and easy to make, covered in garlicky sauce and gooey cheese.
  • Grilled Eggplant Here’s how to make perfectly grilled eggplant! These tricks make it come out tender every time.

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Faux-Blanching Is the Cooking Technique We Didn’t Know We Needed

It all started the first time I was lured by a tri-color bag of string beans at a farmers market—the purple, green, and yellow electric against each other.

I brought them home so pumped to make a salad. I cleaned each one, getting more and more excite…

It all started the first time I was lured by a tri-color bag of string beans at a farmers market—the purple, green, and yellow electric against each other.

I brought them home so pumped to make a salad. I cleaned each one, getting more and more excited as each color passed through my fingers. Then I blanched them and what had been neon purple turned to grey-green. I was pissed off in a way that is, admittedly, unreasonable.

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Baked Zucchini

This baked zucchini is so easy to make, covered in a light coating of crunchy breadcrumbs and Parmesan! This veggie is at its best roasted in a hot oven. Oh hey, it’s the vegetable of the season: zucchini! There are so many creative ways to use this veggie, from casserole to chocolate cake. One of our new favorites though, is this baked zucchini! It’s the opposite of soggy or slimy: coat this tasty veggie lightly with breadcrumbs and a little Parmesan cheese. Even better, it’s not so labor intensive as zucchini fries (where you dip in flour and egg): so you get the best of both worlds! Pop it in the oven and it’s a tasty and easy side dish for summer meals. Here’s what to do! Want a quicker way to cook zucchini? Try Perfect Sauteed Zucchini. How to season baked zucchini Here’s the thing about this green vegetable. Zucchini contains over 90% water. Wow! Not only does it give off a lot of water when it cooks, it needs quite a bit of seasoning. Ever bitten into a zucchini and it tastes watery and bland? This is exactly what we don’t want. Here are the seasonings that will […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

This baked zucchini is so easy to make, covered in a light coating of crunchy breadcrumbs and Parmesan! This veggie is at its best roasted in a hot oven.

Baked zucchini

Oh hey, it’s the vegetable of the season: zucchini! There are so many creative ways to use this veggie, from casserole to chocolate cake. One of our new favorites though, is this baked zucchini! It’s the opposite of soggy or slimy: coat this tasty veggie lightly with breadcrumbs and a little Parmesan cheese. Even better, it’s not so labor intensive as zucchini fries (where you dip in flour and egg): so you get the best of both worlds! Pop it in the oven and it’s a tasty and easy side dish for summer meals. Here’s what to do!

Want a quicker way to cook zucchini? Try Perfect Sauteed Zucchini.

How to season baked zucchini

Here’s the thing about this green vegetable. Zucchini contains over 90% water. Wow! Not only does it give off a lot of water when it cooks, it needs quite a bit of seasoning. Ever bitten into a zucchini and it tastes watery and bland? This is exactly what we don’t want. Here are the seasonings that will cover your zucchini in the best savory Mediterranean flavors:

  • Dried oregano
  • Onion powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Italian style bread crumbs
  • Grated Parmesan cheese

There are a few things to note about these breadcrumbs (you can also skip them if desired). Here’s what to know!

Baked Zucchini

Use Italian Panko or breadcrumbs, or this substitute

This recipe uses Italian style Panko or breadcrumbs, not plain. What’s the difference? Italian breadcrumbs are made with seasonings and salt. This gives them quite a bit of extra flavor when you use them. Italian breadcrumbs and panko are easy to find at most grocery stores. If you can’t find it, here’s a substitute:

  • Use 1/2 regular panko or make homemade breadcrumbs.
  • Mix in 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt. Because you’re already adding Italian-style seasonings to the zucchini, you won’t lose much without the seasonings in the breadcrumbs.

Don’t want to use breadcrumbs in your baked zucchini? No problem.

Not into breadcrumbs? Or do you eat a gluten-free diet? You can absolutely make baked zucchini without them. Here’s what to do:

  • Omit the breadcrumbs.
  • Toss the zucchini with grated Parmesan cheese after baking!

As a note: there are lots of gluten-free breadcrumbs or Panko on the market these days, so you can use those to make this recipe gluten-free as well.

How to make baked zucchini

Grated vs shredded Parmesan cheese

For some reason, even after all this time of cooking for a living I have a hard time remembering the difference between shredded and grated Parmesan cheese. Here’s what you need for this recipe:

  • Grated Parmesan cheese: This is the powdery cheese that looks like snow! You can use either the shaker can or the or the containers. This is what you’ll need in this recipe, because it integrates into the texture of the bread crumbs.
  • Shredded Parmesan cheese: Shredded Parmesan cheese looks like little sticks of Parmesan. It’s great for garnishing salads and soups. You could use it here in a pinch, but it has a different look. See Roasted Zucchini and Squash.

How to make roasted / baked zucchini: a few tips!

