Greek Baklava Recipe


Indulge in the irresistible flavors of Greece with our authentic Greek Baklava recipe. This beloved dessert is a true masterpiece of Mediterranean cuisine, featuring layers of crispy phyllo dough, aromatic nuts, and sweet honey syrup. In this article, we’ll take you on a culinary journey to discover the art of making traditional Greek Baklava and share our step-by-step recipe for you to recreate this iconic sweet treat at home.

Exploring Greek Baklava: Greek Baklava is a time-honored dessert that holds a special place in Greek culinary heritage. With its origins dating back centuries, this exquisite pastry has become synonymous with celebrations, holidays, and family gatherings throughout Greece and beyond. Each bite of Greek Baklava is a symphony of textures and flavors, from the crispiness of the phyllo dough to the richness of the nut filling, all balanced by the sweetness of honey and fragrant spices.

Unveiling the Recipe: Let’s delve into the art of making Greek Baklava. Here’s what you’ll need to create this delectable dessert:


For the Baklava:

  • 1 pound (450g) phyllo dough, thawed
  • 1 1/2 cups (200g) mixed nuts (such as walnuts, pistachios, and almonds), finely chopped
  • 1 cup (225g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

For the Honey Syrup:

  • 1 cup (240ml) water
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (240ml) honey
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 strip of lemon zest


  1. Prepare the Nut Filling:
    • In a mixing bowl, combine the finely chopped nuts with ground cinnamon and ground cloves. Set aside.
  2. Assemble the Baklava:
    • Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Brush a 9×13-inch baking dish with melted butter. Place a sheet of phyllo dough in the bottom of the dish and brush it with melted butter. Repeat layering phyllo sheets and brushing with butter until you have used half of the phyllo dough.
  3. Add the Nut Filling:
    • Sprinkle a generous layer of the nut mixture over the phyllo dough in the baking dish, spreading it evenly. Continue layering the remaining phyllo sheets on top, brushing each layer with melted butter.
  4. Score and Bake:
    • Using a sharp knife, carefully score the top layer of phyllo dough into diamond or square shapes. This will make it easier to cut the baklava after baking. Place the baking dish in the preheated oven and bake for 45-50 minutes, or until the baklava is golden brown and crisp.
  5. Prepare the Honey Syrup:
    • While the baklava is baking, prepare the honey syrup. In a saucepan, combine water, sugar, honey, cinnamon stick, and lemon zest. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, then reduce the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until slightly thickened.
  6. Pour the Syrup:
    • Once the baklava is out of the oven and still hot, carefully pour the hot honey syrup over the top, ensuring it covers the entire surface. Allow the baklava to cool completely in the baking dish, allowing the syrup to soak into the layers.
  7. Serve and Enjoy:
    • Once cooled, cut the baklava along the scored lines into individual pieces. Serve the baklava at room temperature, garnished with additional chopped nuts if desired. Enjoy this sweet delight with a cup of Greek coffee or tea for a truly authentic experience.

Serving and Storage Tips for Greek Baklava:

Serving Tips:

  1. Serve at Room Temperature: Greek Baklava is best enjoyed at room temperature, allowing its flavors to fully develop and its layers to soften slightly. Remove the baklava from the baking dish and let it sit for about 30 minutes before serving.
  2. Garnish with Nuts: For an extra touch of elegance and flavor, garnish the top of the baklava with finely chopped nuts, such as pistachios or almonds, before serving. This adds visual appeal and enhances the nuttiness of the dessert.
  3. Pair with Greek Coffee or Tea: Serve Greek Baklava alongside a steaming cup of Greek coffee or a fragrant herbal tea, such as chamomile or mountain tea. The rich, bold flavors of the coffee or the soothing qualities of the tea complement the sweetness of the baklava perfectly.
  4. Offer Small Portions: Greek Baklava is rich and decadent, so consider serving it in small, bite-sized portions to allow guests to indulge without feeling overwhelmed. Cut the baklava into small squares or diamonds for easy serving.
  5. Accompany with Fresh Fruit: For a refreshing contrast to the sweetness of the baklava, serve it with a side of fresh fruit, such as sliced strawberries, grapes, or figs. The juicy fruit adds a burst of freshness and complements the rich flavors of the dessert.

Storage Tips:

  1. Store at Room Temperature: Greek Baklava can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days. Keep it in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight and heat sources to maintain its crispness and freshness.
  2. Avoid Refrigeration: Avoid storing baklava in the refrigerator, as the cold temperature can cause the phyllo dough to become soggy and lose its crispness. It’s best to keep it at room temperature for optimal texture and flavor.
  3. Refrain from Freezing: While baklava can technically be frozen, its texture may suffer upon thawing, becoming less crispy and more chewy. If you must freeze leftovers, wrap individual pieces tightly in plastic wrap and aluminum foil, then thaw at room temperature before serving.
  4. Reheat Before Serving: If serving leftover baklava, you can briefly reheat it in a preheated oven at 300°F (150°C) for 5-10 minutes to restore its crispiness. Avoid microwaving, as it can make the phyllo dough soggy.
  5. Enjoy Fresh Whenever Possible: For the best taste and texture, enjoy Greek Baklava fresh within a day or two of making it. Its flavors are at their peak when freshly baked, so indulge in this delightful treat as soon as possible for a truly authentic experience.

