This German goulash is one of our favourite budget friendly gluten free beef stew recipes. It allows us to use more affordable cuts in a delicious way. This beef goulash is gluten free, dairy free, and top 8 allergens free.
Why We Like This Recipe
This German goulash recipe is a beef paprika stew. It is one that we make quite a bit for the kids in the winter. It is nice to come home to the smell of it cooking on a cold day. The kids love this gluten free beef stew as it is not a spicy dish but instead one full of flavour.
You can certainly make it spicy by using a spicy paprika but our kids do not handle heat well in food. I love this recipe because we can use a cheaper cut of meat and cook it for a longer time. This German goulash will make it more tender and help us keep our costs down.
Our version is one that is more German than Hungarian, as that is what Rob was raised with. Beef goulash is a popular stew in Europe and most areas of each country will have their own version of this stew.
- Stewing Beef
- Salt and Pepper
- Plant Butter, dairy free
- Green Bell Peppers
- Sweet or Smoked Paprika
- Gluten Free Flour
- Diced Tomatoes
- Beef Stock
- Frozen Peas
See recipe card for quantities.
The Ingredient Low Down
We use this dish as an opportunity to use a variety of meat cuts depending on how much time we have to spend on cooking our stew. If we have little time for the stew to cook we will buy a more tender cut of meat. If we are letting the stew simmer for a long time we will buy a more economical cut of stewing beef that we can cook until it is tender and falls apart, delicious.
Salt and Pepper
Make sure they are top 8 free and gluten free. There is a lot of cross contact in spice manufacturing and we always recommend contacting the manufacturer to see if salt, pepper and other spices are made on shared lines.
Plant Butter, dairy free
Any safe plant butter or spread will work. We usually use Melt Organics or soy free Earth Balance. If plant butters are not safe for you check the substitutions section as there are alternatives that can be used.
Onion and Garlic
Fresh onions and garlic are what we use as they are best in this recipe over dried onions and garlic or powdered.
Green Bell Peppers
We usually choose green bell peppers because they are on average cheaper than red, yellow, or orange ones. They also have a stronger taste in a stew like this that goes well with the smoked paprika. If you are using sweet paprika you can use sweet bell peppers, if preferred.
Sweet or Smoked Paprika
Good paprika is what we choose to we buy. It is our big splurge. We switch it up and sometimes make this recipe with a sweet paprika and sometimes with a smoked paprika to keep the dish interesting. Always check the heat of your paprika as some kinds can be spicy. If your kids are like ours they will not be as keen on a spicy paprika so check it before adding it. Don’t forget to check with the manufacturer about allergens in the processing of the spices. Many spices may be processed on shared lines.
Gluten Free Flour
An all purpose gluten free flour like King Arthur 1 to1 or Bob’s Redmill 1 to 1 can be used. It can have xanthan gum or not but isnt needed to have it added if the flour doesn’t contain it. If you don;t have blended flour on hand that is okay. Rice flour can also be used to thicken the stew and works really well. It is one of my favourites. For using starches in place of flour check out the substitutions section.
Diced Tomatoes and Beef Broth
We use canned diced tomatoes with the juice from the tin. These both can be homemade or commercial versions. Go with whichever is safest and easiest for you. Beef bone broth can be used in place of beef stock. It will increase the amount of fat and the nutritional info though.
Carrots and Frozen Peas
These do not have to be fresh; they can absolutely both be frozen or fresh. If they are frozen always check with the manufacturer, as they may have come in contact with allergens. Use whatever is safest and easiest to make cooking dinner that much easier for you.
We have used red, yellow, and russet potatoes successfully in this recipe. The russets break down more and add more starch to the stew as they simmer and the longer they cook. If cooking for a long time we prefer the waxier red and yellow potatoes as they hold their shape a bit better.
Instructions/ Directions and Tips
1- Season beef cubes with salt and pepper.
2- In a large pot over medium heat melt the plant butter.
3- Add meat to the melted plant butter and cook to brown the outside. Stirring often to get all sides of the beef is lightly seared. About 6 minutes.
4- Put onion, garlic, and peppers in the pot and cook until the onions and garlic are translucent. About 5 minutes.
5- Sprinkle paprika into the pot and cook for another 4 minutes. Mix the paprika in well using the heat to bring out all the flavour in it.
6- Dust on the gluten free flour and stir until it is well mixed in.
7- Deglaze with the beef stock. Pouring it in slowly whilst stirring so lumps don’t form in the sauce. Dump in the diced tomatoes and all their juice. Bring to a boil.
8- Reduce the heat once it boils to allow it to simmer for 1 hour. Cover with a lid during the simmering to keep in the liquid.
9- Add carrots and potatoes and continue to cook for another 30 minutes or until the potatoes can be pierced with a fork.
10- Put peas in for the last 15 minutes.
11- Salt and pepper as needed.
In place of plant butter the beef can be browned in a bit of neutral oil or fat. We drain our bacon fat, cool it and store it in the fridge and use it from time to time to cook our meat in for added flavour. This works well for those that do not have a safe plant butter.
