Oven-baked ratatouille in cast iron.

Oven-baked Ratatouille (Keto, Paleo)

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No more boring side dishes with this eye-catching, oven-baked ratatouille! Healthy, keto, paleo, and so good!

Recently, my boys watched the computer-animated movie Ratatouille, and boy, were they excited when I told them that we will have ratatouille for dinner! Now, while my version of course is not as stunning as Remy’s (the rat and main character in the movie), it comes pretty close!

Everything about this dish is inviting, from the saucy base, to the rainbow-colored veggies, to the balsamic drizzle! What I also like about this oven-baked version is that (other than all that slicing) it’s actually fairly simple to prepare! It will make a beautiful side dish that’s both low-carb and paleo, and is perfect for special holiday dinners.

What is ratatouille?

Oven-baked ratatouille in cast iron.

Ratatouille, of course, wasn’t invented by the famous kids’ movie, but is actually a beloved French dish. Many variations exist, but common ingredients include tomatoes, zucchini, eggplants, peppers, and onions.

What makes this dish so special, is its creamy consistency and combination of flavors. It truly is a dish for all the senses – eyes, nose, and mouth!

Tips for making an eye-catching, oven-baked ratatouille!

Sauce. The base is made up of tomatoes, pepper, onion, and spices that are cooked and then pureed. You can skip this step and simply use a store-bought tomato sauce for your base. Of course, homemade is always yummier!

Vegetables. Try to find vegetables that are the same size for the arrangement to look as neatly as possible. My eggplant was way bigger than my zucchini and yellow squash, so I simply quartered it and that worked well. Slice the veggies thinly. If I had a mandoline slicer, I would have used it!

Baking dish. I actually used my 10-inch cast iron pan for preparing the sauce AND for baking the dish since it’s oven-safe. If you don’t have an oven-save pan, transfer the sauce to a round or oval ceramic (or glass) baking dish.

Arrangement. Layer the sauce at the bottom of your baking dish (or oven-safe pan). Make stacks of your sliced vegetables (in an alternating pattern) and layer them on top of the sauce. I layered my veggies in a circle around the edges and two rows on the inside of the dish. Depending on the size of your dish, you can also do a spiral. Drizzle with the balsamic-oil vinaigrette and bake.

Bake. To prevent the veggies from burning, cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Then uncover and cook for 15 more minutes. The ratatouille tastes even better the second or third day!

Ratatouille – an exciting side dish for all senses!

Oven-baked ratatouille in cast iron.

It would be great if you left feedback on this recipe by commenting and hitting the 5-star rating button. I’d love to hear from you!

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Oven-baked ratatouille in cast iron.

Oven-baked Ratatouille (Keto, Paleo)

No more boring side dishes with this eye-catching, oven-baked ratatouille! Healthy, keto, paleo, and so good!
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Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine French, Keto
Servings 8 servings
Calories 72 kcal

Equipment

  • 10-inch oven-safe pan (cast iron) or baking dish (e.g. pie casserole)
  • blender or immersion blender for sauce

Ingredients
  

Sauce*

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ small onion diced
  • 1 clove garlic pressed or minced
  • 1 green pepper diced
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 4 basil leaves fresh
  • ¼ tsp thyme dried
  • salt and pepper to taste

Layered Vegetables

  • 1 medium zucchini
  • 1 medium yellow squash
  • 1 small eggplant
  • 2 Roma tomatoes

Balsamic Vingaigrette

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ tsp thyme dried
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
 

Sauce

  • Heat oil in pan. Add onion, garlic, and pepper, and cook over medium heat until soft (about 5 minutes). Add canned tomatoes, basil, and thyme, and simmer for 15 minutes until sauce is thickened (start slicing veggies while your sauce is simmering). With a blender or immersion blender, puree sauce.
  • Pour sauce back into pan (if it's an oven-safe pan) or pour it into baking dish.

Layered Vegetables

  • Preheat oven to 400 °F.
  • Slice vegetables thinly. You can also halve or quarter slices to match them in size. Make stacks of your sliced vegetables (in an alternating pattern) and layer them on top of the sauce. I layered my veggies in a circle around the edges and two rows on the inside of the dish. Depending on the size of your dish, you can also do a spiral or just rows.

Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • In a small bowl, whisk together all the vinaigrette ingredients. Brush vinaigrette on the layered vegetables.

Baking

  • Cover dish with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 more minutes. Serve right away or store covered in the fridge for 1 week. Ratatouille tastes great the next day!

Notes

Sauce. Instead of preparing the sauce from scratch, you can also use a store-bought tomato/marinara sauce. You will need 1 cup of sauce.
Slicing. Try to find vegetables that are the same size for the arrangement to look as neatly as possible. My eggplant was way bigger than my zucchini and yellow squash, so I simply quartered it and that worked well. Slice the veggies thinly. If I had a mandoline slicer, I would have used it!

Nutrition

Serving: 1servingCalories: 72kcalCarbohydrates: 9gProtein: 2gFat: 4gFiber: 3gSugar: 6g
Keyword French side dish, keto side dish, Paleo side dish
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