Chicken, Mushroom, and Barley Soup

Homemade mushroom soup with millet and vegetables in white plate(Serves 8)

Ahhh, soup! This one is flavorful, hearty, and nutritious, and should get you in the mood for fall right around the corner. Each one-cup serving is only 130 calories with just 12 g of carbs, 3 g fat, 260 mg of sodium, and 4 g of sugar, with good sources of both protein (15 g) and potassium (520 mg). Pick up pre-cooked rotisserie chicken in the grocery store as a time-saver, if you’re short on time to cook the chicken yourself, or if you don’t already have leftover chicken. Preparation is fast, whether you make it the night before or for same-day servings. It travels well for kids’ lunches, too! 


2 tsp. olive oil

1 medium onion (diced)

2 carrot(s) (diced)

3 celery stalks (diced)

1 lb. white (button) mushrooms (sliced)

32 oz. low-sodium chicken broth (low-sodium, fat-free)

1 sprig fresh thyme

2 bay leaves

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. black pepper

1 cup cooked barley

2 cups cooked chicken (shredded)

Add oil to a soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, celery, and mushrooms. Sauté for five minutes.

Add broth, thyme, bay leaves, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer, covered for 20 minutes.

Remove bay leaves and thyme stem. Add the barley and chicken, and heat through for two to three minutes.

Note: Cook barley in bulk by adding 11 oz. dry pearled (quick-cooking) barley to a pot of four cups boiling water. Cover, then reduce to a simmer for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from heat, keep covered off the heat for five minutes. Makes six cups cooked barley. (You can cook barley like this for other recipes, then refrigerate it in an airtight container for seven days. You can also store it in the freezer in one cup increments for up to six months.)

Recipe adapted from:

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