Pastitsio | Kita Roberts


This is an all afternoon sort of meal with home made meat and creamy sauce. Pure guilt, pure indulgence, and 100% rocking because you flexed those culinary skills and made it all from scratch.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Keyword pastitsio
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 680kcal
Author Kita Roberts


  • 3 tbsp olive oil good quality
  • 1 large yellow onion diced
  • 1 lbs lean ground beef
  • 1 lbs lean ground lamb
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic 3 large cloves
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 28 oz crushed tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan
  • 2 large eggs beaten
  • 2/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 3/4 lbs pasta shells small


Start with the meat sauce:

  • Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Saute the onion for 5 minutes, until soft. 
  • Add the ground beef and lamb and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, breaking up with a spoon. 
  • Drain off any fat if needed. 
  • Add the wine and cook for 2 minutes. 
  • Add the garlic, cinnamon, oregano, thyme, and cayenne pepper. Stir to combine and cook for 5 minutes longer. 
  • Add the tomatoes and season with 2 teas salt and 1 teas pepper, if desired. Simmer for 40 - 45 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the b├ęchamel sauce.

  • Heat the milk and cream in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until just starting to simmer, there will be bubbles around the edges and steam coming off the top. 
  • In another larger saucepan, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Add the flour, stir, and cook for 2 minutes. Whisk away. 
  • Slowly pour in the heated milk and whisk vigorously. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes longer, stirring often, until thick. 
  • Add the nutmeg, 1 teaspoon of salt and pepper if desired. Add 3/4 cup of the shredded Parmesan cheese and 1/2 cup of the tomato meat sauce. 
  • Allow to cool for 10 minutes. Lastly, stir in the eggs and yogurt.


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 x 13" baking dish. 
  • Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water until just al dente. You're going to continue to bake it, so don't over cook it. Drain.
  • Toss the pasta in with the meat sauce to combine. Pour into the prepared baking dish and spread evenly. 
  • Pour the bachamel sauce over the top and shake the pan about to spread evenly. Top with the remaining 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese.
  • Bake, uncovered, for 1 hour, until golden brown and bubbly. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.



Calories: 680kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 39g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Cholesterol: 137mg | Sodium: 252mg | Potassium: 695mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 900IU | Vitamin C: 9.5mg | Calcium: 162mg | Iron: 4.4mg