Eggplant involtini stuffed with herby ricotta filling baked in rich tomato sauce is a delicious vegetarian dish, perfect for dinner.
I love simple recipes that make use of in-season fresh produce. This easy eggplant recipe is exactly that. Stuffing the eggplant with an easy, flavorful cheese mixture ensures even the fussiest of eaters will love this dish. It’s also another way to use up the many, many batches of tomato sauce I have after trying to preserve perfect summer-ripe tomatoes.
What is involtini?
Involtini is the Italian word for “rolls” and is a recipe consisting of a wrapper of sorts rolled around a filling. You can make involtini out of vegetables (like this eggplant/aubergine version), fish or meat. Involtini and Rollatini are pretty much the exact same recipe, the eggplant is just often breaded in rollatini.
- Eggplant / Aubergine.
- Cream cheese.
- Herbs. Basil, Parsley.
- Red chilli.
- Italian herbs.
- Chopped tomatoes. I often use canned cherry tomatoes too.
How to make eggplant involtini?
- Grill the eggplant: Slice eggplant into long, thin slices. Brush the eggplant with olive oil then grill until cooked through.
- Make the filling: Combine the ricotta and cream cheese with finely chopped herbs, chilli, salt and pepper. Add a spoonful of herbed ricotta filling to each of the aubergine slices and roll into tight rolls.
- Make the tomato sauce: To make the tomato sauce, sweat onions and garlic in butter until soft and translucent then add canned tomatoes and herbs and allow to simmer for a few minutes
- Assemble and bake: Add the eggplant rolls and top with mozzarella. Bake until golden and bubbling then top with fresh basil and serve.
Can I freeze eggplant involtini?
You can make the involtini all the way up to baking then freeze. Top with mozzarella before baking until golden and bubbling.
Easy vegetarian dinner recipes
- Cauliflower tikka masala
- Creamy spinach baked ravioli
- Vegetarian lasagna with basil pesto and ricotta
- Easy lemony spring pea pasta
- Vegetable fried rice
- 4 large eggplants sliced into ½cm slices
- olive oil for brushing
For the ricotta filling
- 250 g (½lb) ricotta
- 250 g (½lb) cream cheese room temperature
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley finely chopped
- 2 tbsp fresh basil finely chopped
- 2-3 garlic cloves crushed
- 1-2 tsp red chilli, finely chopped (optional)
- salt and pepper, to taste
For the tomato sauce
- 1 red onion finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves crushed
- 2x 400g (14oz) cans cherry tomatoes
- 1 tsp sugar (optional)
- 2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp Italian herbs
- black pepper, to taste
For the topping
- 1-2 cups grated mozzarella cheese
- fresh basil for serving
- Pre-heat the oven to 200°c/390ºF.
- Brush each aubergine slice with olive oil and place on a very hot griddle pan. Grill for 2-3 minutes per side. Remove from the pan and set aside. Continue until all the aubergine slices have been grilled.
- For the tomato sauce, sweat the onion and garlic until soft and translucent in a splash of olive oil in a large oven-proof pan. Add the tomatoes and seasonings and allow to simmer for 10 minutes.
- To make the ricotta filling, combine all the ingredients and mix well.
- To make the involtini, place a dollop of the ricotta filling onto a slice of aubergine and roll up. Place in the tomato sauce and continue until all the aubergine slices have been used.
- Top with the mozzarella cheese then place in the oven and allow to bake for 10-15 minutes until golden and bubbling.
- Remove from the oven, top with basil and serve.