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Ratatouille

5 stars based on 12 votes

Ratatouille

Ratatouille is a bright and chunky summer vegetable stew, rich with olive oil and fragrant with garlic and herbs. The dish hails from Provence, a region in the south of France near the Mediterranean Sea known for its bounty of sun-ripened produce. Since it’s a bit time-intensive to make, I suggest cooking a big batch on a lazy Sunday so you’ll have a tasty and colorful base for meals throughout the week. With a little imagination, there are endless possibilities: serve it alongside roasted or grilled meats and fish; make it shakshuka-style with poached eggs; toss it with pasta; spoon it over grains or creamy polenta; fold it into omelets or frittatas; dollop it over crostini with goat cheese; or eat it straight from the fridge as a snack (it’s delicious cold). If you have more than you can use up, freeze it for a taste of summer once the fall weather comes. And, if possible, make it at least a day ahead of time — ratatouille improves significantly after the flavors have a chance to mingle in the refrigerator.

Begin by heating 3 tablespoons of oil in a large nonstick pan over medium heat. Add the eggplant and season with 1/4 teaspoon salt.

Cook, stirring frequently, until soft and starting to brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

cooked eggplant for ratatouille

Add another tablespoon of oil to the pan (no need to clean it). Add the zucchini and cook, stirring frequently, until tender-crisp, 3 to 4 minutes.

zucchini ratatouille

Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt and transfer to a plate; set aside.

cooked zucchini ratatouille

Add two more tablespoons of oil to the pan and add the onion and bell pepper.

onions and peppers

Cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes.

garlic ratatouille

Add the garlic and continue cooking for about 3 minutes more. Do not brown. Next, add the tomatoes, tomato paste, thyme, sugar, crushed red pepper flakes (if using) and 3/4 teaspoon salt.

tomatoes ratatouille

Cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes are broken down into a sauce, 8 to 10 minutes.

cooked tomatoes ratatouille

Add the cooked eggplant to the pan; bring to a gentle boil, then reduce the heat to low, and simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes or until the eggplant is soft.

eggplant tomatoes ratatouille

Add the zucchini and cook for 1 to 2 minutes more, or until just warmed through. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.

zucchini eggplant tomatoes ratatouille

Sprinkle with fresh basil and thyme, drizzle with a little olive oil if desired, and serve warm or chilled.

basil ratatouille

Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 3 months. Enjoy!

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Ratatouille

Servings: 8 (Makes about 7 cups)
Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Cook Time: 45 Minutes
Total Time: 1 Hour 15 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 large (1.25 lb) eggplant, cut into 1/3-inch cubes
  • Salt
  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
  • 2 medium zucchini (about 1 lb), cut into 1/3-inch cubes
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 red, orange or yellow bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 5 large cloves garlic, chopped
  • 5 large vine-ripened tomatoes (1.75 lb), cut into 1/3-inch cubes, with their juices
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons fresh chopped thyme, plus more for serving
  • 3/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

Instructions

  1. Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a large nonstick pan over medium heat. Add the eggplant and season with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until soft and starting to brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
  2. Add another tablespoon of oil to the pan (no need to clean it). Add the zucchini and cook, stirring frequently, until tender-crisp, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt and transfer to a plate; set aside.
  3. Add two more tablespoons of oil to the pan and add the onion and bell pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and continue cooking for about 3 minutes more. Do not brown. Add the tomatoes and their juices, tomato paste, thyme, sugar, crushed red pepper flakes (if using) and 3/4 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes are broken down into a sauce, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the cooked eggplant to the pan; bring to a gentle boil, then reduce the heat to low, and simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes or until the eggplant is soft. Add the zucchini and cook for 1 to 2 minutes more, or until just warmed through. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Sprinkle with fresh basil and thyme, drizzle with a little olive oil if desired, and serve warm or chilled. Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 3 months (although keep in mind that the zucchini won't stay crisp after being frozen).

Nutrition Information

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  • Per serving (8 servings)
  • Calories: 153
  • Fat: 11 g
  • Saturated fat: 2 g
  • Carbohydrates: 14 g
  • Sugar: 8 g
  • Fiber: 5 g
  • Protein: 3 g
  • Sodium: 392 mg
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

Reviews & Comments

  • 5 stars

    We just had this for lunch using fresh vegetables out of our garden. Fabulous! Only modifications – I peeled the eggplant and tomatoes because I don’t care for the skin. I also added a jalapeno since I didn’t want it to go to waste. Wonderful lunch served with crusty garlic bread.

    - Katy on August 6, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    If you have not tried this recipe yet please do. It is delicious and filling. I went to my local farm stand and purchased all fresh ingredients! This is the second time I have made it. We used the leftovers for lunch the following day and then I sautéed a cup full and topped with an egg and had it for breakfast. Jenn, I love your website. You are a fabulous Chef and I so enjoy cooking your recipes.

    - Joanna on August 4, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Delicious! I’ve been enjoying it so many ways: side dish, shakshuka style for Sunday brunch, straight from the fridge. My husband even enjoyed it and he’s not a big fan of eggplant and tomatoes. Can’t wait to make it again.

    - Liz on August 3, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Wow, really delicious. Served with polenta. Thanks, Jen, for another great recipe.

    - Hedy DeCampo on August 2, 2017 Reply
  • the tomatoes…please clarify…you say do not seed and save the juice…am I using as is or am I squeezing out the juice and using it later. Want to make iot tomorrow so I hope that you can answer my query, Thanks, carol

    - Carol Winkelman on July 31, 2017 Reply
    • Hi Carol, Sorry for the confusion. I’ve updated the recipe. You just want to use all of the tomatoes — seeds and juices included. Hope that clarifies :).

