March 23, 2021

Beef Barley and Vegetable Soup

It's very possible that I've shared this before but I don't know that it's been this exact version that I made last week. 

You see, I'm in a cooking rut. R-u-t. It's bad. 

And we have a friend visiting and staying with us. 

So this means, in an effort to not serve chicken sausage and pizza two days a week (you know those are my go-to dinners), I'm trying to branch out. On this particular day, it was so rainy and so gross outside. It was cold and miserable. Yay for spring break, I suppose. I figured soup was my best bet. 

I made a loaf of beer bread to go along with this. 

Beef Barley and Vegetable Soup

1 pound of beef stew meat, thawed

3 oz of tomato paste (half a can)

1 can diced tomatoes (14.5 oz, don't drain)

1 T. Montreal Steak Seasoning

1 t. sea salt

1 t. pepper

8 cups beef broth or stock (bone broth would be great but I didn't have any so I made broth with the cubes and hot water)

Whatever vegetables you like: I didn't do any chopping for this, but you can use fresh, canned, or frozen. 

I used 1 1/2 cups each of frozen corn and frozen green beans. You can do diced/chopped carrots, celery, onions...I wouldn't use potatoes, in case you want to freeze the leftovers and potatoes don't freeze well.

 2 cups of cooked barley (to add later)


In a large stockpot, heat a few tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. 

On a cutting board, season the meat with the salt, pepper, and steak seasoning. Make sure it's thawed out; this isn't quite like putting it into a crockpot.

Once the oil is hot, add the meat and brown it. You may have to turn up the heat, but watch it closely. 

Once it's browned, add the tomato paste, canned diced tomatoes, and broth. Bring to a boil (you'll have to turn the heat down to low at this point).  Stir well to scrape up the browned bits at the bottom. 

^This is when you can transfer everything to a crockpot if you want to and cook on low all day. I usually just leave it on the stove and simmer for 1-2 hours. 

After an hour or so (give it at least an hour), add the vegetables. If you have fresh vegetables you'll need to continue cooking longer. If frozen or canned, it'll be ready sooner.

Heat it through and basically it's ready to go, but you can cook it all day if you'd like. I started it around noon and we ate at 5pm. 


If you think you may want to freeze the leftovers, don't add the barley all in at once. You can cook it in the soup, but I make it in a separate pot, like oatmeal and just add it to each bowl. Cooked barley isn't going to freeze well. 

It's one-to-one, like oatmeal. The directions are on the package and it's super easy. Promise. 


  1. I hate being in a cooking rut... which is where I've been the whole past year :(

  2. I feel like this year has been one big cooking struggle. I have tried more new recipes than ever before...but I am also at a loss as to what to cook every day week when I sit down to plan my grocery order. My mom used to add barley to stuffed pepper soup growing up and I always loved it. I don't know why I never think to add it now.


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