Tuscan Inspired Eggplant Parmesan


Congratulations to Mary Shivers, our 2nd place winner in the 2023 recipe contest! Mary's Tuscan Inspired Eggplant Parmesan is a flavorful Italian delight. This dish features eggplant slices seasoned with salt, coated in a crispy mixture of flour, Panko breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, our Tuscan rub, and garlic powder, then fried to perfection in olive oil. Layered with Bella Sun Luci Tomato & Artichoke Pasta Sauce and Sun Dried Tomatoes, it's a true taste straight from Tuscany.

Total Cook Time: 30 minutes

Serves: 4


Print Recipe

Bella Products Used:

Julienne Cut Sun Dried Tomatoes in Premium Oil with Italian Herbs 8.5 oz

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Bella Sun Luci Tomato & Artichoke Pasta Sauce 25oz

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Sun Dried Tomato Tuscan Rub

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Bella Sun Luci California Estate Extra Virgin Olive Oil 16.9 FL OZ

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  • 2 medium eggplant, 1-inch trimmed from each end then each sliced into ½-inch thick rounds (you will need 12 slices)
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 (8.5 oz.) jar Bella Sun Luci Julienne Cut Sun Dried Tomatoes in Olive Oil with Italian Herbs, divided use
  • 25 oz. jar Bella Sun Luci Tomato & Artichoke Pasta Sauce
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, divided use
  • 2 cups Panko
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp Bella Sun Luci Sun Dried Tomato Tuscan Rub
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ cup Bella Sun Luci California Estate Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided use
  • 4 oz. finely shredded mozzarella cheese


  • 10 large fresh basil leaves, snipped


  1. Sprinkle eggplant slices on both sides with salt. Place on a paper-towel lined plate for 15 minutes. Rinse and pat dry.
  2. Meanwhile, remove 36 julienne cut sun dried tomatoes in olive oil with Italian herbs from jar and reserve for later use.
  3. Put remaining contents of jar in a food processor. Add pasta sauce and pulse until sun dried tomatoes are finely chopped.
  4. Place in a large saucepan and heat over low heat, stirring occasionally, keeping warm until serving time.
  5. Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a shallow bowl, stir together egg and water.
  6. Place ½ cup of flour in a pie plate.
  7. In a medium bowl, stir together remaining flour, Panko, Parmesan cheese, Tuscan Rub, and garlic powder.
  8. In a large skillet, heat ¼ cup of oil over medium high heat.
  9. Dip eggplant slices first in flour, then in egg wash, then in Panko mixture, completely coating each time.
  10. Fry 6 slices at a time for 2-3 minutes per side until golden brown, turning once.
  11. Remove to a large wire baking rack over a drip pan. Wipe out skillet and add remaining oil. Repeat steps for remaining 6 eggplant slices. Bake for 10 minutes.
  12. Remove from oven. Add 1 tablespoon pasta sauce mixture on each slice. Divide mozzarella onto each. Arrange 3 reserved julienne cut sun dried tomato slices on each.
  13. Return to oven for 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.
  14. To serve, divide remaining pasta sauce mixture onto 4 serving plates. Arrange 3 eggplant slices on each. Sprinkle with snipped basil leaves for garnish. Serve immediately.

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