We use beef in this stew but lamb, bison, venison, even pork could be used in place of beef, if it is safer or preferred. We have not tried chicken and if it were used we recommend thighs as they are less likely to go rubbery than chicken breasts will. Match the stock/bone broth to the meat, or use vegetable broth if say venison bone broth is difficult to find and making it yourself is not on the menu.
Sweet potatoes can be switched out for potatoes but it is best to use sweet paprika instead of smoked paprika when using sweet potatoes. They will not add as much starch to the mix so you may want to add a bit of starch when the potatoes go in or with the peas, as per the instructions in the next point about flour.
Gluten Free Flour
A starch like corn starch, tapioca, arrowroot starch can be used in place of the flour. The difference when using a starch in this recipe is to change when it is added to the recipe and how. Mix the starch with equal parts of water before adding to the stew. Start by adding 1 tablespoon only and add more if needed as it may get too thick if more is used right away. Add the starch when the peas go in and not before the beef stock goes in the pot. It can go in as early as with the potatoes.
- Spicy - Instead of sweet or spicy paprika use a good spicy paprika. There are many different kinds with different amounts of heat. We find that Hungarian paprika can pack a heat punch, though it will vary from brand to brand.
- Cabbage - for an added deliciousness add shredded cabbage to the stew. It should be added no sooner than the last 15-30 mins of simering and cooked until tender.
- Green Beans - Beans can be added to the stew with the peas or instead of peas.
The only really big piece of equipment needed is a good stock pot or large soup pot. We have a couple we use as we make so many soups during the season. The usual other bits like knives and cutting boards, measuring cups and spoons for liquid and dry and stirring utensils are always great to have at hand for this recipe.
Storage and Reheating Instructions
In a container that seals this recipe will keep for up to 3 days.
In a sealing freezer safe container this beef stew will keep for up to 3 months. We like to store some of the German Goulash in individual servings for school lunches.
In a pot add the gluten free beef stew and up to ½ a cup of water depending on how many servings are being heated. Over medium heat stir the stew and heat it until it starts to bubble. Reduce the heat to let simmer for 5 mins.
In a microwave safe bowl put one serving of stew and 1-2 tablespoons of water mixed together. Heat for 1 minute 30. Stir well and check to see if it has been heated through. If not, reheat for another 25 seconds, stir and check again. Repeat as needed.
Beef goulash is a great way to use an affordable cut of meat by cooking it for a longer time and letting it soften and fall apart delicious as the meat cooks in the broth. Add ½-¾ cup more of beef stock per extra hour and simmer it down.
This means this German goulash recipe can also be cooked in the slow cooker for 4-6 hours on high or 6-8 hours on low heat. The changes to make to the recipe when putting it in the slow cooker are to increase the amount of beef broth to 2 cups as extra liquid will be needed.
What To Serve With
We often serve German goulash with a nice top 8 free, gluten free roll, like these from Little Northern Bakehouse. Rice or quinoa as a side dish for an added starchy side, if needed. A tasty salad like kale and fig salad is an excellent dish to serve as it compliments this gluten free beef stew and adds extra veggies and fruit to the meal. A serving of brown beans is also a great side with this paprika stew.
Other Recipes You May Enjoy
- Large Pot
- Knife and Cutting Board
- Stirring Utensil
- Vegetable Peeler
- 2 lbs Stewing Beef or beef cut into 1 inch cubes and trimmed
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- ½ teaspoon Pepper
- 2 Tbsps Plant Butter dairy free
- 1 large Onion small diced
- 4 Cloves Garlic minced
- 2 Green Bell Peppers medium diced
- 1 tablespoon Sweet or Smoked Paprika
- 3 Tbsps Gluten Free Flour
- 16 oz can Diced Tomatoes with juice
- 1 C Beef Stock
- 1.5 C of Carrots medium diced (about 4)
- 1 lbs of Peeled Potatoes diced in ½ inch cubes
- 1 cup Frozen Peas
- 1- Season beef cubes with salt and pepper.
- 2- In a large pot over medium heat melt the plant butter.
- 3- Add meat to the melted plant butter and cook to brown the outside. Stirring often to get all sides of the beef is lightly seared. About 6 minutes.
- 4- Put onion, garlic, and peppers in the pot and cook until the onions and garlic are translucent. About 5 minutes.
- 5- Sprinkle paprika into the pot and cook for another 4 minutes. Mix the paprika in well using the heat to bring out all the flavour in it.
- 6- Dust on the gluten free flour and stir until it is well mixed in.
- 7- Deglaze with the beef stock. Pouring it in slowly whilst stirring so lumps don’t form in the sauce. Dump in the diced tomatoes and all their juice. Bring to a boil.
- 8- Reduce the heat once it boils to allow it to simmer for 1 hour. Cover with a lid during the simmering to keep in the liquid.
- 9- Add carrots and potatoes and continue to cook for another 30 minutes or until the potatoes can be pierced with a fork.
- 10- Put peas in for the last 15 minutes.
- 11- Salt and pepper as needed.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Contact the manufacturer of products, regarding cross contact and ingredients, to ensure they are safe for you
- Always check ingredients for allergens
- Do not use the same utensils on allergen free food, that previously touched allergens
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
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