A Spicy Perspective

One-Pot American Goulash

The Best Beef Goulash Recipe – Savory American goulash is a classic one-pot dish that everyone loves! It’s made with a hearty tomato sauce, macaroni, and shredded cheese, and is ready to enjoy in just over 30 minutes.

one pot american beef goulash

Easy American Beef Goulash

When you think of your favorite comfort foods that you could eat again and again, recipes with some kind of tender beef simmered in a rich and flavorful sauce is probably on the list. And if you’re like anyone in our family, savory beef dishes are definitely in the top 5.

Hearty goulash recipes are perfect for satisfying those cravings for something cozy, warm, and rustic. The term “goulash” typically refers to a simmered soup or stew that includes meat, some kind of vegetable(s), and paprika seasonings. We have a classic stew-like Hungarian Goulash recipe on the site, made with potatoes and peppers in a smoky broth. It’s wonderfully delicious, but does take a couple of hours to properly cook.

So today we’re sharing this quick and easy American Beef Goulash version. But while it has a similar name, it’s nothing like classic European goulash… Instead, it’s more like Homemade Hamburger Helper with a heavier tomato sauce and cheese. Don’t let this detour you, it’s a real crowd-pleaser and popular with the neighborhood kids!

Cheesy beef goulash is a one-pot wonder that’s ready to serve in just over 30 minutes for a nearly last-minute weeknight meal. This recipe is also super simple to customize with different proteins and gluten-free pasta. Prepare to your tastes and get ready to put this at the tippy-top of your must-have comfort food dishes!

up close view of bowl with beef goulash and fork selecting a bite

Ingredients You Need

  • Oil preferred high-heat neutral-flavored oil
  • Onionpeeled and chopped
  • Bell pepperseeded and chopped
  • Garlicminced
  • Ground beef or other protein of choice
  • Tomato saucecanned
  • Diced tomatocanned, with the juices
  • Italian seasoning store bought or homemade Italian seasoning
  • Beef baseor bouillon
  • Dried macaroni noodlesor other small pasta
  • Sharp cheddar cheeseshredded
  • Hot sauceoptional
  • Chopped cilantro or parsleyoptional garnish
pot with browned meat, peppers, and onions

How to Make American Goulash

First, a large saucepot over medium heat. Add the oil, onion, bell pepper, and garlic. Sauté for 3-5 minutes to soften.

Add the ground beef. Stir and brown for 5-8 minutes.

Then add in the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and Italian seasoning.

pouring a can of tomato sauce into the pot

Then add the beef base and macaroni noodles. Use the tomato can to add 15 ounces of water to the pot. 

adding macaroni noodles to the pot

Stir well. Cover and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 7-9 minutes until the pasta is just cooked through, al dente.

simmered one pot goulash with beef

Stir in the shredded cheese and hot sauce (if using).

Get the Complete (Printable) American Goulash Recipe + VIDEO Below. Enjoy!

adding cheese to the pot

Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired.

overhead view of pot with cooked macaroni, and beef in a tomato sauce with chopped parsley on top

Add chopped cilantro or parsley right to the pot, or serve on the side to let everyone garnish their own bowl.

overhead view of white plate with beef goulash topped with chopped parsley and shredded cheese, fork on the side. The pot of goulash is in the upper right with wooden spoon

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I make this a gluten-free beef goulash recipe?

Use your favorite GF-friendly macaroni noodles to easily make this a gluten-free dish.

What other proteins can I use to make American goulash?

This recipe is delicious with ground chicken or ground turkey. Or feel free to use your favorite plant-based ground meat alternative!

How long do goulash leftovers last?

Leftovers will keep well for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. Let the dish cool completely before transferring to an airtight container. The flavors get better and better as they sit together, so this recipe is great to make ahead as part of your weekly meal prep!

side view of fork getting a bite of American beef goulash from a white bowl

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One-Pot American Goulash Recipe + VIDEO

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
American beef goulash is a classic one skillet dish that everyone loves! This easy goulash recipe is made with a hearty tomato sauce in only about 30 minutes.
Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Set a large saucepot over medium heat. Add the oil, onion, bell pepper, and garlic. Sauté for 3-5 minutes to soften.
  • Add the ground beef. Stir and brown for 5-8 minutes.
  • Pour in the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, Italian seasoning, beef base, and macaroni noodles. Use the tomato can to add 15 ounces of water to the pot.
  • Stir well. Cover and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 7-9 minutes until the pasta is just cooked through, al dente.
  • Stir in the cheese and hot sauce. Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve warm with a sprinkling of parsley or cilantro.

Video

Notes

Use GF noodles to make this gluten free!
Also try with ground turkey or chicken.
Leftovers will keep well for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. Let the dish cool completely before transferring to an airtight container. The flavors get better and better as they sit together, so this recipe is great to make ahead as part of your weekly meal prep!

Nutrition

Serving: 1.25cup, Calories: 520kcal, Carbohydrates: 41g, Protein: 28g, Fat: 28g, Saturated Fat: 12g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 11g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 83mg, Sodium: 1188mg, Potassium: 975mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 10g, Vitamin A: 1578IU, Vitamin C: 45mg, Calcium: 287mg, Iron: 5mg
Course: dinner, Main, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Author: Sommer Collier

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3 comments on “One-Pot American Goulash”

  1. This was so incredibly yummy! Can’t wait to make it again! Thank for the great recipe.

  2. I haven’t had goulash since I was a kid, and I forgot how much I liked it. Except this recipe was better than my Mom’s!

  3. this goulash is so amazing and I love the flavoring so much! Take the extra time to grate your own cheese, it is 1000% worth it!