Mushroom Barley Soup
This Mushroom Barley Soup is packed with flavor and is ready in just 30 minutes. Featuring tender mushrooms and barley in a rich and creamy broth, this soup is perfect for busy weeknights!
My Grandma was the best cook.
I know, I know…you’re probably thinking, “My Grandma was the best cook!” Am I right?
But, my Grandma really was the best cook. Ok, I’ll stop now. Let’s just all agree that most Grandma’s are the best in the kitchen.
Whenever I make soup, I’m always reminded of how delicious my Grandma’s soups were. She made a decadent chicken noodle soup from scratch, savory split pea soup, and a few others that were just as good. And although I could probably make her soups using the exact same recipe, it just wouldn’t taste the same. Know what I mean?
And that’s ok. I’ve come to accept that my cooking will never be quite as good as my Grandma’s, because you know, my Grandma was the best cook ever. And so was your Grandma, right?
Since we all know how much I love soup, it seemed fitting that I share with you my second soup recipe of today’s 30-Minute Thursday installment. And since you also know how much I love mushrooms, this dish just screamed “Gayle” to me.
I can’t take credit for this entire recipe, as I adapted it from a Taste of Home magazine edition from last year.
I did change the broth to make it more flavorful, though. And that’s something that I also did with my cream of mushroom soup, which makes it extra special. Using beef broth seems to make soups stand out even more, which is why this Mushroom Barley Soup is oh-so good.
And because the weather is still cold (hurry up, spring!) and I crave soup ALL the time, this Mushroom Barley Soup definitely hit the spot. So if you’re in the mood for a savory, 30-minute meal, then this soup was made for you.
Easy to make and even better to eat, you’ll be whipping up this soup over and over again!
Ingredients for Mushroom Barley Soup
This creamy mushroom barley soup has a short ingredients list, which makes it even easier to prepare. Here’s what goes into this easy mushroom soup:
- Unsalted butter
- White onion
- Baby Bella mushrooms
- Dried thyme
- Beef broth
- Quick-cooking barley
- All-purpose flour
- 2% milk
- Salt and pepper
How to Make Mushroom Barley Soup
Did I mention that this soup is ready in just 30 minutes? From start to finish, you can have a savory, steaming bowl of soup ready for you lunch or dinner.
Because I used quick-cooking barley, all of the ingredients get mixed together until it’s ready to be devoured.
Heat butter over medium heat until melted. Add carrots, onions, and mushrooms. Sauté until tender, for about 5 minutes.
Add dried thyme, beef broth, and barley and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until barley is tender.
While soup is simmering, whisk flour, milk, salt and pepper in a small bowl until smooth.
Stir flour mixture into soup and return to a boil. Stir constantly and cook until thickened.
Remove from heat and serve immediately.
Can This Recipe Be Made in a Slow Cooker?
I’ve never made this in the slow cooker, so I really can’t say how it would turn out. I imagine you’d need to cook the soup on low for a couple hours.
Personally, I’d wait to add the mushrooms and the flour mixture until the last 1 to 2 hours of cooking. Maybe even crank the heat to high for that last hour — but I can’t say for sure!
Can I Use Regular Barley?
Yes, I imagine you could. However, I always use quick-cooking barley so you’ll have to use your best judgement if adding regular barley.
Tips for Making Mushroom and Barley Soup
- I used baby bella mushrooms because I love their bold flavor and dark color. However, you may use any mushrooms you’d like.
- Between the 2% milk and the flour mixture, this mushroom and barley soup ends up being thick and creamy. However, you’re welcome to swap in a little heavy cream for some of the milk if desired.
- This soup keeps well in the fridge for up to 5 days. Because it contains so much dairy, it doesn’t freeze well.
Looking for More Quick Soup Recipes?
I have tons of soup recipes on my site already, but here are a few of my favorites:
- One-Pot Chicken Fajita Soup
- Creamy Tomato Tortellini Soup
- One-Pot Lasagna Soup
- Creamy Mushroom and Spinach Tortellini Soup
- Slow Cooker Pizza Chili
Mushroom Barley Soup
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- ¼ cup diced carrots
- ½ white onion, diced
- 1 pound fresh baby bella mushrooms, sliced
- ¼ teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 cups beef broth
- ¾ cup quick-cooking barley
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 cups 2% milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- In a medium soup pot or saucepan, heat butter over medium heat until melted. Add carrots, onions, and mushrooms. Sauté until tender, for about 5 minutes.
