Baklava Recipe

Best Baklava Recipe

Baklava is delicious and it tastes amazing when it’s homemade. I have tried many different store-bought baklava pieces but homemade always tastes better.

I grew up eating baklava several times a year. It is a traditional dessert in Bulgaria (and all other Eastern European countries 🙂 ) and my sister and I love it.

Actually, I researched the origins of baklava and it turns out it dates back to the Byzantine empire (or even further), and many cultures claim it for their own (Eastern European countries (some of them are Albania, Bulgaria, Greece, Turkey etc) and the Middle East (Armenia, Georgia, Israel, Iran, Syria)). There are many variations of baklava, but all of them include layering of buttered pastry dough with nut mixture between the layers and soaked in a sweet syrup once it’s baked. This Wikipedia article has some interesting facts and information about the history and the different variations of baklava.

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As a kid, watching my grandma prepare baklava, I always thought that it is very complicated. In fact, it is not. It may be time-consuming but it is easy. You need simple ingredients and a little bit of time. 🙂 In this baklava recipe (which is absolutely delectable), I have also included step by step pictures and detailed instructions which are easy to follow.

I contemplated for a while whether or not I should post this recipe to my blog because it may be delicious but it’s not really healthy. But to be honest, I do indulge a piece or two once a year when I bake it, so I decided it won’t be fair if I don’t share the love with you all. So here it is, my favorite baklava recipe! 🙂

Best Baklava Recipe

Best Baklava Recipe

Ingredients

For the baklava

1 (16 oz) pkg phyllo dough, thawed according to package instructions (9 x 14 inches, 40 sheets)

1 1/2 cup butter (3 sticks butter), melted

1 lb walnuts, coarsely chopped (or pecans)

1 tsp ground cinnamon

For the syrup

1 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup honey

2 Tbsp lemon juice

3/4 cup water

chopped walnuts or pistachios, for garnish

Preparation

Thaw phyllo dough according to package instructions. (This will make it easier to separate the sheets without tearing them apart)

Honey Lemon Syrup

First, start with the honey lemon syrup as this will need to cool before pouring over the warm baklava.

In a medium pan combine 1 cup sugar, 1/2 cup honey, 2 Tbsp lemon juice and 3/4 cup water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved, then reduce to medium-low and boil for another 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let syrup cool while preparing baklava.

Best Baklava Recipe

Baklava 

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Mix 1 lb coarsely ground walnuts with 1 tsp cinnamon. The first time, I tried to chop the nuts in a food processor but it didn’t work well because some of them were still whole and others were finely ground. I prefer them coarsely chopped, that’s why I chop them with a knife or bang them with a meat tenderizer or rolling pin in a plastic bag. 🙂 Chopping the nuts in a food processor also makes them release more oil and this results in a heavier baklava. Just resist the urge to use the food processor and you will have a perfect baklava! 🙂

Best Baklava Recipe

Butter the bottom and sides of a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. I used this glass baking dish and it was perfect.

Layer 10 sheets one at a time in the baking dish, brushing each sheet with melted butter before adding the next sheet. (Keep the remaining phyllo sheets covered with a damp towel to prevent drying out.) My grandma taught me to wrinkle the sheets slightly without tearing them (that’s why the sheets are a little bit longer than 13 inches). This creates a nice texture once the baklava is baked. Top the 10 phyllo sheets with 1/5 of the nut mixture.

Best Baklava Recipe Best Baklava Recipe

Layer 5 sheets of phyllo dough on top, brushing each one with butter before adding the next. Sprinkle again with 1/5 of the nut mixture. Add 5 more phyllo sheets on top, brushing each with butter, then add another 1/5 of the nut mixture, add 5 more pieces of phyllo, brushing each with butter, then add another 1/5 of the nut mixture, add 5 more pieces of phyllo , brushing each with butter, and sprinkle with the remaining nuts.

Finally, layer the remaining 10 sheets one at a time in the baking dish, brushing each sheet with melted butter before adding the next sheet. Brush top sheet with extra butter.

Order of layers:

10 buttered phyllo sheets, 3/4 cup nut mixture,
5 buttered phyllo sheets, 3/4 cup nut mixture,
5 buttered phyllo sheets, 3/4 cup nut mixture,
5 buttered phyllo sheets, 3/4 cup nut mixture,
5 buttered phyllo sheets, 3/4 cup nut mixture
10 buttered phyllo sheets and butter the top.

