Eggplant Parmesan Pizza: If you love baked eggplant parmesan, you’ll LOVE this pizza! This is an incredibly fun and delicious way to jazz up pizza night!
Is pizza night a Friday tradition in your house? It was in mine growing up and we just made it a tradition with our new little family over the summer.
And let me tell you, I couldn’t be more excited! First, because pizza is one of my favorite foods. Seriously, one of my 3 desert island foods would have to be pizza.
And second, because it’s one night a week I don’t have to think about what to make for dinner, what ingredients I need for it, and how much time I have to cook it before I have to run out and pick Riley up from daycare.
I realize that seems counter intuitive to the life purpose of a food blogger but the dinnertime struggle for us is real too!
In any event, pizza has always been a big thing for me. Of the 10 or so homemade pizza recipes I’ve got on the site, our favorite is, by leaps and bounds, the 3 cheese, rosemary and pepperoni pizza.
I’m not normally a pepperoni pizza fan but the rosemary flavor brightens up the whole pizza and makes it feel less heavy.
If that could even be a way to describe pizza! But the rosemary definitely makes a difference.
It’s hard to believe that it’s been 4 years since I shared a new pizza recipe with you here, too! The last one was our grilled farmer’s market pizza that makes good use of leftover veggies and cheese nubs that you have in your fridge at the end of the week.
This eggplant parmesan pizza has been a long time coming though. Is eggplant pizza a thing where you live? It was certainly new to me when I saw eggplant on a pizza toppings list about 10 years ago and all I could think was “how brilliant is that?!”
It was the same reaction I had when I was first introduced to the idea of chicken on pizza, essentially making it a chicken parm pizza. How utterly brilliant, right?!
Look, I’m a MAJOR eggplant parm fan. Like, if I had to choose between baked eggplant parmesan and chicken paremsan, I almost certainly will choose eggplant.
Yes, it’s a bit more work to make than chicken parm with the slicing and salting and draining of the eggplant, but since I don’t fry the eggplant (it’s super crispy oven-baked eggplant!), I love that I can avoid the frying mess.
How to Make Eggplant Parmesan Pizza
So, for this eggplant parm pizza, I used those crispy oven-baked eggplant rounds from my favorite eggplant parmesan recipe and tossed them atop my favorite pizza dough along with some sauce, mozzarella, ricotta, and parmesan cheese.
OHHH! And I also added some caramelized onions that I had leftover in the fridge from another recipe. How I love that caramelized onions add so much flavor to a recipe!!
Then I baked the pizza on a piece of parchment paper on a pizza stone in a 500° F oven for 13 minutes.
And let me tell you, this pizza was DIVINE. Just like my eggplant meatballs, this pizza tastes JUST LIKE eggplant parmesan!
Can you Use Store-Bought Frozen Baked Eggplant?
I realize that not everyone has the time to make their own baked eggplant to throw on something as simple as a pizza so I’m suggesting 2 shortcuts:
1.) Take a couple hours on a weekend afternoon to make a big batch of the eggplant. My recipe makes A LOT of eggplant and the baked rounds freeze perfectly in a zip-top bag. That means they’re ready for you to pull out at a moment’s notice to use for other recipes, like this pizza.
2.) The pre-made baked eggplant rounds that Trader Joe’s sells are truly excellent. Believe me, I’ve bought and used them many times and I’m always impressed with how good they are.
I’ve seen this type of eggplant in my regular grocery store freezer section too so store-bought baked eggplant is a great option in place of making your own.
To use frozen baked eggplant on this pizza, just toss a few pieces on a baking sheet in the oven while you’re preheating it. Once warmed through – this should take about 5 to 7 minutes – pull them out of the oven and arrange them atop the cheese layer of your pizza.
So easy, right?!
What We Love About This Eggplant Parmesan Pizza
First off, the fact that I can combine 2 of my favorite foods into 1 make this an automatic winner of a recipe. Eggplant parm on a pizza = big fat YES! This pizza was so, so delicious.