Here are a few tips for making this baked zucchini, aka roasted zucchini! Alex and I tried making zucchini fries and realized that they were a bit time intensive. You have to dip the zucchini in flour and egg before the breadcrumbs, and it ends up all gummy and messy. (If you have a great zucchini fries method, let us know!) So for this baked zucchini, we were inspired to make it like fries but without the fuss. You’ll get a light coating of bread crumbs for a little crunch, but they’re not fully coated like fries. Here’s what to know:

  • Mix some breadcrumbs with oil-coated zucchini first. Not all of them will stick to the zucchini: that’s ok! The same is true when you place them on the baking sheet. So…
  • Move any breadcrumbs that fall onto the baking sheet to the top of the zucchini. Just quickly move any piles of breadcrumbs to the top of the zucchini. It doesn’t have to be perfect.
  • Finish by sprinkling with more dry breadcrumbs & Parm. This gets another fresh coating of crumbs on top.
  • Bake until just tender (keep an eye on it). The bake time will depend on exactly how thin the zucchini is: so keep an eye on it! You want it to be just tender: crisp and water, but not overly soggy. Take a taste if you need to assess doneness!
Roasted zucchini
Lots of breadcrumbs will end up on the baking sheet: that’s ok!

Main dishes that pair with baked zucchini

OK so you’ve got your crunchy, crispy baked zucchini: what to serve it with? It’s easiest to serve it with dishes that don’t use the oven. Here are a few great main dishes that pair well:

This baked zucchini recipe is…

Vegetarian. For gluten-free, use gluten-free bread crumbs or panko, or omit the breadcrumbs.

Print
Baked Zucchini

Baked Zucchini (Perfectly Seasoned!)


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (6 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

This baked zucchini is so easy to make, covered in a light coating of crunchy breadcrumbs and Parmesan! This veggie is at its best roasted in a hot oven.


Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds zucchini (3 medium small)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Italian style panko or bread crumbs, divided
  • 6 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Slice the zucchini into 1/4-inch thick rounds. In a large bowl, mix it with the olive oil, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, and kosher salt. (If using plain bread crumbs, mix in a generous 1/4 teaspoon salt.) To the bowl add 1/4 cup breadcrumbs and 3 tablespoons of the grated Parmesan cheese and toss.
  3. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Place the vegetables in a single layer on the baking sheets, then use your fingers to quickly place breadcrumbs that fall onto the sheet on the top of the zucchini rounds (it doesn’t have to be perfect). Top with the remaining 1/4 cup dry breadcrumbs (divided across the two sheets) and 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese.
  4. Roast until just tender, 15 to 20 minutes. If your oven is uneven, switch the trays at the 7 to 8 minute mark. Allow to cool slightly before serving.

  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Baked zucchini

More zucchini recipes

Summer is all about zucchini recipes! Here are some we recommend giving a try:

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

35 Zucchini Recipes {And More!}

Wondering what to do with all of that garden zucchini? We are coming to your rescue by sharing our all-time favorite zucchini recipes! You are going to want to make them all this summer! Zucchini Season, My Favorite Time of Year Summer is in full swing…

Wondering what to do with all of that garden zucchini? We are coming to your rescue by sharing our all-time favorite zucchini recipes! You are going to want to make them all this summer! Zucchini Season, My Favorite Time of Year Summer is in full swing and that means it is zucchini season, my favorite…

The post 35 Zucchini Recipes {And More!} appeared first on Two Peas & Their Pod.

It’s Not Too Late to Start a Vegetable Garden—Blue Hill Shows Us How

You might have a scallion, shooting out of its bulb, sitting in your windowsill. Or a stalk of romaine, stretching up and away from its leafy base, waiting to be plucked. The coronavirus pandemic and widespread stay at home orders saw our ideas about k…

You might have a scallion, shooting out of its bulb, sitting in your windowsill. Or a stalk of romaine, stretching up and away from its leafy base, waiting to be plucked. The coronavirus pandemic and widespread stay at home orders saw our ideas about kitchens, and our practices of feeding ourselves take new shape, much of it couched in self-sufficiency. As we eke into the fifth month spent relatively homebound, the team at Blue Hill at Stone Barns is developing an even more comprehensive way to grow at home.

When COVID-19 hit, like many restaurants across the country, Blue Hill at Stone Barns was forced to let go of a majority of their employees. Located an hour north of New York City, the restaurant and the farmland upon which it sits were suddenly, uncharacteristically empty. Chef Dan Barber and Jack Algiere, the Stone Barns farm director, considered their now-jobless cooks, starting with a guiding inquiry: “What would it look like if out-of-work cooks around the world dug in and built a garden?” Thus, the The Kitchen Farming Project, was born: An online curriculum for first-time gardeners wanting to plant, harvest, and cook all their own food at home.

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How to Make a Grain Bowl With Whatever’s in Your Fridge

I realize that I may be alone here when I say that bowls are my favorite piece of dishware. (What, you don’t have a favorite eating vessel?)
Hear me out: Unlike plates, which waste sauce and discourage you from mixing a meal’s different components, bow…

I realize that I may be alone here when I say that bowls are my favorite piece of dishware. (What, you don't have a favorite eating vessel?)

Hear me out: Unlike plates, which waste sauce and discourage you from mixing a meal's different components, bowls are vessels that empower you to layer multiple flavors and top everything off with a grand finale of dressing. Which brings me to grain bowls.

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19 Grilled Recipes All About the Vegetables

When I think about summer grilling, the first things that usually comes to mind are burgers, steaks, chicken, whole fish, and the like. In a word: meat.

But there are so many other ingredients—hello, vegetables!—that are made all the better from a qui…

When I think about summer grilling, the first things that usually comes to mind are burgers, steaks, chicken, whole fish, and the like. In a word: meat.

But there are so many other ingredients—hello, vegetables!—that are made all the better from a quick trip to the grill. Think: corn, peppers, asparagus, and the like in the summer; broccolini, squashes, Brussels sprouts, and more during the cooler months.

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