- Add dried thyme, beef broth, and barley and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 15 minutes, or until barley is tender.
- While soup is simmering, whisk flour, milk, salt and pepper in a small bowl until smooth.
- Stir flour mixture into soup and return to a boil. Stir constantly and cook for 3-4 minutes, or until thickened. Remove from heat and serve immediately.
Photos updated 1/25/2021
Haha, everyone definitely thinks their grandma was the best cook, but mine really was 😉 Especially when it came to soup.
This is the kind of soup my mum used to make me when I was ill, as mushroom soup had a way of making me feel better.
Grandmas definitely are the best, especially at making soup! Mushroom soup is such a favorite of mine, glad you like it, too!
I love mushroom barley soup. This looks like the best way to do it quickly without resorting to any cans!
And yep, grandmothers are the best cooks. Probably because they have the time to do it!
Yes! This is such a quick and easy version, Mir! Definitely beats the canned kind! 🙂
Wow, that looks so warm, cozy, and delicious! We love our soups, and this one is a winner! Plus, can’t beat that quick and easy cooking time. 🙂
Thanks for the soup love, Blair!
Gayle, I LOVE this Mushroom Barley Soup and I can’t believe is is ready in about 30 minutes. looks absolutely delicious and mouth watering!
Thanks, Alice! 30 minute soups are definitely the best! 🙂
Yep! All the grandmas were the best cooks!! I haven’t made a barley based soup in the longest time – I’m pretty sure I used beef but your mushrooms make the beef totally unnecessary! I love this soup, Gayle! And the fact that it can be ready in 30 minutes makes it all the better!
Thank you, Annie! I love beef barley soup too, but it was a nice change to use mushrooms instead!
I’m so cold right now and this soup looks just perfect!
Definitely perfect for cold weather, Sues!
Yes, let’s all agree that all grandma’s are the best cooks. I know mine certainly was! I need this soup today – it got crazy cold again here. I was all ready for Spring and then BAM – back to freezing temps. Ugh. Hurry up already Spring!
I wish spring would come soon! Until them, I’m devouring lots of soup!
I wish spring would come soon! Until them, I’m devouring lots of soup!
Aren’t grandmas the best? I’m sure she would be proud of your soup and the inspiration you get from her! Adding the quick cooking barley was a great idea!
Thanks for the kind words, Rachelle!
Your grandma sounded like a wonderful lady, and I love the sound of the soups that she made! I love mushrooms and eat them almost every day, so this soup just sounds wonderful. I have a mushroom barley soup I like to make but it isn’t creamy — I love the cream of mushroom twist that you gave this! And nice use of quick cooking barley to make it in 30 minutes!
Thank you for the kind words, Marcie! I would love to try your version too. Mushrooms are the best no matter how you eat them! 🙂
Mushroom soup is my absolute favorite- it’s so creamy but definitely doesn’t lack any flavor 🙂 So yum!
Thanks, Medha! I love the creaminess of it, too!
It’s been forever since I had barley in soup. I’m having a real craving now! And yay for mushrooms. ????
Barley and mushrooms make the best combo, right?! 🙂
Mmmm, mushroom soup – I love it. So good on a cold day. Or any day really. And yes, I think everyone’s Grandma is the best cook ever. I wish I had more of my Grandma’s recipes, but most were just in her head. I remember asking for a recipe once and the answer was “oh, a little of this and that”. I couldn’t make it from that! 🙂
Haha that’s what my Grandma used to say, too! She always made the best pot roast, and mine doesn’t even come close to hers! Thanks for the kind words, Stacey!
You are right Gayle, grandmas are the best cooks! This soup looks wonderful! Pinned to try it!
Thank you, Mira!
It looks delicious Gayle, so comforting and filling! and yes grandmas are the best cooks 🙂
Thanks, Manali! And so glad you think Grandma’s are the best cooks! 🙂
Oh I just love delicious comfort foods like this! And it is even better that it can be made in just 30 minutes!
Hooray for 30 minute meals! 🙂 Thanks, Annie!
