Easy Ratatouille Recipe

by Kendall
8 cups
1 hr 5 min

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Thought Ratatouille was just an amazing Disney movie? Think again! It’s also an equally amazing French dish that is the perfect one-pan summer meal! Filled with vibrant, colourful and nutritious vegetables like tomatoes, zucchini and eggplant, ratatouille is sure to become a staple in your home this season.

This ratatouille recipe is a low-carb, gluten-free and vegan dish that can be served atop greens or grains, as a side to a main, with eggs for breakfast, or all on its own.

What is Ratatouille made of?

Ratatouille is a course vegetable stew hailing from Nice, France. Several variations of the recipe exist, but the main ingredients are typically onion, zucchini, tomato, eggplant and bell pepper. Though available year round, these vegetables are at their peak from June to August, making this dish especially popular in the summer.

How to Make this French Stew

You can prepare ratatouille a number of ways. Some recipes instruct you to cook the vegetables separately and then combine them in a pot to simmer together. This method is more in line with traditional preparations and creates a perfectly hearty, chunky stew.

When I make ratatouille, I like to prepare it in a deconstructed style. This is a bit of a modern take on the dish. Thinly slicing the vegetables and arranging them as pictured creates a beautiful meal that is great for serving guests. As an added bonus, preparing ratatouille this way transforms it into a one-pan meal! Ten points for fewer dishes and less clean up!

I recommend using a mandoline slicer to cut the vegetables. This will ensure each slice of zucchini, eggplant and tomato are cut to the same thickness. I cut mine about 1/8″ thick, but you could go as thin as 1/16″.

Once you’ve cooked and reduced the tomato sauce, simply arrange the sliced zucchini, eggplant and tomato in an alternating pattern, starting with the outside ring and moving in. Drizzle some olive oil over the veggies and place your pan in the oven to bake. After 30 minutes, remove the pan from the oven, top with some freshly chopped basil and serve hot! Freshly grated Parmesan cheese goes really well on top as well.

What do you serve Ratatouille with?

Ratatouille can be enjoyed SO many ways! Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Serve as a side dish to your main. It goes especially well with grilled proteins such as steak, chicken, lamb, veal, or fish.
  • Scoop it on top of a bowl of grains if you don’t follow a low-carb diet. Quinoa or pasta are great options.
  • Scoop it on a bed of greens for a low-carb meal. Arugula, kale, and spinach are some of my favourites.
  • Add some to an omelette for a heartier breakfast.
  • Serve as a main with a side salad. Try pairing it with my Kale Niçoise Salad for a fully French-inspired night!
Is Ratatouille Healthy to Eat?

Ratatouille is a healthy, wholesome vegan dish made from ingredients that deliver lots of micronutrients to the body. Tomatoes, eggplants and zucchinis are all nutrient-dense foods with lots of vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants.

Ratatouille is primarily made of nightshade vegetables; namely, eggplant, tomato and bell pepper. While healthy, nightshade vegetables can cause inflammation in the body for some people. They can also be particularly troubling for those with autoimmune conditions such as IBD or IBS. If you fall into one of those categories, or if you follow a paleo diet, ratatouille may not be for you.

Looking for other one-pan, low-carb meals? Try my Shakshuka with Feta. It has a similar stew like consistency but with the addition of eggs for a healthy dose of protein and fats!

If you make this ratatouille, please rate it and add your comments below. And tag @thebespokebites in your photos and videos on Instagram for a chance to be featured!

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Recipe details
  • 8  cups
  • Prep time: 15 Minutes Cook time: 50 Minutes Total time: 1 hr 5 min
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  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup diced onion; about 1/2 an onion
  • 1 yellow, red or orange bell pepper, diced; about 1 cup
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 can crushed or diced (and drained) tomatoes (14.5 oz)
  • 2 tablespoons freshly chopped basil
  • 2 medium eggplants sliced about 1/16” – 1/8″ thick
  • 5 Roma tomatoes sliced about 1/16” – 1/8″ thick
  • 2 medium green zucchinis sliced about 1/16” – 1/8″ thick
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Heat olive oil in a 10 inch cast iron skillet over medium-high. Add the garlic, onion and bell pepper and cook until just soft; about 3 minutes. Add the oregano, thyme, salt and tomato paste and cook another 2 minutes.
Add the can of tomatoes and freshly chopped basil. Bring to a slow boil while stirring. Reduce heat to medium-low and let the tomato sauce simmer to cook off some of the liquid; about 5-10 minutes. The mixture should start to thicken up slightly.
Arrange the sliced veggies* on top of the sauce in an alternating pattern such as eggplant, tomato, zucchini. Start with the outer ring of the pan and work your way towards the centre. Drizzle some olive oil over the veggies and season with salt and pepper.
Cover the skillet with tinfoil and place in the oven to bake for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, remove the tinfoil and bake for another 15 minutes. Serve hot.
  • *To ensure all your veggies are sliced to the same thickness, I recommend using a mandoline slicer.
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