If there’s one essential truth about ratatouille, it’s that it has to be built around the summery trio of eggplant, summer squash, and tomato. Beyond that, everything is fair game. No two chefs can agree on how precisely to make it—Julia Child insisted on sauteeing each of the ingredients individually before baking them casserole style, while Joël Robuchon prefers to simmer them in a pot. Plus, from brunch-worthy recipes with eggs to inventive takes like ratatouille grilled cheese, it’s hard to say exactly which is the best way to eat it. No matter which of the following ways you choose to savor this Provençal classic, they’re all prime examples of a dish that really lets the vegetables do the talking.
Our take on classic ratatouille cuts down on the cooking time while still highlighting the individual flavors of each vegetable. It could easily work as a side to some sort of protein, but it’s also hearty enough to enjoy as the main attraction. Get our Ratatouille recipe.
2. Ratatouille Pasta
It doesn’t take much to turn ratatouille into a complete meal. Just toss it with pasta for a savory, one plate dinner. Get our Ratatouille Pasta recipe.
3. Ratatouille Crostini with Pecorino
It can easily slip into hors d’oeuvres territory, too. Just grab a baguette and get topping. Get our Ratatouille Crostini with Pecorino recipe.
4. Pistou Deviled Eggs with Ratatouille
No matter whether you serve them at brunch, during a cocktail party, or just as a sophisticated snack, these ratatouille-topped deviled eggs with herbs deliver tons of flavor in a petite package. Get our Pistou Deviled Eggs with Ratatouille recipe.
5. Ratatouille Tart
A ratatouille tart is not only a stunning way to present your vegetables, it’s easy to divvy up and transport to potlucks and more. You’ll be sure to impress everyone who gathers ‘round for a slice. Get the recipe here.
6. Ratatouille Clafoutis
A clafoutis is essentially a custard with chunks of fruit or vegetables baked right into it. The eggy, milky batter is a natural host for ratatouille’s bits and pieces. Get the recipe here.
7. Ratatouille Grilled Cheese
Melty cheese and toasted bread make pretty much anything taste better. But when it’s ratatouille that’s between the slices, you know you’re in for an extra special treat. Get the recipe here.
8. Ratatouille with Poached Eggs
All ratatouille needs to go from dinnertime fare to a major brunch main is a few eggs and perhaps some toast to sop it all up with. Get the recipe here.
9. Grilled Ratatouille Salad
If you’re one of those cooks who grills just about everything during the summer months, guess what—you can grill your ratatouille, too! This warm salad gives the vegetables a nice, smoky char. Get the recipe here.
10. Roasted Ratatouille Lasagna
Just look at this cheesy, overflowing goodness. A lasagna like this could make full-grown adults weak at the knees and convince vegetable haters to see the light. Get the recipe here.
11. Ratatouille with Spicy Italian Chicken Sausage and Creamy Polenta
Ratatouille may be from the south of France, but that doesn’t mean it’s not up for a little border hopping. It gets cross-cultural here with Italian-style sausage and polenta. Get the recipe here.
12. Ratatouille Barley Salad
Barley may be the grain of wintery soups and hearty whole grain risottos, but when tossed with ratatouille’s vegetables in this light salad, it becomes an instant summer classic. Get the recipe here.
13. Ratatouille Style Pizza Boats
Ratatouille belongs on pizza because, well, everything is awesome on a pizza. Break out the extra cheese for this one. Get the recipe here.
Miki Kawasaki is a New York City–based food writer and graduate of Boston University's program in Gastronomy. Few things excite her more than a well-crafted sandwich or expertly spiced curry. If you ever run into her at a dinner party, make sure to hit her up for a few pieces of oddball culinary trivia.