Best Baklava Recipe

Using a very sharp knife cut carefully into the baklava to make 4 strips, about 1 1/2 inches wide. Then make diagonal slices to create a diamond pattern.

Best Baklava Recipe Best Baklava Recipe

Bake at 350 F for about 50 – 60 minutes or until top is golden.

When baklava is done, pour the honey lemon syrup over the warm baklava. You may hear the syrup sizzling, and feel your mouth watering, almost tasting that sweet delicious baklava… 🙂 My husband was deeply disappointed we couldn’t eat it right away.  Let it soak, uncovered, overnight. Or if you can’t wait, let it soak at least 6 hours.

Enjoy! 🙂

How To Store Baklava

Baklava has a really long shelf life, lasting about 2 weeks. It should be stored at room temperature in an airtight container or in the fridge. You can preserve the crispness of the baklava by storing it at room temperature. Or store it in the fridge if you like it a bit harder and chewy. Either way, it will be delicious.

How To Serve Baklava

Serve baklava cool once it cools down at room temperature. You can it diagonally to create diamond-shaped bites, or you can cut it vertically to create square bites. Top the baklava pieces with walnuts or ground pistachios.

Best Baklava Recipe

You will love with your coffee.

You will love it with your tea.

You will love it in the morning.

You will love it in the night. 

Best Baklava Recipe

Best Baklava Recipe

 How To Make Baklava

5 from 9 votes
Print
Baklava
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 15 mins
 

This is hands down the BEST baklava recipe I have ever tried, tastes SO good. Easy ingredients, detailed instructions, and step-by-step pictures.

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Servings: 20
Calories: 357 kcal
Author: Neli @ Delicious Meets Healthy
Ingredients
  • 1 16 oz pkg phyllo dough, thawed according to package instructions (40 sheets)
  • 1 1/4 cup butter 2 1/2 sticks butter
  • 1 lb walnuts coarsely ground (or pecans)
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup water
  • chopped walnuts or pistachios for garnish
Instructions
  1. Thaw phyllo dough according to package instructions. (This will make it easier to separate the sheets without tearing them apart)
Honey Lemon Syrup
  1. First, start with the honey lemon sauce as this will need to cool before poured over the warm baklava.
  2. In a medium pan combine 1 cup sugar, 1/2 cup honey, 2 Tbsp lemon juice and 3/4 cup water. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved, then reduce to medium low and boil for another 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let syrup cool while preparing baklava.
Baklava
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Mix 1 lb coarsely ground walnuts with 1 tsp cinnamon.
  3. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9 x 13 inch baking dish.
  4. Layer 10 sheets one at a time in the baking dish, brushing each sheet with melted butter before adding the next sheet. (Keep the remaining phyllo sheets covered with a damp towel to prevent drying.) My grandma taught me to wrinkle the sheets slightly without tearing them (that's why the sheets are a little bit longer than 13 inches). This creates a nice texture once the baklava is baked. Top the 10 phyllo sheets with 1/5 of the nut mixture.
  5. Layer 5 sheets of phyllo dough on top, brushing each one with butter before adding the next. Sprinkle again with 1/5 of the nut mixture. Add 5 more phyllo sheets on top, brushing each with butter, then add another 1/5 of the nut mixture, add 5 more pieces of phyllo , brushing each with butter, then add another 1/5 of the nut mixture, add 5 more pieces of phyllo , brushing each with butter, and sprinkle with the remaining nuts.
  6. Finally, layer the remaining 10 sheets one at a time in the baking dish, brushing each sheet with melted butter before adding the next sheet. Brush top sheet with extra butter.
  7. Using a very sharp knife cut carefully into the baklava to make 4 strips, about 1 1/2 inches wide. Then make diagonal slices to create a diamond pattern.
  8. Bake at 350 F for about 45 - 50 minutes or until top is golden.
  9. When baklava is done, pour the honey lemon syrup over the warm baklava. Let soak, uncovered, overnight.
Recipe Notes
Order of layers:
10 buttered phyllo sheets, 3/4 cup nut mixture,
5 buttered phyllo sheets, 3/4 cup nut mixture,
5 buttered phyllo sheets, 3/4 cup nut mixture,
5 buttered phyllo sheets, 3/4 cup nut mixture,
5 buttered phyllo sheets, 3/4 cup nut mixture
10 buttered phyllo lo sheets and butter the top.
Nutrition Facts
Baklava
Amount Per Serving
Calories 357 Calories from Fat 243
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 27g 42%
Saturated Fat 8g 40%
Cholesterol 30mg 10%
Sodium 171mg 7%
Potassium 118mg 3%
Total Carbohydrates 27g 9%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Sugars 17g
Protein 4g 8%
Vitamin A 7.2%
Vitamin C 1.1%
Calcium 2.9%
Iron 6.4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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This is hands down the BEST baklava recipe I have ever tried, tastes SO good. Easy ingredients, detailed instructions, and step-by-step pictures.

