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Healthy Greek Pasta with Feta, Eggplant and Spinach

I do love the Greek cuisine! But whenever I went for dinner to a Greek restaurant, I find myself in a slightly comatose condition since this kind of food is so fatty and hard to digest. Do you feel the same way after eating Greek food? If so, you’re gonna love today’s recipe. This healthy Greek pasta bridges the gab between the delicious Greek and Mediterranean cuisine and a healthy, well-balanced dish. And since it’s a pasta bake, I guarantee you that everyone – even kinds or picky eats – will love this greek pasta recipe.

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greek pasta bake

Balanced and Nutritious Greek Pasta Bake

Since this Greek pasta recipe is packed with vegetables, it provides us with many vitamins, minerals and fiber. Spinach, just for instance, is one of the best suppliers of beta-carotene, which is important for our vision as well as our skin.

In addition, the high amount of potassium provides a dehydrating effect. Furthermore, spinach contains lot of vitamin E, which protects our cells form free radicals. An even if the iron value isn’t quite as high as previously suspected due to a comma error, it’s still a very good iron supplier. Iron in turn supports the body in the blood formation process.

At the same time this pasta dish is quite a balanced meal. It contains lots of vegetables and a moderate servivng of whole grain pasta. It has the advantage of keeping us full for longer and provide a large portion of the so important fiber. The proteins, in turn, are covered by the ground meat and feta cheese.

Additionally, the oil, feta and gratin cheese provide the required fats. However, to keep this number in a moderate range, I use the light version for both cheeses.

Ingredients

The quantities, as they are given in the recipe below, are approximately equal to four servings. However, feel free to double, triple, or halve them, depending on how many people you’re cooking for or if you want to have some leftovers for the next days.

If you like to have a larger portion or one with more or less calories, carbs, proteins or fats, feel free to adjust the amount of carbs and/or protein and fats to your individual needs.

I always base portion sizes on my personal dietary needs (presumably those of the average woman). However, you or perhaps one of your fellow eaters may need more (or less) than I do.

Ingredients for Our Healthy Greek Pasta

  • one eggplant
  • one teaspoon of olive oil
  • 100 grams or 3.5 ounces of (short cut) whole grain pasta
  • 200 grams or 7 ounces of 95% lean ground beef
  • one clove of garlic
  • on can of finely crushed tomatoes which is about 400 grams or 14 ounces
  • 200 grams or 7 ounces of fresh spinach
  • 60 grams of feta (I prefer the fat-reduced lite version)
  • some salt, paprika powder, dried (or fresh) thyme, pepper, dried oregano, and chili flakes for seasoning
  • 50 grams or about half a cup of gratin cheese

Alternatives and Substitutions:

To make this greek pasta recipe meatless, feel free to use a plant-based ground meat product instead of the ground beef.

For a vegan pasta bake, you can furthermore substitute the feta and gratin cheese for similar plant-based products.

Further, feel free to swap out the eggplant for some zucchini or use thawed frozen spinach instead of fresh one. Just make sure to squeeze out the water before adding the thawed spinach to the pan.

Healthy Greek Pasta Bake – Here’s how it’s done

Before we start with preparing our Greek pasta recipe, we must preheat the oven to 200°C or 400°F. Now we wash our eggplant and quarter it lengthwise before cutting it into thin slices.

Next, heat a large, coated pan with a teaspoon of oil and add the eggplant. If you’re not using a coated pan, you’ll probably need a little more oil. Salt the eggplants generously and fry them for about five minutes.

Meanwhile, bring the water for the pasta to a boil. Peel and finely dice the garlic. As soon as the water is boiling, you can put the pasta in and cook it almost al dente. They should still have a little too much bite since they will continue cooking while the Greek pasta is baked in the oven.

Mediterranean Tomato Sauce Packed with Flavors

As soon as the eggplants are soft and juicy, take them out of the pan and put them aside. Now add the ground beef and pound it well so that it breaks down into small crumbs as it browns.

When the liquid which forms when frying ground beef slowly evaporates, you can season it generously with paprika powder and add the garlic.

