COMFORTING BEEF BARLEY SOUP (INSTANT POT)

A simple beef barley soup made in the instant pot (pressure cooker). The beef is tender, veggies are perfectly cooked, and the barley is al-dente. It’s seriously the simplest, most delicious soup. And it’s healthy too!





INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 ½ pounds stew meat
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 10 baby bella mushrooms, quartered
  • 3 cups mirepoix (just a combination of chopped onion, celery, and carrots)
  • 6-8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 cups low sodium beef broth (or vegetable)
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 large potato, shredded (using a food processor or grater)
  • 2/3 cup pearl barley, rinsed


DIRECTIONS:

  1. Season the stew meat with a good pinch of salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large pot or in the instant pot over medium-high heat. Add ½ the stew meat and brown on all sides for about 2-3 minutes total. Remove meat to a plate and repeat with the second batch and the second tablespoon of oil.
  2. Add the mushroom to the pot and brown the mushrooms for 1-2 minutes or until they start picking up the brown bits left behind by the meat. Remove the mushrooms to the same plate as the stew meat.
  3. If needed, add a little more oil to the pot and the mirepoix mix. Cook the veggies for 4-5 minutes or until the onions soften and become translucent. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds.
  4. SLOW COOKER: Add the softened veggies, stew meat, mushrooms, bay leaves, dried thyme, water, and beef broth to the slow cooker and allow the soup to cook on the high setting for 3 hours or on the low setting for 6 hours.
  5. INSTANT POT: Add the stew meat, mushrooms, bay leaves, dried thyme, water, and beef broth the to sautéed veggies in the instant pot, cover and pressure cook the meat for 13-16 minutes depending on the size of the stew meat. Allow the pressure to release before removing the lid.
  6. BOTH METHODS: Add the shredded potatoes and the barley and allow the soup to cook on the high setting (for the instant pot you hit the slow cook button) for 1 hour or until the potatoes and barley cook through. Season with additional seasonings to taste. Serve warm with chopped parsley on top and a loaf of crusty bread or crackers.


NOTES:
Sometimes I like to spice things up by adding a little pinch of red pepper flakes along with the dried thyme too but this is purely optional.

source: littlespicejar

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