What is it about Grandmas? Maybe the years of experience? I know MY Grandma was the best cook, too 🙂 I hope to be one of those Grandmas! Lol. This soup looks SO creamy and it must be so much better than the can!
Yes! I can only hope that my cooking is half as good as my Grandma’s was as I continue to get older. Thanks for the kind words, Ashley!
Mmm this soup looks like total comfort food! That’s awesome that it’s ready in 30 min!
I agree with you Gayle that Grandma’s are always best and they are the best in the kitchen.
Can I use vegetable broth for this soup ?
Thank you, Puja! I’ve never tried this with vegetable broth, so I can’t say for sure. The actual recipe that I modified it from didn’t use any kind of broth, so I’m sure that it would work!
My grandma is the best cook too! I mean, aren’t all grandmas?? Haha! Seriously though, this soup is PURE comfort food! I’m a total mushroom lover so this one is right up my alley! So want a bowl in my lunch life today!
Haha yes all Grandma’s are the best! 🙂 Thanks, Sarah!
We are all about the barley these days, you and me! Must try this bowl of comfort food deliciousness!
This soup looks like just the thing for a chilly winter day! I love mushrooms too, and this looks so delicious with the barley!
We are on th same soup page, girl! I love your version, looks comforting and wonderful!
Soups are the best! Thanks, Kelly!
It’s still fairly cool here so this soup would be a great way to warm up! Love the barely in here. It sounds so filling and comforting.
Thank you, Jen!
This soup looks incredible. I’ve never cooked with barley before, but I’ve wanted to. Just one of those things where I haven’t found the right recipe. Until today. Also I love that it’s a 30 minute meal! Score!!
Thanks, Cyndi! I used quick-cooking barley, so it’s practically fail-proof! 🙂
I love a nice hearty soup. This looks fantastic!!
Thank you, Renee!
I wish I could say my grandma was the best cook but she really wasn’t into cooking…my great grandma on the other hand was amazing ;). You must have taken after your grandma, this soup recipe looks amazing! Love quick & easy dinner meals.
Thanks for the kind words, Katie!
My grandma was the best cook too! Her famous soup was cheesy potato soup. She would make it every winter when we would go up to her cabin in the snow. The best after skiing all day! Now I can’t wait to try this mushroom barley soup. Love that it is only ready in 30 minutes!
Oh your Grandma’s soup sounds delicious! Thanks for the soup love, Natalie!
Unfortunately, I missed out on the whole grandma’s cooking. However, me and hubby just had a friendly debate about who’s mom was the better cook! It’s funny how everyone’s perception is different. This soup looks so yummy and I love a good 30 minute soup.
It’s definitely interesting to hear other people’s perspective! Thanks for the kind words, Rachel!
Thank you for this interesting recipe! Eill definatley try it! Can I refrigirate and eat it at a later time?
I wouldn’t see why it wouldn’t keep for a few days in the fridge, enjoy!
Making this AGAIN. So good for fall – or any time of year. Love it. I used fat free milk and low sodium broth, and it was very very good.
I’m so glad to hear that, Brittany! That’s a great idea to use fat free milk and low sodium broth. Thanks for stopping by and letting me know how it turned out!
I have regular pearl barley on hand and it seems silly to buy quick cooking. Do you think this would do well in the slow cooker? Thinking if I throw everything other than the milk/flour in on low and then turn to high for an hour or so when I add the flour mixture it should hopefully thicken up okay. Just don’t want the mushrooms to overcook and loose their texture!
Hi Hannah! I’ve never made this in the slow cooker, so I really can’t say how it would turn out. I would think that if you did what you say, it would work well. Maybe add the mushrooms in an hour or two after cooking, depending on how long you’re planning to slow cook for? Just a guess! Hope you enjoy and thanks for stopping by!
I usually don’t comment but I need to let you no it was the best soup I didn’t have any leftover s. I will be making this again loved it
I’m so happy you liked this, Catherine! It’s a favorite of mine, too!
How much longer to cook if you use regular barley — not quick brley?
Hi Sunny! I haven’t tried regular barley, so I can’t be sure. Hope you enjoy!
Hi, this mushroom barley soup looks great! How much is one serving please? One cup?
Hello! One serving is roughly 1.5 cups, may be a little over. Hope you enjoy!
Thank you! Not everyone replies on such forums so appreciate it!
You’re very welcome!