This recipe is a take on the Skinnytaste Eggplant Meatballs. I added a few ingredients such as sauteed onions and garlic to mimic the way that I make meaty-meatballs, such as these baked chicken meatballs, and used panko breadcrumbs instead. I must say, they were WONDERFUL! I was a bit nervous that the mixture would be very wet, and would not allow for good, round meatballs. I was very wrong. The eggplant meatball mixture was sticky and rolled right into a perfect ball. The Cheese, who doesn’t really like eggplant, ate these up like crazy and didn’t miss the meat for a second. New staple. Best part, super easy and quick. Make them.
Begin by chopping 1 cup yellow onion (about 1 medium onion), 1 medium sized eggplant, and 3 cloves garlic.
Saute the yellow onion in a few tablespoons of olive oil and 1/2 tsp Kosher salt.
Add the eggplant, the garlic and 1 tsp Kosher salt. Saute until the eggplant is very soft.
In a food processor, blend the eggplant and onion mixture until fairly smooth, but not completely pureed. Allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes
In a bowl, add the eggplant mixture 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, 1 cup panko breadcrumbs, 1/4 cup chopped parsley, 1 egg, 1/2 tsp Kosher salt, 1/2 tsp black pepper.
Mix all ingredients until combined.
Roll out the eggplant mixture into meatballs and place on a cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.
When you take them out, they should be just a bit golden and crispy.
For this recipe I sped things up by using my favorite jarred tomato sauce. Rao’s Arrabiata. I am a stickler for making homemade tomato sauce and my Sicilian grandmother would probably be rolling in her grave if she knew I wasn’t. But Rao’s is an exception. All of there sauces are very well made, with exceptional ingredients.
I warmed up the sauce and gently nuzzled the meatballs into the sauce. Cover and let them cook in the sauce for 5 more minutes.
You can serve these over spaghetti or some roasted spaghetti squash, but we ate them just as they were with a green salad! Enjoy!
- 3 TB olive oil
- 1 cup chopped yellow onion (about 1 medium onion)
- 1 medium eggplant, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (or pecorino romano)
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1 - 2 jars of good quality tomato sauce (recommended Rao's) or 3 - 4 cups homemade tomato sauce.
- Kosher salt
- Fresh ground black pepper
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
- Heat the oil in a saute pan over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the onion and 1/2 tsp of Kosher salt.
- When the onion has softened add the eggplant, garlic, 1 tsp Kosher salt and 1/2 tsp of black pepper. Allow the eggplant to cook down until it is very soft.
- Add the eggplant mixture to a food processor and pulse a few times to form a rough paste.
- In a bowl, add the eggplant, cheese, parsley, egg, breadcrumbs, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper.
- Mix together with a wooden spoon until fully combined.
- Using your hands, roll the eggplant mixture into small balls and place on an un-greased cookie sheet.
- Bake at 350 for 25 minutes.
- Once the meatballs are done, they should be a bit crispy on the outside and a little golden.
- Heat the sauce in a saucepan and nuzzle the meatballs into the warm sauce.
- Allow them to cook in the sauce for 5 - 10 minutes.
- Serve over pasta, spaghetti squash, or as is! Enjoy!