19 comments on Baklava Recipe

    • Delicious Meets Healthy (author)

      Thanks Dixya! Glad you like it! 🙂

  • Emily @ Zen & Spice

    Found you via spoonful of foodies— this recipe looks AMAZING! It really makes me want to rush into the kitchen and make baklava. Your pictures are gorgeous.

    • Delicious Meets Healthy (author)

      Thanks Emily!

  • Mira

    I love baklava and this one looks beautiful and delicious! You gave a great blog, nice recipes and stunning pictures!

    • Delicious Meets Healthy (author)

      Thanks Mira!

  • Thalia @ butter and brioche

    I have so many great baklava related memories! Thanks for reminding me how delicious it is – I definitely am inspired to make this recipe.

    • Delicious Meets Healthy (author)

      Thank you for stopping by! I haven’t posted any other phyllo desserts.
      But I have several desserts posted in the Desserts category of the Recipe Index and you are welcome to check them out.

  • Sue

    Love this Baklava – hint for easier buttering if the Phyllo, pour the melted butter into a spray bottle from the dollar store and spray each layer instead of brushing. So quick and easy.

    • Delicious Meets Healthy (author)

      That’s a great idea, Sue! Thanks for sharing! Glad you like the baklava! 🙂

  • Cheryl Moir

    Don’t understand measurements…
    3/4 nuts each time under buttered phyllo sheets? What does that mean?
    Recipe looks delicious and really want to try it!
    Thanks.
    Cheryl

    • Delicious Meets Healthy (author)

      Hi Cheryl,
      Yes, sprinkle 3/4 cup of nuts after every 5th buttered phyllo sheet. It goes like this… Place 1st phyllo sheet, butter it, place 2nd phyllo sheet, butter it, place 3rd phyllo sheet, butter it, place 4th phyllo sheet, butter it, and place 5th phyllo sheet, butter it, and after the 5th buttered phyllo sheet, sprinkle 3/4 cup of nuts.
      Repeat this processes according to the recipe instructions. Hope this helps!
      It’s very delicious indeed. Hope you enjoy it! 🙂

  • sonya

    how should this be stored and how long will this store for.

    • Delicious Meets Healthy (author)

      Hi Sonya, you can store it in an airtight container for 2+ week at room temperature. Baklava has a long shelf life. you can store it in the fridge as well – but it might be a little bit harder and soggy. If you like crispy baklava, store it at room temperature. Hope this helps!

  • Tammy

    Hello Neli,
    I make mine almost exactly like this, but I add a 1/4 cup of sugar to my walnut and cinnamon mixture.
    I also add a cinnamon stick and a teaspoon of vanilla flavoring to the syrup mixture. That being said as soon as mine cools off I immediately put it in the fridge with a lid, ( I bake mine in a 9x 13 Wilton cake pan with lid) but mine has never been hard or chewy, it actually stays very light, crispy, and flaky!!!

    • Tammy

      Sorry, I don’t mean to say that I actually bake it with a lid because the lid is plastic!!! Lol!!!
      I just put the lid on after it cools down and put it in the fridge, not sure if this is what keeps it from getting hard or chewy and keeps it crisp and flaky, but just wanted to let you know. 😁

      • Delicious Meets Healthy (author)

        Thanks, Tammy! Glad to hear that yours turns out great too! 🙂 I will try it with a cinnamon stick in the syrup next time. My Grandma has never made it with a cinnamon stick so I never thought of adding it but I am sure it adds so much more flavor!
        I didn’t mean that the baklava is going to be hard and difficult to eat when it’s stored in the fridge. When I store it in the fridge, I have noticed that the syrup naturally hardens because of the cold temperature, and it’s a little bit crispier compared to when stored at room temperature.
        Plus, I find it very convenient to store it on the counter if I don’t have enough space in the fridge – it’s great that this dessert doesn’t require refrigeration like other desserts. Thanks for stopping by, Tammy! 🙂

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