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Old Fashioned American Goulash

In this post I’ll be sharing how to make Old Fashioned American Goulash.

Did you grow up eating American Goulash? We just call it simply “Goulash” here in the South. Goulash is a comfort food meal that remains popular today!

My husband introduced me to Goulash. He grew up with this recipe. In fact, he is usually the one who prepares it in our house. Rest assured, he kept an eagle eye on me while I was preparing it for this post to make sure I didn’t do any food blogger tricks and add anything extra to it.

Sadly, I somehow missed out on this dish growing up. My mother’s menus were always the same. Some variety of dried beans, mashed potatoes or rice (sometimes mac and cheese), one other vegetable, cornbread or biscuits and a meat. Rarely did she stray from this trend but sometimes it was spaghetti or grilled hamburgers or hot dogs.

In case you read this Mother, your cooking was great, just telling a story here. It is true though.  😀

American style goulash is a basic skillet meal with ground beef, macaroni noodles, tomatoes and some type of vegetables which will vary according to whose cooking it. Okay, let’s face it – it’s basically a rustic macaroni spaghetti skillet or hobo skillet.

Economical easy recipes that are comforting to the soul are great in my book. Leftovers are even better the next day! We enjoy ours served with a little shredded cheddar on top and a few dashes of hot sauce. So good y’all!

Beef Pasta Tomato Goulash

Easy old fashioned goulash - American style topped with cheddar and a few dashes of hot sauce

Feel free to add more vegetables to this recipe if you like. I’ve seen versions to include carrots and corn. We keep it pretty simple here.

Cooking well doesn’t mean cooking fancy ~ Julia Child

Preparing American Style Goulash in a skillet

American Style Goulash

Find a printable recipe card with full ingredients and instructions at the end of this post.

Ingredients: ground beef, macaroni, onion, celery, mushrooms, seasonings, soy sauce, diced tomatoes, water and tomato paste

Stainless Steel Skillet with Southern Goulash Recipe

Step 1: Use the biggest skillet with a lid that you have to make this a one pot meal. Begin by heating a skillet over medium heat. Add the ground beef and cook until nearly browned through. Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder and Creole seasoning.

Step 2: Next, add the onion, celery and mushrooms along with any other vegetables that you may be using. Cook until the vegetables soften.

Step 3: Next, add the macaroni, canned tomatoes with the juice, tomato paste, soy sauce and water. Give everything a good stir to combine it all together. Be sure that the macaroni noodles are pretty much covered with liquid. You can add a bit more water if needed. Cover with a lid and simmer 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Serve hot with any toppings desired such as shredded cheese, sour cream, or hot sauce.

Easy Goulash

American Goulash Recipe - Southern Goulash - Easy

Old Fashioned American Goulash

American Goulash served in a yellow bowl

Other ground beef recipes you might enjoy: Ground Beef Casserole, Ground Beef Stroganoff, Classic Stuffed Peppers

Southern Goulash

American Goulash Recipe #onepot #beef #pasta #tomatoes #easyrecipe #classic

Easy Old Fashioned American Goulash Recipe

Old Fashioned American Goulash

Easy Old Fashioned Goulash served in a bowl from the Pioneer Woman collection

Classic old fashioned goulash is a simple comfort food meal made with ground beef, tomatoes and pasta

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes


  • 2 lbs Ground Beef
  • 1.5 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Creole Seasoning
  • 1 Onion, diced (Vidalia or Yellow)
  • 1/2 c Celery, chopped
  • 1/2 c Sliced Mushrooms
  • Couple of dashes of Soy Sauce (about a teaspoon)
  • 2 c Uncooked Elbow Macaroni
  • 28 oz Can Diced Tomatoes, with the juice
  • 2 c Water
  • 1 tbs Tomato Paste


Begin by adding the ground beef to a large skillet. Break the meat apart and cook until nearly browned through. Season the meat with the salt, pepper, garlic powder and creole seasoning. 

Next add the diced onion and celery along with the sliced mushrooms. Stir to combine with the meat mixture and cook until the vegetables begin to soften.

Next, add the macaroni, canned diced tomatoes with juices, soy sauce. Then add the water and tomato paste and stir to combine.

Cover the skillet and cook for 15 minutes or until the macaroni is tender.

Serve hot with favorite topping or garnish if desired.

Nutrition Information:



Amount Per Serving: Calories: 402Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 101mgSodium: 761mgCarbohydrates: 20gFiber: 3gSugar: 8gProtein: 34g
Basic Goulash Recipe - Southern Style - American Chopped Suey

This recipe was proudly shared at Weekend Potluck and Meal Plan Monday

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richard mooney

Saturday 24th of October 2020

grew up on goulash, but have not had it since my mother passed away, been 20 some years, thanks I made it wow just like Moms thank you for sharing :)

Julia Jordan

Saturday 24th of October 2020

Richard, Thank you so much for letting me know how much you enjoyed this goulash recipe. It makes me so happy that you did. ~Julia

Colleen - Faith, Hope, Love, & Luck

Saturday 21st of July 2018

What a tasty all in one dish meal!!!


Thursday 19th of July 2018

I didn't grow up with goulash either, so I never think to make it. Yours does look great though, so now I am thinking it needs to hit our menu!

Julia Jordan

Thursday 19th of July 2018

I thought I might have been the only one, lol ;) It is tasty and so simple.

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