Home / Soup Recipes / Authentic German Goulash Soup Recipe {Gulaschsuppe}

Authentic German Goulash Soup Recipe {Gulaschsuppe}

This one-pot Authentic German Goulash Soup Recipe is the perfect bowl to warm up to on bitterly cold days. Braised beef, potatoes, carrots, dried marjoram, and sweet paprika all come together to make this mildly spicy, rich soup so delicious. Top each bowl with a dollop of crème fraîche and chopped parsley!

A bowl of German goulash with a piece of bread in the bowl and a spoon.

Raise your hand if your grandma or mom made goulash when you were growing up. You can’t see me but my hand is raised.

My grandma made goulash but it wasn’t like this. She made what I affectionately call American goulash, and she affectionately called Goop.

Grandma’s goulash was more of a pasta dish with elbow macaroni and ground beef in a tomato sauce. It sounds terrible but I loved it. It did however, look like goop.

If you’ve only ever had this offshoot of the stew, let me assure you, traditional goulash recipes are absolutely delicious and just the thing you need to make during this arctic winter we’re having.

What Is Traditional Goulash Made Of?

A blue pot of goulash with a ladle in the pot

While there are many types of goulash the dish originated in Hungary made by herdsmen back in the 18th century. Traditional Hungarian goulash is a thick stew made with red bell pepper, tender chunks of beef, Hungarian paprika, and caraway and is served over egg noodles.

Rachel Laudan wrote a really interesting article about goulash over on Smithsonian. If you are a food history nerd like I am, it’s a good read.

An authentic German goulash recipe is very similar but less of a hearty beef stew and more of a soup. In Germany, beef goulash has the same flavors of paprika and caraway but in a rich tomato broth.

At first glance I thought this recipe would take me a long time but it is actually a fairly easy, one-pot dish that took about 30 minutes to prep and about an hour for the beef to get nice and tender.

Cozy up with a bowl of this soup, alongside a fresh salad and a warm slice of crusty rye bread or homemade focaccia, for a meal that will leave you feeling warmed from the inside out. If beef soups are what you crave, be sure to try my easy beef barley vegetable soup too.

Here’s Why You’ll Love This Authentic German Goulash Recipe

A white bowl filled with German goulash with a spoon in the bowl.
  • Brothy yet still rich and so satisfying
  • Can be made on the stove or in a crock pot (see recipe notes for crock pot instructions)
  • 1-pot meal
  • Using pre-cut stew meat saves time
  • So much more delicious than store-bought soup
  • Make ahead of time and freeze 
  • Flavorful spices, herbs, and vegetables
  • Ultimate winter comfort food!


All the ingredients to make German goulash including beef, carrots, paprika, potatoes, and more
  • Beef stew meat or cubed beef chuck roast
  • Kosher salt
  • Cracked black pepper
  • Olive oil
  • Yellow onion. Use large onions
  • Carrots
  • Garlic cloves
  • Tomato paste
  • Dry red wine
  • Beef broth or beef stock
  • Baby Yukon gold potatoes
  • Bay leaves
  • Sweet paprika. Look for sweet Hungarian paprika if you can find it. If not, regular paprika will work or I’ve even used smoked paprika one time because that’s all I had and it was quite delicious.
  • Caraway seeds
  • Dried marjoram
  • Dried thyme
  • Hot paprika or ground cayenne pepper
  • Worcestershire sauce or soy sauce
  • Italian parsley
  • Crème fraîche or sour cream, for serving

How To Make It

step one

Season the beef. The beef is where you want to start. Pat the beef cubes dry with paper towels then season all over with a teaspoon each of salt and pepper.

A hand patting beef dry with a paper towel.

step two

Sear the beef. Heat oil over medium-high heat in a large Dutch oven or a large pot. Add the beef and spread into an even layer. Let cook without stirring too much to get a nice brown crust on one side.

Keep rotating the pieces occasionally until they are nice and browned all over. Remove to a plate.

