Enjoy warm smiles and full bellies with our bougatsa Recipe. You can enjoy this delicious Greek pastry for breakfast or any time of the day.

Bougatsa Recipe

This is a stunning pastry dish. It combines a deliciously sweet and creamy semolina custard filling with a flaky, golden-crusted pastry shell. Although it is a popular breakfast dish, you can enjoy it any time of the day.

What is Bougatsa?

Bougatsa, a traditional Greek dish that dates back to the Byzantine period, is a multi-layered pastry filled with different fillings.

Bougatsa can either be sweet or savoury, depending on your preference. There are many sweet bougatsa available in bakeries. Most often, they come with the traditional semolina custard filling. Many options, including cheese and minced meat fillings, can be used for savoury options.

It is a classic pastry in Greek Cuisine. However, it is also very popular in North Macedonian Cuisine. This dish was brought to Serres by Greek refugees in the 20th century.


Filo/Phyllo 12 sheets (250g or 8.8 oz).

Semolina* 1 cup (150g)

Whole Milk 4 and 1/4 Cups (1 litre)

Sugar – 6.3 oz or 180 grams (~ 3/4 cup)

Butter 7 oz, 200 grams or 14 Tbsp Half for the cream and half to melt

Vanilla 1 tbsp

Eggs 4 (2 eggs, 2 egg yolks).

Salt- A pinch

Cinnamon 1 tbsp to sprinkle on top at the end

Icing Sugar 1 tbsp to sprinkle on top at the end

You can find semolina online if you don’t see it in your local grocery store.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1 Warm the milk for 5 minutes on medium heat.

Step 2 Melt half of the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. (100g or 7 tablespoons). Once the butter is melted, add the semolina and stir until it turns golden (approximately 3-4 min).

Step 3 Slowly heat the milk mixture over medium heat. Whisk continuously until you achieve a smooth consistency.

Step 4 After the milk is incorporated, stir in the sugar. Continue stirring for approximately 7 minutes to make the mixture thicken.

It’s easy to tell if the mixture is thick.

Step 5 Once the mixture has thickened, turn off the heat and add the vanilla. Stir. Let the mixture cool to room temperature.

To prevent the mixture from sticking to the top, cover it with cling wrap. Allow the mixture to cool for about 15 minutes. You can continue stirring the mixture or transfer it to another pot to speed up its cooling process.

Step 6 Beat 2 eggs with 2 egg yolks and 1 egg white with a pinch of salt. You can save the egg whites you don’t use here for another recipe.

Step 7 Slowly add eggs to the cooled mixture of semolina and flour. The mixture should be at room temperature (not hotter). Otherwise, it will cook eggs. Patience is the key!

Step 8 Melt the remaining butter (100g or 7 tbsp).

Now, you can assemble the bougatsa into the baking dish. Remember that filo/phyllo sheets can dry quickly after being taken out of the package. To prevent them from drying out, place the filo sheets under a damp kitchen towel, such as the one below, while you assemble the bougatsa.

Step 9 – Heat some butter in a pan and then spread it using a pastry brush.

Step 10 Add half of the filo sheets and brush each layer with butter.

Your tray will look more like the one below as you add layers.

Step 11 Mix half of your filo layers into the tray and add the mixture to it. Smoothen it out.

You can trim the filo sheets if they are too large for the pan or turn them upside down on top of the mixture.

Step 12 Add the remaining filo sheets and butter each layer.

Score the top sheets before you bake them. This makes it much easier to cut the bougatsa without tearing the filo after the oven has been turned off. As shown below, we divided ours into eights.

Step 13 Bake at 360degF/180degC for 35-40 minutes, until golden.

Serve the dish with a generous amount of cinnamon and sugar.

These colours are simply stunning to look at. Let the slice cool on your plate.

This pastry can be eaten hot straight out of the oven. We prefer to allow it to cool down so the creamy filling can meld and thicken. This will enhance the taste and texture of each bite.

This dish is great to serve for dessert or breakfast if you like something sweet and light in the mornings. This classic dish is sure to please! It’s creamy and delicious!