Barley (how to cook)

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Barley is a great, low fat grain, packed with nutrients. Cooking barley separate ensures the barley is cooked to perfection. It can also be frozen and used in recipes later.

Yield: about 2 cups cooked



  1. Add to a medium pot the barley, water and mushroom powder. Bring to boil over high heat then lower to simmer. Cover and cook until barley is tender. About 25 to 30 minutes for pearl barley, 50 to 55 minutes for pot barley.
  2. Once barley is cooked, it can be eaten as is or mixed with other grains. Barley is also nice to add to soups like this Beef Flavored Vegetable Barley Soup or to Split Pea Soup with Barley. Cooked barley also freezes well.


The type of cookware as well as the stove top heat will affect how food cooks. When cooking barley with the method above, the water should be absorbed. If you notice the pot is going to dry out, then add more water. It’s better to use more water than needed and drain it. However, when barley is being cooked for soup, add the cooking water to the soup.

  • Use in a variety of soups or mix in with other cooked grains.
  • When I batch cook soup, I freeze the soup in portion size containers. I do the same with cooked barley. Adding cooked barley to most precooked soups can be a nice way to add variation, while adding texture and making it more hearty.