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Hungarian Food - Goulash Soup (Gulyásleves)

Updated on December 4, 2012

Hungarian Gulyas Soup

Gulyas simmering in a Bogracs
Gulyas simmering in a Bogracs
Hungarian Food
Hungarian Food
Goulash Soup
Goulash Soup
Redskin Potatoes
Redskin Potatoes

Hungarian Food

Cast your vote for Goulash Soup


Goulash Soup with Dumplings

(Gulyasleves with Galuska or Csipetke)


In Hungary and throughout most of Europe, Goulash is a thick soup and not a stew. What we call a stew here is called a porkolt in Hungary and is covered in a different hub.


Goulash soup is generally made with chunks of beef, potatoes, onions and paprika and is sometimes thickened with egg dumplings. Many people also add a green pepper and a tomato and sometimes a pinch of caraway seed. Feel free to adjust this recipe to your own taste.


The original recipe was brought to Hungary by the Magyars in the ninth century. Meat cubes were cooked with onions in heavy iron kettles called bogrács until all of the liquid evaporated. Then they were dried in the sun so that they would keep for long periods of time.


The shepherds brought them along in bags made from sheeps stomachs and when they wanted food they simply add water and heat them in the same iron pot. Even today, some Hungarians still insist that it isn't true gulyás unless it is made in a bogrács.




Preparation Time:

60 Minutes

Cooking Time:

2 Hours



2 Lbs. Boneless Beef cut into 1/2 inch cubes

2 Tablespoons Butter and 2 Tablespoons of Vegetable Oil

2 Large Onions chopped

1 Green Pepper cored, cut in quarters and sliced

2 Large, ripe tomatoes peeled and chopped

1 Lb. Red Skin Potatoes peeled & cut into ½ inch cubes

3 Cloves of Garlic chopped

3 Tablespoon Hungarian Sweet Paprika

½ Teaspoon of Caraway Seeds

1 Qt. Water and 1 Qt. Beef Broth

1-2 tablespoons of Ketchup to taste

3 Teaspoons Salt

Pepper to taste

Galuska or Csipetke (see link) 



Clean and chop all of the ingredients and prepare about 2-3 cups of galuska using the recipe from the attached link. Allow the galuska to air dry while you cook the goulash.


Cooking Instructions: 

1. Saute the onions in the butter and oil until wilted. Add the paprika, caraway seeds and half the salt and pepper.

2. Add the beef, remaining salt and pepper and continue cooking until browned.

3. Immediately add one quart of warm water and one quart of beef broth and continue cooking for about an hour until the meat is fork tender.

4. Add the tomatoes, potatoes chopped green pepper and adjust to taste with salt and pepper. Add the ketchup to taste and continue cooking until the potatoes are cooked.

5. Finally, add the dried galuska or csipetke to the gently boiling goulash and continue cooking until the dumplings rise to the surface and then for three more minutes


Serving Suggestions:

This is a hearty soup and it can be eaten as the main course with some fresh baked bread or rolls and maybe a few pickles on the side


How to Make Hungarian Goulash Soup

How to Make Hungarian Dumplings (Galuska)

George Lang’s Cuisine of Hungary

If you only plan to buy one cookbook this year and if you enjoyed my recipes on Hungarian food, I highly recommend this cookbook. Owner of Café des Artistes in New York and the magnificent Gundel restaurant in Budapest, George Lang not only provides authentic recipes from the various regions of Hungary, he also provides historical information and anecdotes on their origin. This is one of my very favorite cookbooks of all time.


Budapest Montage

Budapest, Hungary
Budapest, Hungary

Budapest Hungary


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    • profile image


      4 years ago

      What are you doing to that recipe...No actual Hungarian puts all that junk in. Please, that's some awful commercial restaurant recipe.

    • rjsadowski profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      You need to understand that after I try a new recipe, I make it my own; that is to say that I adjust it to suit my own personal taste. My mother often added a little ketchup when she wanted a little sweetness or tomato in a recipe instead of adding sugar or tomato paste. It is purely optional.

    • Zsuzsy Bee profile image

      Zsuzsy Bee 

      7 years ago from Ontario/Canada

      Ketchup???? Really? Must be a more modern version of the recipe than mine.

      You should try making my recipe(also a hub) and I'll make yours then we can compare notes.

      Thanks for sharing your version

      regards Zsuzsy

    • rjsadowski profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      Thasnks. good seeing you again.

    • scarytaff profile image

      Derek James 

      7 years ago from South Wales

      Looks like a good hearty meal. Cheers.

    • rjsadowski profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      Thanks for your comment. This soup is good. Even my wife likes it and she isn't even Hungarian. Do try to make some of the homemade Hungarian dumplings. They add a lot of texture to the soup.

    • Just Ask Susan profile image

      Susan Zutautas 

      7 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      This soup looks really good. I have bookmarked it so that I can try it soon. I am always looking for new soup/stew recipes at this time of year. Thanks so much.


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