Hungarian Beef Paprikash

This Hungarian beef stew is the perfect Spring meal. With temperatures slightly cool outdoors, we still enjoy the comfort of a warm and hearty stew. Yet, unlike traditional beef stew Hungarian Paprikash is not as heavy. Beef Paprikash is a savoury stew that mostly contains chunks of lightly seasoned beef and a scant accompaniment of lighter carb vegetables. Paprika is the star seasoning of this dish and it’s prepared with roasted, dried and powdered sweet red peppers. There are many variations of paprika (ie. smoked, Spanish, Hungarian etc ..). The seared bell pepper garnish creates a beautiful Spring theme with the pepper rounds appearing flower-like. You can adjust the amount of garlic and spicier chili pepper to your taste preference. You will enjoy creating this easy stew as well as sharing it with others around the table.


First season well and marinate 1 kg of stew beef.  Use 2 Tbsp each:

  • Soy sauce
  • Hungarian paprika
  • All-purpose flour
  • Add either 2 cloves fresh minced garlic or 2 tsp dehydrated garlic or garlic powder.
  • Add 1/2 tsp sugar and 1/3 tsp thyme.

Peel 2 carrots and cut them up in 1 ½” diagonal triangles (cut diagonal one way then turn the carrot and cut the opposite way in shape of a triangle).

Cut 2 green chili peppers each in half. (optional)

Wash and dice 3 green onions (to be added at the end).

Prepare the garnish:

Use 2 sweet bell peppers – any two colours of your choice. With the pepper lying on its side and starting at the bottom end of the pepper, slice it in 1/4” rounds (or rings). Don’t worry about the white flesh innards of the pepper. That can be poked out or pulled off once the rounds are cut.

Heat a cast iron or ceramic skillet and drizzle some EVOO (extra virgin olive oil) to coat the bottom.

Lay the pepper rounds / rings flat on the bottom of the pan and do not season.

Use medium-high heat but keep an eye on them. Brown each side by letting them sear on each side.

Remove the peppers to a plate and set aside when done.

Making the Paprikash:

Heat a soup pot or Dutch oven. Drizzle EVOO on the bottom. When hot, brown each side of the beef stew chunks. There should be a slight caramelized crust coating each side.

Add the following ingredients to the pot:

  • 1 and ½ cups of your favourite tomato sauce
  • Carrot chunks
  • Green chilies
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 more TBSP Hungarian paprika
  • More garlic (to taste)
  • ½ to 1 tsp salt

Cover the pot and simmer for at least 1 hour.

The finishing touches:

Before turning off the stove, add 3 Tbsp sour cream and stir into the paprikash.

Add the diced green onion, but don’t stir them in, and cover the pot for about 3 to 5 more minutes.

Transfer the beef paprikash to a serving dish and garnish with the flower-shaped fried bell pepper rings. beef paprikash2

Enjoy this beautiful meal with hunks of bread such as ciabatta, baguette, pumpernickel or sour dough.