You might think of barley as an addition to hearty, wintery soups, such as mushroom-barley or beef-barley soup, but it also works well in lighter soups like this one with chicken, asparagus and peas. Source: EatingWell Magazine, March/April 2009

Marie Simmons
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Ingredients

Directions

  • Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat; add onion and celery and cook, stirring, until beginning to soften, 2 to 4 minutes. Grate or finely chop 1 clove garlic; add to the pan and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add broth, chicken and barley. Bring to a gentle simmer. Cover and cook over low heat until the chicken is cooked through, about 20 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate with a slotted spoon. Return the broth to a simmer and cook until the barley is tender, 20 to 30 minutes.

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  • Meanwhile, shred the chicken or cut into bite-size pieces; discard the bone.

  • When the barley is done, add the chicken, tomatoes and juice, asparagus, peas, salt and a grinding of pepper; return to a simmer. Cover and cook over low heat until the asparagus is tender, about 5 minutes more.

  • Coarsely chop the remaining garlic clove. Gather basil, orange zest and the garlic and finely chop together. Ladle the soup into bowls and sprinkle each serving with a generous pinch of the basil mixture.

Tips

Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 3, cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Reheat the soup, thin with broth if desired and finish with Step 4 just before serving.

Nutrition Facts

254 calories; 5.3 g total fat; 1 g saturated fat; 32 mg cholesterol; 1235 mg sodium. 712 mg potassium; 29.8 g carbohydrates; 7 g fiber; 8 g sugar; 22.4 g protein; 1598 IU vitamin a iu; 31 mg vitamin c; 100 mcg folate; 68 mg calcium; 3 mg iron; 55 mg magnesium;

Reviews (17)

Read More Reviews
17 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 1
  • 4 star values: 15
  • 3 star values: 1
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 4 stars
07/07/2019
I really enjoyed this recipe but I might add carrot next time. I will definitely make this again Read More
Rating: 4 stars
04/29/2019
Found this while looking for recipes with cholesterol lowering foods like barley. I added carrots when sautéing the onion and celery. This was delicious although next time I might make it without the peas. It was quite easy but very satisfying. Read More
Rating: 3 stars
02/25/2013
Good weeknight soup The first thing I will say is that the orange zest make this dish so I do not recommend omitting it. Overall this is a very healthy and easy to make dish. I used boneless chicken breast (taking care not to overcook) and more or less just threw all the ingredients together almost all at the same time (again trying not to overcook the asparagus). That helped me cut down the time a little and the dish didn't suffer. I also added some italian seasoning for just a little more flavour and I added the zest and basil right to the pot. I also used 4 cups broth not 6 since I was only cooking for two anyway. Turned out very well. Had leftovers enough for myself for lunch for two days. Two minutes in the microwave was enough to warm it up. I will make this again for sure but it's only a good recipe not a great one. Pros: Full of veggies one-pot dish anyone can make fresh taste Cons: Slightly bland recipe could be simplified Read More
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Rating: 4 stars
03/15/2012
This soup was wonderful! I also added some chopped carrots. I used lemon peel & cilantro for the orange & basil since it is what I had. I added the peel mixture to the pot once it was done rather than the indiviual bowls. Very flavorful! Port Clinton OH Read More
Rating: 4 stars
10/31/2011
Loved this soup it went together quickly and was a perfect light meal for early summer. Read More
Rating: 4 stars
10/31/2011
This is one of my favorite soups.....we make it often and the kids love it too. Nutritious easy and healthy! Read More
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Rating: 4 stars
10/30/2011
My husband and I loved this! I also added a few green onions green and yellow bell pepper carrots mushrooms and 1 parsnip. The hint of orange was such a nice compliment to the soup. Will definitely be making this again!! Carrie Northern MI Read More
Rating: 4 stars
10/30/2011
This soup is super yummy! I made a batch of it for lunches. I added zucchini to boost the veggie content and will probably add mushrooms as well next time. I didn't use the orange zest and used boneless breasts - turned out great! Heather Parkton MD Read More
Rating: 4 stars
10/30/2011
Fabulous soup!!!! I added some fresh mushrooms as well as some fresh chopped spinach. I will definitely make this again. Note that the orange peel is the secret ingredient so don't leave it out!!! Jenne St. Louis MO Read More
Rating: 4 stars
10/30/2011
I made this for a dinner with family and it was delicious-and easy to make ahead -simply finish to the add vegetables and chill then finish up by putting in the fresh vegetables and heat until done-garnish and serve. loretta London on Read More
Rating: 4 stars
10/30/2011
I made this for dinner tonight and it was a hit even my 3 year old liked it! I used boneless chicken breasts and dried basil just because it's what I had on hand. I agree with the previous poster about it probably not being great leftovers but it is pretty easy to whip up. Cooking time was a little long but mostly unsupervised. Jaime Read More
Rating: 4 stars
10/30/2011
I made this according to the recipe. I liked the flavor and the extra fiber from the barley but would disagree about keeping in the refrigerator for several days. It is very easy to overcook nice spring vegetables during the reheating. For the same reason it didn't freeze well. Gretchen Cleveland OH Read More
Rating: 4 stars
10/30/2011
this was easy super healthy and delicious heidimotsch Denver CO Read More
Rating: 4 stars
10/30/2011
While it's not Spring yet I needed a soup for my husbands work potluck. This is easy and very flavorful. Everyone loved it! I kept mostly to the recipe diced all veggies and meat small so when you take a bite you get a little of everything. Added extra cooked turkey leftover in the freezer from Thanksgiving. Used Butternut squash in place of Asparagus left from the garden added leeks with onions and garlic as it's what I had on hand. Left out the basil and orange zest. Didn't miss any flavor. key is cooking the chicken with the bone for lots of flavor. I at least tripled the recipe for extra lunch and some for the freezer. Sandy Portland OR Read More
Rating: 4 stars
10/30/2011
It was the only thing I wanted to eat after recovering from cancer surgery. Loved it. Read More
Rating: 4 stars
10/30/2011
The basil/garlic/orange mixture turned this ok soup into a delicious bowl of healthy and yummy goodness. I also browned some fresh chicken tenders... and cleaned out the veggie drawer. Happy we have some left for tomorrow. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/29/2011
Wonderfully fresh taste Aspargus gives this a nice spring taste. I doubled the recipe. My wife & I loved it. Read More