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Slow Cooker Bean and Barley Stew


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  • 8 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 8 ounces dried pinto beans
  • 8 ounces dried navy beans
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 stalks celery, diced
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • A few sprigs fresh thyme
  • 8 ounces dried barley
  • 8 ounces baby spinach
  • Toasted crusty bread or baguette, for serving



Step 1

Combine the broth, pinto beans, navy beans, salt, pepper, celery, carrots, garlic, onions, bay leaf, thyme and 2 cups water in a slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 7 hours. Add the barley and, if the broth looks low, another cup of water. Cover and cook on low an additional 1 hour (8 hours total).

Just before serving, stir in the spinach to wilt. Serve in a big bowl with toasted crusty bread or baguette.


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