Easy Crockpot Goulash is the perfect make ahead meal for busy families! It is hearty, delicious and the perfect comfort food served alongside Easy Homemade Buttermilk Biscuits!

American Goulash (not to be confused with Hungarian Goulash) is made with ground beef, onions, mushrooms and pasta smothered in a tomato based broth. This easy Crockpot Goulash is easy to make ahead of time and everyone absolutely loves it!

Overhead shot of goulash in a crockpotEasy Crockpot Goulash

Old fashioned goulash is a complete meal in one bowl that will keep your family satisfied and their bellies happy. Serve it with fresh rolls and a side salad if you like. Your family will absolutely love the taste and you will love the simplicity!

What is Goulash?

While Hungarian Goulash is a paprika seasoned meat stew/soup, an American Goulash is a completely different dish.

A beef goulash recipe in North America is more commonly a tomato based ground beef and macaroni dish. Other vegetables are added such as onion and green peppers for flavor. This dish goes by many other names as well (like American Chop Suey) but our family has always just called it beef goulash!

Overhead shot of Crockpot Goulash in a white bowl

Can you make Goulash in a Crockpot?

While most Goulash recipes are made on the stovetop, allowing this dish to simmer in the slow cooker is a perfect make ahead meal. Not only can it be made ahead of time, the flavors are so much better when it cooks in the slow cooker all day long! The perfect dish to come home to.

  • Convenient: Just put the ingredients in and let the slow cooker do all of the work.
  • Flavorful: As the meat sauce cooks all day for this goulash recipe, it has tons of flavor.
  • Make Ahead: This can be made ahead of time meaning you come home to a meal ready to enjoy.

Crockpot full of goulash ingredients before being mixed

How to Make Old Fashioned Goulash in the Crockpot

Making Crockpot Goulash is super simple!

  1. Brown ground beef, onions and garlic.
  2. Add all the ingredients (except noodles), stir, cover and cook on high for 2 hours or on low for 4-5 hours.
  3. Prepare your noodles (this also can be done ahead of time and placed in a refrigerator), then add to the slow cooker for about 5-10 minutes to heat through.

While you can add raw noodles to the crockpot for the last 30-40 minutes, for the best results, I highly recommend cooking the noodles on the side and stirring them in for serving.  I have found that, depending on the brand, adding raw noodles can become gummy in texture. The best and most consistent results were achieved by cooking the pasta separately.

Ladle full of Crockpot Goulash

As the temperature drops, stews, chilis and soups are a welcome change from summer barbecued dishes. Crockpot Goulash is the perfect comfort food meal that will warm you to your core this fall. So simple to make and equally as delicious, you just have to give it a try!

More Crockpot Recipes You’ll Love!

Ladle full of Crockpot Goulash
4.94 from 163 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Crockpot Goulash

This Crockpot Goulash recipe has tender pasta noodles mixed in a rich beefy meat sauce.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings 8 servings
buy hollys book


  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 ½ medium onions diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 green pepper diced
  • 6 ounces tomato paste
  • ½ cup water
  • 24 ounces pasta sauce jarred or canned
  • 28 ounces diced tomatoes canned, do not drain
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 8 ounces mushrooms canned, do not drain
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon seasoning salt or to taste
  • 3 cups pasta shells uncooked


  • Brown ground beef, onions and garlic until no pink remains. Drain any fat.
  • Add ground beef mixture to CrockPot. Add all remaining ingredients except the uncooked shells.
  • Cook on High for 2 hours or low for 4-5 hours.
  • Prepare shells al dente according to package directions.  Drain well and stir into meat sauce. Cover and cook an additional 10 minutes to heat through.



This recipe creates a thick goulash if you prefer your goulash to be thinner, increase the water to  1 ½ or 2 cups.
4.94 from 163 votes

Nutrition Information

Calories: 373 | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 70mg | Sodium: 749mg | Potassium: 1352mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 875IU | Vitamin C: 34.8mg | Calcium: 92mg | Iron: 6.3mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Main Course, Pasta
Cuisine American

REPIN this Goulash Recipe

Crock Pot Goulash with a title




Crock Pot Goulash with a title


, , ,

Like our recipes?
Follow us on Pinterest!

Follow us on Pinterest

Recipes you'll love

About the author

Holly Nilsson is the creator of Spend With Pennies, where she creates easy, comforting recipes made for real life. With a passion for nostalgic flavors and simplified techniques, Holly helps busy home cooks create delicious meals that always work. She is also the author of “Everyday Comfort,” which promises to inspire even more hearty, home-cooked meals.
See more posts by Holly

Follow Holly on social media:

pinterest facebook twitter instagram

Free eBook!

Subscribe to receive weekly recipes and get a FREE Bonus e-book: Quick & Easy Weeknight Meals!

You can unsubscribe anytime by clicking the “unsubscribe” link at the bottom of emails you receive.

Latest & Greatest

4.94 from 163 votes (117 ratings without comment)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


    1. You should be able to freeze this dish, I would suggest under cooking the pasta so it doesn’t get mushy during the reheating process.
      I am so glad you enjoyed the goulash!

  1. Hi I have a question. I will be making this this weekend cooking on low while we are out on the lake. Can I put the uncooked pasta in with everything to cook all day on low?

    1. I have tried it with several brands/shapes of pasta and find it comes out gummy in texture most of the time. The pasta can be cooked up to 48 hours ahead of time, drained and kept in the fridge until you add to the slow cooker. I hope that helps!

    2. To simplify last minute prep, you could use Ready Pasta Rotini instead of the shells. It only takes about a minute in the microwave, then add it to the sauce.

  2. This recipe was a big hit. I made it for my husband, grown son, and myself. My guys are big eaters, and we still had enough for leftovers twice. We all loved it! I really liked that the recipe was high in protein and easy to make. I did the preparation in the morning, and leave it alone until dinner. I did not put in the mushrooms, but did add 2 cans of green beans.5 stars

  3. Hi. I want to make this for my coworkers and customers but was wondering how long it would stay good in the crockpot? thanks.

  4. I have only made this and then eaten it. How does it do left over for the next day and reheated? My plan is to make it without the noodles and reheat the next day while I cook the noodles to serve with it.

    1. If you make it without the noodles then it should turn out perfectly, Kelsey! If leaving the noodles in the goulash they can get a bit soft before the next day.

  5. We had American Goulash often growing up. Great way to stretch the budget with something delicious and filling. Lost my mother’s recipe when she passed and was anxious to try this one. I did make a mistake when I grabbed a sweet onion instead of a yellow. Made the sauce sweeter than I like. Won’t make that mistake again! Other than that, your version is awesome. I will be making this again. I do remember momma’s version had lots of celery added with onions and peppers. Going to add that next time.

    Thanks for great home cooking for a “not so great” home cooker! :-)5 stars

    1. So happy you enjoyed this recipe, D M! We can’t wait to hear how your make it your own ❤️

  6. This is great, I make it very often, but I would like to know the serving size for the recipe…..is it one cup?5 stars

  7. I haven’t had goulash so I don’t know what it should taste like. To me, it had the consistency of chili but tasted like spaghetti sauce.

    1. Hi Chris, that makes sense. They do have a lot of the same ingredients. We hope you enjoyed it regardless!

    2. I made this last night. I served it over rice and added some cooked shrimp on the top which dressed it up. I substituted sherry for the water. We enjoyed it a lot, and the flavor was delicious. However I thought the same thing, it’s definitely similar to a bolognese with the consistency of chili. It would be more goulashy if it had some chunks of meat in it.5 stars