Giada De Laurentiis Has a Secret for Crispy, Light Eggplant Parm (and It’s Not Deep Frying)

Some nights (like tonight), we want to fall face-first into gooey, cheesy satisfaction. But that whole rock-in-the-stomach thing? Not exactly a fan. That’s where our cooking idol Giada De Laurentiis comes in. She showed us how to tweak any eggplant Parmesan recipe so it’s twice as delicious but doesn’t weigh us down.

What you need: A grill or grill pan, olive oil, oregano and ingredients from your favorite eggplant parm recipe. 

What you do: Coat the sliced eggplant in olive oil and season it with oregano. Instead of deep-frying it, grill it on both sides over medium high until it’s cooked through and lightly charred. Then layer it as you normally would in the casserole dish. Or do as Giada does and make neat little eggplant stacks and bake them in a muffin tin for easy portions.

The results: A dish that’s never oily, heavy or gummy. It’s crispy and slightly smoky but still melt-in-your-mouth saucy and cheesy. Basically, an elevated version of your favorite comfort food that’ll keep you coming back for seconds (and thirds).