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Bacon-Beef Barley Soup Recipe

Bacon-Beef Barley Soup Recipe

Here’s a robust dish that’s perfect for hungry teenage boys! Served over creamy mashed potatoes, this quick, comforting soup will really hit the spot. —Cathy Peterson, Menominee, Michigan
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 40 min. Cook: 7 hours YIELD:7 servings


  • 4 bacon strips, chopped
  • 1-1/2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 medium red potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1-1/2 cups fresh baby carrots, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1/4 cup medium pearl barley
  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) beef broth
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes with basil, oregano and garlic, undrained
  • 1 jar (12 ounces) home-style beef gravy
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • Mashed potatoes, optional


  • 1. In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, remove to paper towels to drain. In the drippings, cook beef and onion until meat is browned; drain.
  • 2. In a 5-qt. slow cooker, layer the potatoes, carrots, corn and barley. Top with beef mixture and bacon. Combine the broth, tomatoes, gravy and pepper; pour over top (do not stir).
  • 3. Cover and cook on low for 7-9 hours or until meat and vegetables are tender. Stir before serving. Serve over mashed potatoes if desired. Yield: 7 servings.

Nutritional Facts

1-1/3 cups (calculated without mashed potatoes) equals 319 calories, 10 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 68 mg cholesterol, 1,218 mg sodium, 32 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 26 g protein.

Reviews for Bacon-Beef Barley Soup

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Reviewed Mar. 10, 2015

"very good"

Reviewed Nov. 17, 2012

"Yummy! I changed a lot though - didn't have any barley and not really into canned gravy. I made it on the stovetop, added green beans, and a healthy dose of herbs: sage, thyme, rosemary and a dash of cayenne and white pepper. Served with hot skillet corn bread. So good!"

Reviewed Oct. 17, 2012

"Great recipe! My husband loves it! The bacon adds such great flavor to the meat. Thanks for a recipe I'll make often."

Reviewed Feb. 22, 2012

"didnt think it was anything special"

Reviewed Dec. 4, 2011

"Good but I like my Beef Barley soup better. This just needs more seasoning."

Reviewed Nov. 6, 2011

"Very satisfying and delicious."

Reviewed Apr. 19, 2011

"Not only my family loved this, but people at work asked for the recipe, just by the mere description of ingrediants. So far, it's been a 5 star hit with everyone.

I did alter a little, instead of going through the trouble of frying bacon and the extra grease, I used the Oscar Mayer bacon pieces you can buy in the ziplock bags instead (1/2 bag=4 chopped bacon strips). Also, I did not eat this over mashed potatoes. We ate it like a soup with buns, biscuits, and buttered bread. One co-worker put in extra barley and said it was more like a stew. This is a definate keeper and perfect for cold climate states. Has a great aroma and is the perfect comfort food after a long day outside in the cold."

Reviewed Apr. 18, 2011

"This dish really suits our family. I use ground beef instead and double the amount of barley. This is something we like so much we eat it once a week."

Reviewed Mar. 15, 2011

"This is the best I've ever had. Easy too. I did have to make a few alterations due to my pantry not being fully stocked, but nothing took away from the autors version. I have a 7 qrt. slow cooker, so I doubled the recipe. Keep this in mind when doing substitues. These are my substitutions:

1 bag Hormel Bacon Pieces vrs. frying bacon strips : 1 can corn vrs frozen corn : 2 cans Diced tomatoes without spices, but added 1 TBSP each of minced garlic, oregano & basil. Served it like soup, not over mashed potatoes. A friend added extra barley, and it was more like a stew. Excellent recipe!!! Thanks for putting it out there, Cathy Peterson!"

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