This super easy Goulash Recipe is a comfort food classic! It’s filled with hearty ground beef and tender pasta in a rich tomato-based sauce and comes together in about 30 minutes!

Easy Goulash Recipe made on the stove top.pinterestI’m always looking for new and exciting ways to turn ground beef into dinner, but sometimes I just love the good old classics that bring me right back to my childhood. This Goulash Recipe is just that. It’s super affordable, quick to make and tastes like a warm hug on a cool evening.

Classic Goulash Recipe

Are you familiar with Goulash? If not, let me introduce you to this old fashioned recipe! This recipe is an American Goulash that’s great for busy weeknights, but I love to take this recipe to potlucks and parties because it makes a ton and is super affordable. It’s also great for picky eaters, I haven’t met one kid who doesn’t love this dish!

Goulash is filled with ground beef, onion and bell peppers along with macaroni noodles in a tomato-based sauce. I like to stir in some sharp cheddar cheese at the end to give it a creamy texture. My family loves it!

Dry macaroni noodles in a pot of Goulash

Goulash Ingredients:

  • Onion – I like to use either a white or yellow onion
  • Green Bell Pepper – you can use other colors of peppers if desired
  • Ground Beef
  • Garlic
  • Tomato Sauce
  • Diced Tomatoes – I love using the petite diced tomatoes here
  • Beef Broth
  • Worcestershire Sauce
  • Seasoned Salt
  • Italian Seasoning
  • Bay Leaves
  • Dry Macaroni Noodles – other small pastas would work too
  • Cheddar Cheese

Classic American Goulash in a white bowl with spoon on the left.

How To Make Goulash

  • Start by browning the ground beef along with the onion and bell pepper. Drain any fat and then toss in garlic until fragrant.
  • Pour in tomato sauce and diced tomatoes along with beef broth and Worcestershire sauce for some added depth of flavor.
  • Add in the seasonings as well as dried macaroni noodles and let simmer until the noodles are cooked through.
  • Finally stir in the cheddar cheese and dig in!

Tips and Variations:

  • Make sure you use a big pot, as this recipe does make a lot!
  • You can swap out the macaroni noodles for any other small pasta you have on hand.
  • To make this an even leaner meal, you can use ground turkey in place of ground beef.
  • Try adding in extra veggies like: corn, peas, diced carrots, green beans or even stirring in baby spinach at the end!
  • Stir in a cup of sour cream at the end to give this recipe an even creamier base!
  • The goulash is not quite soup consistency, but if you would like to add extra beef broth to make it more soupy you can definitely do that!

Tender macaroni pasta in a beef and tomato sauce in a white bowl.

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Tender macaroni pasta in a beef and tomato sauce in a white bowl.
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4.91 from 213 votes

Easy Goulash Recipe

This Ground Beef Goulash Recipe is a quick and easy one pan dinner that's pure comfort food.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 10
Calories: 388 kcal
Author: Shawn


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 2 lbs. ground beef, lean
  • 3 tsp garlic, minced
  • 2 15 oz cans tomato sauce
  • 2 15 oz cans petite diced tomatoes
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • 3 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 tsp seasoned salt
  • 2 tbsp Italian Seasoning
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 cups macaroni noodles, uncooked
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded


  • Add olive oil to large pot over medium-high heat. Add in the onion, bell pepper and ground beef then cook until beef is no longer pink. Drain any excess fat and return pot to stove top. Add in garlic and stir until fragrant (about 30 seconds).
  • Pour in the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, seasoned salt, Italian seasoning, bay leaves and dried macaroni noodles. Stir and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to a light boil and stir occasionally until the pasta is tender, about 20 minutes.
  • Remove the bay leaves and stir in the cheddar cheese just before serving. Enjoy!


Calories: 388kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 76mg | Sodium: 918mg | Potassium: 439mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 174IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 134mg | Iron: 3mg
Keywords: Classic, Comfort, Goulash, Ground Beef, Pasta
DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?don't forget to share a picture and mention @iwashyoudry on Instagram or tag #iwashyoudry!


EASY American Goulash Recipe

About the author

Shawn is the Owner and Creator of I Wash You Dry. She loves to create and share simple, family-friendly recipes. Mom to 5 adorable children and dwells in the desert of Southern Utah.
390 Responses
  1. Sabrina Dale

    5 stars
    This recipe is absolutely delicious!!! Thank you very much for bringing me back to my childhood!! My grandmother made it all the time and I have always wanted to make it!! Thank you Shawn!! Blessings to you and your family!!

