Making a pot of wholesome Beef Barley Soup from scratch doesn’t have to be a long complicated process. This recipe is easy and in just a little over an hour you can have a delicious and hearty meal on the table.
Hearty and full of flavour, this Beef Barley Soup is delicious and nutritious. Barley has a slightly nutty flavour and a chewy consistency. It’s high in protein, fibre, vitamins and minerals (see here for more on its health benefits). To make this soup in just about an hour I used Pearl barley in this recipe. Though it’s not considered a whole grain and is less nutritious than hulled barley, it is still beneficial for your health. If you prefer to use hulled barley and take full advantage of its health benefits, you can do so but will need to increase its cooking time (see recipe for details).
Cooking the barley before adding it to the soup
Since barley absorbs a lot of liquid, I found that cooking it part way on its own reduces the amount of stock needed in the soup. I recommend you start cooking the barley by boiling it in a separate pot while you make the soup. After about twenty minutes, you can add the drained barley to the soup pot and let the soup simmer for another 15 to 20 minutes to finish cooking.
Top this Beef and Barley Soup with some chopped fresh parsley for a delicious and wholesome meal. Enjoy!
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 pound beef chuck roast or sirloin tip, you can use less beef if you prefer a less meaty soup
- 1 onion medium
- 1 celery stick
- 1 carrot large
- 2 garlic cloves
- 5 cups beef or chicken broth more broth may be needed as barley absorbs alot of liquid as its cooking
- 1 bay leaf
- salt and pepper to taste
- parsley few sprigs
- 1/2 cup pearl barley rinsed
- In a heavy-bottomed pot, heat the butter and olive oil over medium-high heat.
- Season the beef with salt and pepper and brown it on all sides. Remove the beef from the pot and set it on cutting board. Cut the meat into 1/2 inch cubes.
- In a second pot, bring 3 cups of water to a boil and add the barley. Lower heat and let simmer for 20 minutes, drain and set aside.
- Meanwhile, to the pot where you browned the beef, add the onion, celery and carrots. Saute for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for an additional minute. Lower heat to medium and cook, stirring every few minutes, until vegetables soften, about 7 minutes.
- To the soup pot, add the beef cubes, bay leaf and stock. Stir and scrape the bottom of the pot to release the caramelized bits. Taste and adjust salt and pepper to your liking. Bring the soup to a boil and cook for 20 minutes.
- Add the drained barley to the soup. Let soup simmer for approximately 15 to 20 minutes more or until beef and barley are tender. Add more broth if desired and adjust seasoning.
- Before serving, sprinkle soup with chopped fresh parsley.
- If you choose hulled barley for this recipe, I recommend you cook it on its own for at least 30 minutes prior to adding it to the soup pot. It will continue cooking with the remainder of the ingredients.