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Barley Lentil Soup

Cooking for a Crowd

Cooking for a Crowd

Use these recipe sheets to prepare for larger groups:

Photo of Barley Lentil Soup
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 1 and 1/2 hours
Makes: 10 cups
Nutrition Facts: View label


1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
1 clove garlic, minced or 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1 cup sliced onion
1 cup sliced carrot
1 cup sliced celery
1 can (15 ounces) stewed or diced tomatoes, with juice
3 cups low-sodium broth, any type (see Notes)
3 cups water
1 cup dry lentils
⅔ cup pearl barley (see Notes)
½ teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon basil
salt and pepper to taste


  1. Wash hands with soap and water.
  2. In a large sauce pan or soup pot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and stir for about 1 minute. Add garlic and stir for another minute.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a light simmer. Place a lid on the pan.
  4. Cook until the barley and lentils are tender, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Serve hot.
  5. Refrigerate leftovers within 2 hours.


  • No broth? Use 1 teaspoon or 1 cube bouillon dissolved in 1 cup water for each cup of broth.
  • Use any fresh, frozen, or canned vegetables you have on hand.
  • No basil, oregano or thyme? Try chopped cilantro.
  • Pearl barley is high in fiber but is not a whole grain. If using whole grain barley (also called hulled barley), it may take longer for the barley to soften.


I made this barley lentil soup and added some quinoa and more veggies corn, potatoes, peas, green beans and zucchini. Delisioso!!!

I made this soup for a tasting at a farmer's market and it got rave reviews. I also made it at home, and my adult son, who is a DIE HARD carnivore, loved it.  It's great when I can sneak in a vegetarian meal that is so tasty and filling. 

I made this as directed, omitting salt.  Fantastic. A keeper.

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