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Beef Barley Stew

I like barley, so I knew I had to try this beef and barley stew recipe when I ran across it in a newspaper some years ago. It's nice to have a tasty, filling dish that's lower in fat. —June Formanek, Belle Plaine, Iowa
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. Cook: 1-1/2 hours
  • Makes
    8 servings


  • 1-1/2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) beef broth
  • 1 cup medium pearl barley
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 4 medium carrots, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


  • In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, brown meat in oil in batches. Remove and set aside. In the same pan, saute onion until crisp-tender. Add the broth, barley, seasonings and beef; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1 hour.
  • Add carrots; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 30-40 minutes or until meat and carrots are tender. Add parsley just before serving.
Nutrition Facts
1 cup: 266 calories, 8g fat (0 saturated fat), 40mg cholesterol, 618mg sodium, 24g carbohydrate (0 sugars, 0 fiber), 23g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 3 lean meat, 1 starch, 1 vegetable.

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  • funmom27616
    Mar 13, 2017

    I love this stew, it was one of the first recipes I tried when I got married. It fills your house with a mouthwatering aroma! I add in potatoes to make it a little heartier and haven't noticed a flavor change, it goes well with the rosemary. I have also adapted this to be a slow cooker meal, the only things I change is I only brown the outsides of the meat (not cooked all the way through) and then just set it on low for 4-6 hours but be careful with the barley, if you add too much it will soak up all the liquid, best to omit if you go the slow cooker route. Comes out just as tasty!

  • wrenjen523
    Oct 3, 2013

    This turns out to be a complete fail for me, first I didn't watch and added more oil than I wanted, then the barley absorbed more liquid than I expected, and then I added the spice and it came out fast, and was a little heavy handed, so I ended up having to pitch the whole thing, being inedible and unable to fix the problem. At least its things I did wrong rather than the recipe, which I may attempt again, based on the 4 and 5 star reviews. Don't let my inability to make the recipe deter you if you're intrested in making it.

  • mifediba
    Nov 30, 2012

    No comment left

  • farrahlu22
    Jul 5, 2011

    Pretty good, and very easy to make, will be making it again

  • LizWhatton
    Mar 15, 2011

    Got this recipe from my married daughter. It's excellent and filling; very tasty. I did add a little more beef broth to make it a soup; also added celery. Gave some to 2 neighbors, who are asking for the recipe.

  • LeLimey
    Nov 30, 2010

    Love this stew - it's exactly how I've always made stew except that I will add some worcestershire sauce and also chunks of parsnips to it as well. A perfect "rib-sticker" as my grandma used to call it - warming winter food that sticks to your ribs and keeps you warm!

  • doddstir
    Oct 22, 2010

    This recipe was simple to make and it was very tasty. I added a couple shakes of worcestershire and lemon juice to the first hour of cooking; I like how it flavors the meat. I will definately make it again.

  • khuntley
    Oct 14, 2010

    Nice on a cold day. This stew is heavier than I thought it would be, probably due to the barley. It turned out looking a bit more like gruel or something, but did taste rather good. I don't know if I would say that there are 8 servings, but I didn't need that many anyway.

  • PastorsWife7
    Feb 5, 2010

    Love it! The whole family does too. Easy to make & very cheap. This will be a regular recipe for us especially in the winter here in PA.

  • leahmow
    Dec 6, 2009

    No comment left