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Lemon Basil Ricotta Stuffed Involtini sprinkled with fresh basil in a frying pan

Lemon Basil Ricotta Stuffed Eggplant Involtini

Lemon Basil Ricotta Stuffed Eggplant Involtini are fantastic for your summer lunches or dinners. Vibrant with Italian flavors of roasted eggplants, fresh ricotta, lemon zest, and fresh basil leaves, the Involtini are baked on a layer of garlic tomato sauce, with bursting cherry tomatoes. The flavor profile of these Involtini makes them the perfect match for a light and fruity Sangiovese-based wine, such as Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, Rosso di Montalcino, or Chianti Classico.

  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x



For the roasted eggplant slices

2 large eggplants

8 tablespoons (120 ml) of extra-virgin olive oil

For the lemon, basil, and ricotta filling

2 cups (500 g) of ricotta cheese

the zest of 3 lemons

1 and ½ cups (30 g) of basil leaves, thinly chopped

1 tablespoon (5 ml) of extra-virgin olive oil

⅛ teaspoon of freshly cracked green pepper

¼ teaspoon of sea salt

For the garlicky tomato sauce

1 can (2 cups / 400 g) of good-quality tomato pulp

3 big cloves of garlic, crushed

3 tablespoons (45 ml) of extra-virgin olive oil

¼ cup (50 ml) of water

¼ teaspoon of sea salt

For the topping

1 cup (100 g) of grated Pecorino cheese (or Parmesan)

1 and ½ cups (200 g) of cherry tomatoes (feel free to use a mix of varieties and colors)

a handful of fresh basil leaves, to sprinkle on top just before serving


Start by preparing the tomato sauce

  1. In a saucepan, heat 3 tablespoons (45 ml) of extra-virgin olive oil with the crushed garlic cloves.
  2. As soon as the garlic starts becoming fragrant (and not brown), add the tomato pulp, ¼ cup (50 ml) of water, and a pinch of sea salt.
  3. Let the sauce simmer for 15 minutes over low flame and stir regularly.
  4. Set aside.

Meanwhile, slice and roast the eggplants

  1. Preheat the oven to 480°F (250°C).
  2. Wash and cut off the stems and blossoms of the eggplants.
  3. Using a mandolin or a sharp knife, slice the eggplants lengthwise, into 0,2 inches (0,5cm) thick slices.
  4. Line the eggplant slices onto a parchment-lined oven tray.
  5. Drizzle the eggplant slices with 4 tablespoons (60 ml) of extra-virgin olive oil.
  6. Roast them in the oven until golden (about 15 minutes), then set them aside.
  7. Repeat the process as you will need to make two batches to roast all the eggplant slices.

Prepare the filling

  1. In a mixing bowl, add the ricotta cheese, lemon zests, thinly chopped basil, extra-virgin olive oil, cracked green pepper, and sea salt.
  2. Stir with a spoon until well combined.

Assemble the Involtini

  1. Preheat your oven to 390°F (200°C).
  2. In a large baking dish, pour the tomato sauce and spread it evenly.
  3. Then, on each roasted eggplant slice, spoon a tablespoon of the ricotta mix on the thinner edge and roll gently.
  4. Transfer the rolls to the baking dish, on top of the tomato sauce.
  5. Repeat the process until all the slices are stuffed and the baking dish is filled.
  6. Add the cherry tomatoes on top.
  7. Sprinkle the Pecorino cheese.
  8. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until slightly golden and bubbly.
  9. Sprinkle extra fresh basil leaves and serve immediately.
  • Author: Ninon
  • Prep Time: 35
  • Cook Time: 55
  • Category: Main Course
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Diet: Vegetarian


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 505
  • Sugar: 3.6 g
  • Sodium: 279.1 mg
  • Fat: 39.3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 29.4 g
  • Protein: 14.7 g
  • Cholesterol: 42.2 mg

Keywords: Eggplant involtini, lemon basil ricotta stuffing, tomato sauce