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Southwestern Chicken Barley Soup

Kell Ferell of Alamo, North Dakota drives 80 miles round-trip every day for her job, so she needs quick, healthy dishes to fix for her family. "This is a huge favorite," she pens. "If I don't have leftover chicken, I simply boil or poach some chicken breasts. I use the cooking liquid to replace part of the water in the recipe to add even more flavor."
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. Cook: 1 hour
  • Makes
    12 servings (3 quarts)


  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 can (15-1/4 ounces) whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup medium pearl barley
  • 1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chilies, drained
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3 cups cubed cooked chicken


  • In a Dutch oven, saute onion and garlic in oil until tender. Add the water, corn, beans, tomato sauce, tomatoes, broth, barley, chilies, chili powder and cumin. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer after 45 minutes.
  • Stir in chicken; cook, uncovered, 15 minutes longer or until chicken is heated through and barley is tender.
Nutrition Facts
1 cup: 187 calories, 4g fat (1g saturated fat), 31mg cholesterol, 582mg sodium, 21g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 5g fiber), 15g protein.

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Average Rating:
  • TheDix
    Jun 4, 2013

    Very flavorful. I cut back a bit on the seasonings and chilis as my stomach has become sensitive to Mexican flavors. I left out the beans, cut back on the corn (used frozen). All in all, an excellent recipe and worth making again!

  • contrarywife
    Oct 31, 2012

    This is one of our favorite soups, been making it for years. I've served it to guests with rave reviews and recipe requests. So simple too. As a matter of fact I'm making it tonight for hubby to take on a hunting trip.I don't rinse and drain the beans; I figure there's just a little more fiber in there for us.

  • 3akitalovers
    Jan 22, 2012

    No comment left

  • mknoll
    Oct 31, 2011

    No comment left

  • daisey5
    Mar 13, 2011

    I loved it. I used frozen corn and a rotesire chicken.

  • mother of 3
    Mar 6, 2011

    It was zippy! Everyone in our fellowship liked this; I made a full pot and brought home one serving. However, it took me 3 hours to make it. I used frozen corn, cooked and tomatoes w/green chilies in addition to the tom. sauce and diced tomatoes. Also used chicken broth instead of the water.

  • marciedarcie
    Aug 11, 2009

    My husband and I loved it. Healthy and yummy!

  • martinna
    Sep 21, 2008

    No comment left

  • welshone
    Jul 25, 2008

    I modified this to do it in the crockpot, and it was divine! Excellent flavors and textures, and very healthy! This won raves from everyone in our houseehold!