Can You Cook Barley In A Crock Pot?

Did you ever wonder if can you cook barley in a Crock Pot?  In fact, almost any grain can be cooked in a Crock Pot. Why not make barley in the slow cooker?

Yes, you can cook barley in a slow cooker. It’s a quick and easy way to prepare this nutritious grain. Cook for several hours after combining the barley, liquid, and seasonings. A nutritious meal will be ready for you when you return home.

In this blog post, I’ll go over the basics of cooking barley in a Crock Pot. Once you’ve mastered it, you’ll be able to prepare a healthy, delicious meal in minutes.

Why Cook Barley in a Crock Pot Matter?

Cooking barley in a Crock Pot has several advantages. Initially, it is a convenient and hands-off cooking method. You can set it up in the morning and return home in the evening to a cooked meal without having to check on it or stir it.

Furthermore, since barley is cooked at a lower temperature for a longer period of time in a Crock Pot, more of its nutrients are preserved. 

Additionally, it facilitates meal preparation and bulk cooking. You can make a large batch of barley and store it in the refrigerator or freezer for use in salads, soups, and other dishes.

Read Also: Can I Cook Barley In My Rice Cooker?

What is Barley?

Before discussing the specifics of cooking barley in a Crock Pot, let’s examine the grain itself. Barley is a related cereal grain to wheat, rye, and oats.

It is a staple food in many cultures and is known for its nutty flavor and chewy consistency.

Additionally, barley is an excellent source of fiber, protein, and numerous vitamins and minerals.

How to Prepare Barley for Crock Pot Cooking?

The first step in preparing barley for Crock Pot cooking is to thoroughly rinse it in a strainer with a fine-mesh screen. This will eliminate any dirt or debris present on the grain.

Next, measure the amount of barley that will be utilized. As a rule of thumb, 1 cup of barley per 3 cups of liquid is recommended.

Once the barley has been rinsed and measured, it can be added to the Crock Pot along with any other ingredients.

These may consist of broth, water, or a combination of the two. If the recipe calls for additional ingredients, such as vegetables or spices, you can also add them at this point.

How Long to Cook Barley in a Crock Pot?

Cooking time for barley in a Crock Pot will vary based on the type of barley used and your desired texture.

For instance, pearled barley, which has had its outer husk removed, cooks faster than hulled barley, which retains its husk. Barley can be cooked in a Crock Pot on low heat for approximately 3 to 4 hours, or on high heat for approximately 1 to 2 hours.

Crock Pot Cooking

The benefits of eating barley

Barley is a nutrient-dense, adaptable grain that provides numerous health benefits. Here are some of the most important advantages of eating barley:

  1. High in fiber: Barley is an excellent source of soluble and insoluble dietary fiber, which promotes healthy digestion and regular bowel movements. Additionally, it aids in lowering cholesterol levels and maintaining a healthy weight.
  2. Low in gluten: Barley is a cereal grain related to wheat, rye, and oats, but it contains significantly less gluten than wheat. This makes it a suitable option for individuals with gluten intolerance or celiac disease.
  3. Rich in nutrients: Barley is an excellent source of numerous vitamins and minerals, such as Vitamin B, Vitamin E, magnesium, selenium, and potassium.
  4. May aid in blood sugar control: Barley contains beta-glucan, a type of fiber that may help to slow the absorption of sugar into the blood, thereby aiding in the regulation of blood sugar levels.
  5. May help to lower cholesterol levels: Some studies suggest that consuming barley may assist in lowering cholesterol levels by inhibiting cholesterol absorption in the gut.
  6. May boost heart health: Barley’s fiber and minerals may promote heart health by lowering the risk of heart disease.
  7. May aid in weight loss: Barley’s high fiber content and low-calorie density may aid in weight loss by promoting feelings of fullness, thereby decreasing the likelihood of overeating.

Barley can be a great addition to a healthy diet because it is versatile, simple to prepare, and a good alternative to other grains. As with any food, it is best to consume it in moderation and as part of a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins.

Recipes for cooking barley in a Crock Pot

Now that you understand the fundamentals of cooking barley in a Crock Pot, it’s time to put your knowledge to the test! Here are some tasty recipe suggestions:

Barley and Vegetable Soup

This hearty soup is an excellent way to utilize leftover vegetables from the refrigerator. Simply add diced carrots, celery, onions, and potatoes, along with barley that has been rinsed, and cook on low heat for three to four hours.

Barley and Mushroom Risotto

This comforting and creamy dish is an excellent way to dress up bare meat. Simply sauté some sliced mushrooms in a pan with some butter or oil, and then combine the cooked mushrooms and some grated Parmesan cheese with the barley in a Crock Pot. Cook for three to four hours on low heat.

Barley and Lentil Stew

This hearty stew is ideal for chilly winter evenings. It’s a great way to warm up and satiate yourself with protein and fiber. Here is a simple recipe for a barley and lentil stew that can be prepared in a Crock Pot :


  • 1 cup of barley
  • 1 cup of lentils
  • 2 cups of vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 stalks of celery, diced
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups of water or additional broth, as needed


  1. Rinse the barley and lentils in a fine-mesh strainer and set aside.
  2. In the Crock Pot, add the barley, lentils, broth, onion, garlic, carrots, celery, cumin, and salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
  3. Turn the Crock Pot on to low and cook for about 6-8 hours, or until the barley and lentils are tender. Check the stew periodically and add additional water or broth as needed.
  4. Once the stew is cooked, taste and adjust the seasoning as needed.
  5. Serve the stew in bowls and garnish with chopped fresh parsley or cilantro if desired.

This is a basic recipe; to make it more protein-rich, you can add diced cooked chicken or beef, as well as diced tomatoes or any other desired vegetables. To give it a little kick, you can also add spices like smoked paprika or cayenne pepper.

Tips for cooking barley in a Crock Pot

Here are some suggestions for cooking barley in a Crock Pot :

  1. Rinsing the barley prior to cooking is essential for removing any dirt or debris as well as excess starch, which can cause the barley to become mushy.
  2. Use the right amount of liquid: 1 cup of barley per 3 cups of liquid is the general rule of thumb. You can use less liquid if you prefer a thicker consistency, and more liquid if you prefer a thinner consistency.
  3. Experiment with different types of barley: Barley is available in various varieties, including pearled, hulled, and pot barley. Each has a unique cooking time, texture, and taste.
  4. Add a flavor: You can enhance the barley’s naturally nutty flavor by adding spices and herbs. Bay leaves, thyme, rosemary, and garlic are all excellent alternatives.
  5. Consider pre-soaking: Because certain types of barley can take longer to cook, you can shorten the cooking time by soaking them in water for a few hours prior to cooking.
  6. Check the barley for doneness: Barley is done when it is tender and chewy. If it is not fully cooked after the recommended cooking time, add additional liquid and cook for an additional 30 minutes to 1 hour.

By following these instructions, you will always be able to cook barley in a Crock Pot to perfection. With a Crock Pot, you can have a delicious and nutritious meal ready when you return home from a long day at work.

Read Also: Can You Cook Barley In A Slow Cooker?


This delicious and nutritious grain can be prepared easily and conveniently in a Crock Pot.

It’s a great way to prepare a hearty and comforting meal, and you can make a large batch and freeze it so it’s always available.