Old-Fashioned Skillet Goulash

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Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 25 mins
Total: 40 mins
Servings: 6 servings

This simple and old-fashioned recipe for Old-Fashioned Skillet Goulash is delicious and quick to make. It uses the shortcut ingredients condensed tomato soup and diced tomatoes with garlic. If you can't find diced tomatoes with garlic, add two cloves of minced garlic to the recipe. Cook the garlic with the ground beef and onions.

Skillet meals are good because there is little cleanup, and they can be made quickly. And this recipe contains pasta that is cooked right with the other ingredients, making it a one-dish meal. Since the pasta is cooked in the sauce, it has a better texture and absorbs more flavors than pasta cooked in a huge pot of boiling water.​

You can use other types of pasta if you'd like. Ziti or mostaccioli would be good in this dish. Those types of pasta will most likely take longer to cook than the rotini, so be sure to taste the pasta as it cooks. Always cook pasta to al dente, which means the pasta is tender, but still has some texture and a bit of resistance in the center. You can also sprinkle this recipe with some grated or shredded Parmesan or Romano cheese before serving, even though that ingredient is not traditional in goulash.


  • 1 pound ground beef

  • 2 onions, chopped

  • 1 red bell pepper, choppped

  • 1 (26-ounce) jar spaghetti sauce

  • 2 (14-ounce) cans diced tomatoes with garlic, undrained

  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

  • 2 teaspoons sugar

  • 1 to 3 teaspoons paprika, to taste

  • 1 teaspoon dried marjoram

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 cup water

  • 2 1/2 cups rotini pasta, or gemelli pasta

  • 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley, optional

Steps to Make It

  1. In a large skillet, cook the ground beef, onion, bell pepper, and garlic until the meat is browned and the vegetables are tender, stirring to break up the meat. Drain well.

  2. Add the pasta sauce, diced tomatoes with their liquid, vinegar, sugar, paprika, marjoram, salt, pepper, and water to the skillet with the ground beef and onions and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until the mixture starts to boil, stirring frequently.

  3. Add the pasta to the skillet and bring the mixture back to a simmer. Simmer the food, uncovered, stirring frequently, until the pasta is tender, about 11 to 16 minutes. Sprinkle everything with fresh parsley, if using, and serve immediately.