This dish is the ultimate in comfort food. If you are short on time, assemble the dish in advance, cover, refrigerate, and cook it just before serving.

Makes 4 servings


1 medium eggplant (about 1 pound), cut into ¼-inch-thick rounds

4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

¾ teaspoon salt (adjust based on the saltiness of marinara sauce)

14 to 16 ounces extra-firm tofu, drained and gently pressed with an absorbent towel

¹/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 cup grated mozzarella cheese

1 cup ricotta cheese

1 large zucchini, cut into ¼-inch rounds

2 cups marinara sauce (no added sugar)

¼ cup fresh basil leaves

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese


  • -Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  • -Brush the eggplant with the oil and arrange the rounds in a single layer, or slightly overlapping at the edges, on a large baking sheet (or two, if necessary). Sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon of the salt. Roast until tender, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven but leave the oven on.
  • -Meanwhile, crumble the tofu into a large bowl with the remaining ½ teaspoon salt and the pepper. Combine well. Stir in the mozzarella and ricotta until well mixed.
  • -Cover the bottom of a 9 x 12-inch baking dish with ¾ cup of the marinara sauce. Top with half the basil, then half the roasted eggplant, half the zucchini, and half the mozzarella mixture. Repeat by topping with another ¾ cup of the marinara sauce and the remaining basil, eggplant, zucchini, and mozzarella mixture. Top with the remaining tomato sauce and sprinkle evenly with the Parmesan.
  • -Roast until the eggplant is soft, the casserole is bubbling throughout, and the Parmesan is golden brown on top, about 30 minutes. Serve warm.

Excerpted from the book ALWAYS HUNGRY? By David Ludwig, MD, PhD. Copyright ã 2015 by David Ludwig, MD, PhD. Reprinted by permission of Grand Central Publishing.  All rights reserved.