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Very excited to share this simpler Easy Baklava. Baklava is a Greek dessert pastry. It consists of layered phyllo dough and chopped nuts that have been soaked in a sweet syrup to hold everything together and add amazing flavor. Traditionally, Baklava can be a tedious dessert to make. But I have a trick that solves that by reducing the amount of work. This trick helps to create a much more approachable baklava. My version of baklava is less sweet, plus it’s also made with chocolate. It’s delicious!

Easy Baklava |

What I said above is true, I could not be more excited about this recipe. I guess first and foremost, this baklava is really so delicious. I know that should be a given since I’m sharing the recipe, but I just have to say, this really is so good.

Second, phyllo dough gets such a bad wrap for being tricky to work with. And while it can sometimes cause issues, you just have to simplify the process. Then it actually becomes pretty easy to work with.

When you make traditional Greek baklava, most recipes will have you layer each sheet of phyllo dough, one at a time, brushing each with butter as you layer the sheets. Phyllo dough is super, super thin, and delicate, so working with just one sheet can be tricky. It’s why a lot of people steer away from baking with phyllo dough.

Easy Baklava |

But it doesn’t have to be scary! Over the years, and mainly out of laziness, I started working with doubled sheets of dough. I discovered that if you work with more than one sheet layered on top of each other, the dough is much easier to work with.

And that’s kind of what we’re doing here. Stacking the sheets without buttering each sheet in between. It’s a little shortcut that makes all the difference and doesn’t sacrifice on flavor…we’re still using plenty of butter.

Easy Baklava |


The ingredient list is simple: walnuts, hazelnuts, chocolate, cinnamon, honey, and vanilla. Most baklava is not made with chocolate, but I wanted to add some into my mix.

I like to combine the nuts and chocolate in a food processor to give them a really good chop. I also add cinnamon and a pinch of salt.

Then, instead of just using regular butter, I brown my butter to add additional flavor to the baklava.

Once the nuts and chocolate are chopped and mixed, and the butter is browned you can go right into assembling. Note, I don’t like to add any sugar to the nuts mix.

Easy Baklava |

Grab the phyllo dough and divide it into 3 stacks. The stacks do not need to be perfectly even, but if using Athens phyllo dough, it’s about 12 sheets per stack.

Layer 1 stack into a baking dish, pour over some of the butter, then add some of the nuts/chocolate. Layer with a second stack of phyllo and pour over more butter. Then add the rest of the nuts and the final stack of phyllo. Finish with the last of the butter.

We eliminated layering 36 pieces of dough with butter and skipped over brushing on the butter. This way takes so much less time and the result is just as yummy. Promise!!

Easy Baklava |

While the baklava bakes, make the syrup. This is the key to really good baklava.

I like making mine out of honey and vanilla instead of honey and sugar. It’s not too sweet, but perfectly sticky, and I love the light honey flavors. Especially with the phyllo dough and chocolate.

Just simmer honey on the stove along with vanilla and water until the sauce thickens slightly. I also like to add a little sea salt.

Easy Baklava |

When the baklava comes out of the oven, pour the syrup over the warm dish and let it soak in for a couple of hours.

You can serve this after a few hours, or let sit overnight. It’s also a great dish to enjoy leftover. The syrup continues to soak into the baklava, creating an even more delicious treat.

Easy Baklava |

Looking for other desserts? Here are my favorites: 

Chewy Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

Easy Espresso Chocolate Mousse

Soft and Crinkly Brown Sugar Peanut Butter Cookies

Chai Espresso Martini

Lastly, if you make this Easy Baklava, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Easy Baklava

Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 20
Calories Per Serving: 334 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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  • 1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.
    2. Combine the walnuts and hazelnuts in a food processor and pulse until chopped. Add the chocolate, cinnamon, and salt. Pulse until well mixed.
    3. Add the butter to a small pot set over medium heat. Allow the butter to brown lightly until it smells toasted, about 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat.
    4. Divide the phyllo sheets into 3 stacks (12 sheets per stack, but don't stress on it). Lay 1 stack flat in the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. Evenly pour over 1/3 of the butter. Sprinkle over 1/2 of the nut mix, then layer with a second stack of phyllo. Pour over another 1/3 of the butter. Sprinkle over the remaining nuts, then add the final stack. Pour over the remaining butter.
    5. Cut into the baklava lengthwise into 1 1/2 inch strips. Then make diagonal slices, 1 1/2 inches apart, to create a diamond pattern (see photo). Bake 40-45 minutes, until golden.
    6. Meanwhile, combine the honey, vanilla, and 1/3 cup water in a medium pan. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer 5 minutes until thickened slightly. Pour the syrup over the warm baklava. Let soak for 2 hours or overnight. Enjoy! 
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Easy Baklava |

