Down Home Goulash

1 lb. lean ground beef
1/2 large onion, diced
1/2 bell pepper, diced (opt)
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
1/2 cup V8 juice
1 cans diced tomatoes (with garlic, if you can find)
1 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 tsp. Lawry's season salt (more to taste)
1/2 tsp. chili powder (more or less to your taste)
1 bay leaves
1 cup dry elbow macaroni  ( I like the big fat ones)
 salt and pepper to taste

In a large skillet, brown beef over medium-high heat until cooked all the way through. Drain off any fat. Add onions and peppers (if using) and continue cooking until tender (about 5 min).

Add tomato sauce, V8 juice, tomatoes, garlic, Italian seasoning, season salt and chili powder.

Cover and continue cooking for around 20 minutes.

Add macaroni and stir well.

 Put the lid back on and cook for an extra 20 minutes, or until macaroni is tender.

Turn off  the heat and let the pot sit covered for bit, or until the liquid has been absorbed.

Add your salt and pepper when you plate it up. This dish just begs to be eaten with a piece of  plain ole bread with butter. Trust me!

Oh yeah, fish out that bay leaf!

I'll tell ya, I've used tomato sauce and a splash of water a time or two when I didn't have V-8. I just added a bit more spices, salt and pepper to compensate for the missing flavors the V-8 offers.  I've also pre-cooked my pasta in a separate pot (to al dente) while I was preparing the meat mixture and added it as directed in recipe, just skipped the extra 20 minute cooking time. Either way, it turns out scrumptious, inexpensive and filling, every time. Three of my favorite combinations :) Hope it works out for you too.


  1. how much does this make??

  2. That's always a hard question to answer as all our appetites are quite different. Some can eat more than others. I think, using moderate proportions, this recipe should feed 4 comfortably. Paired with a nice salad and some bread would stretch it a little further.

  3. what size can of tomato sauce did you use?

  4. Well, I used the larger tomato sauce can, I believe it's a 15 oz. can. I omitted the V8 Juice so I went for the bigger can. Otherwise, just use the 8 oz. can. It's a pretty forgiving recipe.

  5. Very good, this recipe is a keeper for sure! Thanks for sharing! You are correct, it is a forgiving recipe. We added more tomatoes, more V-8 & more noodles. The bread would be a perfect pairing!

  6. Great to hear! Nice added tips for other readers. Thanks!

  7. I didnt have tomatoe sauce so I used tomatoe soup, a pinch of sugar which cuts down on the tomatoe taste and always add a little extra spices...

  8. My mother made this when we were kids (I'm now 52) I make it, my sister makes it, gramma makes it, and EVERYONE loves it! Your recipe is a bit different, we use tomato soup (no water) and stewed tomatoes. I have also made it with sauce in addition to soup. I like the idea of paste and V-8! Will definitely try it this way! Thanks so much for sharing!! :)