Make-Ahead Beef Barley Soup Recipe
Make-Ahead Beef Barley Soup Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Make-Ahead Beef Barley Soup Recipe

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"This satisfying soup is wonderful for a busy day when you want something hot in a hurry," assures Lisa Ortis of Drain, Oregon. "It makes a hearty meal with warm bread and a green salad."
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Cook: 40 min.
MAKES:12 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Cook: 40 min.
MAKES: 12 servings


  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) beef broth
  • 1 cup quick-cooking barley
  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) diced tomatoes with garlic and onion, undrained
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil

Nutritional Facts

1 cup: 198 calories, 8g fat (3g saturated fat), 37mg cholesterol, 548mg sodium, 16g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 4g fiber), 16g protein


  1. In a Dutch oven, cook the beef, onions and celery over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in the water and broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Add barley; cover and simmer for 10-20 minutes or until barley is tender.
  2. Stir in the remaining ingredients; heat through. Transfer to three 1-qt. freezer containers; cool. Cover and freeze for up to 3 months.
  3. To use frozen soup: Thaw in the refrigerator. Place in a saucepan and heat through. Yield: 3 batches (4 servings each).
Originally published as Beef Barley Soup in Quick Cooking March/April 2002, p62

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Reviewed Jun. 1, 2015

"Great Soup !!!!"

Reviewed Jan. 28, 2015

"Very good! Nice flavor, though I think it would be improved with additional vegetables and seasoning. I added corn to mine. I think this soup will be improved by freezing and reheating. This goes together easily and tastes good on cool evenings."

Reviewed Jan. 19, 2012

"Quick and easy soup and also inexpensive.

Next time will use a little less chop meat. Would also work with other veggies as well as I added some leftover corn and was very good.
Thanks for a delicious recipe!"

Reviewed Sep. 17, 2011

"It isn't often that my husband goes nuts over soup, but with this one he asked for seconds AND asked if we could have it again the next night. I added a little pepper and topped it with french fried onions. Definitely a delicious, hearty soup and great for cooler weather! I am glad it is a big recipe because that gave me plenty left to freeze for later."

Reviewed Sep. 14, 2011

"I love this soup its so easy to make and is loaded with so much flavor. All the farmers love it when I bring it to them on chilly days."

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