Pressure cooker, Sunday dinner
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Instant Pot Beef Goulash

A bowl of beef goulash over noodles, with a bag of noodles and a canister of paprika in the background
Instant Pot Beef Goulash

Instant Pot Beef Goulash. Hearty Hungarian beef and paprika stew, ready in about an hour thanks to pressure cooking.

Beef Goulash is a classic recipe from Hungary – chunks of meat, stewed with paprika and vegetables, usually served over noodles or with dumplings. Instant Pot Beef Goulash is a natural – of course I’m going to cook it quickly in my pressure cooker. Here is my take on Certified Angus Beef’s Goulash Recipe: Hungarian Goulash

Thank you to my friends at Certified Angus Beef® Brand for sponsoring DadCooksDinner. Please check them out at hashtags #BestAngusBeef and #SteakHolder for more beef recipes, or join them at the Certified Angus Beef Kitchen Community on Facebook.

OK, OK, before we get to the recipe, one thing is still bugging me. We have a lot of great Eastern European restaurants here in Northeastern Ohio, and I’ve been eating Goulash and Paprikash for years. So…

What’s the difference between Goulash and Paprikash?

Both goulash and paprikash are Hungarian dishes, meat stewed with paprika, and served with noodles or dumplings. The only consistent difference I could find: A paprikash has sour cream stirred in late in the cooking process, and a goulash doesn’t. With a goulash, the sour cream is served as a topping at the table. Other than that, the recipes were all over the place. A goulash usually has cubes of beef, and a paprikash usually has pieces of chicken…except when they don’t. If anyone is of Hungarian descent and knows the difference, let me know in the comments, please?

Whatever it’s called, goulash is the definition of old-world comfort food, and easy to make in the pressure cooker. It’s a simple recipe – beef, onions, paprika, and tomatoes – so I take the time to brown the meat and sauté the onions, adding complexity to the dish. The Instant Pot makes short work of the total cooking time, replacing hours of simmering with minutes under pressure.

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A bowl of beef goulash over noodles, with a bag of noodles and a canister of paprika in the background

Instant Pot Beef Goulash

  • Author: Mike Vrobel
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 2 quarts of goulash 1x


Instant Pot Beef Goulash. Hearty Hungarian beef and paprika stew, ready in about an hour thanks to pressure cooking.


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 pounds of beef bottom round roast, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1½ teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 2 large onions, diced
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ cup paprika
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 1 cup beef broth (homemade or low-sodium store bought)
  • 14.5 oz can petite diced tomatoes
  • ½ to teaspoons fine sea salt (see instructions about canned broth)
  • ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Cornstarch slurry (optional)

  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch


  • Extra-wide egg noodles, cooked according to the directions on the package
  • Sour Cream


  1. Sear the beef in three batches: Heat the vegetable oil and butter in the pot over medium heat (Sauté mode set to medium in an Instant Pot) until the butter stops foaming. While the pot heats, sprinkle the beef cubes with 1 ½ teaspoons salt. Add 1/3 of the beef in a loose single layer and sear until well browned on one side, about 3 minutes. (Don’t crowd the pot or the beef will steam, not brown). Transfer the browned beef to a bowl, add half of the remaining beef to the pot, and sear until browned on one side, about 3 more minutes. Transfer the browned beef to the bowl. Add the rest of the beef to the pot and sear until browned on one side, about 3 more minutes. Transfer the browned beef to the bowl.
  2. Sauté the onions: Add the onions to the pot and sprinkle with ½ teaspoon salt. Sauté until the onions soften, about 8 minutes, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pot occasionally to loosen any browned bits of beef.
  3. Stir everything into the pot: Stir in the beef and any juices in the bowl. Sprinkle the paprika and caraway into the pot and stir to coat the beef. Stir the beef broth and tomatoes into the pot.
  4. Pressure cook the stew for 15 minutes with a natural pressure release: Lock the lid on the pressure cooker. Cook at high pressure for 15 minutes in an electric pressure cooker (“Manual” or “Pressure Cook” mode in an Instant Pot), or for 12 minutes in a stovetop PC. Let the pressure come down naturally, about 20 more minutes. (If you’re in a hurry, you can quick release any remaining pressure after 15 minutes.) Remove the lid, tilting it away from you to avoid the hot steam.
  5. Thicken, season and serve: Whisk the water and cornstarch together to make a cornstarch slurry, and then stir the slurry into the stew. Stir in salt and pepper: If you used store-bought beef broth, add ½ teaspoon of fine sea salt; if you used homemade beef broth or water, add 1½ teaspoons of fine sea salt. Also, add ½ teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper. Serve over egg noodles with a spoonful of sour cream on top. Enjoy!


