Beef Barley Soup

Beef Barley Soup

Beef Barley Soup is a delicious and nutritious soup that is easy to prepare and flavorful. It is made of simple ingredients, barley, ground beef, vegetables, beef broth, and salted herbs. The salted herbs are of Quebec origin, specifically from the Bas-du-Fleuve; they are now easily found in all grocery stores. They are a mixture of fresh herbs and finely chopped and macerated vegetables, as was the custom in the past. Salted herbs are a good seasoning for all soups, stews, mashed potatoes, vinaigrettes, and any dish where you want to add the pleasant taste of salt and fresh herbs. This recipe uses hulled barley, but you could just as easily have used pearl barley. If you find the soup too thick, add a little more beef broth.

P.S.: The recipe originally used a 3/4 cup of barley; I changed the amount to 1/2 cup, which is plenty, as barley gels considerably when cooked.

The difference between hulled and pearled barley

Hulled barley: Whole barley with only the inedible outer husk removed.

Pearled barley: Has undergone 6 polishings, loss of the germ, and a good part of the vitamins, minerals, fibers, lipids, and proteins.


  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1/2 pound lean ground beef
  • 6 cups of beef broth
  • 1/2 cup diced carrots
  • 1/2 cup diced rutabaga (turnip)
  • 1/2 cup hulled barley
  • 1 tsp. salted herbs
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat.
  2. Add onion and cook, occasionally stirring, for 5 minutes or until softened.
  3. Add ground beef and cook for 5 minutes or until it has lost its pink tint. 
  4. Add beef broth and bring to a boil. (source:
  5. Add remaining ingredients. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for about 1 hour or until tender barley and vegetables.


1 Comment

  1. Bj still

    Thank you

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