Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Beef & Barley Soup

The weather is rather pleasant in my neck of the woods today, but it has been downright chilly (highs in the teens, anyone?).  So cold I need a space heater during the day to warm my icy feet.  And far too frigid to take the pooch out for a walk, which would help earn a few extra calories (because we don't want to talk about the few pounds that joined me recently, no doubt courtesy of the Salted Caramel Bark and various other holiday treats).  So while I may be in the mood for warm and steamy winter casseroles, my caloric intake has been, shall we say, reduced.  By a lot.

Which is why this soup is so fabulous.  It's hot, tasty, and hearty, meeting all my requirements for January comfort food.  Paired with some Lightened Buttery Dinner Rolls (recipe forthcoming), it's the perfect winter lunch or dinner to help fill you up while still shedding those pesky holiday pounds.

Beef & Barley Soup
Adapted from Everyday with Rachael Ray
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1 lb. lean (93%) ground beef 
1/2 onion, chopped 
1 tsp. minced garlic 
2 cans (14.5 oz.) diced fire-roasted tomatoes 
8 cups water 
8 cubes beef bouillon 
1 cup carrots, chopped 
1 cup celery, chopped 
1 cup frozen green beans 
1/2 cup quick barley 
2 tsp. dried oregano 
3/4 tsp. salt 
1/2 tsp. black pepper 
2 tsp. Penzeys Forward! 

In a Dutch oven or large soup pot, cook the ground beef over medium-high heat, breaking it up with a spatula or wooden spoon as it starts to brown.  Stir in the onion and garlic, lower the heat to medium, and cook until the beef is well-browned, about 10 to 15 minutes.  Stir in the tomatoes and bring to a simmer over high heat.  Add the water, bouillon cubes, carrots, celery, green beans, barley, and spices and return to a simmer.  Lower the heat and cook until the barley is very tender, about 1 hour.  Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. 
Serves:  7-8 servings,  2 cups each 
Calories:  166 calories per serving




  1. Oh my! This sounds delicious!!! Perfect for cold winter nights. Does barley freeze well? I usually like to make huge batches of soup, and freeze the leftovers for later...

  2. Hi Kristin! This soup freezes GREAT. It makes 7-8 servings (we only eat 2) and I put the rest in individual containers to freeze and then microwave for quick weeknight dinners. Thanks for stopping by!