Instant Pot Best Hungarian Goulash

When it comes to Goulash, there are two types: American Goulash (which also goes by American Chop Suey) which is simply a macaroni in a meaty tomato sauce and the REAL Goulash that is Hungarian Goulash. And there is zero comparison in flavor as Hungarian-style wins by a landslide.

Slightly reminiscent of my famed Jewish Brisket, this dish is best described as sweet & savory stew while also being super rich in flavor with meat that literally falls apart and melts in your mouth. It’s like eating meaty butter in the best gravy-like sauce ever. And when served over noodles? Forget it. Comfort food at its finest.

What’s even more is this is a relatively inexpensive dish to make since the chuck roast is on the cheaper side and is where the Instant Pot uses its magic to take cheaper cuts of meat and have them taste like high-end fabulousness! This dish will satisfy meat lovers anywhere.

Here’s How I Made It! (scroll to the bottom for the fully-written recipe): 

Take a good sized onion… 

…and slice it up longways and into wedge-like pieces. 

Then, take a nice marbled chuck roast (“marbled” means there are nice, visible strands of fat within the meat)… 

…and dice it up into chunks. 

Now, go to the pot, add some butter and give it some heat. 

Once that butter’s melted and sizzlin’… 

…add in the onion! 

Allow it to sauté for a few minutes in that glorious butter. 

Now there are two key spice ingredients to a Hungarian Goulash and that would be caraway seed (like the seeds in rye bread)… 

…and paprika (you can use any variation of this spice). 

Once added to the onions, give it a good stir so they’re all coated up… 

…and add in some MORE butta! 

This is important because you’ll need to deglaze (scrape) the bottom of the pot from any paprika that may have stuck onto it. So when the butter is added, make sure you swoosh it around well, making sure the bottom of the pot is nice and smooth so we don’t have any issues when we come to pressure. 

Ah! Isn’t that pretty?! 

Add in the meat… 

…and stir it up with everything constantly for a few quick minutes. We don’t want to meat be fully cooked at all now, just lightly seared/browned. 

Now, it’s time to get a sauce going. Add in some broth… 

…a basic, dry red wine (or extra broth if you don’t want wine)… 

…white vinegar… 

…a can of diced tomatoes… 


…brown sugar… 

…seasoned salt… 

…and black pepper. 

Give everything a good stir! 

Then, add in some baby carrots if you wish (you can also add some baby potatoes as well – see the yellow “Jeffrey Sez” section)… 

…and lightly stir them in. Secure the lid and cook at high pressure. 

While the Goulash is cooking, create a cornstarch slurry which will thicken our final sauce. Take equal parts cornstarch… 

…and water… 

…and mix together in a bowl until smooth. 

Once the Goulash is done cooking, bring it to a boil… 

…and stir in the cornstarch slurry. 

Allow it to bubble for a moment and then kill the heat. This is when the sauce thickens perfectly into a gravy-like texture. 

Now it’s time to serve this Goulash up! 

Take a bowl and add in some egg noodles, if you wish. NOTE: You must boil the egg noodles separately because they will absorb all of the broth and become mush if you pressure cook with the Goulash.

And spoon that unbelievable Goulash over them. 

Make sure you get plenty of that sweet & savory gravy and carrots! 

Stick a fork in it, and try not to drool over it from that rich and wonderful aroma. 

Show it off… 

…have it melt in your mouth. 

And enter food ecstasy. 

The meat is literally fork tender and will make make you hungry for Hungarian Goulash!

At the time of this post, Pressure Luck exclusively uses Better Than Bouillon/Southeastern Mills for all soup bases and bouillon

Instant Pot Best Hungarian Goulash
Yield: 6

Instant Pot Best Hungarian Goulash

Instant Pot Best Hungarian Goulash

One of my all-time favorite comfort foods, this sweet and incredibly tender Hungarian Goulash is just superb over a bowl of egg noodles.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 47 minutes
Total Time 52 minutes


  • 4 tbsp (1/2 stick) of salted butter, divided in half
  • 1 large Spanish onion, cut length-wise into strands
  • 2 tbsp of paprika (regular, smoked or Hungarian is fine – since paprika is a key ingredient of this dish and if you wish to go heavier on it, add 1/4 cup instead)
  • 1 tsp of caraway seeds
  • 2-3 lbs of chuck roast, cut into bite-sized pieces (use this cut of meat for the best results and make sure it’s marbled – meaning strands of fat are visible)
  • 1.5 cups of beef broth (I used 1.5 tsp of Beef Better Than Bouillon + 1.5 cups of water)
  • 1/2 cup of a dry red wine, like a Pinot Noir or Cabernet Sauvignon (if you don’t wish to use wine, use another 1/2 cup of broth)
  • 1 tbsp of white vinegar
  • 14.5 oz can of diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup of ketchup
  • 3 tbsp of dark brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp of seasoned salt
  • 1 tsp of pepper
  • 2 cups of baby carrots
  • 2 tbsp of cornstarch + 2 tbsp of water to form a slurry (I think it’s perfect this way, but use 1/4 cup of each if you want the gravy very thick)
  • Egg noodles, to serve the Goulash over (optional, but cook separately on the stove according to package)


