Granddad’s Beef and Barley Soup

My granddad was an old-school Scottish gent who enjoyed a bowl of homemade soup every day, and this recipe was his standard fare.

Best Beef and Barley Soup Recipe | Foodal.com

Hearty and full of flavor, this soup goes well with a glass of lager, a slab of sharp cheese such as aged Cheshire, extra-aged Cheddar or Stilton, and a slice of artisan bread.

The Best Beef and Barley Soup Recipe

You’ll need a little extra time with this recipe if you want to make your own stock, so plan accordingly.

This soup’s really nice served in bread bowls, too. If you really enjoyed this soup, then you’ll love our conveniently tasty one-pot beef stew recipe.

Best Beef and Barley Soup Recipe | Foodal.com
The Best Beef and Barley Soup
Votes: 2
Rating: 4
You:
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
2 hours
Servings Prep Time
8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
2 hours
Best Beef and Barley Soup Recipe | Foodal.com
The Best Beef and Barley Soup
Votes: 2
Rating: 4
You:
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
2 hours
Servings Prep Time
8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
2 hours
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless beef chuck cut into bite-size cubes
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 2 cups low sodium beef stock homemade if possible
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 2 large carrots chopped
  • 2 cups celery chopped
  • 2 cups mushrooms chopped (crimini or button)
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 4 sprigs parsley minced (reserve a small amount to garnish)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary minced or, ½ tsp dried and ground
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 1 ounce can tomato paste 6size
  • 1 1/2 cup tomatoes chopped
  • 1 cup pot barley can substitute hulled or pearl barley
Servings: people
Units:
Instructions
  1. Heat a large Dutch oven to medium high and add the oil and beef, sautéing briefly just until browned on all sides.
  2. Add the onion, carrots, celery, mushrooms and garlic, sautéing for another two minutes, just until the onions are beginning to turn translucent.
  3. Add the water, wine, stock, parsley, rosemary, salt and pepper. Reduce heat, cover and simmer on medium low for 45 minutes.
  4. Add the tomato paste, tomatoes and barley, stirring well. Bring to a boil again, then reduce heat and simmer for another hour, or until the barley is cooked through and the beef is tender. Ladle into bowls and garnish with a sprinkle of parsley.
Recipe Notes

The Best Beef and Barley (and Vegetable) Soup Recipe | Foodal.com

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About Lorna Kring

Recently retired as a costume specialist in the TV and film industry, Lorna now enjoys blogging on contemporary lifestyle themes. A bit daft about the garden, she’s particularly obsessed with organic tomatoes and herbs, and delights in breaking bread with family and friends.

26 thoughts on “Granddad’s Beef and Barley Soup”

  1. This is something I have had from a package or in a restaurant but have never had at home cooked from scratch. I’ve always wanted to make some, because I quite enjoy it, but I had no idea what to do with the barley. I was always afraid it would get all sticky if I just threw it in with the other stuff. Who knew it was so simple?

    Well, now I have zero excuses left for not cooking up a batch. I just made soup the other day, but I’ll be giving this one a shot in the next couple of weeks. Thanks, Lorna.

    • My pleasure Zyni – it is quite simple and straightforward to make, and tastes much better when homemade!

  2. The first soup I have ever tasted with barely in it was made by my dad and it was amazing. I enjoy a good hearty beef soup and the barely adds a wonderful body to it. This recipe looks simple and delicious and I cannot wait to make it for my family. Being a busy mother of two, I do not think I will be making the stock my self, at least not yet. This recipe sounds particularly good with a nice cheese loaf.

    • The barley does add wonderful body and texture, and the flavor is a lovely compliment for the tomatoes, herbs and beef… and easy to make! Let us know what you and your family think dawn.

  3. I’m a huge soup fanatic and I think I’d eat/drink just about any type as long as isn’t mushroom. Beef and Barley is a indulging pleasure to have every time. It tastes great and when you add the right spices and ingredients, it just leaves you licking the spoon. You got a nice recipe right here for sure.

  4. I’ve never heard of pot barley, so I’ll have to look it up, to see how it differs from pearl barley. I love barley soup, but it’s difficult to find here in the States, or at least where I am. Your recipe sounds rich and hearty, so I will definitely have to try making it. Sometimes I toss pearl barley in my other soups when I’m making them, but I like the idea that it is featured in this recipe.

    • The difference between pot and pearl barley is in the hulling process Diane. Both have had the inedible hull removed in a polishing machine, but the pearl barely has been further polished which removes the bran as well. Like you, I toss a handful into other soups as well.., chicken noodle, bean soups etc. for its delicious taste and texture. Hope you enjoy the recipe!

  5. This is right up my alley for sure. I love beef & barley soup! I love to add boatloads of mushrooms to my beef/barley. Just reading that recipe made me want to go snag some barley & get started. It’s so close to a stew we might have to rename it ‘stewoup’

    • Oh, yeah, mushrooms in B & B are a very nice addition… and it does get pretty chunky at times. Garden fresh tomatoes get extra space in mine.

  6. This looks like a nice soup. Rosemary always adds a great taste to anything. Soup really is a healthy dish with the vegetables and broth. I kind of feel like the hot liquid aids in digestion. Making your own stock is better because you know exactly what is in it. No hidden surprises or unwanted chemicals.

  7. I am absolutely obsessed with soup! It’s one of my favorite things to make and eat. You can experiment so much with creating the perfect soup. Thank you for this post! It has definitely given me some ideas.

  8. Having recently visiting Scotland, this is perfect. Although there isn’t a huge difference between American and Scottish soups, the latter’s broths are simply amazing. I grew up hating celery, but now it’s a must for every soup that features either beef or tomatoes.

    • The broth’s are where those subtle flavors lie RumbarBrook, and celery certainly adds a lovely depth of flavor. Thanks for your comments!

  9. I want to try this, it looks good. I would rather use a recipe that doesn’t include the wine however. That might be a deal breaker for me. It looks like simply omitting it wouldn’t be the best option either.

    • Omitting the wine’s no biggie nytegeek… just replace it with another cup of broth, or even apple juice. I’ve used both with very tasty results.

  10. Totally the best kind of soup, chunky and warming! I would have this for an autumn or winter supper, with some crusty bread, to provide a good, hearty meal.

  11. Just like you, I associate beef barley soup strongly with my grandparents. You said your grandparents were from Scottland, whereas mine were German. It just must be a popular dish with European immigrants. I’m glad you posted this because my family members tend to not write any recipes down and just eye ball the ingredients. I would love to have that skill, but I am simply not that experienced in the kitchen yet. Hopefully this recipe will taste like home!

  12. My mom cooks the best soup in my family, she surely will try this one as soon as I show it to her or maybe she will just try to enhance it a little bit, however ,I personally think it still would taste as good as this one. Thank you for sharing.

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