Eco-innovation, as a new concept, and green technologies are central to the Europe’s future and at the core of the European Union policies to boost competitiveness, create jobs, and generate sustainable growth for years to come. In this context, eco-innovation is a significant tool that combines decreased environmental impact with a positive socioeconomic impact. This paper highlights the prominent role of eco-innovation and investigates still scarcely explored impact assessment of GDP growth, quality of institutions, and recycling rates on the eco-innovation index in the 28 European Union member states. Specifically, the set of regression analyses that use panel estimation models was undertaken and the system GMM estimator with robust standard errors was used. Econometric analysis indicates that GDP growth rate, quality of institutions, and recycling rate of municipal waste had a statistically significant and positive effect on eco-innovation in the period 2010-2016.