      1. Tara Fry

        Please adjust the prep/cook time. I started just after 6:00 pm. It is now 8:20 pm and we’re just sitting down to eat. I did not make any adjustments to the original recipe.

  2. Pam

    5 stars
    Made this tonight. Great recipe!!! We loved it. I cut it in half but added more macaroni since there were complaints of it being too much liquid. This was perfect and not runny at all. Definitely a keeper for another time. Thanks for the recipe!!!

  3. Kim St Charles

    4 stars
    Delicious! I only give it four stars because it was a bit soupy for my taste. I remedied that by cooking extra macaroni on the side and stirring it in before adding the cheese. I cut the recipe in half , it was a generous amount for 4 with next day leftovers. I will be making again !

    1. I find that this dish actually gets thicker the longer it stands. Might make a difference in the future for ya! Or you can always just add a little extra noodles to the dish while it’s cooking. Glad you enjoyed it!

  4. Nancye Alameda

    It looks delicious… may cut back on the liquids as I want it not too soupy… I will add beans and a little corn, and serve with my fabulous corn bread and butter!!! Cannot wait to try it!!!

  5. Laura Bien

    5 stars
    Delicious and oh so easy! Got a rave review from husband! It was so rainy and gray and snowy here today–this was the perfect comfort food! Paired with a small salad = perfect meal! Thank you!

  6. Paul Dupuie II

    5 stars
    This was my first dish I ever made. I did make a few tweeked for what I have in hands. It’s was a smashing hit! Even my very picky austim 10 years old granddaughter praised me for a frost time! I’m glad I found your recipe. Thank you Shawn. It’s a real keeper!

  7. Goulash Recipe

    5 stars
    This recipe was amazing; very simple to follow for someone whose not a good cook like myself and the flavour was amazing. I missed a few minor ingredients but it still tasted great. I am so happy to have stumbled on it and recommend it to any beginner cooks or anyone who wants a flavourful, hardy stew.

  8. Rachel Vryhof

    4 stars
    Made it as is and enjoyed it! Reminded me more of my grandma’s chop suey than my mother’s goulash (which tastes more spaghetti-ish). I agree with others that it was a little soupier than I’m accustomed to, but I think the leftovers will thicken up nicely.

  9. Nikole Lehuray

    5 stars
    I made this last night. It is the best quick ghoulash
    recipe I’ve ever made or had. So simple I followed to the T.
    I’m so excited to go thru all your

  10. Dana Babcock

    1 star
    So I just made this goulash. I did exactly as the directions told me to and it looks and has the consistency of runny soup. In fact, I left out 1 can of the diced tomatoes thank goodness. I was really hoping for something alot thicker.

  11. Cortney

    I have always made my goulash with tomato juice. Trying this tonight and not telling the family I switched it up . Fingers crossed lol. Momma of 8 teenagers and I work full time, so quick recipes are always a win over here lol

  12. Dawn Arnold

    I am planning on making this recipe this week. I had 2 questions. What percentage of ground beef do you recommend, 90%, 85%, or 80%. Also your recipe calls for seasoned salt. Do you mean like Lawry’s seasoning salt?

    1. Shawn

      I typically cook with 93% when I make a recipe, but it doesn’t really matter, cause you’ll drain the fat after you’ve browned it. And yes, Lawry’s seasoning salt is what I use. 🙂

  13. Gretchen

    Made this last weekend for the family and was an instant hit!! Trying your Italian Beef and Rice skillet tonight and I know it will be amaze!!

        1. No, the consistency would be off if you did this. This is because the noodles absorb a lot of the sauce when it’s cooking. If you wanted to use potatoes instead of noodles, I would reduce the beef broth to maybe just a cup (if using cooked potato).

  14. Betty Ensley

    We made this exactly as written. Way too much Italian seasoning. 1 bay leaf would have been enough.
    I will make it again but cut the seasoning in half.

    1. Shawn

      Sorry you felt it had too much seasoning, next time I would try half like you mentioned, taste it and see if you like it. If it needs more, just add a little more at a time. 🙂

  15. Lisa Anderson

    Great dish and great for leftovers. I always wondered what the difference was between this and America Chop Suey. Finally looked it up and it seems that us silly New Englanders call it American Chop Suey. So i learned that they are the exact same just a silly colloquial name difference.

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Shawn Syphus

Hi, I’m Shawn and I’m a busy mom of five; pretending to live on a budget. I love to cook, and explore new recipes, but they have to be quick and easy with as few dishes as possible.

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