Dear Crissy

Instant Pot Goulash

Old-fashioned Instant Pot goulash is a classic family dish that comes together easily in your pressure cooker. Whether you call it goulash, Johnny Marzetti, or American chop suey, you have to agree that this recipe is simply THE BEST!

best instant pot goulash recipe

Pressure Cooker Goulash Recipe

Readers have been begging me to create an Instant Pot version of my popular Old-Fashioned Goulash recipe.

Therefore, I’m SO happy to be sharing this incredible Instant Pot goulash recipe with you today!

This is the most popular recipe on my blog, and thousands of Pinterest users have tried and loved this easy family recipe!

Our Instant Pot goulash recipe is SPECIAL and UNIQUE! In other words, It’s not just pasta, meat, and a jar of sauce.

It’s loaded with quality, real ingredients that come together to make a flavorful family meal.

PRO Instant Pot Tip: How To Fix The C6L Error On Your Instant Pot

Instant Pot Old Fashioned Goulash

How to Make Instant Pot Goulash

Note, this is American goulash. Sometimes it’s also called American chop suey or for Ohioans like me, Johnny Marzetti.

Are you looking for Hungarian-style goulash recipe? Then check out this one.

Certainly, I love easy recipes. I’m not above using a jar of pasta sauce!

However, you just can’t beat the depth of flavor achieved when using my special combination of delicious ingredients.

Pressure cooker goulash

If you’re saying to yourself, enough talk already, just SHOW ME THE RECIPE, then just scroll down toward the bottom of the page to get our complete Instant Pot goulash recipe! :)

easy instant pot goulash

Time needed: 45 minutes.

Here’s how to make my easy pressure cooker American goulash!

  1. Cook the ground beef

    Firstly, set the Instant Pot to sauté. When hot, add the olive oil, onion, and garlic; sauté for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the ground beef. Break up the meat with a wooden spoon and brown until no pink remains. Spoon off any excess liquid. 

  2. Add the additional ingredients

    Secondly, add the one cup of beef broth and stir to deglaze. Add the 2 cups of water, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, bay leaves, and the remaining seasonings. Stir well. Stir in the elbow macaroni.

  3. Cook on high pressure

    Finally, put on the lid, set to sealing, and set to high pressure for 1 minute, with a quick release. After that, when all the pressure is released carefully remove lid and stir. Make sure to turn off the keep warm function to prevent the pasta from overcooking. Serve your Instant Pot goulash IMMEDIATELY for best results! Top with shredded cheese, optional, but honestly… who wouldn’t? :)

best instant pot goulash recipe

Tips for Making Instant Pot Old-Fashioned Goulash

I make this goulash recipe in my 6-quart Instant Pot. You will need to use a 6-quart or larger pot to accommodate this recipe. I’ve been thinking about getting an 8-quart pot, myself. Do you have one? Do you love it?

In addition, be sure sure to break up your ground beef well during the sautéing phase. I recently got this tool to break up meat in my Instant Pot and it works better than a wooden spoon.

Important note about cooking time. While it may seem like 1 minute at high pressure is not enough time, trust me, it is. Keep in mind that the pasta will be starting to cook while the pot comes up to pressure.

I find that the 1 minute with a QUICK RELEASE produces a JUST al-dente pasta that will hold up on day two and three. If you want your pasta to be even closer to true al-dente, you could cook for 0 minutes at high pressure with a quick release.

Moreover, if find the pasta is still too tough for your liking, it’s a very simple fix. Put the lid back on and let it sit for a minute or two. You can make your pasta softer, but you don’t want to go too far and have mushy pasta hence the 1 minute cook time!

Finely grate your own cheese (like in my picture) for the most luscious results. You can use the bagged stuff too, of course! :)

I am SUCH an IP-recipe junkie. In fact, I just tried Jessica’s Instant Pot Baked Ziti, and y’all, it’s SO GOOD!

More Delicious Recipes

Did you make this recipe? It really is the BEST! If you loved it and want to really help this site, consider leaving a rating, comment, and pinning this recipe to your favorite Pinterest boards. Your support helps us so much! :)

Instant Pot Goulash

Instant Pot Goulash

Yield: 10 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

Old-fashioned Instant Pot goulash is a delicious family meal that your whole family will love! This reminds me of the Johnny Marzetti that my grandma used to make when I was a kid!


