Beef Barley Stew Recipe

This beef barley stew recipe is hearty, comforting, flavorful and nutritious. It is pretty easy to make and great for those cold dreary days. Barley goes well with beef. It has a nutty flavor and a pasta like consistency. It is also loaded with fiber and is a good source of niacin – a B vitamin.

This beef barley stew recipe freezes beautifully so go ahead and make an extra batch. That was you will have it ready on busy days when you cannot cook.

Serve this with a nice piece of crusty bread and butter.

Here is what you are going to need for this delicious beef barley stew recipe:

Serves twelve
3 lbs. beef stew, cubed and dredged in flour, salt and pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 large yellow onion, coarsely chopped
3 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 teaspoons celery leaves, finely chopped
4 medium red potatoes, peeled and cubed
6 white mushrooms, sliced
3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped into 2 inch pieces
½ cup of barley
3 stalks celery, chopped into 1 inch pieces
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
4 slices bacon, cut into six pieces each
8 cups beef broth

1. In a large, heavy skillet fry the bacon until crisp. Remove from pot.
2. Brown the beef equally on all sides in the bacon fat. Add olive oil if necessary and work in batches. Remove the browned beef and get rid of the excess fat.
Wipe pan clean and add some more olive oil.
3. Add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring often for 2 to 3 minutes.
4. Add the carrots, celery, celery leaves and thyme. Stir well and cook for 2 to 3 minutes longer.
5. Add the mushrooms and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes.
6. Return the bacon bits and beef to the pot. Add the broth and the laurel leaves.
7. Bring pot to a boil and cover. Simmer for 45 minutes. Uncover and skim the excess fat from the sides of the pot.
8. Add the potatoes, peas and the barley. Mix well. Season with pepper. Bring pot to a boil, cover and bring to a simmer again. Cook for an extra 20 minutes.
9. Serve in a bowl with a piece of crusty bread.

CALORIES 306.60; FAT 13.52 grs (sat 4.03; mono 4.19; poly 0.53); PROTEIN 30.19 grs ; FIBER 3.26 grs; CARBS 15.66 grs; CHOLESTEROL 62.76 mg; IRON 3.30 mg; SODIUM 510.20 mg; CALCIUM 35.58 mg

Print the Frugal Beef Barley Stew Recipe Here!

My name is Mary Ann Allen and I am here to help you get organized so you can save money on groceries and feed your family healthy, nutritious food. My multi-cultural cooking background comes from being born in the US and raised in Bolivia. I have 5 kids and own around 400 cook books. I absolutely love to cook!


  • September 17, 2010


    Hey, I’m interested in making this for the weekend. How much does this recipe serve? Also is it filling enough on its own? I normally like to have bread with my stew (just because!) but with the barley would it be too much starch? Thanks. Another fabulous video :o) xx

  • September 17, 2010


    Hey Zizi!
    Thanks for coming by! This recipe will serve 6 very hungry people. I always serve it with bread . . . I eat too much bread, I guess! But, a nice crusty, crunchy bread would pair this beautifully! Let me know how it comes out! Happy cooking!
    Mary Ann

  • June 12, 2011


    This looks like a great recipe. How necessary is the bacon/bacon grease? I’d like to make it without the pork content.

  • June 14, 2011


    Hi Brian!
    Go ahead and make it without the bacon. No problem! Thank you very much for coming by!
    Mary Ann