This Crockpot Goulash is a slow cooker version of a classic comfort food! Ground beef and macaroni noodles are simmered in a flavorful and creamy tomato sauce then topped with sharp cheddar and sour cream!
Goulash is the perfect comfort food. It’s a hearty, stick to your ribs dinner that’s loved by kids and adults alike! It has meat, veggies, pasta, and cheese — just a little something for everyone. 🙂 I love this version in particular, because it’s made in my favorite cooking tool: the slow cooker!
What is the difference between american goulash and hungarian goulash?
Although both are called goulash, American and Hungarian goulash are not the same thing.
Hungarian goulash is a stew made up of beef, onions, spices, veggies, and often homemade dumplings. American goulash on the other hand, also known as American chop suey, is a tomato-based pasta dish made up of ground beef, veggies, and macaroni noodles.
Hungarian goulash is delicious, but today we’re making American goulash!
This simple ingredient list makes a flavor packed dinner that’s also loaded with nutrients.
- Condensed Tomato Soup – the base for the tomato sauce and the perfect canvas for flavorful seasonings. It’s thick, rich, a little sweet, and a little acidic.
- Ground Beef – use lean ground beef so the pasta isn’t too greasy. Feel free to use ground turkey for an even lighter version!
- Onion and Bell Peppers – give the pasta texture, color, and a boost of nutrition.
- Garlic – adds a bit of nutty flavor to round out the brightness from the tomato sauce.
- Italian Seasoning, Paprika, Salt, and Pepper – an earthy, sweet seasoning blend with a little kick to add so much flavor to this dish.
- Canned Diced Tomatoes – don’t drain the tomatoes! The extra moisture works into the sauce and gives the pasta something to soak up.
- Soy Sauce and Worcestershire Sauce – gives the sauce salty, slightly tangy flavors.
- Elbow Macaroni – no need to cook first! If you don’t love macaroni noodles feel free to use another short noodle. Keep in mind, cook time may be affected.
- Sour Cream – makes the tomato sauce ultra creamy with a little bit of tang.
- Cheddar Cheese – melted into the sauce and used for topping!
How to make
No need to cook the beef OR pasta before placing them into the crockpot — both cook directly in the slow cooker.
- Grease a crockpot with cooking spray then pour in condensed soup.
- Add in ground beef, onions, bell peppers, garlic, seasonings, diced tomatoes, soy sauce, and Worcestershire sauce then cover on cook on HIGH for 3-4 hours or on LOW for 6-8 hours.
- Remove beef and break apart with two forks then return to the crockpot along with uncooked macaroni noodles.
- Cook again on HIGH for 30-60 minutes, stirring halfway through then mix in sour cream and shredded cheese and enjoy!
Can you put raw beef in a slow cooker?
Yes! The ground beef goes into the slow cooker uncooked and comes out perfectly!
Can you put uncooked noodles in the crockpot?
Yes. The pasta cooks directly in the crockpot but just for the last 30 minutes to an hour of cook time. Cook less if you prefer more al dente pasta or longer if you prefer it softer.
Can you use another pasta?
Yep! If macaroni noodles aren’t your thing, or you have another variety on hand, feel free to use those instead.
What to serve with goulash
I love to serve my goulash with another sprinkle of cheddar cheese, an extra dollop of sour cream, and some yummy sides!
How to store
Leftovers will last in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days.
To reheat, microwave or heat on the stove with a splash of chicken broth.
Can you freeze goulash?
I don’t recommend freezing leftover goulash. Pasta does not freeze well.
No crockpot? Check out my one pot goulash recipe instead!
Equipment for this recipe
- 2 (10.5 oz) cans condensed tomato soup
- 2 pounds uncooked lean ground beef
- 1 yellow onion diced
- 2 green bell peppers diced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1- 2 tablespoons dried Italian seasoning
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon salt plus more to taste (I did 2 1/2 teaspoons)
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 (16 oz) box uncooked elbow macaroni
- 1 cup sour cream plus more for serving, if desired
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese plus more for serving, if desired
- Grease a 6 quart crockpot with cooking spray, then pour in the condensed soup.
- Top with ground beef (no need to break it apart), then onions, bell peppers, garlic, Italian seasoning, paprika, salt, and pepper.
- Pour in diced tomatoes, soy sauce, and worcestershire sauce.
- Cover and cook on HIGH for 3-4 hours or LOW for 6-8 hours.
- Remove beef and break apart with 2 forks (it’s ok if it’s still a little pink in some spots, it’ll keep cooking).
- Stir the crumbled beef back in, then stir in the uncooked macaroni.
- Cover and cook on HIGH for 30-60 minutes or until the noodles are cooked to your liking, stirring halfway through* to ensure the noodles cook evenly.
- Stir in sour cream and shredded cheese until melted.
- Taste and re-season, if necessary, then serve and enjoy!
*Note: Nutrition information is estimated and varies based on products used.