One-Pot Slumgullion Recipe (American Goulash)

You have most likely had this one-pot slumgullion before, you just didn’t know it! I’ve heard it called American Goulash, American Chop Suey, Beefaroni, and Beefy Mac! The word “slumgullion” isn’t the most appetizing name but it doesn’t matter what you call it, this is such a delicious, EASY meal! Ground meat, tomatoes, macaroni, spices, and shredded cheese all come together in one pot, and it’s perfect for the whole family!

If you love the one-pot, cheesy vibe of this meal, you have to try my Velveeta Hamburger Helper and this One Pot Creamy Cajun Chicken Orzo!

Slumgullion or American Goulash with cheese on a spoon.

What you’ll love about this recipe:


  • CLASSIC AMERICAN COMFORT FOOD- This recipe is super easy and uses pretty basic ingredients and pantry spices that come together to make this incredibly flavorful dish!
  • 30-MINUTE MEAL – This dish comes together in almost exactly 30 minutes!
  • KID FRIENDLY – The pasta and cheesiness make it kid-friendly….and we won’t tell them there are some veggies hidden in there, too!

RECIPE INGREDIENTS

You’ll need the following ingredients to make this delicious One Pot Slumgullion Recipe:

Ingredients needed to make old fashioned slumgullion.

INGREDIENT NOTES

Ground Beef: I like to use lean ground beef (90% lean or more).

Crushed Tomatoes: Canned crushed tomatoes work best but you can also put whole canned tomatoes in the food processor if you have time. A 28 oz. can of tomato sauce or diced tomatoes can also be used in a pinch, but I don’t like the flavor quite as much.

Macaroni Noodles: Regular old elbow macaroni works great and cooks up quickly. Cavatappi is also a great option, but it takes a bit longer to cook.

Cheese: Your favorite cheese works here. I always use sharp cheddar.

Brown Sugar (optional, not shown): This balances out the acidity of the tomatoes, but it’s totally optional and to taste.

HOW TO MAKE THIS EASY ONE-POT SLUMGULLION: STEP-BY-STEP

Here are some quick visual instructions. Remember that full instructions with exact ingredients will be in the recipe card below!

Steps 1 & 2: Brown beef with seasonings. Then add onion and bell pepper and cook for a few minutes.

Ground beef cooking in a pan with spices.
Veggies being added to the ground beef.

Steps 3 & 4: Add crushed tomatoes, beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, and macaroni. Give everything a big stir. Bring to a boil. Then, reduce heat to LOW, cover, and cook for 15 minutes until the macaroni is tender.

Top with cheese, cover, and allow the cheese to melt. Serve immediately!

Macaroni noodles and beef broth being added to the pan.
Finished Slumgullion dish in the pan with cheese on top.

Confidence Tip

While the pasta is cooking, give it a few stirs every so often to ensure even cooking and that nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pan.

STORAGE & REHEATING

Storage: Leftovers are great the next day! Store leftover goulash right in the pan with a tight-fitting lid in the fridge for up to 3 days. You can store it in airtight container in the fridge for 5 days.

Reheating: To reheat, just add a splash of beef broth to the pan and heat it over medium heat until warmed through. I like adding extra cheese, too!

Freezing: You can freeze leftovers in a freezer bag or freezer-safe, airtight container. Just thaw in the fridge, then reheat using instructions above.

ADDITIONS & SUBSTITUTIONS

ADDITIONS:

  • Brown Sugar: I like adding a few teaspoons of brown sugar to this dish to balance out the acidity from the tomatoes.

SUBSTITUTIONS:

  • Ground Meat: Ground turkey, chicken, or bison work really well in this dish, too!
  • Chili Mac: Swap out the Italian seasoning and garlic powder for 1-2 tablespoons of chili powder. Then stir in a can of black beans (drained and rinsed) at the end for a southwestern twist! Top with sour cream!
  • Cheese: Swap out the cheddar for your favorite cheese. My family loves Parmesan cheese!

PIN THIS POST FOR LATER!