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    1. Hi Sandra,
      Yes, the chocolate is optional so you can omit it:) Please let me know if you give the recipe a try, I hope it turns out amazing for you! xx

  1. 5 stars
    Haven’t made this, but I learned from a baklava making expert that if you keep melted butter in a spray bottle and just keep the bottle submerged in hot water, it makes it much easier to evenly distribute. For whatever reason, I’ve found the Target brand ones you find in the travel size section work the best. With butter, they’re not much good after one use because it clogs the mechanism, but you can use them more long term with olive oil!

    1. Hi Aimee,
      Not at all, the chocolate is optional so you can easily omit it:) Please let me know if you give this recipe a try, I hope it turns out amazing for you! xx

    1. Hi Lisa,
      They are edible flowers I order from Gourmet Sweet Botanicals. Please let me know if you give this recipe a try, I hope you love it! xx

  2. Melting the butter in a 1C pyrex measuring cup in the microwave, makes it so easy to distribute the butter and accurately in thirds!

    1. Hi Helen,
      Thanks for sharing, but you wouldn’t get the browned butter that you are looking for in this recipe that the stove top provides:) Please let me know if you give the recipe a try! xx

  3. What size and type of pan(metal, glass or ceramic) are you using. Are you buttering the pan before you begin?

    1. Hi Tracey,
      For this recipe I used a 9×13 metal baking pan:) You do not have to butter the pan for this recipe. Let me know if you give it a try, I hope you love the baklava! xTieghan

  4. Hmmm… Baklava is my FAVORITE dessert. And EASY Baklava…. come on!!

    But with Chocolate? Hm…. not sure. Guess I’ll have to bake this deliciousness and find out!


  5. 5 stars
    THIS. RECIPE.!!! I can’t EVEN!!
    So, I NEVER bake baklava, because buttering individual sheets of phyllo, PLUS how excessively sweet it always has been to my tastebuds, it just wasn’t worth it to me. I could always buy a single piece to nibble on if I had to have it.

    BUT THIS!!

    I can totally see how it will flake up perfectly, given, lol, that phyllo dough in and of itself is flour layered with butter! You are way, way BRILLIANT Girl! Thanks for this! I can barely wait for a summer potluck to bring this to, so I can confirm that I am, ahem, a fabulous baker…though I always say, to the myriad compliments I get, “Oh, thanks, but you know, it’s a Half-Baked Harvest recipe, so—“[anyone can make this and be amazing!–implied].

    I think last party was your blueberry Basque cheesecake, and another earlier one was an insane cake with blackberries white chocolate and a lavender syrup? Seriously. You are rocking this gig!

    1. Hey Toni,
      Happy Friday!! Thanks a lot for giving this recipe a try and sharing your feedback, I love to hear that it was enjoyed!! Thanks so much for your kind message:) xT

    1. Hi Vicki,
      You will want to use 1 teaspoon of cinnamon. I hope this recipe turns out amazing for you, let me know if you give it a try! xx

  6. In the pictures I don’t see a middle layer of phyllo. Is it there and just disappearing between the nut layers? Thanks!

      1. Hi Melana,
        The phyllo dough is incredibly thin, so the middle layer becomes hidden from all of the weight, but it’s in there:) xTieghan

    1. Hi Liz,
      Yup, it’s in there:) Let me know if you have any other questions, I hope you love the recipe!! xTieghan

  7. These really look tasty with the chocolate. I have never cared for them but… the chocolate really looks good.

  8. love this recipe but I see no cinnamon in the list of ingredients and the amount

    1. Hi Joy,
      Sorry for any confusion, you will want to use 1 teaspoon of cinnamon for this recipe. I hope it turns out amazing for you, let me know if you give it a try! xx

    1. Hey Karin,
      Sorry for any confusion, I have added those amounts to the ingredients list:) Let me know if you give this recipe a try, I hope you love it! xx