Eggplant timbale: better than parmigiana. Only 180 calories!

Eggplant timbale is a delightful Italian dish that offers a lighter alternative to traditional eggplant Parmigiana, boasting only 180 calories per serving. This dish features layers of tender eggplant slices, savory tomato sauce, and creamy ricotta cheese, all baked to perfection in a timbale mold. With its rich flavors and satisfying textures, eggplant timbale is sure to become a favorite on your dinner table.

Recipe: Eggplant Timbale


  • – 2 large eggplants, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
  • – Salt, for sweating the eggplant
  • – Olive oil, for brushing the eggplant slices
  • – 1 cup marinara sauce (homemade or store-bought)
  • – 1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
  • – 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • – /4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • – /4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • – Salt and pepper, to taste
  • – Cooking spray, for greasing the timbale mold


1. Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C). Grease a 9-inch round timbale mold or springform pan with cooking spray and set aside.

2. Place the eggplant slices in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Sprinkle both sides of the eggplant slices generously with salt and let them sit for about 30 minutes. This process helps to draw out excess moisture and bitterness from the eggplant.

3. After 30 minutes, pat the eggplant slices dry with paper towels to remove the excess moisture.

4. Brush both sides of the eggplant slices with olive oil and arrange them in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet.

5. Roast the eggplant slices in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, or until they are tender and lightly golden brown. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool slightly.

6. In a mixing bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, grated Parmesan cheese, chopped fresh basil, red pepper flakes (if using), salt, and pepper. Mix until well combined.

7. To assemble the timbale, spread a thin layer of marinara sauce on the bottom of the prepared timbale mold.

8. Arrange a layer of roasted eggplant slices over the marinara sauce, slightly overlapping them to cover the bottom of the mold.

9. Spread half of the ricotta cheese mixture evenly over the layer of eggplant slices.

10. Repeat the layers, starting with marinara sauce, followed by eggplant slices, and finishing with the remaining ricotta cheese mixture.

11. Finish by topping the timbale with a final layer of marinara sauce.

12. Cover the timbale mold with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes.

13. After 30 minutes, remove the foil and continue baking for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and bubbly.

14. Remove the timbale from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes before unmolding.

15. To unmold the timbale, run a knife around the edges to loosen it, then carefully invert it onto a serving platter.

16. Slice the eggplant timbale into wedges and serve hot, garnished with additional chopped basil or grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.

This eggplant timbale is a delicious and satisfying dish that offers all the flavors of eggplant Parmigiana with a lighter twist. With its low calorie count and indulgent taste, it’s perfect for anyone looking to enjoy a comforting Italian meal without the guilt.


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