Ground Beef Goulash

A favorite of mine while growing up, this recipe comes closest to my memories of the others I've tried.



  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste, plus a little more
  • 1 1/2 cup low-sodium beef broth
  • 1 15-oz. can tomato sauce
  • 1 15-oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 - 2 Tbsp sugar, to taste
  • 1 1/2 cup elbow macaroni, uncooked - make sure that it's the egg noodle variety, not semolina - semolina will require more liquid, spice, and time. Found that out the hard way.
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar
  • Freshly chopped parsley, for garnish


  1. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat oil. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute more.
  2. Add ground beef and cook until no longer pink, about 6 minutes. Drain fat and return to pan. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Add tomato paste and stir to coat, then pour in broth, tomato sauce, and diced tomatoes. Season with Italian seasoning, paprika, and sugar and stir in macaroni. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until pasta is tender, about 15 minutes.
  4. Adjust salt, pepper, seasonings, and sugar to taste after macaroni is cooked to your liking
  5. Stir in cheese and remove from heat. Garnish with parsley before serving.