Slow cooker mushroom barley soup is creamy, easy, satisfying, and delicious! Made with three different kinds of mushrooms, veggies, barley, and broth, this easy pleaser is comfort food at its finest!
As the famous slogan says: soup is good food. Soup is filling, warm and wonderful. It can be a full delicious meal, an appetizer, a side dish, or even a snack. Hot soup is just plain GOOD - any time of year.
This slow cooker mushroom soup is no exception! It is satisfying, delicious, and easy to make. All that and it also manages to be vegetarian/vegan and pretty inexpensive! A winning bowl that will quickly become a whole family favorite.
I promise this mushroom barley slow cooker recipe is really easy to make. Don’t be intimidated by the long ingredient list, it all just gets tossed together! If you want to make things as lazy as possible, check out the Hints & hacks below.
To make this easy crockpot barley soup, you will need to gather the following:
- Mushroom broth - or vegetable broth
- Baby Bella mushrooms
- Shiitake mushrooms
- Fresh button mushrooms
- Garlic cloves - minced
- Worcestershire sauce
- Soy sauce - I use low sodium
- Basil - dried
- Thyme - dried
- Barley -pearl barley, uncooked
Slow cooker mushroom barley soup is a true dump-and-go recipe. The ingredients are rather voluminous, so a 6 quart or larger slow cooker is recommended. Start by slicing your fresh mushrooms, dicing up your vegetables and putting them in the pot. Next, add the spices and barley.
The final ingredient to add is the broth. Then, just cover your slow cooker with its lid and cook on low heat.
Of course, the most important step is always to turn your crockpot on and then double-check to confirm that it is, in fact, on! I wish I had a dime for each time someone told me they either forgot to turn their slow cooker on. OR they turned it on only to realize much later that it was unplugged!
Barley is a wonderful soup ingredient in that it emits starch naturally during the cooking process. This is why soup with barley in it tends to be so thick and hearty. It has so much flavor and texture it can almost be a full meal on its own.
To balance out this thick, rich, tasty soup, I recommend serving it with a cool crisp salad or, in colder weather, with a delicious cooked vegetable. Avocado toast is another amazing pairing for this soup, as is a big heel of crusty bread.
Store leftovers of this easy recipe in airtight containers in either the refrigerator or freezer. They will last for 4-5 days in the refrigerator or for several months in the freezer. Reheat frozen leftovers in the microwave, on the stovetop, or even right back in your slow cooker.
One great way to store leftovers is in a mini food warmer! (here is a different brand). Store the warmer's insert with your soup in the refrigerator and then transfer it to the warmer to reheat. This makes for a super easy way to transport and reheat leftovers. There is nothing better than having some warm, homemade soup for lunch at work the next day.
If you love this recipe, please let me know in the comment section below!
- Chicken broth can be used in place of mushroom or veggie broth in this crock pot recipe.
- Cremini mushrooms and porcini mushrooms can be used in place of or in addition to the mushrooms listed.
- While I prefer fresh mushrooms for this recipe, dried mushrooms can be reconstituted and used.
- This mushroom barley soup recipe is intentionally made without salt. I sometimes like to add a little garlic salt to my individual bowl of creamy mushroom soup for extra oomph!
😉HINTS & HACKS
- Looking to save extra time? You can purchase all of the mushrooms needed for this mushroom soup recipe pre-sliced.
- Want to save even more time? Purchase your carrots, celery, and onion already cut. These can be found in the fresh produce section of your market. A more economical way is to purchase them frozen from the frozen veggie section. You can purchase each individually or buy find them all together as Mirepoix.
- This is a great recipe to prep in advance. You can assemble all ingredients other than barley and the broth the night before. Barley and broth can then be carefully added at the time you are ready to commence cooking.
- Use a vegan Worcestershire sauce to make vegan mushroom barley soup.
- This is a perfect meal for days when your people will be eating at different times. After the cooking time, turn your slow cooker to warm. Everyone can have a hot and filling meal, no matter what time they are ready to eat.
- I always recommend the use of a slow cooker liner. Of course, this is an optional step. I like to purchase my liners in bulk for a less expensive per-piece price.
- In the market for a new slow cooker? I love mine!
❓FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Nope! your barley will slow cook to perfection right in your soup
Yes! This soup freezes really well. The texture of the barley may change very slightly, but it will still be delicious! If you feel your defrosted soup is too thick, add in some additional broth to thin it out.
Barley contains starch which is released naturally into the liquid surrounding it during cooking. This lends a thick creaminess to any soup it is cooked with.
This is the perfect set it and forget it soup. Both barley and mushrooms are prime for low and slow cooking. Although it can be made stovetop, your slow cooker allows you the freedom to walk and away. No need to babysit this dish!
Yes! Barley contains soluble fiber which helps to reduce hunger by making you feel full longer. This can aid in weight loss.
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Lazy Mushroom Barley Soup Recipe
- 8 oz baby bella mushrooms, sliced
- 5 oz shiitake mushrooms, sliced
- 8 oz white mushrooms, sliced
- 1 large carrot diced
- 1 large celery stalk, diced
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce I use reduced sodium
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- ¾ cup pearl barley
- 8 cups broth vegetable, mushroom or beef broth would all work well
- place slow cooker liner into slow cooker, if using
- place mushrooms into slow cooker
- add diced vegetables to slow cooker
- add garlic, Worcestershire sauce, say sauce, basil, thyme and barley to slow cooker
- pour broth over ingredients in slow cooker
- stir, cover and cook on low for 6 hours.
- serve in bowls and enjoy!