A pot with chunks of beef browning in the pot

step three

Sauté the vegetables. Add the onions, carrots, and garlic to the pot and season with salt and pepper. Cook a few minutes until the onions begin to get tender then add the tomato paste and let that cook until it is melted in with the veggies.

Vegetables in a pot coated in tomato paste with a wood spoon in the pot.

step four

Simmer. Now add the rest of the ingredients (minus the parsley and crème fraîche).

Scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan and add the beef back in. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for about an hour.

Stir in the Worcestershire sauce and give the soup a taste. Add more salt and pepper if needed.

Broth and beef in a large pot with a wood spoon in the pot.

step five

Serve and enjoy. To serve, ladle the soup into bowls. Then add a dollop of crème fraîche and fresh chopped parsley for a nice pop of color and flavor at the end. A loaf of crusty bread is all you need!

A bowl of German goulash with a dollop of creme fraiche in the bowl.

What To Serve With It

In Germany goulash is often served with potato dumplings, spaetzle, or bread dumplings called semmelknödel. I think it’s great on its own with just some crusty rye bread for dipping.

Make-Ahead, Storage, and Reheating Instructions

Two bowls of goulash on a gray table with a spoon next to the bowls.

This is a great pot of soup to make on a Sunday and have in the fridge for the week. It actually tastes better if you make it ahead.

Let the soup cool completely then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Reheat the soup in a small pan on the stove or in the microwave until warm.

To freeze the soup: You can freeze the soup in an airtight container for up to 3 months but know that the potatoes will get a little water logged and mushy when the soup is thawed and reheated. It’s not terrible, but not as good as when you first make it.

Let the soup thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

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Dig Into This German Comfort Food Classic

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A bowl of German goulash with a piece of bread in the bowl and a spoon.

Authentic German Goulash Soup Recipe {Gulaschsuppe}

Author: Kate
This one-pot Authentic German Goulash Soup Recipe is the perfect bowl to warm up to on bitterly cold days. Braised beef, potatoes, carrots, dried marjoram, and sweet paprika all come together to make this mildly spicy, rich soup so delicious. Top each bowl with a dollop of crème fraîche and chopped parsley!
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 4 servings



  • Pat the meat chunks off with paper towels, soaking up any moisture. The less moisture the better the sear, which will give the meat better flavor and texture. Season with the 1 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.
  • Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add beef and sear until browned on all sides, about 8 minutes. Remove beef from pot and set aside.
  • Add onions, carrots, and garlic to the pot. Season with a bit more salt and pepper. Sauté until starting to get soft.
  • Stir in tomato paste letting it cook and toast a bit with the vegetables.
  • Add red wine, and mix around, scraping the bottom of the pot to get off any stuck bits. Then add broth, potatoes, bay leaves, paprika, caraway seeds, marjoram, thyme, and hot paprika or cayenne.
  • Add seared beef and bring to a boil. Reduce heat so it is gently simmering. Cover and let simmer until beef is tender, about an hour.
  • Once beef is tender, stir in Worcestershire sauce. Taste and season with more salt and pepper as needed.
  • Ladle soup into bowls and garnish each bowl with a dollop of creme fraiche and a sprinkling of chopped parsley. Serve with rye bread for dipping.


  1. Slow Cooker Instructions: Prepare the beef and vegetables on the stovetop. Transfer to a slow cooker and continue with step 4, but only use 4 cups beef broth. Allow to cook for 6 hours on high, or 8 hours on low. 
  2. Freezing Instructions: You can freeze this soup for up to 3 months but the potatoes will get a little water logged. Thaw in the refrigerator the day before eating, and then reheat on the stove until warm.
  3. Spice-level: If you prefer a spicier kick, adjust the amount of hot paprika to suit your taste.
  4. Paprika: The signature of goulash is Hungarian paprika. If you can’t find it, substitute regular paprika or I’ve even used smoked paprika in a pinch. 
  5. Caraway seeds: This is an essential spice to goulash. I don’t mind the whole seeds in my soup but if you’d like to grind them in a mortar or spice grinder that is always an option. 


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