  1. Add 2 tbsp of the butter to the Instant Pot. Hit “Sauté” and adjust so it’s on the “More” or “High” setting
  2. Once the butter’s melted and sizzlin’, add the onion to the pot and sauté for 3 minutes in the butter.
  3. Then, add the caraway seed and paprika followed immediately by the other 2 tbsp of butter, stirring constantly so the paprika doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot too much. As the butter’s melting, we will also deglaze (scrape) the bottom of the pot to make sure it’s free and clear of any caked-on paprika
  4. Add the meat and sauté/sear for only for 2-3 minutes, constantly stirring in the pot (it shouldn’t be fully cooked at all, just lightly browned/seared on the edges)
  5. Add all the other ingredients except for the cornstarch slurry and egg noodles (if using, you’ll cook the noodles on the stove separately while the Goulash is pressure cooking)
  6. Hit “Keep Warm/Cancel” and then hit “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” for 30 minutes at high pressure. Once done, allow a 10 min natural pressure release (also known as a “NPR” which means you do nothing for 10 minutes) and then follow it up with a quick release
  7. Once the lid’s off, hit “Keep Warm/Cancel” again and then hit the “Sauté” button again and adjust so it’s on the “More” or “High” setting. Once it comes to a bubble, stir in the corn cornstarch slurry and let bubble for a minute and the sauce will have thickened to the perfect consistency
  8. Serve over egg noodles (boiled on the stove separately), if desired
  9. Enjoy!

Jeffrey's Tips

Like my acclaimed Beef Stroganoff, this dish is elevated when served over egg noodles. But make sure you cook them separately on the stovetop (remember that?!). We do this because if the noodles are cooking with the beef for 30 minutes, not only will they absorb all the broth, they will become mush.

Since paprika is a key ingredient of this dish and if you wish to go heavier on it, add 1/4 cup instead

Want potatoes as well as carrots? Add in a nice handful of baby white or red potatoes, halved. Nothing changes cook-time wise!

You can absolutely double this recipe in the 6qt easily!

This dish makes for amazing leftovers!

Reader Interactions


  1. Marl

    I’m am a 72 yr old lady and al the men In my fam is either a cook or just cooks at home it started way back in Italy 4time great gran father cooked in summer palace and the only woman was my gran that was a cook for non and state troopers so I have bee watching you for a while and I’m in love with your fit right in my fam .your the best never change

  2. Rachael S

    Made this tonight and it was perfect! Only change I made was adding 5 cloves minced garlic. So easy and satisfying. Another success from Pressure Luck!

  3. Josh

    I have a batch in the Instant Pot right now! I’ve made it before, so I know how tasty it is.

    I was wondering if it would hurt to add the paprika with the meat? Even with the butter, it burns to the bottom of the pot. I can fix this later when I add the broth, but the constant stirring trying to keep ahead of the burning makes my hand and elbow ache quite a bit.

  4. Cathy Williams

    Question….I very seldom use dark brown sugar, is okay to use light brown sugar without changing the taste too much?

  5. Sarah Beltz

    You have given me hope; I own a copy of your cookbook and due to Covid19 we haven’t even gotten our 8 quart out of the box but we will soon!

  6. Calvin

    Jeffrey, I got my IP for Christmas (2020). For the next 2 weeks, I intentionally left it in the box and began researching for recipes on YouTube and came across your recipes and the another (I won’t mention the name). I immediately started liking your recipes and your beginner video understanding your IP. I’ve fixed about 10 different meals since and I love it. Your presentation and videos along with your character is second to none. Thank you and keep up the good work. Tonight’s dinner is Hungarian goulash👍 By the way, the Better than Bullion bases are off the chain!!!

  7. Lesli

    This was absolutely to die for! I used Worcester instead of vinegar but no matter it was so good! Thank you for posting!

  8. Mona Mesa

    My mother-in-law (who was from Budapest) always put lots of sweet and or hot banana peppers in her goulash. No ingredients other than the meat, onions, tomatoes, peppers, and lots of paprika. This looks like a totally different type of goulash. She would serve it over homemade egg drop noodles. Delicious!

