Grandma’s Italian Goulash

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Originating in Hungary and made popular by cowboys, the term goulash typically refers to thick meat-based stew often made with cuts of boneless diced red meat accompanied by potatoes or pasta. This Italian version uses less expensive, yet equally delicious ground beef and easy to find elbow macaroni.

Follow these steps to create an amazingly simple, yet flavorful home-cooked meal from stovetop to the table in just about thirty minutes.

Grandma’s Italian Goulash

You will need:

  • 1 lb elbow macaroni pasta
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 2 14oz cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • Grated Parmesan cheese


In a large skillet over medium heat place ground beef, onion and garlic; cook until beef is thoroughly browned and onion is clear, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, in a large kettle boil elbow pasta to el dente, drain, and set aside.
Add green pepper continue to cook until soft.
Stir in diced tomatoes, basil, and oregano. Cover and simmer, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Mix in prepared macaroni until well combined.
Transfer to a glass serving dish, add a generous sprinkling of Parmesan cheese to the top and allow guests to serve themselves.
Makes 8 hearty servings.

Pair with slices of crusty Italian bread and a green salad for the ultimate comfort food feast.

Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Simply pop in the microwave to reheat for a tasty lunch or an appetizing after school snack.

For a lower fat version of this tasty favorite, try replacing the lean ground beef with equal amounts of fresh ground turkey or ground chicken.

For a deliciously cheesy pasta dish, pour prepared goulash into a 9X13 casserole dish, top with 1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly. Allow to cool for 10 minutes and serve up hot helpings of gooey goodness. For an easy make-ahead meal the goulash can be frozen baked or unbaked in a freezer-safe container. Simply remove from the freezer and bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for 50-60 minutes or until golden and bubbly.

To make a simple yet superb soup, replace the green pepper with 3 stalks of chopped celery. Prepare goulash as directed above to step 5, then transfer to a large kettle. Add 8 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat cover and simmer for approximately 30 minutes. Ladle into soup bowls and serve hot with a side of warm yeast rolls.

With quick and easy preparation and irresistible flavor, it is no wonder this praiseworthy dish has been one of the most popular meat dishes in America

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