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 2 large yellow onions, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 2 cups of water
  • (2) 15-ounce cans tomato sauce
  • (2) 15-ounce cans diced tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups elbow macaroni, uncooked
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese


  1. Set the Instant Pot to sauté. When hot, add the olive oil, onion, and garlic; sauté for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the ground beef. Break up the meat with a wooden spoon and brown until no pink remains. Spoon off any excess liquid. 
  2. Add the one cup of beef broth and stir to deglaze. Add the 2 cups of water, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, bay leaves, and the remaining seasonings. Stir well. Stir in the elbow macaroni.
  3. Put on the lid, set to sealing position, and set to high pressure for 1 minute, with a quick release. After all the pressure is released carefully remove lid and stir. Make sure to turn off the keep warm function to prevent the pasta from overcooking. Top with shredded cheese, optional.


  • Remove the inner pot after cooking is complete to allow for faster cooling.
  • Serve IMMEDIATELY for best results!

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 342Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 92mgSodium: 651mgCarbohydrates: 16gFiber: 3gSugar: 5gProtein: 31g

    105 Comments on “Instant Pot Goulash”

  1. I made this last night and it was a hit! There were three of us so needless to say there were A LOT of leftovers. How would I go about freezing this? I didn’t know if I should put it in individual baggies or one big one?

  2. One of my besties is vegetarian. I sub veggie crumbles for the meat, veggie broth etc, add some corn, and roasted peppers. She absolutely loves it, and so do our meat-eater friends. A quick, easy, inexpensive way to feed my loved ones.

  3. I’ve never made goulash before, but my husband asked for it for dinner yesterday. Glad I found this recipe! I didn’t think I’d like it, but It was really good! The only change I made was to 1/2 the recipe since there’s only two of us.

  4. I’m confused. High pressure for just one minute??

  5. This was an amazing recipe! My family loved it and there was plenty for leftovers which we all gobbled up! We served with small potatoes and cheese. Thanks for the great recipe!

    • Could you tell me if you used 1 tbsp of ground Oregon or did you use 1 tbsp of the dried leaves? I don’t want to mess this up.

  6. I wasn’t sure what i was going to have for dinner last night. I came across your recipe and thought, “I think I have all these ingredients”. Sure enough, I did, yay! Nice to know that I can make this again in a pinch because ingredients are easy to keep on hand. I followed instructions as written (except I used chicken broth, because that’s the carton that was already open in the fridge and didn’t want to open another carton 😋) This was so good! Why do y’all want to half the recipe?? Leftovers are wonderful. So economical. It’s lunch the next day, or the next month it you freeze it. **I did remove liner from pot after browning meat to drain off grease. I poured hot grease into an old plastic lunchmeat container that I put a few ice cubes in to keep hot grease from melting plastic. (this plastic is not recyclable in my town) I store this container in freezer and keep adding to it until it is full, then I toss in trash.
    Thank you dear crissy! I plan to try out more of your recipes.
    Love the fact that you love Jesus! Me too!!

    • It’s just my son and I and he will not eat anything with tomatoes… I’d be eating this all year by myself… that’s why some of us cut the recipe in 1/2😊

  7. Just made it and followed the directions this time lol. came out looking exactly like the photo. I halved it for my pot is a 3 qt

  8. This is Amazing! I made it with gluten free (Banza elbow) noodles. Rice noodles would probably go to mush. The chick pea noodles were perfect. Great flavor. So good!!! 

  9. I made this tonight and it was delicious! It was a complete hit at my house. I did add some things to mine. I added a small bag of frozen peppers and onions, 2 pounds of hamburger meat, 1 pound of ground sweet Italian sausage, also after adding the tomatoes and sauce, I added a 1/4 container of cream cheese, and 1/4 cup of heavy whipping cream. Instead of water I used all beef broth. I also used cavatappi pasta. It was super tasty. Thanks for the recipe. 

  10. Confused. Looks great and am trying it. But it says cook time 25 minutes but then the instructions say one minute. Hope the 25 is right.

