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Eggplant Stack-Ups



These yummy little Eggplant Stack-Ups are filled with a tasty homemade vegan “cheese” and topped with a spicy tomato sauce, making an excellent choice for a casual supper or dinner party.

Makes 6 servings



1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, with juice
1½ teaspoons Italian seasoning blend
3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon dried crushed rosemary
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 large eggplant
1 can (15 ounces) white beans, drained and rinsed
1/3 cup raw cashews
1/3 cup filtered or spring water
1 clove garlic, chopped
½ teaspoon sea salt
3 slices whole-grain bread, torn into chunks



Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. To make the tomato sauce, put the tomatoes (with juice), 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, 1 teaspoon olive oil, garlic powder, rosemary and 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper in a medium-sized bowl and stir to combine. Trim off the stem end of the eggplant and discard. Cut a 1½- to 2-inch slice off each end of the eggplant and dice. Add the diced eggplant to the tomato sauce and stir to combine.


Slice the center of the eggplant into 1/8- to ¼-inch wide slices, to make 24 slices. Next, put the white beans, cashews, water, chopped garlic, ¼ teaspoon sea salt and 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper in a blender and process until smooth.

Spread half of the tomato sauce mixture evenly in the bottom of a 9 x 12-inch casserole dish. Spread a heaping tablespoon of the cashew mixture evenly on each of 6 eggplant slices. Arrange the 6 slices in a single layer over the top of the tomato sauce in the casserole dish. Spread a heaping tablespoon of the cashew mixture evenly on 6 more eggplant slices. Arrange these 6 slices over the first layer of slices, to start assembling the “stacks.” Continue in this manner with 6 more eggplant slices. Top each stack with a plain eggplant slice. (There will be 4 slices of eggplant in each of 6 stacks). Top each stack with one-sixth of the remaining tomato sauce mixture.


Cover and bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until the eggplant is almost soft.

While the eggplant bakes, put the whole-grain bread chunks, ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning and ¼ teaspoon salt in a blender and pulse on medium-low to process into coarse crumbs. Put the crumbs in a small bowl and add 2 teaspoons olive oil. Gently toss to evenly coat the bread crumbs with the oil. If the bread crumbs still seem dry, add 1 more teaspoon of olive oil and stir to coat.


Remove the cover from the casserole and sprinkle one-sixth of the bread crumb mixture over the top of each stack. Cover and bake for 10 minutes. Uncover and bake for 5 to 10 minutes more or until the eggplant is soft, the crumbs are golden and the sauce is bubbling. Cool 10 minutes. Serve one stack per person with rice, quinoa or whole-grain pasta served on the side.