The ultimate makeover: Moussaka

The ultimate makeover: Moussaka

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(52 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 2 hrs, 5 mins

More effort

Serves 6
A light and healthy, but rich-tasting Greek-style dish

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal325
  • fat15g
  • saturates5g
  • carbs19g
  • sugars14g
  • fibre6g
  • protein28g
  • salt0.65g
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  • 2½ tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 1 onion, chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 2 plump garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 large carrots (350g total weight), diced



    The carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root…

  • 450g 5% fat minced beef
  • 100ml white wine
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon, plus extra
  • ¼ tsp ground allspice
  • 400g can plum tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 heaped tbsp chopped oregano leaves



    Closely related to marjoram, of which it is the wild equivalent, oregano has a coarser, more…

  • 2 good handfuls chopped flat-leaf parsley, plus extra to garnish



    One of the most ubiquitous herbs in British cookery, parsley is also popular in European and…

  • 3 aubergines (about 750g/1lb 10oz total weight), ends trimmed



    Although it's technically a fruit (a berry, to be exact), the aubergine is used as a…

  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

For the topping

  • 2 eggs



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition packed with protein and a…

  • 1 tbsp cornflour
  • 300g 2% Greek yogurt
  • 50g parmesan, grated



    Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…

To serve

  • halved cherry tomatoes and thinly sliced red onion and rocket salad


  1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large, wide sauté pan. Tip in the onion and garlic, then fry for 6-8 mins until turning golden. Add the carrots and fry for 2 mins more. Stir the meat into the pan, breaking it up as you stir. Cook and stir over a high heat until the meat is no longer pink. Pour in the wine and briefly cook until most of the liquid has evaporated. Stir in the cinnamon and allspice. Tip in the tomatoes, tomato purée and 1 tbsp water (mixed with any juices left in the can), then stir to break up the tomatoes. Season with some pepper, add all the oregano and half the parsley, cover, then simmer on a low heat for 50 mins, stirring occasionally. Season to taste. Mix in the remaining parsley. Can be done a day ahead and refrigerated overnight.

  2. While the meat cooks (unless you are doing this a day ahead) prepare the aubergines. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/ gas 6. Brush a little of the remaining oil onto 2 large baking sheets. Mix the rest of the oil with the lemon juice. Slice the aubergines into 1cm thick lengthways slices, then lay them on the oiled baking sheets. Brush with the oil and lemon mix, then season with pepper. Bake for 20-25 mins until soft, then set aside. Lower oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4.

  3. Spread 2 big spoonfuls of the meat mixture on the bottom of an ovenproof dish (about 28 x 20 x 6cm deep). Lay the aubergine slices on top, slightly overlapping. Spoon the rest of the meat mixture on top. Beat the eggs in a bowl. Slacken the cornflour with a little of the yogurt, stir in the rest of the yogurt, then mix this into the eggs with half the cheese. Season with pepper. Pour and spread this over the meat to cover it. Sprinkle with the rest of the cheese, a little cinnamon and a grating of pepper. Bake for 50 mins-1 hr until bubbling and golden.

  4. Leave moussaka to settle for 8-10 mins, then scatter over some chopped parsley and cut into squares. Serve with a salad of tomato, red onion and rocket.

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Comments, questions and tips

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clovelly1's picture
26th Aug, 2018
Absolutely divine, made it exactly as instructions made 2 and cooked the second from freezer for my daughter on her arrival from USA she loved it! One thing I did was dip the sliced aubergines in the oil accumulated on top of the cooked sauce. I then griddled them each side instead of oven cooked.
26th Nov, 2017
Very tasty meat and aubergine but swapped the white sauce for a more traditional version.
21st Sep, 2017
Mmm, this was very tasty! Did anyone think they could have done with more topping? Mine came out a bit thin. Perhaps I used too big a dish...
11th Jun, 2016
Great recipe! I have never had moussaka before so I can't compare it but its a really nice and filling dish. I used 300gr of organic lean beef mincemeat (in the Netherlands we label a bit differently and don't have all the same products), 2 aubergines, 180gr carrots, halved the amounts for the topping and used 0% Greek yoghurt and kept the other ingredients the same. Makes 3 generous portions no salad or anything else needed. I followed the advice of other readers. Left the meat sauce on the hob for 30 minutes ( In between I added a little extra water approximently 50 ml or so using the tomato tin) and I kept the whole thing in de oven for about 35 minutes. What are people's experiences with the leftovers and reheating without a microwave?
20th Jul, 2016
I make up large quantities, freeze and then either microwave or simply defrost, put in the oven to heat, 170 fan oven for 30 mins. If it gets too brown loosely cover the top with foil.
13th Dec, 2015
Made this recipe instead of my normal one and it was delicious. I did make some changes- I only used two aubergines but still had some left over. I didn't have fresh oregano or parsley so used dried instead and I used lamb mince instead of beef so it wasn't quite so healthy. Will definitely make this again.
22nd Jul, 2015
Very popular, even though my son wasn't mad about the aubergines. I really enjoyed making it! And an additional attraction was that it was gluten free.
7th May, 2015
This is the first moussaka I've ever cooked - and it was absolutely delicious. I've never seen my three year old eat so much of his dinner - and he even went back to it after dessert! I used lamb mince, half the amount of cinnamon (as suggested) and mixed spice. I only had one medium sized aubergine and I think one large would do it. I probably had it cooking on the hob for 30mins and gave it 30 minutes in the oven - but with foil over it until the last ten minutes. The topping was like a soufflé and was divine. It fed two adults and a hungry pre schooler, with not much leftover. It was a bit of a faff to cook but definitely worth it, this will be going on our favourites list.
22nd Aug, 2014
Cooked this for the first time earlier this week and absolutely loved it! Will definitely cook it again. I followed the recipe to the letter and found it would feed 6 if served with salad and perhaps boiled potatoes. It's much easier to cook than the recipe would suggest too.
15th Aug, 2014
This turned out fabulous, made it with my favourite person and we both enjoyed it. Subbed the beef for lamb. I always think moussaka should be made with lamb anyway. Used just one large aubergine. Added cheddar to the topping and covered it with foil so it wouldn't burn. Used real tomatoes and omitted lemon juice and allspice. Also cooked the mince for just 30 minutes. We figured it was going to get well cooked in the oven for 1 hour. I really enjoyed it. So yummy


8th Oct, 2018
Loved this so much going to make it again! Any ideas what alternative I could use for the greek yogurt as my friend is lactose intolerant? thanks
goodfoodteam's picture
12th Oct, 2018
Thanks for your question. One suggestion is that you could replace the suggested topping with grated vegan cheese.
4th Jul, 2017
This was lovely but i have a hunch that i am not cutting the aubergines properly, is it 1cm circles or batons?
goodfoodteam's picture
5th Jul, 2017
Thanks for your question. We suggest you cut the aubergine into slices at 1cm intervals lengthways (from end to end) rather than across (which would be circles). Hope that's clearer.
6th Feb, 2015
I am planning to make this tomorrow but wanted to make it in advance. Is it ok to do this and leave the topping on top of the meet for a few hours and then cook in the oven or should I do the meat part and then add the topping on prior to oven cooking? Thanks Jen
goodfoodteam's picture
6th Feb, 2015
Hi Jen, thanks for getting in touch. We haven't tested preparing this ahead but can see no reason why you wouldn't be ok to prepare the whole thing, meat and topping, ready for baking and just store it in the fridge until you're ready to cook it. It should be fine in the fridge like that for 24 hours. Let us know how it goes. 
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