One of the best cool-weather meals is a piping hot bowl of this tasty, hearty goulash soup recipe. Actually, this particular goulash recipe is as rich and delicious as the classic Hungarian goulash. You’ll find reasons to make it even before it gets cold outside!
The best part is that it’s really simple to make and totally loaded with nutritious veggies. Savory bacon, sweet Hungarian paprika, and beef broth form the basis of this goulash soup stew and a few secret ingredients really set it off.
This goulash soup is hearty and full of intense flavors that are built layer by layer in a few easy steps. Need something quicker? Try my instant pot goulash (more American flavor and style).
What I Love About This Goulash Soup Recipe
This scrumptious goulash soup recipe is a one-bowl wonder that is built in a single pot. I absolutely love the deep rich flavors and the way they permeate every single ingredient in the pot.
The fall-apart tender meat doesn’t hurt a bit either but here are some other great reasons to love it.
- Melt-in-your-mouth tender meat
- Plenty of nutritious veggies
- One bowl wonder
- Deep rich delicious flavor
Goulash Soup Recipe Notes
Pot: Since this goulash soup recipe is a one-bowl wonder, you’ll be building all the awesome flavors in the same pot with some simple yet effective techniques. The process works best if you use a higher quality heavy gauge pot because it distributes heat more evenly to help prevent burning.
Roux: Also, when the flour goes into the pot with the paprika and caraway seeds, you’ll be cooking it for a moment stirring constantly before moving on. Don’t skip this step. Cooking the roux for just a minute helps ensure that your ‘sauce’ doesn’t taste like four.
Bacon: The savory salty bacon adds a ton of flavor to this recipe and it serves two purposes. You’re cooking the bacon to get the drippings and then to add back to flavor the goulash. It’s a bacon double punch! Yay!!
Beef Chuck: I like to use beef chuck for this recipe. This cut contains collagen which breaks down during the cooking process leaving a fall-apart tender piece of meat. I also find it wonderfully flavorful.
Better Than Bouillon: Better Than Bouillon is one of my secret weapons in the kitchen. It’s a yummy paste full of concentrated flavor that takes the place of those salty bouillon cubes. Trust me on this one. Besides, it’s easier to measure.
Veggies: You’ll be sautéing veggies throughout the process of building your goulash soup recipe. This is also very important because it helps reduce bitterness while bringing out the sweeter more mellow flavors.
Spices: A little time in a hot pan (or pot) perks up spices and coaxes out their deeper flavors. It also wakes up their fragrant aromas which add to the robust flavors of your dish.
Thining: This will continue to thicken as it simmers on the stove. Once the veggies are fork-tender and your goulash soup is almost ready, it may be necessary to add some water or beef broth to thin it out to the desired consistency.
How Long Can You Keep This In The Fridge?
If stored according to FDA recommendations in a food-grade container, your goulash soup will stay fresh in the fridge for up to 4 days. Sometimes I like to divvy up leftovers into single-serve containers so they’re ready to go. Just store the bread for dipping separately so it doesn’t get soggy!
This can be stored in the fridge for 3-4 days.
Can You Freeze This Goulash Soup Recipe?
Yes, this recipe freezes great. I love keeping a batch of this in the freezer for ready-made meals. You can slow thaw it in the fridge or use the microwave.
It does tend to thicken as it freezes so you may need to thin it out a little before serving. Generally, soups and stews can be stored in the freezer for 2-3 months.
Make Ahead Tips
This goulash soup recipe does require some simmer time but it’s not an all-day cooker. It takes less than an hour to throw together, but it doesn’t show in the layers of bold flavor. I love that I can get it prepped and then move on to other things while its simmering on the stove.
The surest way to complete your dinner is to serve goulash with bread! Lion house rolls recipe is a family favorite and has fantastic buttery goodness that matches goulash soup’s meaty flavor.
Of course, if you want something quick and so aromatic everyone will race to the table, you gotta make these tender bisquick drop biscuits. Beer bread is also wonderful with this and it’s one of the easiest bread recipes to make.
- Make a hamburger version. Soupified burger? Heck, yeah! Switch beef chuck for ground beef and tweak the wholesome veggies to get hamburger soup or hamburger stew.