  9. Cara Cozart

    I made this last night and it was SO GOOD!! I had an open bottle of white wine so I used that with balsamic vinegar instead of white vinegar. That substitution worked out well!!

  10. Jess

    We really liked this recipe. We’ve never had Hungarian Goulash before so didn’t know what to expect. My family liked it but they didn’t like the sauce being as sweet as it was ~ I think I will half it next time on the brown sugar. I did it exactly as written. I will just adjust that next time. Maybe add in the description that it’s a sweet sauce. Thanks for the recipe. I’m looking forward to trying more from you.

  11. Gary

    Hey Jeffrey, I am a guy who never cooked before (takeout king!) I began with IP cooking 3 years ago. Your eggplant risotto is amazing!!
    When I see your name on a recipe I know it is good!! I can’t wait to try your goulash recipe!!

  12. Helen

    If I double the recipe do I need more liquids? Longer cooking time? I have a 6 qt pot and 4 lbs of meat, thanks for your help

  13. Cheryl

    I made this tonight for dinner and it was delicious. The only wine I had was Reunite so it probably made my sauce sweeter, but we liked it. I also added a stalk of chopped celery. Soooo good. Thank you for the recipe.

  14. Theresa

    Hi Jeffrey been following you on FB for a few years now & also have your cookbooks.

    Is the caraway necessary for this recipe? Is there a good substitute? I have someone sensitive to seeds. Thank you, love all your posts & videos

  15. Theresa

    Is the caraway necessary for this recipe? Is there a good substitute? I have someone sensitive to seeds. Thank you, love all your posts & videos

  16. Linda

    Just made this for dinner tonight and it was to die for! Everyone loved it. It got a 4 thumbs up and that also includes mine. LOL. I’m not a fan of caraway so I substituted dried dill. Also found out the hard way that I was out of beef broth, so I substituted the Better than Bouillon Vegetable base. Both substitutions worked very well. The flavors in this are so complex! With every bite there was a new and delicious surprise.

  17. Desiree

    Delicious! Made a few changes-added sliced mushrooms and a chopped celery stalk when sautéing and some garlic. I covered the meat in the spices first before sautéing it. No sugar because I don’t like sweet stews. Also used the traditional Sour Cream added at the end. Needed a good base recipe and this was great! Wonderful leftovers !!

  18. Lauren

    Does anyone know if I need to increase cook time if I double the recipe. I have relatives coming and would love to make this for them.

  19. Sonja

    Absolutely delicious! I didn’t have caraway seeds so I left them out – will try with them next time. I also added about 4 cloves of minced garlic. This is going into my permanent recipe book.

  20. Sue Callahan

    Best recipe ever! Been a HUGE fan of you since I got my Instant Pot. Recipes are clear and concise. Just wish I could snap my fingers though & stuff would be cut up!
    Your best Canadian fan! You rock!

  21. Jennifer

    I made this and used a combination of hot Hungarian paprika, smoked paprika and just paprika. We all loved it but next time I will leave out the smoked paprika. I did use 1/4 cup total of paprika. We loved the goulash we had in Germany and this was definitely close to it. We will be making this again.

  22. Elliott Suzanne

    Hi, made this today and tasteless. Everything cooked well but no flavour. I have an authentic Hungarian recipe and I think the main difference was garlic as this recipe doesn’t have it.

    • Jeffrey

      If this is truly the case, I think you must have seriously missed a few ingredients or steps. This is one of the most flavorful dishes around.

  23. Lucy Kalstrom

    Great tip about chopping your own meat! I do that as the ready cut stuff is so variable. I sometimes brine the sliced beef too, but mostly not 🙂

  24. V.j. kohout

    I know this is 2 years old. What took you to Prague. That’s where I am from. Your goulash recipe beats the American goulash recipe but it isn’t the Czech hungarian goulash I grew up with and cook often. Good try, Jeffrey!!

  25. Dee

    Fixed this recipe twice now. I am a seasoned cook; 54 years. This recipe has the best flavor! I do add a few things, such as; more wine, 2 bay leaves and 6 cloves of garlic but overall it is your recipe. It is a hit in this household! I intend to give your original book as a gift to my daughters. I was wondering if you have a list of your most loved recipes in one book since I think it would be a best seller. I have the original and the light fare book.

  26. Melissa T

    This was a hit with my family, including three picky kids. The leftovers were even better. Husband asked me to “put it in the rotation” of our dinner repertoire. Thank you for sharing!

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