mous·​sa·​ka mü-ˈsä-kə How to pronounce moussaka (audio) ˌmü-sä-ˈkä How to pronounce moussaka (audio)
variants or less commonly mousaka
: a Middle Eastern dish of ground meat (such as lamb or beef) and sliced eggplant often topped with a seasoned sauce

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Egyptian moussaka foregoes both the béchamel of the Greek version and the usual ground beef, so all attention is given to the eggplant, roasted in tomato sauce until the flesh goes lush. Ligaya Mishan, New York Times, 28 Feb. 2020 Other moussaka recipes use potato slices, which tend to need a fair amount of salt for seasoning. Darlene Zimmerman, Detroit Free Press, 22 Feb. 2020 Take your time exploring the farm, with everything from papaya trees to baby peacocks, before trying the house salad packed with fresh-picked greens or the sweet potato moussaka. Shannon Sims, New York Times, 11 Feb. 2020 His moussaka—baked eggplant with zucchini, potato, and fresh tomatoes—is also a draw. David Kortava, The New Yorker, 23 Aug. 2019 The fast-casual restaurant serves steak gyros, lamb shank youvetsi, chicken souvlaki and moussaka. Los Angeles Times, 20 Aug. 2019 Feast on gyros, moussaka, spanakopita and other Greek delights at the 41st Taste of Greece at St. Paul’s Greek Orthodox Church. Sara Cagle,, 26 June 2019 And for those who already clearly know their moussaka, their tzatziki and their baklava, this is just like home. Joan Cary, Aurora Beacon-News, 8 July 2018 But what food and prices: hummus and assorted salads, kebabs, moussaka, and the like, plus Abali yogurt soda and Burg apple nonalcoholic beer to wash it down. Michael Klein,, 24 Jan. 2018 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'moussaka.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Modern Greek mousakas, from Turkish musakka, from dialect Arabic (Egypt) musaggaʽa, literally, chilled

First Known Use

1862, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of moussaka was in 1862

Dictionary Entries Near moussaka

Cite this Entry

“Moussaka.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition


mous·​sa·​ka ˌmü-sə-ˈkä How to pronounce moussaka (audio)
: a Middle Eastern dish of ground meat (as lamb or beef) and sliced eggplant often topped with a seasoned sauce

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