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A Greek baked pasta dish consisting of ziti layered with a cinnamon and clove seasoned meat sauce, feta cheese, and a bechamel sauce.

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Servings: 6
Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Recipe by: Frankie


1 pound ground beef
1 cup finely diced red onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cinnamon stick
1 whole clove
1 TBSP tomato paste
14-ounce can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup red wine
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
12 ounces ziti pasta
4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
2 large eggs
5 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated
8 TBSP butter (1 stick)
8 TBSP all-purpose flour
3 1/2 cups whole milk, room temperature
2 egg yolks
3 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated
pinch of nutmeg



1. Cook the ground beef and onions in a dutch oven or large pot over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes or until beef is browned and onions are soft.

2. Stir in the garlic and tomato paste and cook while stirring about 30 seconds or until fragrant. Add the red wine and cook until wine has evaporated, 5 to 10 minutes.

3. Stir in the diced tomatoes, cinnamon, bay leaf, clove, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, Put a lid on the pot and reduce heat to low. Simmer covered for about 30 minutes then remove the bay leaf, cinnamon stick and clove.

While the meat simmers start on the pasta.


1. Cook the pasta about 2 minutes under the cooking time on the box so the pasta doesn't become soggy.

2. Drain the pasta and place in a large 9x13 baking dish. Stir the feta cheese and eggs into the pasta and set aside.


1. Melt the butter in a large sauce pot over medium-low heat, stir in the flour to combine until no white flour is visible.

2. Slowly whisk in the milk until thoroughly combined and there are no lumps.

3. Take the pot off of the heat and let rest 1 minute. Quickly whisk in the egg yolks, nutmeg, and the 3 ounces of Parmesan until well incorporated. Season with a little salt and pepper and set aside.


1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

2. Grab the baking dish with pasta and pour the meat sauce over top. Spread the sauce evenly over the pasta.

3. Pour the bechamel sauce over top of the meat sauce and spread evenly.

4. Sprinkle the remaining 5 ounces of Parmesan evenly over top the bechamel sauce.

5. Bake uncovered in the preheated oven for 45 minutes or until the cheese on top begins to brown.

6. Let the pastitsio rest for 5 minutes before serving.

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