  • The downside to pressure cooking is a thin sauce. The sealed pressure cooker lets us build pressure, but we don’t get any evaporation to thicken up the sauce. The cornstarch slurry thickens the sauce and gives it the mouthfeel of a long-simmered stew.
  • You can substitute chuck roast for the bottom round roast if that’s what’s available; everything else cooks the same.


  • Category: Sunday Dinner
  • Method: Pressure Cooker
  • Cuisine: Eastern European

Keywords: Instant Pot Beef Goulash, Pressure Cooker Beef Goulash

What do you think?

Questions? Other ideas? Leave them in the comments section below.

Pressure Cooker Beef Stew Provencal (Beef en Daube) – DadCooksDinner
Instant Pot Easy Beef Stew with Certified Angus Beef Bottom Round – DadCooksDinner
Pressure Cooker Vegetable Beef Soup – DadCooksDinner
My other Pressure Cooker Recipes

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Filed under: Pressure cooker, Sunday dinner


Hi! I’m Mike Vrobel. I’m a dad and an enthusiastic home cook; an indie cookbook author and food blogger with a day job, a patient spouse, and three kids who would rather have hamburgers for dinner.


  1. Aurora says

    This is such a fantastic recipe. I’ve made it about five times now and it always turns out perfectly delicious. I never bother with the cornstarch slurry but I do sometimes add some carrots to the mix.

  2. Yummy in my tummy!! says

    I love this recipe! I didn’t have caraway seeds so I just went without. I did add 4 carrots. Everything else I left as is. It was perfect!!!

  3. Micki says

    Looks like a legit goulash recipe…very similar to mine. As others have stated, I use tomato paste as thickener and it works great! Also, I always add a couple of bay leaves to my goulash…it infuses the dish with great flavor. Just be sure to fish them out afterwards, as they’re not edible (due to their texture).

  4. delicious! used a can of tomato paste instead of chopped tomatoes and an extra 1/4 cup of water- no need to thicken after pressure release! Thanks, this one is a keeper 🙂

  5. I modified the recipe with what I had on hand. Didn’t have tomatoes or beef broth. Substituted 1 red bell pepper diced and chicken broth. Also added half smoked and half sweet paprika, petite gold potatoes, garlic , 1 tsp of Marjoram, Bayleaf and a few Pepperoncinis. It is delicious. If you like it a little more spicy. I’m positive that the original recipe is very tasty as well, which I will try next time.

  6. Truly says

    Fantastic a definite winner! So easy and superbly delicious without huge effort. Our guests were very impressed and went for third helpings. Thank you Mike! Another great recipe

  7. Gary says

    Hi Mike,
    Planning to try this in my stovetop Fagor Duo.
    Question: Do you drain the tomatoes or use the liquid as well?


  8. Carrie says

    Delicious! Easy! My husband who rarely compliments any meal loved this! Thanks for a great recipe, a keeper!

  9. This was my first time using my Instant Pot. I am amazed at how rich and flavorful this dish came out, with a great texture too, meat tender and sauce just right thickness. Thank you so much!!!

  10. Razzy 7 says

    Nor Hungarian but here’s what I found. “As nouns the difference between goulash and paprikash is that goulash is a stew of beef or veal and vegetables, flavoured with paprika while paprikash is a hungarian dish resembling goulash (a paprika-based potato stew), but without potatoes and using meat instead, often chicken and sometimes veal.
    Goulash vs Paprikash – What’s the difference? | WikiDiff

    Whatever the difference, I say delicious.

  11. Kathie says

    Thanks Mike for your timely recipe. I always make some version of goulash on Halloween, but call it “Ghoulash.” I’m trying your Instant Pot recipe next Wednesday. Happy Haunting.

  12. My wife can’t have seeds, so I’m going to drop in a half star anise. Should be easy to find and fish out.

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