Slow Cooker Slumgullion is a dump-and-go crock pot recipe, made with a handful of simple ingredients. Slumgullion, or Goulash, is flavorful comfort food that your whole family will thank you for!
Goulash is classic American comfort food, made with ground meat, tender macaroni, and diced tomatoes. It's a one-pot meal, making it an excellent choice for busy weeknights.
While it's an all-in-one dinner that doesn't need to be served with any sides, a crusty piece of Dutch Oven Bread puts a nice finishing touch on the meal!
What is Slumgullion?
Historically, Slumgullion was used to describe a cheap stew, often made with meat, vegetables, and whatever ingredients were on hand. Today, Slumgullion is a nickname for American goulash, Hungarian goulash, beefaroni, or chop suey.
Why you'll love this recipe
- Easy: This easy Slumgullion recipe can quickly be thrown into the slow cooker before you leave for the day!
- Comfort food: Goulash is the epitome of comfort food and nostalgia, making it perfect for cozy evenings.
- Dump-and-go: All ingredients (except noodles and cheese) are thrown into the crock pot and left to cook on low for the day. You don't even have to brown the meat first!
- One-pot meal: Slumgullion is made entirely in the slow cooker, including the pasta!
- Kid-friendly: Kids love the combination of ground meat, diced tomatoes, and macaroni noodles.
- Cheap: Goulash can feed a crowd without breaking the bank, and leave leftovers for the next day!
Ground turkey: Traditional Slumgullion recipes are made with ground beef. Ground turkey is used in place of ground beef so that we can skip browning the meat before it goes into the slow cooker.
Macaroni: Macaroni is the traditional type of pasta used in goulash. Any small pasta will work, though. Avoid larger pasta shapes like penne, fettuccini, or rigatoni.
Diced tomatoes: Canned diced tomatoes, along with the juices, are added to the sauce.
Bell peppers: I like to sneak in extra veggies when I can. Diced green bell peppers add color, flavor, and an extra dose of nutrition!
Cheddar cheese: Shredded cheddar cheese is sprinkled on during the last 5 minutes of cooking time. Melty cheese adds to the comfort food factor!
Beef broth: At first, the broth will seem like it makes the slumgullion too watery. The broth is needed for cooking the pasta during the last 30 minutes.
Seasonings: Ground paprika is a common spice used in Hungarian goulash. It gives the meat dish a mildly sweet and spicey flavor.
How to make Slumgullion
- Add all your ingredients (except pasta and cheese) to the slow cooker.
- Cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 4-5 hours.
- Stir in the dry macaroni during the last 30 minutes of cooking time.
- When the noodles are soft, top the dish with shredded cheddar cheese.
- Serve and enjoy!
Step 1: Add all ingredients, except for the macaroni noodles and shredded cheese, to the slow cooker.
Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or low for 6-8 hours.
Step 2: Add the dry macaroni noodles during the last 30 minutes of cooking time. Cover and continue cooking until the noodles are soft.
Step 3: When the noodles are soft, stir the dish well to incorporate all the ingredients.
Step 4: Top with a generous amount of shredded cheddar cheese, cover, and let the cheese melt.
Step 5: After about 5 minutes, the cheese should be gooey and melted!
Step 6: Serve and enjoy!
- Use quality ingredients. I prefer 80/20 ground turkey, fresh bell peppers, and low-sodium beef stock.
- Save yourself some time in the morning and chop your bell peppers in advance.
- Resist the urge to open the slow cooker during cooking time. Opening the lid allows steam and heat to escape, increasing the time it takes for the dish to cook.
- Wait to add the pasta until 30 minutes before the end of cooking time. Adding the pasta too soon could cause the pasta to overcook and get mushy.
- Adjust the seasonings to your taste. Add more salt and fresh herbs, and top with grated parmesan cheese if you'd like!
Substitutions and variations
What to substitute: Ground chicken can be substituted for ground turkey. Low-sodium beef broth can be substituted with any other broth or stock.
Variations: Additional veggies can be added, such as red bell peppers, frozen corn, and green peas. Increase the heat with red pepper flakes or spicy chili powder.
How to store, freeze, and reheat
How to store: Store leftover goulash in a glass, airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days.
How to freeze: Slumgullion freezes really well! Let it completely cool, then transfer to a freezer-safe container or ziplock bag. It can be frozen for up to 3 months.
How to reheat: Reheat leftovers in the microwave at full power in one-minute increments, stirring in between each increment.
What to serve with goulash
While goulash is a one-pot meal, it still pairs well with various side dishes! It's sometimes served with potatoes, rice, and beans, but I prefer fresh bread and sauteed vegetables!
- 3-Ingredient Drop Biscuits
- Dutch Oven Bread
- Roasted Green Beans and Carrots
- Air Fryer Zucchini and Squash
Frequently asked questions
According to Merriam-Webster, the term "slumgullion" was first used in 1890, as a word to describe meat stew or soup.
Yes, currently, slumgullion is another name for American Goulash, Hungarian Goulash, or American chop suey.
Slumgullion can be any cheap combination of meat, vegetables, and pasta. It's traditionally made with ground beef, tomatoes, and macaroni noodles.
More pasta and ground meat recipes
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