Slow Cooker Mushroom Barley Soup is perfect for chilly fall days!
There’s nothing like a good slow cooker soup on a chilly fall day and this Slow Cooker Mushroom Barley Soup is satisfying, tasty, and healthy. Healthy and good, that’s a win-win for me! This recipe makes a flavorful soup and the mushrooms add a “meatiness” to it while keeping it a healthy vegetarian meal. To make it even healthier, this slow cooker soup can be made with low sodium broth, and the salt can be eliminated from the recipe. An increase in the required herbs added during the cooking process and a salt substitute added when serving, could enhance any flavor that is lost by eliminating salt. Why do things that make food taste so good – fat, sugar, and salt – have to be so bad for us? Both Bill and I love all three but we have to be careful and limit them to reasonable levels because of health issues we both have.
We both love mushrooms – button, portabella, baby bella, cremini, oyster, shitake – are fine with us. Usually at the market, the white button mushrooms are the most available but I like the baby bellas for this soup. Full size portabella mushroom are much to big and don’t look as nice as the baby bella mushrooms do when sliced for the soup. For this slow cooker soup recipe I have only used white button and baby bellas, so I do not know how any others would hold up under the long cooking times of a slow cooker.
We have lots of wild mushrooms that grow on our lawn and in the woods. Bill is always telling me that his friends tell him that this one or that one are edible but I am very reluctant to try wild ones. Picking wild mushrooms requires knowledge that neither of us has and it can be horrendous if you make a mistake. In a number of mushroom varieties, the differences between poisonous and edible are subtle. I’m sticking with the ones from the store – better safe than sorry!
|Slow Cooker Mushroom Barley Soup|| || |
- 9 c. beef broth
- 1 lb. mushrooms, sliced ¼ inch thick, preferably button or baby bellas
- 1 med onion, diced
- 2 carrots, diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp. salt
- ½ tsp. fresh ground pepper
- ½ tsp. dried thyme or 1½ tsp. fresh thyme, chopped
- ¼ tsp. dried sage, or ¾ tsp.fresh sage
- ½ c. barley
- Add all ingredients to slow cooker and stir gently to combine.
- Cover, and cook n Low setting for 6-7 hours.