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American goulash with cheese in a white Dutch oven.

Easy American Goulash

This American Goulash recipe is an easy one-pot meal made with ground beef and macaroni pasta in a tangy red sauce and covered with cheddar cheese. It’s classic American comfort food.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 4 5 servings
Calories 502kcal
Author Tracy


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ large onion diced
  • 1 pound ground beef *
  • 4 cloves garlic crushed or minced
  • ¼ cup (60g) tomato paste
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Pinch red pepper flakes optional
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes *
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 ounces (about 1 ½ cups) elbow macaroni
  • 1 cup (4oz) shredded cheddar cheese preferably sharp


  • In a large pot with a lid, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions and cook until the edges begin to turn translucent, about 5 minutes.
  • Add ground beef and cook, breaking the meat into crumbles as you go, until meat is browned.
  • Stir in garlic and cook for 30 seconds before adding tomato paste, salt, oregano, basil, pepper, and optional red pepper flakes. Stir until the meat is well-coated and you can really begin to smell the garlic and spices, 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Add crushed tomatoes, chicken broth, soy sauce, and bay leaves and bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 25 minutes.
  • Remove bay leaves, stir in the macaroni, and cover. Simmer covered, stirring occasionally, until pasta is al dente, about 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Turn off heat and add cheese. Replace lid and let sit for 2 to 3 minutes until cheese is melted. Serve and enjoy!


*I like to use 85% lean beef.
*Diced tomatoes can also be used.
Approximate nutritional information is for 5 servings.


Calories: 502kcal