    • Oh no! The 25 minutes is TOTAL cook time. Follow the times in each step. The one minute is what you set your Insta pot timer to it will be cooking until it gets to the pressure required and then the one minute timer will start. 

    • Is it 25 minutes because it takes that long to get pressure up to start on the one minute cook time?

  11. I was out of fresh onions but I had some frozen Mirepoix mix (chopped onions, celery and green peppers) and used that instead. Tasted great!

  12. We usually add corn in our so I put in two cups of frozen corn. It came out pretty soupy. Could I omit two cups of water if I add the corn in the future or just at half cup or one cup of water? Also used fire roasted tomatoes and chili ready tomatoes since we had that in hand and it was delish!

  13. I made this and left out the cheese but it was superb in every way.  Easy to make and even easier to eat LOL.  Simply perfect.  You can make it  and eat portions all week if it’s only two of you at home!

  14. made tonight and it came out great. Started with frozen beef, so defrosted in the instapot first (look on pinterest for how to do this too) Took it out, emptied the pot and then proceeded with the recipe. fast and delicious

  15. Really delicious. Halved the recipe but I think I forgot to do half the water. Still came out delicious. Wondering if splitting the diced tomatoes with some Rotel would make this even better and also half the onion (or a smaller onion).

  16. I don’t have an insta pot. Do I follow the recipe as written for cooking on stove top? For instance do I use the amount of water and broth as listed?


  17. I do not have elbow noodles on hand. Could No Yolk Extra Broad noodles be used?  If so, would the cooking time be the same or altered? Thank you!  I look forward to trying this recipe. 

  18. Has anyone tried this with 1 lb ground beef and 1 lb Italian sausage??? Not wanting to change recipe just wanted to use what we have on hand.

    • I’m sure you can do it. I would definitely use lean meat or drain it so you don’t have the fat from the sausage in there

  19. Thank you!! I made it for dinner today and it was delicious!!

  20. Can you freeze the left over goulash?

  21. This is the best recipe. My family asks for it all the time. Sooooo many people have repinned it. I love it. 

    I only make half and there is never any leftovers. 

  22. This recipe was AMAZING and couldn’t have been easier to make. Everyone raved about how good it was and sad there weren’t many leftovers. It’s basically a recipe similar to one I make on the stove but somehow in the instant pot it had so much more flavor! Looking forward to trying more of your IP recipes!

  23. I made this tonite. It was so good.  I did some tweaking of ingredients which I picked up in the comment section.  I used spaghetti sauce since I didn’t have tomato sauce. I also was without diced tomatoes. I used Chili ready tomato’s. I used rigitoni pasta since I didn’t have elbow pasta. I forgot about the cheese but it was so good anyway. 

  24. So yummy!! Added a little sour cream with the cheese at the end for even more deliciousness. Used ground turkey instead of beef and halved the recipe. Turned out fantastic. Will be adding this to our regular menu. 

    • This was delicious. Very close to my own American Chop Suey recipe. I may play with the ratio of tomato sauce to beef broth in the future, but otherwise, you nailed it! Thanks so much!

  25. So since I found this recipe I have made it three times. The first time I messed it up which was totally my fault I wasn’t paying attention and added to many noodles(I did half batch). The next two times it came out perfect and OMG so good! haha. the only thing I dont do is add the Oregano and Italian seasoning and i always do a half batch since there’s just two of us. Thank you for the recipe and it will be made many more times that’s for sure.

  26. Very good! I shared with friends who liked it too. I used 1 lb burger. Unless sharing, I would cut in half the noodles, tomatoes, tomatoes sauce, & other liquid. I accidentally released pressure before 1 minute but noodles were done.

  27. This was really good.  Cooked as directed but halved the recipe.  After cooking, I did add a little more salt, pepper and garlic powder.  Be sure to serve right away because the noodles absorb all the sauce. Definitely a keeper.  Great weeknight dinner.

  28. Why does the instant pot goulash – say cooking time 25 minutes – but then in the instructions say set high pressure for 1 minute and quick release? Help?

