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Beef Barley Soup – rich, satisfying, comfort in a bowl. A hearty and delicious soup, loaded with beef and veggies and full of fiber.
I have to tell you, there is nothing like a good hearty soup. A soup that warms all your insides, and makes you feel good all over. And this isn’t just any soup. This soup is unbelievably delicious, warming and just so meaty and loaded with barley and veggies, that you’ll want to run and kiss your neighbour.
You see, I got a thing for soups. I love soups like this, soups that can be eaten as a meal, and soups that when you’re done eating them, you feel like your soul has been soothed. I could eat soups like this every day, even in the summer. But you probably want me to cut to the chase already and tell you how to make this soup already, right?
What Is the Best Beef for Beef Barley Soup
The best beef for beef barley soup is beef stew meat that you can find in all grocery stores. It comes already cut into cubes, ready for you to just cook with it. If you cannot find beef stew meet go for collagen-rich cuts.
Collagen is the tough connective tissue you find in well-used muscle groups. Examples of collagen-rich cuts are chuck or short rib. These cuts of beef are usually tough if you cook them for a short time, but get extra tender when you cook them for a long time.
How to Make Beef Barley Soup
Start by seasoning the beef a bit with salt and pepper then dredge it through some flour. I usually put my beef and flour in a large ziploc bag, close it, and shake the heck out of it until each piece of meat is covered in flour. Shake shake shake!
You’ll then want to brown your meat in a bit of oil, this will create those brown bits in the bottom of your pan which will really give the soup that rich flavor, trust me, those brown bits is where it’s at!
You then need to add some veggies, and let’s face it, what’s soup without onions, celery and carrots? It’s the mirepoix of soups, the trio of aromatics. No soup leaves home without it. Saute those veggies for a bit and scrape those brown bits, then I like to add some tomato paste to my beef barley soup and a bit of oregano.
Then you just have to add the meat back, add the beef broth and water and let this cook for a while to develop those flavors and cook the beef to the point that it melts in your mouth. And that’s just how you want it.
You’ll want to use low sodium beef broth here, just to reduce the sodium in the soup a bit, but you do want to use beef broth or vegetable broth though. After the meat and veggies had some time to cook together and get all happy, you can then add your barley.
How Long Does Barley Need to Cook
Barley needs about 30 minutes or so to cook, mine was done in 30 minutes, and then you’re pretty much done, just garnish with some fresh herbs like parsley or more fresh oregano and you can now enjoy this soup.
That’s about all there is to it, most of the time you just wait for stuff to cook. It really is simple to make soup, nothing much to it really. So there you have it, folks, my version of a yummy beef barley soup.
This was so delicious! I was craving beef with barley soup and so my husband made this in the crockpot. Fabulous! Thank you so much for a great recipe.
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Beef Barley Soup
- 1 lb beef stew meat
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 large onion chopped
- 1 large carrot peeled and chopped
- 2 stalks celery cleaned and chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tbsp oregano fresh, chopped (or 1 tsp dried oregano)
- 3 tbsp tomato paste
- 4 cups beef broth low sodium
- 3 cups water
- 3/4 cup barley
- 1 tbsp parsley fresh, chopped
- Season the beef stew meat generously with salt and pepper. Place the beef in a ziploc bag and add the flour over the beef. Close the ziploc bag and shake until each piece of beef is fully covered in flour. Add more flour if needed.
- Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the beef to the pot and cook just until the meat starts to brown. You will have to do this in 2 or 3 batches, since you do not want to crown the meat. Remove the meat from the pot after you’re done and set aside.
- In the same pot, you will have a lot of brown bits on the bottom, add the chopped onion, carrots and celery. Cook the vegetables until soft, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the garlic, oregano and tomato paste to the pot and stir. Add the meat back to the pot, then the beef broth and water and season with salt and pepper if needed. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat to a medium and cook for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. You want to cook this for so long so that the beef becomes tender, it will melt in your mouth.
- Add the barley to the pot and cook for another 30 minutes or until the barley is cooked through. Make sure you stir occasionally so the barley won’t stick. If you find that too much liquid has evaporated or the soup is too thick add more water as necessary until you get the desired consistency.
- Remove the soup from heat and garnish with fresh parsley before serving.
- I used hull-less barley.
- If you can’t find barley, use rice or couscous instead.
- If you make this ahead of time, add the barley the day you serve it.
- This can be made in a crockpot. Cook for either 4 hours on high, or 8 hours on low.