How To Make Southern Goulash: Family Recipes

August 15, 2021
How To Make Southern Goulash

Hey, y’all! Back to school season is here — and with that comes a restricted amount of time for many families. With that in mind, I’m excited to teach y’all how to make southern goulash, which was one of my favorite recipes that my mother made during my youth. This recipe is immensely simple, yields significant leftovers, and will carry over from back-to-school season to being a perfect fall/winter dish. I just know y’all are going to love it!

How To Make Southern Goulash

How To Make Southern Goulash

What is Goulash?

Goulash, also referred to as “slumgullion”, is a popular comfort food in the south and midwest. It was popularized in Europe as a dish featuring beef, vegetables, tomatoes, bell peppers, and a hearty seasoning of paprika.

Enjoy my Southern Goulash? Check out my other recipes here!

Apart from its original roots, I’ve always known it to be an economical, family-friendly recipe — and I hope that y’all will appreciate that fact, as well.

How To Make Southern Goulash


What type of beef should I use for this?

I personally use 90-10 ground beef; that said, use the ground beef of your choice. I do drain a lot of the excess fat while cooking my beef.

What type of tomatoes should I use?

In my version of goulash, I use three: crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, and tomato paste.

Any tips on pasta preparation?

There are two ways to make this recipe. You can make it in one pot and simply cook the elbow macaroni in the beef and tomato mixture. For a quicker result, you can boil the pasta until it is al dente and fold it into the beef and tomato mixture post-cooking (I most often do this!).

The Recipe

Enjoy my Southern Goulash? Check out my other recipes here!

family recipes using crushed tomatoes
How To Make Southern Goulash

Southern Goulash

JC Phelps
There are few family-friendly recipes that top this easy version of Southern Goulash. Economical + perfect for leftovers, you're going to make this a part of your regular rotation!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 8 people
Calories 519 kcal


  • 2 lbs ground beef lean
  • 3 vidalia onions chopped
  • 3 bell peppers chopped
  • 2 c uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 28 oz crushed tomatoes
  • 15 oz tomato sauce
  • 6 oz tomato paste
  • 3 c water
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tbsp italian seasoning
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • kosher salt to taste
  • black pepper to taste
  • garlic powder to taste (liberal)
  • parmesan for topping


  • Bring a pot of water to a rolling boil, salting liberally. Add elbow macaroni. Cook until al dente. Drain and set aside.
  • Over medium-high heat, cook ground beef + chopped peppers and onions until fully-done. Season with kosher salt, black pepper, and a liberal amount of garlic powder to taste. Add smoked paprika, Italian seasoning, Worcestershire, and soy sauce.
  • When beef is fully cooked, add tomato paste and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Reduce to medium-low heat and add crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, water, and bay leaves. Cook for 30 minutes.
  • Add in al dente elbow macaroni, stir well, and allow to cook for a couple of more minutes. Remove bay leaves and serve; top with fresh parmesan.


Sodium: 953mgCalcium: 135mgVitamin C: 81mgVitamin A: 3055IUSugar: 20gFiber: 8gPotassium: 1370mgCholesterol: 81mgCalories: 519kcalTrans Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 10gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 9gFat: 24gProtein: 28gCarbohydrates: 50gIron: 7mg
Keyword family recipes, goulash, southern goulash
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
family recipes using crushed tomatoes

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

My best,


Keep Up With JCP Eats

Thank you so much for visiting the blog today! I’d love to keep in touch via social media. You can follow my content on InstagramFacebookPinterestTik TokTwitter, and LinkedIn. I also author a sister website to JCP Eats, Unabashedly Southern, on which I write about southern lifestyle. Read Unabashedly Southern here.

Enjoy my Southern Goulash? Check out my other recipes here!

How To Make Southern Goulash

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