- Add pasta. Grab your egg noodles from the pantry and make a brothy beef noodle soup.
- Use chicken. Buy chicken thighs instead for a Southern-style, healthy chicken stew
- Use pork Substitute beef for pork shoulder and transform this soup into pork stew.
More Stew Recipes
- 6 slices bacon, cut into small pieces
- 3 pounds beef chuck, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 cups onion, chopped
- 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons sweet Hungarian paprika
- 1 1/2 teaspoons caraway seeds
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 5 cups beef broth
- 1 tablespoon beef flavor Better Than Bouillon
- 5 cups water
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 3 russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 pieces
- 3 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 pieces
- 2 red bell peppers, cut into 1/2 pieces
- In a large soup pot, cook the bacon pieces over medium heat, stirring often until crisp. Using a slotted spoon transfer cooked bacon to a large mixing bowl; set aside.
- Brown the beef chunks over medium-high heat on all sides in the bacon drippings in small batches. Remove browned beef to the mixing bowl.
- Add oil to the pot and saute onion and garlic, over medium heat until onions are soft, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle paprika, caraway seeds and flour over vegetables and cook, stirring constantly until spices become fragrant, 1-2 minutes. Stir in vinegar and tomato paste and continue to stir constantly, cook 1 minute. Add broth, Better Than Bouillon, water, salt, pepper. Return the bacon and browned beef to the pot. Bring to a boil, immediately reduce heat and simmer, partially, covered until the beef begins to get tender, about 2 hours.
- Add the potatoes and carrots and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the red bell pepper and continue to simmer until all the vegetables are fork-tender. Thin as needed with water. Adjust seasoning and serve.
Fans Also Made:
After your excellent German Goulash recipe, I had to try your goulash soup recipe. Its super!
Outside of Nürnberg, Germany is a tiny town of Anwanden. In 1962 it consisted of a few house an a restaurant named Morgensonne where I first tasted, and fell in live with goulash soup. Your recipe is the closest I have found to replicate that flavor. My own recipe is very similar to yours except that I cut the beef into quarter inch pieces. I use 3 large yellow onions, and I don’t use potatoes, carrots, or peppers. Instead of Better Than Bullion I add about two total quarts of water and simmer (very slow simmer) uncovered for about 4 hours adding water as needed. I end up with about 1.5 gallions of soup, which I refrigerate overnight. Its ready the next day for lunch with brotchen and freezing. I do this about 5 times each winter. Your recipe saves time!
Wow, that sounds so yummy! Thank you for sharing 🙂
Julie Menghini says
These cold days do call for a hearty and comforting bowl of deliciousness like this.
I totally agree, Julie! <3
What a comforting soup! I love all the flavors and how they come together in only one pot. The variations sound great too!
Thank you, Tara! <3
Sara Welch says
Love soup season for recipes just like this one! Warmed up with this for dinner last night and it did not disappoint! So hearty and bold; the whole family loved it!
So happy to hear it was a hit for your family too, Sara! <3
I am used to making goulash, but I have never added potato. Your recipe approach seems even wiser: everything is made altogether. I will definitely try your recipe.
Hope you try it soon, Irins! <3
Such a hearty and comfortable soup. Will be in our winter rotation for sure! Thank you!
You’re so welcome, Courtney! 🙂
Jeannine Meador says
I’m a little confused. In your comments you state the bacon is not used in the goulash but only for the drippings but then in the recipe you say to brown the chuck and put it in the bowl with the small bacon pieces. So does the bacon go in the soup or not is what I’m wondering. Obviously the beef goes into the pot to simmer til tender. I love it, honestly, I think you’ re like me somethings…my mind goes faster than my fingers. Looks like a great recipe and I have everything on hand so tomorrow I’ll be happily making your yummy soup. I very much enjoy your emails and recipes. Have a great day!! And thanks for sharing.
Hi Jeannine. I’m so sorry your questions slipped through without a response! You are so right about my brain going faster than my fingers! I appreciate you letting me know that there was an error so I could fix it. Also, yes the bacon goes back into the soup. I sure hope you were able to make this back when you left the comment. Sorry again for missing this!! <3