      - Jenn on July 31, 2017 Reply
      • 5 stars

        Cut my veggies a little bigger, about 1/2 inch…labor intensive, but great. Had it for lunch, cold with feta cheese and served it over pasta. Everyone loved it

        - Carol on August 5, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made this and it is delicious! My daughter usually dislikes tomatoes but she had seconds. I served it with naan and am looking forward to eating it for lunch this week!

    - AW on July 30, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This recipe is OUTSTANDING. This is the first time I’ve had ratatouille & it’s so delicious! Thanks for sharing this recipe.

    - Catherine Latsombath on July 30, 2017 Reply
  • Some of the best summer flavors ever.
    For your readers who want to cut down preparation to under 10 minutes, I’ve used the same ingredients many times but use a large casserole dish. Just slice vegies 1/4″ thick, EVOO bottom of dish, first layer eggplant, then zucchini, onion, bell peppers, & tomatoes. No need to peel vegies. Drizzle each layer with EVOO, salt & pepper & thinly sliced garlic, Bake at 375 for 1 hour or until soft. Can cover for first half of the time. Best flavor obtained when eaten warm, not too hot, and also good cold.
    I’ve also just thrown all the vegies on a baking sheet, tossed with EVOO & salt & pepper and roasted at 400 for 45-60 minutes. Do not slice garlic cloves, leave whole and use about 12. Slice eggplant & zucchini a little thicker, cut onions & tomatoes each in about 6-8 wedges depending on size, & peppers in 1/2″ strips. Toss vegies a couple of time while roasting. They caramelize for added flavor.
    Both methods take only minutes to prepare. Casserole creates more juice. Hope you try one. One of my favorite summer side dishes.

    - Pam Simpson on July 30, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Omg I made this dish and it was absolutely delicious, my son walked to the kitchen following the aroma of garlic and olive oil, I used fresh veggies from farmers markets, I didn’t change a thing from the recipe.
    I boiled pasta penne and mixed with some of the ratatouille, sprinkled Parmesan and it was amazing, and satisfying food, also with homemade corn chips at room temperature! Thank you for sharing

    - Maylen Martinez on July 29, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This was excellent! I followed fairly precisely, save for only one pepper and used a large cast iron skillet. Everyone loved it, except for my non-vegetable eating 14 year old son. ;) We have a reasonable amount of leftovers, which I am planning to cook with eggs (as suggested) tomorrrow morning. The chopping was also much easier and more uniform with the use of my “As Seen On TV” Chop Wizard. I highly recommend this recipe! I will definitely make this again. Thanks Jenn!

    - Stephanie on July 29, 2017 Reply
  • Hi Jenn! I’ve got almost everything prepped to cook shortly. If you happen to read this I have a quick question. I don’t have a large non-stick pan. Would you recommend at stainless steel (chicken frying) pan or a large cast iron pan?
    Thanks!

    - Susan on July 29, 2017 Reply
    • Hi Susan, Either one will work. The eggplant may stick a little in the stainless steel pan but it’s easy to scrape up with a metal spatula. Enjoy!

      - Jenn on July 29, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    A perfect summertime recipe! The best part of this recipe is the taste and texture of the vegetables. I served it to a friend who is a very good cook. She loved how the zucchini still had a little crunch. Extra fresh herbs really gave it a great kick. I served it with a chicken sausage and made a great meal. Perfect without meat too.

    - Karen on July 29, 2017 Reply
  • Hi Jen,

    This sounds delicious!

    Could I use canned diced tomatoes instead of the fresh tomatoes?

    - Lynda on July 27, 2017 Reply
    • Definitely :)

      - Jenn on July 27, 2017 Reply
  • My husband doesn’t eat eggplant. What would you suggest as a substitute?

    - Highlands Gal on July 27, 2017 Reply
    • I’d use more peppers or squash. Enjoy!

      - Jenn on July 27, 2017 Reply
  • I am looking forward to trying this, what protein dish do you recommend with this?

    - Christina on July 27, 2017 Reply
    • Hi Christina, I’d serve it will grilled steaks, chicken or fish. The ratatouille is basically a sauce and side dish all in one, so best to keep the main dish simple.

      - Jenn on July 27, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    omg haven’t made this in years. I printed your recipe since mine is ‘somewhere’ and this looks mouth watering delicious. As soon as your email popped up and saw Ratatouille, I told my friend I’m going to make it, but this time I’m going to roast the veggies in the oven as I know how labor intensive it is, but well worth it. Love the idea of yellow peppers as green peppers and me do not get along. My old version I added mushrooms and some hot Italian sausage, but for a meatless dish, this is ideal. Thanks for all your wonderful emails. Happy summer!

    - Cookie on July 27, 2017 Reply
  • I am looking forward to trying this recipe this summer! Should the tomatoes be peeled or did you use them with skins on? Also, would canned diced tomatoes work? (For winter time when we don’t have our own tomatoes)
    Thanks!

    - Becky B. on July 27, 2017 Reply
    • Hi Becky, No need to peel or seed the tomatoes — and yes, I think canned tomatoes would work very well.

      - Jenn on July 27, 2017 Reply
      • Thanks for the info! That helps.

        - Becky B. on August 3, 2017 Reply
  • I don’t eat bell peppers. Can I just add more onions or do you have another suggestion?

    - Judi on July 27, 2017 Reply
    • It’s fine to just leave out the pepper, Judi – no other changes necessary. Enjoy!

      - Jenn on July 27, 2017 Reply
      • 5 stars

        I have made this dish many time, so easy to prepare. I toss all veggies on a foil lined sheet pan, stir in oil and seasonings and roast in the oven. I love the caramelization. Clean up is minimal, just put veggies in food container and toss foil.

        - Karen Calanchini on August 17, 2017 Reply

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