Variations of Greek Baklava:

  1. Nut-Free Baklava:
    • For those with nut allergies or preferences, substitute the traditional nut filling with a mixture of dried fruits, such as raisins, apricots, and figs, combined with shredded coconut and cinnamon. Layer this fruity mixture between the phyllo dough sheets and proceed with the recipe as usual.
  2. Chocolate Baklava:
    • Add a decadent twist to the classic baklava by incorporating layers of chocolate. Spread a thin layer of chocolate hazelnut spread, such as Nutella, between the phyllo dough sheets along with the nut filling. Drizzle melted chocolate over the top before baking for an indulgent chocolatey treat.
  3. Citrus Baklava:
    • Infuse the baklava with bright citrus flavors by adding grated orange or lemon zest to the nut filling mixture. Alternatively, replace the cinnamon and cloves with ground cardamom for a fragrant twist. Finish by adding a splash of fresh citrus juice to the honey syrup for an extra burst of flavor.
  4. Savory Baklava:
    • Explore the savory side of baklava by substituting the sweet honey syrup with a savory glaze made from reduced balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and herbs such as thyme or rosemary. Fill the layers with a mixture of crumbled feta cheese, chopped spinach, and toasted pine nuts for a delightful appetizer or side dish.
  5. Phyllo Cups Baklava Bites:
    • Create bite-sized baklava treats by using mini phyllo dough cups instead of traditional layers of phyllo dough. Fill each cup with a spoonful of the nut mixture, then bake until golden brown and crispy. Drizzle with honey syrup and garnish with a sprinkle of chopped nuts for a perfect party or dessert platter addition.


  1. 1. What is Greek Baklava?
    • Greek Baklava is a traditional dessert made from layers of phyllo dough, filled with a mixture of chopped nuts, typically walnuts, almonds, and pistachios, and sweetened with honey syrup.
  2. 2. Is Greek Baklava difficult to make at home?
    • While Greek Baklava may seem daunting, it’s actually quite manageable with the right recipe and technique. With step-by-step instructions and a little patience, you can create delicious homemade baklava to impress your friends and family.
  3. 3. Can I use store-bought phyllo dough for Greek Baklava?
    • Yes, you can use store-bought phyllo dough for convenience. Just make sure to thaw it according to the package instructions and handle it carefully to prevent tearing.
  4. 4. What kind of nuts are traditionally used in Greek Baklava?
    • Traditional Greek Baklava often contains a mixture of walnuts, almonds, and pistachios. However, you can customize the nut filling based on your preferences or dietary restrictions.
  5. 5. How should I store leftover Greek Baklava?
    • Store leftover Greek Baklava in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3-4 days. Avoid refrigerating baklava, as it can become soggy. If freezing, wrap individual pieces tightly and thaw at room temperature before serving.
  6. 6. Can I make Greek Baklava ahead of time?
    • Yes, you can prepare Greek Baklava ahead of time and store it at room temperature until ready to serve. In fact, baklava often tastes even better the next day as the flavors have had time to meld together.
  7. 7. How do I prevent the phyllo dough from drying out?
    • To prevent the phyllo dough from drying out while assembling the baklava, keep it covered with a damp kitchen towel or plastic wrap when not in use. Work quickly and brush each layer with melted butter to keep it moist.
  8. 8. Can I adjust the sweetness level of Greek Baklava?
    • Yes, you can adjust the sweetness level of Greek Baklava by varying the amount of honey syrup used. If you prefer a less sweet baklava, reduce the amount of honey syrup poured over the baked pastry.
  9. 9. Can I add spices to the nut filling of Greek Baklava?
    • Absolutely! Traditional spices such as cinnamon and cloves are commonly used in the nut filling of Greek Baklava. You can also experiment with other spices such as cardamom or nutmeg to customize the flavor to your liking.
  10. 10. What is the best way to serve Greek Baklava?
    • Greek Baklava is typically served at room temperature. Cut it into squares or diamonds before serving and garnish with additional chopped nuts if desired. Enjoy it as a dessert with a cup of Greek coffee or tea for a truly authentic experience.


With its flaky layers, nutty filling, and aromatic honey syrup, Greek Baklava is a dessert that captures the essence of Greek hospitality and tradition. Whether enjoyed during festive occasions or as a sweet indulgence any day of the year, this iconic pastry is sure to delight your senses and transport you to the sunny shores of Greece. Gather your ingredients, follow our recipe, and savor the sweet taste of Mediterranean bliss with homemade Greek Baklava. Opa!

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