Eggplant Rollatini Recipe – A Delicious Vegetarian Eggplant Recipe

Guido Pedrelli
Guido Pedrelli
Italian Cuisine Expert and Food Blogger
Guido Pedrelli
Guido Pedrelli, the mastermind behind Nonna Box, has honed his culinary expertise for decades, inspired by family feasts in Emilia-Romagna. Mentored by his restaurateur nonna, he mastered Italian classics and furthered his skills with professional culinary studies in desserts and gelato making from Mec3. Today, he shares this rich legacy and authentic recipes through Nonna Box.
Expertise: Italian cuisine, Pasta, Pizza, Pastry, Dessert

This vegetarian, gluten-free twist on traditional cannelloni uses grilled eggplant slices in place of pasta for a hearty vegetable-based meal.

Classic cannelloni are stuffed with meat, but this eggplant rollatini recipe with cheese filling mixture makes it a bit lighter and perfect for late-summer suppers. Many of the ingredients can be harvested straight from your own garden or bought fresh at a local farmers market.

It has incredible flavor and eggplant is a good source of fiber, potassium and Vitamin B-6.

Working with eggplant slices can be a little tricky, so make sure not to slice them too thin, and remember to handle them carefully. It is also important not to overcook them; grilling for three minutes on each side is plenty.

Eggplant Cannelloni close up

This recipe doesn’t take long to prepare, but the flavors will make your guests think you spent all day in the kitchen making this special dish.

Serve warm with a fresh salad and enjoy!

Eggplant Cannelloni recipe

Eggplant Rollatini

Everybody knows cannelloni as a delicious pasta dish, but I like to make a lighter, vegetarian version using eggplant slices instead of pasta sheets. This eggplant rollatini recipe will definitely impress you!
4.56 from 9 votes
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Course: Primo
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 230kcal


  • 2 eggplants 1 sliced lengthwise into 1/8-inch slices, the other diced into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons fresh ricotta
  • 3 large basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup hard mozzarella cheese, cubed
  • 1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano freshly grated
  • 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • 3 cups tomato sauce or your favorite jarred marinara sauce
  • 2 tbsp Parmigiano-Reggiano freshly grated - for topping


  • Heat the olive oil in a 12-inch sauté pan, add the cubed eggplant, and fry until golden brown.
    Eggplant Cannelloni recipe
  • Set aside on a plate lined with paper towels.
    Eggplant Cannelloni – A Delicious Vegetarian Eggplant Recipe
  • Preheat a stovetop grill.
  • Place the sliced eggplant on a clean surface and sprinkle generously with salt.
    making the eggplant
  • Marinate for 5 minutes, then pat them dry with a clean kitchen towel.
  • Brush each with 1/2 teaspoon of olive oil.
  • Place the eggplant on to the grill and cook for 3 minutes on each side, or until you get nice grill marks. Set aside and let them cool.
    grilled eggplant on a table
  • Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  • In a food processor, combine the diced eggplant, ricotta, basil, Parmigiano, pepper, and nutmeg. Blend until smooth.
    grilled eggplant in the mixer
  • Lay the grilled eggplant slices flat and spread about 1 tablespoon of the mixture evenly on each.
    eggplant cannelloni close up
  • Add 1 cube of mozzarella cheese and roll the eggplant from bottom to top (that's why is called "eggplant rollatini"), ensuring the mixture stays in the middle of the roll. In a large baking dish, add 2 tablespoons of tomato sauce and place the rolls side by side in the dish.
    rolling the eggplant
  • Top the rolls with the rest of the tomato sauce, sprinkle with Parmigiano, and bake for 25 minutes.
    placing the eggplant on the tray
  • Serve immediately.
    final Eggplant Cannelloni – A Delicious Vegetarian Eggplant Recipe
Calories: 230kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 13mg | Sodium: 652mg | Potassium: 583mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 565IU | Vitamin C: 8.9mg | Calcium: 158mg | Iron: 1.4mg
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