  29. Made this the other night my whole family, from my dad to my kids loved it.  So easy and quick.
    If you have a “crockpot” insta cooker use the beans/chili button for the high pressure 4 min part

  30. Good, and much easier and quicker than my normal American chop suey. No burn in the IP either.

  31. Great recipe, and fast! It’s a keeper! Yummy

  32. First time I made this 2 minutes was perfect but it continued to cook in the broth afterwards just sitting ( and i removed the inner pot) so by the time I was ready to package leftovers the noodles were overcooked and soaked up all and I mean all the broth. next time I will be smart and do it one minute as you say lol

  33. This turned out great! I subd the whole wheat rotini pasta and read some reviews while I was waiting for it to heat up, left natural pressure release for 1 min only then quick released to avoid undercooking noodles as many commented about it, mine came out perfect! I also subd 1lb Turkey burger for the meat and a 1lb meatless Italian sausage because that’s what I had on hand. Delish!

  34. My family loved this recipe tonight.  The next time I make it I will season the meat just after browning rather than putting the seasoning in with all the liquids.

  35. I’ve been looking for a good goulash recipe a

    • I cut the ingredients in half and followed instructions. It turned out perfectly! Thank you for this! I definitely will check out your other receipes!

  36. Question very new to instant pot after doing the sautéed part of onions what option do you put it on after that for hamburger Etc.

  37. I am making this now. I fudged the recipe and used less pasta but kept full liquid and only did one can tomato sauce 1 can diced tomatoes and added some diced jalapenos to give it some pep. I cooked 2 minutes for they say to use 1/2 the time listed on the bag of pasta in the instant pot and 2 minutes is still even less than that so we shall see.

    • update looks good but after 2 minutes noodles dpnt look quite done so I am letting it bubble on saute mode for an extra minute

  38. This came out great!  I had to substitute a few things with what I had on hand, tho. I used homemade tomato soup that I froze last summer to which I added a fair amount of tomato paste in place of the tomato sauce. Also used teriyaki sauce vs Worcester. Used basil vs oregano. I didn’t hear the timer go off after 1 minute so it slow released for two minutes. Pasta was perfect!  None of these little change ups made much of a difference. Really good!  

  39. Fast, easy, and delicious. What’s not to like? Lot’s of flavor and a recipe that is about as simple as it gets. This recipe does make a ton. Right up to the max line on a 6 quart, but no problems. One clarification: Sometimes it’s hard to tell what the recipe is calling for with measurements. Some might equate 2 cups to 1 – 16oz box. In this case, a full box would be WAY too much pasta, so measure out the 2 cups.

  40. We are new to the Instant Pot world and are trying out different recipes. Your Goulash looked delicious so we tried it. What an awesome dish! There had to be variations, as we don’t have a well stocked kitchen – like I used speghetti sauce instead of tomato sauce – but for the most part I cut the recipe in half with great success! My boy loved it. I added it to my Pinterest page. Thanks for sharing it.

  41. My first instant pot recipe and I loved it. I halved it and even though I got the burn notice, I just hit cancel and released pressure. By letting the food cool in the instant pot, the noodles cooked a bit longer and are perfect. 

  42. First, let me say this turned out amazing. Totally my kind of meal. But…. no way can it be done in a 6-qt IP without exceeding the max fill mark! I cooked the macaroni separately and left out the 2 C of water and 1 can of the tomato sauce to compensate for the liquid that would be absorbed by the pasta. Combined the two pots after done cooking and it was great. Next time I’ll half the recipe, but will miss out on leftovers.

    • Donald, I’ve made it dozens of times in my 6-quart. It does come right up to the fill line but doesn’t go over. Maybe you had a little too much of something.

  43. This was the best tasting goulash we have ever had. I just can’t figure out how you got the noodles to cook so quickly! I started at 6 min and ended up cooking a little longer. I used 2 cans of tomato sauce instead of diced tomatoes and I didn’t add the cheese at the end. We used Parmesan cheese on top. My family loves this recipe and we will use it from now on! Thank you!