Pinterest pin with slumgullion on a spoon with cheese.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Where did the the term “slumgullon” come from?

The origin is really debatable. The Merriam-Webster dictionary says the earliest known use of the word was in Mark Twain’s Roughing It in 1872. However, in that reference, it’s a DRINK and not a stew.

Most say the term came about during the California Gold Rush to mean a “cheap, insubstantial meal” or a meal made of whatever they had on hand.

What’s the difference between slumgullion and goulash?

“True” Goulash is actually a Hungarian stew made with meat, vegetables, and lots of paprika. Most people in the United States refer to “Goulash” as a tomato-based dish with ground meat, a few veggies, and macaroni cooked in one pot. AKA: “American” Goulash. Other synonyms for this dish include: American Chop Suey, Beefy Mac, and Beef a Roni.

American goulash in a white bowl with cheese and onions.

I hope you love this One Pot Slumgullion recipe! If you make it be sure to leave a comment and a rating so I know how you liked it. Enjoy, xo!

One Pot Cheesy Slumgullion on a spoon

One Pot Slumgullion (American Goulash)

Casey Rooney
You have most likely had this one-pot slumgullion before, you just didn't know it! I've heard it called American Goulash, American Chop Suey, Beefaroni, and Beefy Mac! The word "slumgullion" isn't the most appetizing name but it doesn't matter what you call it, this is such a delicious, EASY meal! Ground meat, tomatoes, macaroni, spices, and shredded cheese all come together in one pot, and it's perfect for the whole family!
4.92 from 12 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Servings 6
Calories 536 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 lb. lean ground beef 90% lean or more, if possible
  • 1 medium onion, diced (about 1/4" dice) about one cup
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced (about 1/4" dice)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp seasoned salt
  • 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cups elbow macaroni
  • 1-2 tsp brown sugar optional, to taste
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese
  • green onions, for serving optional
  • crushed red pepper flakes, for serving optional

Instructions
 

  • Brown Meat: In a large skillet (make sure it has deep sides) or a large pot, over medium high heat, add 1 tsp olive oil. Add ground beef to the pan and brown the meat, breaking it up with a wooden spoon as it cooks (about 3-5 minutes). Season meat with Italian seasoning, seasoning salt, and garlic powder.
    Pro Tip: During the last minute of cooking, use a potato masher to get the meat broken up into super small bits.
  • Add Veggies: Add onion and green peppers to the beef mixture and cook 2 minutes more, stirring occasionally.
  • Add: Add crushed tomatoes, beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, and macaroni. Give everything a big stir. Bring to a boil. Then, reduce heat to LOW, cover, and cook 15 minutes or until macaroni is tender. Stir often to make sure the pasta isn't sticking to the bottom.
  • Finish: Turn off the heat. Stir in brown sugar (if using), then sprinkle cheese over pan. Cover the pan for a minute or so until cheese melts. Top with green onions and crushed red pepper and serve immediately.

Nutrition

Calories: 536kcalCarbohydrates: 60gProtein: 40gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 88mgSodium: 1337mgPotassium: 1915mgFiber: 10.5gSugar: 3.6gCalcium: 322mgIron: 10mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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Recipe Rating




9 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This was a hit and the kids got a real kick (and lots of giggles) out of the name! It’s the perfect comfort food. I’ll be making this again soon!

  2. 5 stars
    I have never heard it called this before, lol! 🙂 Such classic comfort food. I know my family would love this.

  3. 5 stars
    I need to tell you that growing up, the last of 7, my mom the last of 12, I have a true appreciation for food and culture. When I was young I was jelous of friends that had shake and bake and hamburger helper. I had no idea how good I had it. So, when I saw this dish, I just had to take a photo of those ingredients so I could make this for my family. Thank you.

  4. 5 stars
    Even if this didn’t look absolutely droolworthy (which it does) I’d make it just so I could say slumgullion too! Can’t wait to try it.

  5. 5 stars
    One pot meals are my favorite! I made this one last night for dinner and it was excellent!