When most people think goulash, they imagine a traditional Hungarian goulash rather than this flavor-packed German goulash. Both are great mind you, but this hearty German goulash is like nothing you’ve ever tasted!
This is more than a stew – it’s an experience and it tastes better than I can describe. It’s one of those dishes that needs little introduction and no other companion besides a simple bread item to sop up all the awesome flavor in the bottom of the bowl.
You’ll keep eating long after you’re full and trust me – you’re gonna’ want seconds!
This German goulash recipe is one of my favorite cold-weather meals because the awesome flavor continues to develop as it sits. While there is some simmer time involved, it’s worth every single minute and I love that I can get other things done while it’s on the stove.
- Layers upon layers of flavor
- Wholesome ingredients
- Totally flexible recipe
- Great for lunch or dinner
- Awesome for meal prep
Making goulash soup is pretty straightforward but there are some techniques to ensuring full-blown success. Here are all the tips and tricks you need to know!
Beef Chuck – I find that beef chuck is the best cut for this German goulash recipe. It has plenty of collagen that breaks down as it simmers rendering the meat oh-so-tender. If you don’t have chuck on hand then any well-exercised muscle or lean cut of meat will work, like shoulder or round.
Fond – The fond is all the tasty little brown bits left in the bottom of the pan after cooking meat and/or veggies. This is nothing but the sheer concentrated flavor and it is the basis for your German goulash recipe. It should be a nice brown color, not black and crusty.
Red Wine – You’ll be using red wine to deglaze your pan and pick up all the concentrated flavors from the fond. Don’t worry, the alcohol cooks off. Choosing a wine that tastes good will also help.
Better Than Bullion – Grab the beef flavored Better Than Bouillon! Don’t substitute with those bland salty bouillon cubes because the flavor of your German goulash recipe will suffer. Better Than Bouillon is an intense seasoning paste.
Simmer –You’ll want to simmer your German goulash recipe over medium-low heat. Your tasty concoction should gently bubble in the pot.
Consistency – Your broth should have the consistency of good gravy, but it will thicken as it simmers. If it gets too thick for your liking, you can always thin it out with a little beef broth or water.
Your German goulash will keep best in a food-grade plastic container with a secure lid. Cover it up, slide it into the fridge and it’ll continue to develop even more robust flavor!
Can You Freeze This?
Freeze away my friend! Let your German goulash recipe cool completely before preparing it for the frozen abyss. Keep in mind that it will thicken as it freezes so you’ll need to add water or beef broth upon thawing.
Make Ahead Tips
I like to make a big pot of this German goulash recipe and store the leftovers in single-serve containers. This makes an easy grab and go lunches and ready-made dinners after a long hard day.
Sometimes I’ll whip up a batch of German goulash just to put in the freezer. Here’s a trick. Put a gallon sized freezer bag in a large square pan and then pour in your German goulash. Seal it up, let it harden in the freezer and then remove the pan. The frozen block of German goulash makes it easier to play freezer Tetris.
How Long Can You Keep This In The Fridge?
Storing your German goulash recipe properly will keep it fresh for up to 4 days in the fridge even though it’ll get gobbled up way sooner than that.
This beef goulash recipe is so flexible because you can easily add or subtract veggies and make it as thick as you like. There are a thousand ways to switch it up but here are just a few suggestions.
How Do Other Countries Make Their Goulash?
This veggie-heavy German goulash recipe has a ton of character and loads of robust flavor but if you’re short on nutritious veggies you can make a traditional Hungarian goulash. It’s also a hearty stew that eats like a meal.
Of course, lots of people are partial to a good ‘ole American Goulash with the elbow macaroni and chunks of tomato. Can you blame them?
Can I Turn This Into A Crockpot Goulash?
I love making crockpot goulash because I can virtually set it and forget it! It’s a great slow cooker meal that’s ready when you are but the simmer time on this German goulash recipe does give you time to do other things too.
Can I Turn This Into An Instant Pot Goulash?
Making instant pot goulash means you’ll have dinner ready in a fraction of the time and it’ll be every bit as delicious. The technique varies just a bit when you’re putting this German goulash recipe in an instant pot cooker.
Can I Use Ground Beef Instead?
This German goulash recipe is really designed to be made with lean chunks of meat that come out melt-in-your-mouth tender but if hamburger is all you have on hand you can make hamburger goulash instead.
- 3 pounds beef chuck, cut into 1 inch cubes
- 2 teaspoons salt divided
- 3/4 teaspoon black pepper divided
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 2 cups onions, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 tablespoon sweet paprika
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups red wine
- 3 cups beef broth
- 1 tablespoon beef flavored Better Than Bouillon
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon dried caraway seeds
- 2 teaspoon ground marjoram
- 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons parsley
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
- 1 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1 medium orange bell pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces
- In a large mixing bowl, add the beef and toss with 1 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper. Let sit for 15 minutes.
- In a large pot, heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat. When the oil shimmers add 1/3 of the beef cubes and brown on all sides. Remove to a plate and repeat with remaining beef. Moderate heat so brown bits on the bottom of the pan do not burn and add more oil as necessary. Remove and discard all but 2 tablespoons oil from pot.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low and add the onion to the pot. Saute until they begin to soften, about 4-5 minutes. Add the garlic and saute, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Sprinkle the paprika and flour over onions and garlic and saute over medium heat, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
- Pour in the wine and bring to a boil. Stir and remove all brown bits on the bottom of the pan. When the liquid boils, reduce heat and add broth, Better Than Bouillon, tomato paste, caraway seeds, marjoram, rosemary, bay leaves, red wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper.
- Return the browned beef along with any accumulated juices to pot. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, about 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until beef is fork-tender.
- Add carrots and peppers and simmer until vegetables are tender about 20 minutes. If broth becomes too thick add more beef broth or water to thin. (broth should be like gravy) Adjust seasoning as needed, sprinkle with parsley, then ladle into individual bowls and serve!
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When you’re ready for a hearty flavor-packed meal on a cold dreary day, reach for this German goulash recipe. It’ll warm your insides to a slow fervent glow while you savor every delicious layer of flavor. This is one of my favorite cold-weather meals and once you try it, you’ll know exactly why!
German goulash is more than a stew, it’s an experience you don’t want to miss…