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Please Don’t Call It Beef Stew—This Beef Goulash Brings European Flair To An Otherwise Humble Dish

Beef Goulash always makes an impression when served to guests. Originating in Hungary and prevalent all around Central Europe, this hearty beef stew is flavored with paprika and served with a dollop of sour cream, accompanied by hot buttered noodles or toasted crusty bread. For a more “deluxe” version, you can use tender but more expensive beef cuts like tenderloin, sirloin, or brisket. But the beauty of this dish is it works just as well with more affordable cuts like oyster blade or chuck ribs, without sacrificing taste.


Easy Beef Goulash


  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil, divided
  • 3 strips bacon, chopped
  • 3/4 kilo beef oyster blade (kalitiran), cut into 2-inch cubes
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, peeled and sliced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 teaspoons caraway seeds, toasted
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 can (400 grams) diced tomatoes, drained
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 3 potatoes, peeled and quartered
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish


1. Heat a large heavy pot with 1/2 teaspoon cooking oil over medium heat. Add the bacon and fry until crisp and bacon oil has been extracted. Remove bacon from pan and let drain on a paper towel. Set aside. 

2. In the same pot, pour in remaining oil and add beef cubes to the pot with bacon fat. Brown evenly on all sides. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle flour over the beef and continue to stir to dissolve any lumps. 

3. Add onion, garlic, bell peppers, paprika, and caraway seeds. Stir for about 2 minutes or until fragrant.

4. Stir in vinegar, tomatoes, and beef broth. Bring to a boil, and then allow to simmer for 1 hour, covered, stirring occasionally.

5. Add potatoes and reserved bacon. Continue to simmer, partially covered for 30 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 

6. Stir in sour cream into the goulash just before serving. Garnish with chopped parsley.



This recipe first appeared in FOOD Magazine June-July 2014 issue

Styling by Tina Concepcion Diaz

Photography by Paulo Valenzuela