A good recipe for air fryer eggplant Parmesan will have a crispy breading, great flavors, and is easy to make. Boom! We have all that with this recipe and the best part is it cooks in 15 minutes in the air fryer!
We’re big meat eaters in this house, but we like to do at least one meatless day each week. We usually keep it simple (our air fryer falafel is a definite favorite), and kid friendly because there is nothing worse than hearing kids complain about dinner.
You can see all of our air fryer vegetarian recipes if you’re interested!.
However, don’t think for a second that this recipe has to be limited to vegetarian diets! It is very filling, has a lot of flavor, and is very satisfying to eat!
The eggplant comes out so good – it’s basically just our air fried eggplant with the addition of marinara and cheese – yum!!
Serve with a side of pasta or some roasted veggies for a tasty dinner!
Eggplant – In choosing your eggplant at the grocery store, you need to choose one that doesn’t have any green on it except for the stem. You should squeeze it a bit to see if it is firm. It shouldn’t be rock hard, but it should be nice and firm.
Bread crumbs and Panko– If you own an air fryer you are surely aware that these two ingredients are staples in air frying. Traditional bread crumbs coat the eggplant nicely while the Panko adds extra crispness.
Seasonings– Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and onion powder will provide most of the flavor for the breading.
Cheeses– We use powdered Parmesan and sliced mozzarella. If you have shredded mozzarella on hand it will work also.
How to Make Eggplant Parmesan in the Air Fryer:
Prep the eggplant– Slice the eggplant into 1/4 – 1/2 inch thick slices. Lay the slices on a paper towel-lined baking sheet, sprinkle with salt, and allow the eggplant to rest for 20 minutes. This will remove excess moisture keeping your eggplant more crispy.
Prepare the breading – You will need three shallow dishes for this step. In the first dish add your breadcrumbs, Panko, Parmesan, and Italian seasoning. Stir these together to combine. In the second dish add your eggs and whisk until smooth. In the third dish add your flour, garlic powder, onion powder, and stir to combine.
Air Fry your eggplant– Spritz oil into your air fryer basket. Take a slice of eggplant and dip in the first dish with the breadcrumbs, then the egg dish, then finally the dish with flour. Make sure to get both sides coated well and press the eggplant into the dish with flour a little bit to help the breading stay on the eggplant throughout the cooking process. Place the slices in a single layer in your air fryer, cook in batches if needed. Air fry them for 10 minutes at 380 degrees F and flip them after 5 minutes to ensure even cooking.
Top the eggplant-When the 10 minutes is up spoon some of your marinara sauce evenly over each individual slice of eggplant while it is still in the air fryer basket. Then top with a slice of fresh mozzarella. Cook for 3-5 more minutes until the cheese is melted.
We love to serve this eggplant parmesan with a side of spaghetti topped with marinara – much the same way we serve our air fryer chicken parmesan! It’s also delicious served with roasted vegetables, such as air fryer frozen broccoli or air fryer green beans.
This is also delicious with some garlic bread or frozen breadsticks in the air fryer!
A side salad topped with your favorite dressing is always a good side, too!
Yes! If you find eggplant to be bitter though, you can peel it ahead of time. A fair amount of bitterness does come from the skin.
Heat in your air fryer at 360 degrees for 5 minutes. If your eggplant is covered in marinara you may want to put it on parchment paper to make it easier to remove. Up to you!
Be sure to salt the eggplant and let it sit to draw out excess moisture before cooking. This step is important in keeping your eggplant from becoming soggy.
More air fryer dinner recipes you might like:
- Air Fryer Brats
- Air Fryer Drumsticks
- Air Fryer Turkey Burgers
- Buffalo Cauliflower
- Butternut Squash in the Air Fryer
Let us know your opinion!
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Air Fryer Eggplant Parmesan
- 1 large eggplant
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup bread crumbs
- ¼ cup panko
- ¼ cup powdered Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 2 large eggs
- ½ cup flour
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 cup marinara
- 12 ounces fresh sliced mozzarella
- Fresh basil for garnish
- Slice the eggplant into 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick slices and lay on a paper towel lined baking sheet.
- Sprinkle with the kosher salt and let sit for 20 minutes to allow the eggplant to release excess moisture.
- Add the breadcrumbs, panko, Parmesan, and Italian seasoning to a shallow dish and stir to combine.
- Add the eggs to a second dish and whisk well until smooth.
- Add the flour, garlic powder, and onion powder to a third dish and stir to combine.
- Dip each eggplant slice first in the flour, then the egg, and finally the bread crumbs, making sure to coat each slice fully.
- Spritz an air fryer basket with oil spray and lay the eggplant in an even layer. You will likely need to work in batches.
- Air fry at 380 degrees for 10 minutes, flipping halfway through cooking. Keep the eggplant warm in a low oven on a baking sheet while cooking the other batches.
- While the eggplant is cooking, slice the mozzarella into ¼ inch thick slices.
- Spoon sauce evenly over each slice of eggplant and top with a slice of fresh mozzarella. Return to the air fryer for 3-5 minutes to melt the cheese.
- Sprinkle with fresh basil before serving.