Goulash Soup – Gulyásleves

Goulash soup was often the starter for our Sunday lunch followed by some sweet pancake (palacsinta) or cottage cheese dumplings (túrógombóc). All the flavour from the beef and vegetables is concentrated in the golden liquid, the spiciness of the paprika created a beautiful aftertaste. Great to have a nice slice of bread on the side, dig into the soup time to time and wipe out all the last drops with it from our plate.



600 g topside beef chopped into cubes

3 tablespoon olive oil

1 large onion

3 cloves of garlic

2-3 potatoes (400g)

3 carrots

1 large parsnip

100 g celeriac

1/4 teaspoon caraway seeds

1/8 teaspoon fennel seeds

2 teaspoon Hungarian paprika

1 tablespoon salt


1 bay leaf

1.5 tablespoon of plain flour


For the Csipetke dumpling

1 egg

90 g plain four



Peel and chop up the onion and roast it in 2 tablespoons of olive oil till it gets golden brown. The best is to use a deep boiling pan as we are going to make soup. Add the finely chopped garlic and stir for 20 more seconds. Pull the pan aside from the heat, add the paprika and stir it quickly for 3 seconds then add 100 ml water. Put the pan back on the hob and stir till the water almost evaporates.

Add the beef and season it with salt, ground black pepper, ground fennel and caraway seeds. On high heat cook the beef for 5 minutes, stir frequently the add little bit of water. Don’t let the water cover your meat, just pour enough to prevent the beef from burning and keep it moist. Stir occasionally and top up with water whenever needed. Cook for an hour.

Peel the vegetables and cut into small cubes. When the meat is almost ready add the vegetables and the bay leaf. Add 1,5 liters water and cook it till the vegetables becomes tender. Usually I add a bit of salt again to the soup as the potato and carrots make the soup quite sweet.

Prepare the dumplings ”csipetke” for the soup. Mix the egg with a pinch of salt and flour till you get a fairly firm pastry. Put some flour over your palm. Pinch the pastry to get a small piece and form small noodles in your palm. As small as garden peas.

When all the vegetables have cooked add the noodles into the soup and cook it 10 more minutes. Brown some flour in 1.5 tablespoons of olive oil then add 3 tablespoons warm water and whisk it quickly to dissolve all the lumps, then blend it into the soup.

Serve with some fresh bread and season with some hot paprika paste or dried paprika if you enjoy piquant flavours. I love adding a tiny bit of sour cream to my soup which makes it creamy and edgy



Icons: large pan,

Cooking time: 1.5 hours

Calories and nutrition:

Calories: 373 Carbo: 46.8 g Protein: 29.4 g Fat: 11.3 g

Tip: Let the soup settle as the flavour improves over time.


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