  44. What do you consider lean ground beef? 85-15, 90-10 or 95-5?

  45. This was absolutely amazing and easy to make. Best part is I didnt have to keep reminding my 7 and 4 yr old to eat. They didn’t put their forks down. First thing I’ve ever made in my newly acquired insta pot and it was a huge success thanks to that easy peasy recipe. Thanks for sharing it.

  46. Made this tonight and EVERYONE liked it! That’s a big deal when all three kids like it! Served a family of 5 with a just enough leftover for my hubby’s lunch tomorrow. Really enjoyed it! Will prob add some hot sauce next time to give it a bit more spice! But it was easy and delish!👌🏼

  47. What should I do different if I want to half the recipe 

    • Just half all the ingredients.

    • This isn’t my recipe but I noticed that you didn’t get a reply. In instant pot recipes to increase or decrease a recipe, you adjust the ingredients but keep the times the same. So, you would halve all the ingredients but times stay the same. Hope that helps.

  48. For me the macaroni was still too tough, so I put it back on again for 0 minutes. Then it was perfect. This tasted amazing! Even my picky husband liked it.

  49. This was great!  I made it with gluten free rotini.  Followed the directions to the letter.  My family of 4 loved it. Thanks for the recipe!

  50. I new to the instapot world!! I made this tonight and my pasta wasn’t done after the 1minute on high pressure. What did I do wrong? 

  51. Can I use small shells or rigatoni in place of elbows?

  52. So easy and the flavor is amazing! Turned out perfect!

  53. Should you drain the tomatoes? Or dump the whole can in?

  54. Is there something else I could use besides the beef stock that would be just as yummy?

  55. I will be making this for dinner today. It’s just my hubby and I so I am sure there will be leftovers. Have you ever tried freezing this?? Trying to decide if I need to half the recipe or not, lol. TIA 

    • I Have an 8Quart Bella pro series and I LOVE it!!! It has a non-stick pot unlike the instapot…..very handy for sauteeing…..I poach eggs in it everyday and I now make corn,mash pototoes,beets steammed veggies etc easy peasy

  56. My husband has claimed this to be the best “spaghetti” I’ve ever made. I had to laugh and explain it’s goulash! He said he didn’t care what I called it as long as I make it again! 

  57. Can I make this with frozen ground beef? I don’t think so but wanted to ask

  58. Excellent one pot meal- very tasty, very good football game eating! You will not be disappointed- everyone loved it!

  59. I added spaghetti sauce in mine instead of tomato sauce. Gave it an awesome saucy flavor. This was a very good meal. Served it with garlic toast.

  60. What if I use rotini noodles? Same timing?

  61. I made this today and it was so yummy! I’m making it again later this week. Perfect lunch for my son to pack in his thermos for school tomorrow!

  62. Any idea if the time or QR changes if using gluten free pasta?

  63. Do you use large elbow noodles for this recipe?

  64. This turned out really delicious! I was a little hesitant with the 1 minute cook time so I did 2 minutes which came out soft and the bottom stuck a little. 1 minute would have been perfect lol. Other than that the only other thjngs I changed was ground turkey instead of beef, added bell pepper, a sprinkle of sugar ( I like sweeter tomato sauces) and then after it was cooked a couple tablespoons of tomato paste and corn and peas. I like lots of veggies! It came out soo good! Just as good as if I were to make it in the stovetop but way faster and easier and only had to dirty the one pot. Thank you! 

  65. This sounds delicious and I think my kids will eat it, but we don’t need 10 servings. Can this be halved and still work?

  66. Yummy!!! I will try this tonight! My husband is super picky, and doesn’t like chunks of tomatoes…any substitutions? Or maybe I can blend them up before adding…

    • You could use petite diced, or, try subbing the two cans of diced for one can of crushed. I haven’t tried this, but, I think it would be okay!

  67. I was never a huge fan of goulash, but this came out very good and flavorful! Also quick and easy. I halved this recipe and it came out perfect. 1 minute was plenty for the pasta to cook so I’ll be adding to my notes to make sure to do an immediate QR. I’ll definitely be adding this one to our recipe box. 

  68. Is it really only 1 minute?

    • Yes, Bertie! Keep in mind it takes roughly 20 minutes to come to pressure before the timer starts. That’s a lot of extra time for the noodles to begin to cook! :)

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