Dinner/ Summer

Prosciutto & Breadcrumb Stuffed Eggplant in Tomato Sauce

August 16, 2021

In this stuffed eggplant recipe we combine the strong, rich flavors of prosciutto, tomato, garlic, basil, and Pecorino Romano cheese. I used small “fairy tale” eggplants, cut into quarters, tops intact, then stuffed them with a prosciutto-shallot-parmesan-breadcrumb mixture. The stuffed eggplant is then pan-fried and braised in fresh chopped tomatoes, creating a deliciously simple sauce. Melted mozzarella cheese and fresh basil make for a welcomed finishing touch. Serve this with a hot bowl of fresh gnocchi, pasta, whole grains, or roasted potatoes!

It took me a little while to come around to the eggplant, as it wasn’t common in my childhood household. Once I began working on small vegetable farms, eggplants became an anticipated part of my summer diet. The roasting and slow cooking style of preparation quickly won me over. I learned the eggplant is a vehicle for flavors and can take on a variety of strong ingredients. I especially love a Thai green curry with eggplant or this delicious, Bharwa Baingan from Nisha Madhulika.

Although eggplant is great with other ingredients, I can’t help but be a little partial to combinations involving tomatoes. The rich sweetness, slight acidity, and punch of umami that tomatoes bring to a dish are hard to beat. Perhaps that’s why I look forward to summer so eagerly every year!

What to do with steamed or roasted eggplant:

There are so many directions you can go with roasted or steamed eggplant. You could infuse olive oil or ghee with lots of spices and aromatics to then top the eggplant or incorporate it as a dip. With steamed eggplant, combine the irresistible flavors of garlic, chili, soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, and green onion to create an Asian-inspired eggplant salad. Or roasted eggplant with yogurt, mint, dill, garlic, tahini, and olives for a Mediterranean twist.

Ideas on what to cook with stuffed eggplant:

  • Fresh Pasta
  • Gnocchi
  • Roasted Potatoes
  • Couscous
  • Whole grains

Try stuffed eggplant with this Quick and Simple Buttered Gnocchi!

Prosciutto & Breadcrumb Stuffed Eggplant in Tomato Sauce

Dinner Italian
Serves: 4
Prep Time: 25 Cooking Time: 35 Total Time: 1 hour

Tender eggplant, rich tomato sauce, and melted mozzarella...what more could you ask for? Besides maybe a hot bowl of pasta or gnocchi!


  • 8 small eggplants
  • ⅓ cup pancetta or prosciutto
  • 1 shallot
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced and divided in half
  • 1 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • ⅓ cup pecorino romano, or parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 4-5 medium tomatoes (*optional: blanched and skinned) OR one 15 oz can of chopped tomatoes
  • ½ cup fresh mozzarella, torn into large rough pieces
  • Salt and pepper to taste



Rinse and dry the eggplants. Then cut them into quarters whilst keeping the top inch and stem intact. Place in a bowl of salted water and set aside.


If you are using pancetta, place a pan over medium heat and cook until slightly browned and crispy. If you are using prosciutto, just rip into small pieces.


Toss the shallots in the frying pan, and cook over medium low heat until softened.


Mix in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about a minute.


Toss in the breadcrumbs and toast until golden brown. Then place into a bowl and set aside until no longer hot. (Make sure the pancetta or prosciutto has been mixed in at this point.)


Mix the pecorino or parmesan into the breadcrumb mixture, along with the egg and milk. Season with salt and pepper (plus a few dashes of Italian seasoning if you like!). Stir until combined and set aside.


Rinse and dry the eggplant. Next, carefully open the eggplants and stuff with about 1-2 tablespoons of breadcrumb mixture. Squeeze the eggplant shut and set aside until all are finished.


In a large pan over medium heat, cook the eggplant for 5-7 minutes until lightly browned and soft on the outside.


Toss in the other half of the minced garlic and the tomatoes and season once more with salt and pepper. Cover and cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until eggplants are tender.


Dot the top with mozzarella and place in the oven to broil for 2-3 minutes, or until the mozzarella is melted.


  • 377 Calories
  • 33g Carbohydrates
  • 93mg Cholesterol
  • 17g Fat
  • 5g Fiber
  • 20g Protein
  • 12g Saturated fat
  • 1921mg Sodium
  • 9g Sugar


Serve with gnocchi, pasta, whole grains, or roasted potatoes and enjoy!

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