This one pot chicken barley stew is just chock full of healthy veggies for a winter comfort food taste. It is rich and hearty and clean up is a breeze after making it. The hearty winter vegetable stew is perfect for those chilly nights when you want to eat something that will warm you to the bones with its comforting taste.
I’ve been making a lot of one pot meals lately. I love the way the flavors come together in layers over a slow cooking time. And having just one pot to clean up later is a big win with me. (See my one pot jambalaya for a more spicy stew.)
For me, winter comfort food is all about hearty casseroles and warming soups and stews. There is nothing better than enjoying a big bowl of warming stew when the weather makes you want to curl up and stay indoors.
One pot meals that can be made in 30 minutes are favorites of mine. Try this chicken piccata with artichokes heart recipe. It’s a keeper!
Making this one pot chicken barley stew.
I love to use a variety of fresh vegetables for this stew. It gives the recipe a home cooked nostalgic feel that seems to call out “it’s comfort food time.” Onions, carrots, baby potatoes and leeks were my choice today.
The chicken thighs are browned first in olive oil. This gives a lovely caramelized taste to the dish and adds lots of crusty bits on the bottom to flavor the veggies that are to come next.
When the chicken is lightly browned, remove it to a plate and add the fresh vegetables and gently cook until the onions start to soften.
Return the chicken to the pan and add the chicken stock, barley, tomato paste and dried bay leaf. Simmer covered for 30 minutes.
Now comes the fresh herbs for cooking a really flavorful broth. It’s important to add them later in the cooking time to reserve their fresh flavor. (Dried herbs are added earlier – along with the bay leaf- if you use them and only use 1/3 as much.) Cover and cook another 20 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
I like to thicken the broth a bit to make it more gravy like. Just combine the flour and water and then stir in some of the hot cooking liquid and add this mixture back to the pot. Cook another five minutes until the stew thickens. Season with sea salt and cracked black pepper to taste.
The aroma that comes from this soup when the lid is lifted is amazing. I can’t wait to dig into a steaming hot bowl of it.
Time to taste this hearty winter vegetable stew
Spoon the stew into serving bowls and add some crusty home made bread. You’ll want something to dunk into that tasty broth, won’t you?
Every spoonful of this delicious one pot chicken barley stew is brimming with wholesome fresh flavor. The recipe gives the term “comfort food” a new healthy twist.
Instead of cheese, bacon and butter, the comfort comes from the lovely mix of veggies, the delicious flavor of the fresh herbs, and the nice hearty texture of the barley. There is plenty of home made taste in each delicious bite.
Even though this isn’t a 30 minute meal, you will find the cooking process relaxing. Most of the recipe is hands-off. One pot cooking is my favorite style. It gives me a chance to tidy the kitchen as each stage cooks slowly, so that I truly end up with just one pot to clean up!
This recipe makes 3 hearty servings, each at 426 calories. It is very high in protein and relatively low in fat and sugar. Plus, the stew is filling and really tasty!
On a chilly winter day, nothing beats a steaming-hot bowl of this one pot chicken barley stew. The barley gives the recipe some extra texture and lots of heartiness. It will be come a favorite of your family, for sure.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 pound of chicken thighs, halved
- 4 cups of low sodium chicken stock
- ½ cup of pearled barley
- ½ pound of small new potatoes, halved
- 2 large carrots, peeled and sliced
- 2 leeks, washed and sliced
- 1 medium onion, coarsly chopped
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tbsp of fresh parsley
- 2 tbsp of fresh oregano
- 1 tbsp of fresh thyme
- 1 tbsp all purpose flour
- 4 tbsp water
- Sea salt and cracked black pepper
- Fresh parsley to garnish
- Heat the olive oil over medium heat and cook the chicken thighs for about 5 minutes on each side until lightly browned. Remove to a plate.
- Stir up the crusty bits on the bottom of the pan and add the potatoes, carrots, leeks, and onions and cook until the onions start to soften. Return the chicken thighs to the pot.
- Stir in the chicken stock, barley, tomato paste and bay leaf.
- Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Add the chopped parsley, fresh oregano and thyme, cover and cook another 20 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the bay leaf.
- Mix the water with the flour and combine well. Stir in a few tablespoons of the hot cooking liquid. Mix well and add to the stew liquid in the pot. Stir to combine and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often as the stew thickens.
- Season with sea salt and cracked black pepper.
- Remove from the heat and place in serving bowls. Garnish with fresh parsley and serve with home made crusty bread.
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