Untraditional, but equally sinful. That pretty much sums up my vegetable-based parm recipe in my upcoming cookbook, Dairy-Free Meal Prep: Easy, Budget-Friendly Meals to Cook, Prep, Grab and Go, where I swap eggplant for the more classic chicken or veal and bake instead of fry.
Of course, if you’re feeling extra indulgent, you can fry the eggplant fries instead of baking them. Just heat ½ cup of neutral-flavored oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches and adding ¼ cup oil between batches, cook the eggplant, turning once, until golden brown and cooked through, about 2 minutes on each side.
Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Eggplant Parm Fries
1 medium eggplant (about 10 ounces)
1 cup crushed gluten-free rice cereal
¼ cup store-bought or homemade Dairy-Free Parmesan
2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 large egg
½ cup store-bought or homemade marinara sauce, for dipping
- Preheat the oven to 450°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper; spray lightly with cooking spray. Peel the eggplant and cut lengthwise ¼-inch thick, then cut to make sticks about ¼-inch-thick and 3-inches long.
- On a rimmed plate, stir together the rice cereal, parmesan, parsley flakes, red pepper flakes, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Add the egg to another rimmed plate and beat. Coat the eggplant strips all over with the egg, then roll in the cereal crumb mixture to coat completely.
- Place on the prepared baking sheet and spray lightly with cooking spray; bake, turning once, until crisp and golden, about 20 minutes.
- You can store the cooled eggplant fries in resealable containers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Serve with warm marinara sauce.
- If you don’t love spicy food, just leave out the crushed red pepper flakes in the breadcrumb coating.