Baked Ratatouille is the ultimate end of summer meal. Made with tomatoes, zucchini, summer squash, and eggplant that have been roasted to perfection, it's a deliciously light dinner. White beans have been added to give it a little oomph. Serve it with pasta, rice, or potatoes – or as is! This easy recipe is vegan and gluten-free.
Summer and I don't really get along. I don't function well in hot weather, the humidity gives me a headache, I burn just thinking about sunshine, and don't get me started on the mosquitoes. Summer produce redeems the season for me, though. I could probably live off nothing but nectarines, peaches, cherries, zucchini, eggplant, and tomatoes.
Even though I have air conditioning, I rarely turn on the oven in the hot months. I don't want to heat my kitchen, and I definitely don't want super hot roasted food. In September, just about anything goes when it comes to the kitchen, though.
This baked ratatouille recipe uses fresh, summer produce and the oven, so it's a great in-between-the-seasons dish.
Ratatouille is usually stewed, but if you ask me, roasted veggies taste better. White beans don't usually show up in traditional ratatouille, but I think they complement the vegetables nicely. They had a little heft to the meal to make it more filling. I use them in my Grilled Ratatouille Sandwich too.
What is Ratatouille?
I'm going to admit that when I first heard the word "ratatouille", I had sneaking suspicion that it did have something to do with rats. This was before the movie came out, and all I knew about it was that it was French. I have nothing against French people, but at the time my only knowledge of French food was that it wasn't very vegan-friendly.
As I learned when the movie came out was that it's actually a very vegan-friendly dish. It’s a stewed vegetable dish that originated in Nice, France. It’s traditionally made with tomatoes, onions, zucchini, eggplant, bell peppers, and garlic, along with herbs such as marjoram, basil, and thyme, or a mix of herbs, such as herbes de Provence.
Herbs de Provence
Ratatouille is traditionally made with herbs de Provence, which is a mix of dried herbs that usually includes thyme, basil, rosemary, tarragon, savory, marjoram, oregano, and bay leaf. I doubt you have a jar of it laying around in your kitchen, and I'm sure you don't want to run out and buy one just for this recipe. So I've made things simple and used a little basil, thyme, oregano, and rosemary. If you do happen to have herbs de Provence, you can use 2 teaspoon of it.
Slicing Your Vegetables
You'll want your veggies to be about ¼-inch thick, which might be little tricky to do. My food processor has a slicing blade that cuts vegetables into thin slices in a matter of seconds, and I like to use it for this recipe. A mandoline slicer works really well for slicing vegetables, too. You can carefully use a sharp knife, if you're up to the challenge of slicing them by hand.
How to Make Baked Ratatouille
This recipe is super simple!
- First you sauté the onion and garlic in a large pan with a little oil.
- Then you mix in the white beans and spread the mixture on the bottom of a small casserole dish.
- Next you layer your vegetables on top of the beans vertically, alternating slices of different vegetables. Try a slice of tomato, a slice of zucchini, a slice of summer squash,and a slice of eggplant. Repeat the pattern.
- Then you cover the dish with foil and bake it for 45 minutes in a 400° oven. You remove the foil and bake the dish for 15 more minutes.
How to Customize your Baked Ratatouille
You can easily make this recipe your own.
- You can omit the beans and onions layer, if you just want a vegetable dish.
- If you don't like one of vegetables used, you can omit it and double up on a different veggie.
- Slices of sweet potato or white potato can be added in, to give the recipe a little more heft, if you like.
- You can add slices of red bell peppers to the mix, too, if you're feeling peppery.
Serving Your Ratatouille
Serve your ratatouille with crusty bread and olives for a light meal. It goes great with roasted potatoes, cooked pasta, steamed rice.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 15-ounce can cannellini beans drained and rinsed
- 2 medium eggplants thinly sliced, about ¼-inch thick
- 2 medium zucchinis thinly sliced, about ¼-inch thick
- 2 medium summer squashes thinly sliced, about ¼-inch thick
- 4 medium roma or plum tomatoes thinly sliced, about ¼-inch thick
- ¼ cup vegetable stock
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon dried rosemary
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and have a small casserole dish ready, about 11- x 7-inches or 9- x 9-inches.
- In a medium pan, saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil over medium heat until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add the beans.
- Place all of the vegetable slices into a large bowl and toss with the vegetable stock, dried herbs, salt, and pepper.
- Spread the onion and bean mixture along the bottom of a baking dish.
- Layer the vegetables on top of the onion and bean mixture vertically, alternating slices of different vegetables. Try a slice of tomato, a slice of zucchini, a slice of summer squash,and a slice of eggplant. Repeat the pattern.
- Cover the dish with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 15 more minutes.
- Divide into 4 servings. Serve hot.
Originally posted Updated September 15, 2021
More Summer Produce Recipes You Might Enjoy Include:
- Grilled Ratatouille Sandwich
- Roasted Ratatouille Salad
- Grilled Eggplant Wraps with Spicy Tahini Slaw
- Quick and Crispy Zucchini Fritters from Vegan Comfort Cooking by Melanie McDonald