Second, this is an easy, crowd-pleasing meal to make, even on a busy weeknight. Use store-bought frozen baked eggplant and pizza dough as shortcuts to make your life a little easier.
Lastly, this was a super fun way to change up our regular pizza toppings! If you feel like your regular toppings are getting a little boring, it’s time to try something new!
This eggplant parm pizza will definitely spark your creativity for thinking up new toppings in the future!
For the eggplant (see note below):
- 1 medium eggplant (about 1 lbs) cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
- 1 ½ tsp Kosher salt
- 2 cups Italian breadcrumbs
- ½ cup grated Parmesan (about 1 oz)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs
- 3 tbsp vegetable oil
For the pizza:
- 12 oz fresh pizza dough or ½ recipe homemade pizza dough
- 1 to 1 ½ cups marinara sauce or about 20 oz canned whole peeled tomatoes, crushed with your hands
- 8 oz part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded (2 cups)
- ¼ cup caramelized onions (optional)
- ¼ cup part-skim ricotta cheese or homemade ricotta cheese
- Grated Parmesan cheese
- Italian herb seasoning
- Handful of fresh basil leaves, for garnish
- To make the eggplant: In a large bowl, toss half of the eggplant slices and 1 teaspoon Kosher salt; transfer salted eggplant to colander set over bowl. Repeat with remaining eggplant and salt. Let stand until eggplant releases about 2 tablespoons liquid, 30 to 45 minutes. Arrange eggplant slices on a triple layer of paper towels; cover with a triple layer of paper towels. Firmly press each slice to remove as much liquid as possible, then wipe off excess salt.
- While eggplant is draining, adjust an oven rack to the lower-third of the oven, place a large rimmed baking sheet on the rack, and preheat oven to 425° F.
- In a pie plate or shallow dish, combine breadcrumbs, Parmesan, salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Combine flour and ½ teaspoon pepper in large zip-top bag; shake to combine. Beat eggs in second pie plate. Place 8 to 10 eggplant slices in bag with flour, dip in eggs, let excess egg run off, then coat evenly with breadcrumb mixture. Set breaded slices on wire rack set over baking sheet. Repeat with remaining eggplant.
- Remove preheated baking sheet from oven; add the oil to the baking sheet, tilting to coat evenly with oil. Place the breaded eggplant on the pan in single layer.
- Bake until eggplant is well browned and crisp, about 30 minutes, switching and rotating baking sheets after 10 minutes, and flipping eggplant slices with wide spatula after 20 minutes. Do not turn off oven.
- To make the pizza: Set a rack in the oven to the lowest position. Preheat the oven and a pizza stone, if using, to 500° F for at least 30 minutes - up to an hour is best.
- Dust a work surface lightly with flour and roll out the pizza dough into a 12- to 14-inch circle. Transfer the dough to a large piece of parchment paper; reshape the dough if necessary.
- Spoon on some sauce evenly over the dough out to within ½-inch from the edges. Sprinkle on three-quarters of the mozzarella cheese. Lay a few of the eggplant slices on top of the cheese (freeze the rest for another time), scatter the caramelized onions around (if using), and then dollop the ricotta cheese by the heavy teaspoon in between the eggplant slices. Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella cheese, some grated parmesan, and some Italian herb seasoning over the top.
- Once the oven is preheated, slide the pizza on the parchment paper onto the stone or a baking sheet. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes. Remove the pizza from the oven and allow it to rest for 5 minutes before slicing.
Feel free to use store-bought baked eggplant from the freezer section if you'd like. The baked eggplant recipe I've got here is the one I use for my eggplant parmesan recipe and it's truly fantastic. If you have some extra time, I urge you to use this recipe - you won't be disappointed.
My recipe also makes more eggplant slices than you'll need for this pizza. The slices freeze well for more pizza or other meals in the future!
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Heritage Acacia Wood Pizza Peel, Great for Homemade Pizza, Cheese and Charcuterie Boards - 22" x 14"