Beef & Barley Soup cooked in a Crock Pot is a hearty, comforting dish perfect for chilly days. This slow-cooked soup combines tender pieces of beef stew meat wit
h the nuttiness of barley and a medley of vegetables, all simmered to perfection in a rich beef broth. The addition of herbs like thyme and rosemary adds depth to the flavor, making this soup a nourishing and satisfying meal. This recipe is ideal for those who appreciate the convenience of a Crock Pot, allowing the flavors to meld together over several hours, creating a delicious and warming dish.
1 lb beef stew meat, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 cup barley, rinsed
1 onion, chopped
2 carrots, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
6 cups beef broth
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried rosemary
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 bay leaves
Prepare Ingredients: Begin by rinsing the barley under cold water. Chop the onion, dice the carrots and celery, and mince the garlic cloves.
Brown the Beef: (Optional) For added flavor, brown the beef stew meat in a skillet over medium-high heat until all sides are seared. This step adds depth to the soup’s flavor but can be skipped for simplicity.
Add to Crock Pot: Place the browned beef (or raw if you skipped browning), rinsed barley, chopped onion, diced carrots, diced celery, and minced garlic into the Crock Pot.
Add Liquids and Seasonings: Pour in the beef broth and add the can of diced tomatoes (with juice). Stir in the dried thyme, dried rosemary, salt, pepper, and add the bay leaves.
Cook: Set your Crock Pot to cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours. The longer cooking time on low helps the flavors to develop more fully.
Final Check: Before serving, remove the bay leaves and check the seasoning. Adjust with more salt and pepper if necessary.
The soup is ready when the barley is tender, and the beef is cooked through and tender.
Serve this hearty soup with a side of crusty bread or rolls.
Garnish with fresh parsley or a sprinkle of grated Parmesan cheese for added flavor.
If the soup is thicker than you prefer, add more beef broth to reach your desired consistency.
For a richer flavor, consider using a combination of beef broth and a splash of red wine.
You can also add other vegetables like mushrooms or potatoes for more variety.
Prep Time: 15-20 minutes (if browning the meat) Cooking Time: 6-8 hours on low or 3-4 hours on high Total Time: 6 hours 20 minutes to 8 hours 20 minutes
Calories: Approximately 250-300 per serving (varies based on the cut of beef and portion size)
Protein: Around 20-25g per serving (mainly from the beef)
Sodium: Roughly 600-800mg per serving (depends on the beef broth and added salt)
Conclusion: Beef & Barley Soup made in a Crock Pot is an ideal recipe for anyone seeking a warm, fulfilling meal with minimal active cooking time. This soup’s rich flavors and comforting texture make it a wonderful choice for a family dinner, especially during colder months. Its ease of preparation and versatility in terms of ingredients ensure that this dish can be a regular in your meal rotation, satisfying different palates with its wholesome goodness.