Chicken Vegetable & Barley Soup

This is a very hearty soup. It’s great any time but oh so good on a chilly winter day.

I put this soup together on a chilly January afternoon. I joke about chilly, it was 49 degrees that day.

Vegetable Oil
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into smaller than bite sized pieces
1 large yellow onion, finely diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup flour
8 cups chicken broth (I use Better Than Bullion)
1 bell pepper, any color, diced
1 cup chopped carrots
2 cups chopped celery
Red Pepper Flakes
Onion Powder
Garlic Powder
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup Liquid Smoke
1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce
1 cup pearl barley (note, you can substitute rice here if you wish)
1 bag Kroger® Vegetable Soup Mix – frozen
1 bag Kroger® Vegetable Gumbo Blend Soup Mix – frozen
1 can Kroger® Cut Extra Green Green Beans
1 can Kroger® Petite Diced Peeled Tomatoes – No Salt Added
1 can Kroger® Sweet Whole Kernel Golden Corn

Place a large stock pot over medium heat, pour vegetable oil into the pot, enough to cover the bottom.

Toss the chicken pieces into the pot, and stir fry until the chicken is cooked. Salt and pepper.

Add the onion and garlic to the pot, and let them cook until soft. You can optionally let them brown a bit.

Reduce the heat and add the flour, stirring until the mixture thickens.

Immediately add the broth. Increase the heat until the mixture comes to a rolling boild.

Add the spices: I don’t measure spices, I just throw whatever feels right in. If you are uncomfortable with this method, try 1 teaspoon of each and add teaspoons until you get the flavor you want.
Red Pepper Flakes, Rosemary, Thyme, Paprika, Parsley, Oregano, Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, and Cumin.

Add the Worcestershire sauce, Liquid Smoke, and Tabasco sauce.

Make sure everything is mixed together well before adding the other vegetables.

Add the bell pepper.

Add the chopped carrots.

Add the chopped celery.

Add the cop of barley.

Let this mixture come to a rolling boil. Reduce heat, cover, and let simmer for at least an hour.

Check the soup to see if the barley is fully cooked.

Chicken Vegetable Barley Soup

A view of the pot of Chicken Vegetable Barley Soup simmering. (click to view full size)

If it is, add both bags of frozen vegetables.

Add the 3 cans of vegetables.

Let everything simmer for approximately 30 minutes.

Serve garnished with fresh cilantro or chives and crackers or a crusty bread.

Chicken Vegetable Barley Soup

A finished bowl of Chicken Vegetable Barley Soup.(click to view full size)