Vasili's Pastitsio

Prep Time
Cook Time
2h 10m
Ready In

"This is one of hubby's favorite Greek foods, but as in any ethnic family, it's tough for an outsider (especially a non-Greek outsider!) to compete. Ok, so this one is not as good as SIL Athena's pastitsio (admittedly the best I've ever had) but it's as close as I'm going to come! Even Vasili says it's very, very good... This recipe is a bit time consuming and messy, but it's definitely worth it all!"

Original recipe yields 6 servings


  • Serving Size: 1 (369.1 g)
  • Calories 616.7
  • Total Fat - 40 g
  • Saturated Fat - 18.4 g
  • Cholesterol - 227 mg
  • Sodium - 709.9 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate - 29.8 g
  • Dietary Fiber - 2.8 g
  • Sugars - 7.1 g
  • Protein - 34.6 g
  • Calcium - 256.5 mg
  • Iron - 4.2 mg
  • Vitamin C - 2.9 mg
  • Thiamin - 0.3 mg

Step 1

Cook the macaroni in a large pot of salted water for 10 minutes or until al-dente. Drain and return to the pan.

Step 2

Melt the butter in a small saucepan until golden in color, then pour it over the macaroni. Add the Nutmeg and half the cheese and season to taste with salt and pepper. Let cool and then stir in the egg. Set aside.

Step 3

In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil then add the onion and garlic. Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes or until the onion is soft. Increase the heat and add the ground beef. Stir for 5 minutes or until the meat is browned.

Step 4

Add the wine and cook over high heat for 1 minute, or until the wine has nearly evaporated. Add the stock, tomato paste, oregano, salt and pepper. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 15-20 minutes.

Step 5

Preheat the oven to 350F, and lightly grease a 1.5 liter baking dish.

Step 6

While the meat simmers, make the béchamel sauce by melting the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute until pale and foaming. Remove from heat and gradually stir in the milk. Return to the flame and whisk constantly until the sauce comes to a boil and thickens. Reduce the heat and simmer for 2 minutes. Add the nutmeg and season with salt and pepper. Allow the sauce to cool a little bit and then temper the beaten eggs with a bit of the sauce. Stir the eggs into the sauce.

Step 7

Add about four tablespoons of the béchamel sauce to the meat sauce and stir to combine.

Step 8

Spread half the meat sauce in the prepared baking dish. Follow with 1/2 the pasta. Repeat the layers. With the back of a spatula, press the pasta down firmly to pack.

Step 9

Spread the béchamel sauce over the pasta and sprinkle the remaining cheese on top. Bake for 45 minutes or until the top is golden. Let it stand for at least 15 minutes before serving.

Tips & Variations

No special items needed.



Oh my, this was delicious! And it was so easy to prepare, too. I loved the hint of nutmeg, it add a bit of flavor and warmth to the dish. We all loved it. Thanks, JostLori.

review by:
(26 Feb 2019)


Delicious! As stated in description, it is a bit time consuming and uses a lot of utensils, but so worth it. I made one change—used ground lamb instead of beef and it turned out wonderful. The bechamel firmed up almost to a pastry consistency. I recommend putting the baking dish on a foil lined baking sheet, as the dish may bubble over while baking (I did, because my baking dish was quite full.)

review by:
(18 Feb 2018)


We loved this recipe! This tasted authentically Greek. The consistency was perfect, too. The meat and pasta combination was fabulous and the bechamel sauce firmed up nicely. Great flavor! I didn't think 5 oz of pasta seemed like enough, so I used 8 oz. In hindsight, the 5 oz. would have worked..ha! Thank you for posting this winner!

review by:
(24 Aug 2016)