Grilled Eggplant Parmesan with Zucchini {Vegetarian}

20 minute meal! This Grilled Eggplant Parmesan recipe with zucchini is a fantastic vegetarian option for your next barbecue! And it couldn’t be easier to make.
Stacks of grilled eggplant, zucchini, cheese and tomato sauce on white plate with basil.

Stacks of grilled eggplant, zucchini, cheese and tomato sauce on white plate with basil.

Let’s get right to the point – this healthy grilled Eggplant Parmesan is nothing short of spectacular, in both presentation and flavor. The flavors remind me of some of the best Eggplant Parmesan dishes I’ve eaten in restaurants and at friends’ tables, but the calorie and fat total rings in far less in this grilled version.

I have to ‘fess up – this eggplant Parmesan doesn’t actually include Parmesan. I was aiming for a vegetarian recipe and Parmesan cheeses contain rennet, which is an enzyme found in the lining of the stomach of calves and goats. So yeah, not vegetarian! But thanks to the flavor and texture of melted fresh mozzarella, I promise that you’ll never miss the Parmesan!

Eggplant is a veggie that often isn’t appreciated until adulthood (still working on my kids!), but I was lucky to have a mum who shared her love of eggplant with me when I was young by always slipping me a bite of moussaka at our favorite Greek restaurant. I have a feeling she’ll love this recipe.

Tips for making this easy Grilled Eggplant Parmesan recipe:

This recipe comes together very quickly, making it ideal for a quick weeknight meal or an easy entertaining option.

Start by preheating your grill to medium heat.

For the eggplant, use a large globe eggplant rather than long, skinny or miniature versions. Cut the eggplant into 1/2-inch slices (total 12 slices). Cut the zucchini in half crosswise. Cut each half into 1/4/-inch slices (total 8 slices).

To make it easy to transport the vegetables to and from the grill, arrange the eggplant and zucchini slices on a baking sheet. Lightly coat on both sides with olive oil spray, and season with salt and pepper.

The veggies don’t take long to cook. The goal is tender, but not floppy and overcooked. About 4 minutes per side for the eggplant and 3 minutes per side for the zucchini should do the trick.

In the last 30 seconds of cooking, divide the mozzarella evenly between the eggplant rounds. Re-close the barbecue lid and cook for additional 30 seconds, or until the mozzarella is melted.

Next up…assembling the towers. Each tower will have three layers of cheese-topped eggplant (eggplant on the very bottom and top layers), alternating with two layers of grilled zucchini, tomato sauce and fresh basil.

Overhead photo of eggplants round topped with melted cheese and tomato sauce on white plates.

Overhead photo of eggplants round topped with melted cheese and tomato sauce on white plates.

How to make healthy eggplant Parmesan:

I realize that the claim of “no breading or frying” isn’t always a selling point but, in this case, the clean flavors of the grilled eggplant and zucchini, along with the tomato sauce and basil, are more than satisfying.

You’ll cut down on calories and fat grams dramatically by grilling instead of frying, and skipping the breading altogether.

When you’re adding cheese to a recipe, make it count! Using high-quality, flavorful cheese means that you’ll be able to use less of it – more flavor bang for your buck! Fresh mozzarella, rather than the processed stuff, makes all the difference in the world!

Is this recipe vegetarian or vegan?

Vegetarian, yes. Vegan, no. As I mentioned in the opening paragraphs, I omitted the Parmesan because it is not a vegetarian ingredient (it contains rennet).

Traditionally, mozzarella cheeses also contained rennet, but most modern versions use a microbial rennet. Be sure to check the ingredients list or the manufacturer’s website to double check if this is a concern for you.

If you’re looking for a vegan recipe but don’t want to use vegan cheese, check out these vegan recipes.

Stacks of grilled eggplant, zucchini, cheese and tomato sauce on white plate with basil.

Stacks of grilled eggplant, zucchini, cheese and tomato sauce on white plate with basil.

OTHER HEALTHY EGGPLANT RECIPES:
Roasted Vegetable Lasagna Rolls {Cookin’ Canuck}
Grilled Eggplant & Zucchini Salad with Feta, Chickpeas & Mint {Cookin’ Canuck}
Mediterranean Lentils with Roasted Eggplant & Tomatoes {Vanilla & Bean}
Greek Eggplant & Potatoes {Heather Christo}

Stacks of grilled eggplant, zucchini, cheese and tomato sauce on white plate with basil.Stacks of grilled eggplant, zucchini, cheese and tomato sauce on white plate with basil.

Grilled Zucchini & Eggplant Parmesan Recipe {Vegetarian}

20 minute meal! This Grilled Eggplant Parmesan recipe with zucchini is a fantastic vegetarian option for your next barbecue! And it couldn’t be easier to make. 276 calories and 8 Weight Watchers SP

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Course: Entrees

Cuisine: Italian

Keyword: Gluten Free, Grilling Recipes, Vegetarian

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 9 minutes

Total Time: 19 minutes

Servings: 4 Servings

Calories: 275.6kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 1 1/2 pound eggplant
  • 1 large zucchini
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 ounces fresh mozzarella thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 cups tomato sauce your favorite kind
  • 10 large basil leaves

Instructions

  • Preheat the grill to medium heat.

  • Cut the eggplant into ½-inch slices (total 12 slices). Cut the zucchini in half crosswise. Cut each half into ¼/-inch slices (total 8 slices).

  • Lay the eggplant and zucchini slices on a baking sheet. Brush on both sides with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

  • Grill until the vegetables are tender, but not overcooked, about 4 minutes per side for the eggplant and 3 minutes per side for the zucchini.

  • In the last 30 seconds of cooking, divide the mozzarella evenly between the eggplant rounds. Re-close the barbecue lid and cook for additional 30 seconds, or until the mozzarella is melted.

  • Lay one eggplant round on each of 4 plates. Top each with 2 tbsp tomato sauce. Next, divide half of the basil between the 4 portions.

  • Top each with one zucchini slice. Continue stacking in this order, ending with an eggplant round and tomato sauce. Spoon any remaining tomato sauce around each stack.

  • Serve immediately.

Notes

Weight Watchers Points: 8 (Blue – Freestyle SmartPoints), 8 (Green), 8 (Purple)

Nutrition

Serving: 1Stack | Calories: 275.6kcal | Carbohydrates: 21.3g | Protein: 11.1g | Fat: 16.5g | Saturated Fat: 5.8g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 752.1mg | Potassium: 866.8mg | Fiber: 6.9g | Sugar: 11.9g


Tried this recipe?If you make this recipe, I’d love to see it on Instagram! Just use the hashtag #COOKINCANUCK and I’ll be sure to find it.

This post was originally published on June 18, 2012 and updated on August 3, 2020.

Disclosure: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

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