Once it’s nicely browned, reduce the heat and add the crushed tomatoes. Season the sauce generously with pepper, thyme, oregano and chili to taste and let it simmer on low heat for about two to four minutes.

In the meantime, wash the spinach and chop it coarsely with a knife. Add it to the sauce. Once it has wilted, add the eggplant back to the pan. Now crumble the feta and stir it into the sauce.

tomato spinach eggplant ground beef sauce for the greek pasta

Top with Cheese and Enjoy

In the meantime, your pasta should be almost cooked. Therefore, drain it and add it to the sauce. Give it a mix and transfer the Greek pasta to a baking dish. Sprinkle the grated cheese on top of your Greek pasta and put it in the oven for about 15 minutes.

sprinkle greek pasta with cheese and bake in the oven for 15 minutes

Healthy and Kid-Friendly Greek Pasta Bake

Thanks to the cheese and delicious Mediterranean flavors, this healthy Greek pasta casserole is guaranteed to please kids and picky eaters.

But even if you’re just cooking for yourself or your significant other, feel free to make the double amount of this Greek pasta recipe. Leftovers will keep for a few days in the fridge and can easily be reheated in the microwave or oven.

greek pasta

I hope you like this delicious and simple Greek pasta recipe! If so, make sure to give it a try. If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to drop them in the comments, or send me a massage via email or Instagram (@julesbalancedrecipes).

And in case, you’ve tried this Greek pasta bake, I’d appreciate your comment and rating on this recipe. It’s easy to do via the comments section below this post and it would mean the world to me.

Have fun trying it out and bon appétit,
Jules

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greek pasta

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Greek Pasta

Healthy Greek Pasta with Feta, Eggplant and Spinach

Julia Schmitt
A healthy and well-balanced Greek pasta bake packed with those wonderful Mediterranean flavors. Feel free to use plant-based ground beef (and vegan cheese) for a vegetarian or even vegan version.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Greek, Mediterranean
Servings 2 servings
Calories 514 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 large, coated pan
  • 1 saucepan or small pot (with lid)
  • 1 casserole dish

Ingredients
  

  • 1 eggplant*
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • salt
  • 100 g short cut whole grain pasta ~ 3.5 oz
  • 200 g 95% lean ground beef ** ~ 7 oz
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 400 g finely crushed tomatoes ~ 14 oz
  • 200 g fresh spinach ~ 7 oz
  • 60 g feta *** (fat reduced)
  • paprika owder, dried (or fresh) thyme, pepper, dried oregano, chili flakes
  • 50 g gratin cheese ~ ½ cup

Instructions
 

Preparation

  • Preheat the oven to 200°C or 400°F.

Eggplant

  • Wash the eggplant, quarter it lengthwise and cut it into thin slices. Heat the oil in the pan, add the eggplant, salt it generously and fry it over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes.
    thinly sliced eggplant
  • In the meantime, bring the pasta water to a boil and then cook the pasta according to the package instructions but not completely al dente.

Ground Beef Tomato Sauce

  • Remove the eggplant from the pan as soon as they are soft and juicy. Now add the ground beef and fry it over medium-high heat until crumbly. Meanwhile, peel and finely dice the garlic and add to the ground beef once the liquid starts to evaporate. Season generously with paprika powder.
  • Once the beef is crumbly and well browned, reduce the heat and add the tomatoes. Season generously with pepper, thyme, oregano, and chili to taste, simmer over low heat for three to four minutes.
  • Meanwhile, wash the spinach and chop it a bit, add it to the sauce. Add the eggplants back to the sauce, once the spinach has wilted, crumble the feta and stir into the sauce too.
    sauce for the greek pasta recipe

Pasta Bake

  • Stir in the drained pasta and transfer everything into a baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese and bake it in the oven for 15 minutes

Notes

*Use zucchini instead of eggplant if you like.
**Use a plant-based ground meat can for a vegetarian greek pasta bake.
***To veganize the casserole, additionally substitute feta and gratin cheese for vegan alternatives.
Nutritional values per serving:
  • calories: 514 kcal
  • fats: 15 g
  • carbohydrates: 45g
  • protein: 46g
Keyword greek pasta casserole, greek pasta recipe, pasta bake recipe

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