One-Pot Goulash Recipe

The story of goulash is a tale of 2 different dishes. One is a traditional Hungarian meat stew liberally seasoned with paprika, Hungary's favorite spice, but the other is an all-American dish made of noodles, ground beef, and tomatoes. This recipe is for the latter version, but it is a classic of its own kind: plain, simple, and budget-friendly."This is a fast and delicious meal that's perfect for a weeknight," says recipe developer Erin Johnson, adding "Best of all, it cooks in one pot."

Johnson does say that the dish can be customized if you'd like to change it up a bit, telling us that "You can substitute any ground meat you have on hand, and even substitute spaghetti sauce for the diced tomatoes." You may also wish to spice this goulash up by adding a pinch of cayenne, some crushed red pepper flakes, or paprika to give it a hint of the original goulash flavor. You could also top off the dish with some grated Parmesan, or sharp cheddar cheese to give it an extra layer of flavor.

Gather the 1-pot goulash ingredients

This American-style goulash is mainly comprised of ground beef and elbow macaroni, but it also has a meal's worth of vegetables, such as onion, green pepper, canned tomatoes, and canned tomato sauce. The dish is seasoned simply with salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, and fresh garlic, and also includes some chicken broth to help tie everything together.

Sautée the vegetables and meat

Before you can begin to cook the dish, you will need to peel, and chop the onion. Yes, it's going to hurt no matter what tips, tricks, and hacks you try, unless you've purchased tear-free onions. If you haven't, though, a pair of swim or safety goggles could help you avoid some of the pain. When the onion is chopped, go ahead and chop the green pepper, too — luckily this isn't likely to cause much discomfort.

When the vegetables are chopped, gently cook them in a Dutch oven over medium heat, until softened. Then, add the ground beef, and cook until browned. Stir it as it cooks in order to break up the clumps. When the meat is cooked, season it with salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, and minced garlic.

Simmer and serve the goulash

Stir the tomatoes, tomato sauce, and broth in with the meat and vegetables, then add the elbow macaroni. Heat the goulash until it starts boiling, then turn the heat down, and allow it to simmer for 30 minutes. Check it periodically as it cooks — once the noodles are al dente, remove from the heat, and serve.

Johnson says of this American-style goulash: "I like to serve this with a salad, and good bread," but you may prefer to pair it with another cafeteria staple, such as tater tots to make for a truly nostalgic meal. If you're not going to finish the entire pot in 1 sitting, Johnson tells us that it should be good in the refrigerator for 3 days, but you can also freeze it in individual portions. 

One-Pot Goulash Recipe
5 from 42 ratings
A one-pot meal is undeniably perfect, and this goulash recipe makes for an easy and delicious weeknight dinner.
Prep Time
Cook Time
american-style goulash in bowl
Total time: 50 minutes
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 cups elbow macaroni
  1. Sautée the onion and pepper until tender. Add the ground beef to the vegetables, and cook until browned. Season with the salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, and garlic.
  2. Stir the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, and broth into the pot. Add the elbow macaroni to the pot, and bring the mixture to a boil. Simmer the goulash for 30 minutes, or until the noodles are tender.
Calories per Serving 583
Total Fat 25.1 g
Saturated Fat 9.1 g
Trans Fat 1.3 g
Cholesterol 82.3 mg
Total Carbohydrates 58.8 g
Dietary Fiber 8.2 g
Total Sugars 13.2 g
Sodium 980.7 mg
Protein 31.4 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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