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Spring Chicken & Barley Soup

Source: © EatingWell Magazine
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Active Time:  45 Minutes
Total Time:  1 Hour 15 Minutes
  4 servings, about 2 cups each
You might think of barley as an addition to hearty, wintery soups, such as mushroom-barley or beef-barley soup, but it also works well in lighter soups like this one with chicken, asparagus and peas.

Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 3, cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Reheat the soup, thin with broth if desired and finish with Step 4 just before serving.
1 tablespoon   extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup  finely chopped onion
1/2 cup  finely chopped celery
2 cloves  garlic, divided
6 cups  reduced-sodium chicken broth
1   large bone-in chicken breast (10-12 ounces), skin removed, trimmed
1/3 cup  pearl barley
1 15-ounce can   diced tomatoes
1 cup  trimmed and diagonally sliced asparagus (1/4 inch thick)
1 cup  fresh or thawed frozen peas
1/2 teaspoon   coarse salt
Freshly ground pepper  to taste
1/2 cup  lightly packed torn fresh basil leaves
1 strip   orange zest (1/2 by 2 inches)
Spring Chicken & Barley Soup Recipe at
Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat; add onion and celery and cook, stirring, until beginning to soften, 2 to 4 minutes. Grate or finely chop 1 clove garlic; add to the pan and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add broth, chicken and barley. Bring to a gentle simmer. Cover and cook over low heat until the chicken is cooked through, about 20 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate with a slotted spoon. Return the broth to a simmer and cook until the barley is tender, 20 to 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, shred the chicken or cut into bite-size pieces; discard the bone.

When the barley is done, add the chicken, tomatoes and juice, asparagus, peas, salt and a grinding of pepper; return to a simmer. Cover and cook over low heat until the asparagus is tender, about 5 minutes more.

Coarsely chop the remaining garlic clove. Gather basil, orange zest and the garlic and finely chop together. Ladle the soup into bowls and sprinkle each serving with a generous pinch of the basil mixture.

Recipe reprinted by permission of © EatingWell Magazine. All rights reserved.
Date Added: 03/01/2009
Nutrition Facts per Serving
Yield:   4 servings, about 2 cups each
Calories: 265
Fat. Total: 6g
Protein: 24g
Carbohydrates, Total: 28g
Fat, Saturated: 2g
Fiber: 7g
Cholesterol: 39mg
Sodium: 745mg
% Cal. from Fat: 20%
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