- Meat: Both versions use beef, but the casserole uses ground beef instead of stew meat.
- Vegetables: The soup or stew usually has potatoes, onions and tomatoes, although some versions use a larger variety of vegetables. The casserole uses onion, canned pork and beans and, in place of tomatoes, a can of tomato soup. Make sure you use pork and beans and not baked beans which are flavored with additional spices.
- Pasta: Some versions call for traditional goulash to be cooked with pasta while other versions serve the dish over cooked pasta. The casserole uses macaroni which is combined with the other ingredients before baking.
- Spices: The soup or stew is seasoned with paprika -- a bright orange-red spice made from ground up sweet peppers -- which can range from mild to hot. The casserole gets some heat from a couple of tablespoons of chili powder.
The casserole is baked in the oven for 30 minutes. I add a salad and garlic bread for an easy meal on a busy day. Not only is this quick to prepare during the holiday hustle, it's also a warming meal on a cold winter night.