Inspired by the classic French dish and motivated to simplify our weekday dinners, my wife and I developed this super-easy pan version of ratatouille. It requires some chopping up front, but once everything is prepared, the cooking process has very few steps, allowing you to get other things ready for the meal, take the dog out, etc. It has been a go-to, time-saving dish since we welcomed a baby boy this summer. Pan-patootie makes an excellent side dish… a few big scoops make a nice bed for a grilled chicken breast or pork chop. Served with brown rice, it makes a very nice, warm, hearty meal. We also enjoy it as a chunky sauce over baked spaghetti squash. It gets better with age, too… making an even simpler meal the next day with what’s left! It’s tough to mess up. Add or subtract vegetables as they’re in season. Just count on it taking about an hour to simmer on the stovetop. Everything else is very flexible.



  • Preparation Time: 00:25
  • Cook Time: 00:40
  • Cuisine: French
  • Servings: 6


  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced into thin discs
  • 1 medium summer squash (the long, skinny, yellow kind), sliced into thin discs
  • 1 small eggplant, cut into small cubes (leave skin on)
  • 1 medium onion, halved and sliced
  • 1 large red bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 large green bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 8-10 mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, finely diced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 (16 oz) can diced tomatoes with liquid
  • Italian seasoning and Kosher salt to taste
  • Freshly-grated Parmesan cheese


  • 1Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large (12-inch) pan.
  • 2Add sliced onion and garlic, stir and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.
  • 3Add zucchini, squash, eggplant and tomatoes to pan, stir to mix.
  • 4Cover and reduce heat to medium-low.
  • 5Simmer about 25 minutes.
  • 6Remove cover and add peppers, mushrooms and a few dashes of Italian seasoning and salt and give a few good stirs to mix.
  • 7Increase heat to medium.
  • 8Cover and cook 15 minutes.
  • 9Uncover pan, give a few good stirs to mix and reduce heat to low.
  • 10Serve when you’re ready! It’ll be fine covered on low if your meal isn’t quite ready.