Instant Pot Beef and Barley Soup is an easy, rich, satisfying, soup. This hearty soup is made FAST in the Instant Pot with tender chunks of beef, barley, veggies, and a flavorful broth.
There is nothing more comforting than a rich and hearty soup on a cold day.
And this Beef and Barley soup fits the bill. It is rich, flavorful, and absolutely warms you to the soul.
Not to mention, when using the Instant Pot, this classic soup comes together much faster than the classic version.
- Beef: Sirloin beef, chuck roast, or stew meat are all great options for this Beef and Barley Soup. Either purchase a whole sirloin steak or chuck roast and cut yourself into approximately 2-inch cubes, or purchase stew meat that has already been cubed for you.
- Tomatoes: Use either crushed tomatoes or diced tomatoes based on your preferences. My son hates the texture of diced tomatoes, so I typically opt to use crushed tomatoes, as this soup is one of his favorites.
- Celery and Carrots: They both add incredible flavor to the soup, but omit one or the other if desired.
- Barley: Be sure to use pearl barley, not quick-cook barley for best results.
Turn pressure cooker to saute function and add in a bit of oil.
Once heated, add the beef, onions, celery, and carrots and saute for 3-4 minutes, or until the beef is browned on all sides and the onion begins to soften.
- Add in garlic and saute 1 minute longer. Do not be tempted to add the garlic when adding the beef, onions, celery, and carrots, as garlic can burn quickly.
- Turn the Instant Pot off and add in the stock. Use a wooden spatula to scrape the bottom of the inner pot to remove any browned bits on the bottom of the Instant Pot, which will prevent a burn notice.
Add in the diced tomatoes, barley, bay, thyme, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper.
Place lid on Instant Pot and close valve to sealed. Set to cook on high pressure for 20 minutes.
Allow pressure to release naturally for 15 minutes.
Before serving, remove bay and sprigs of thyme if using.
Slow Cooker Directions
Don't have an Instant Pot? You can make Slow Cooker Beef and Barley soup easily!
- Brown your beef with the carrots, onions, and celery on the stove over medium-high heat in 1 tablespoon oil.
- Once the meat is browned, add to the slow cooker with the stock, tomatoes, salt, pepper, bay leaves, thyme, and barley.
- Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 6 hours.
- Stir in Worcestershire at the end.
It is NOT necessary to saute the beef and vegetables first, but it does add a depth flavor to the final soup.
Yes! As long as your frozen beef is cubed. To prepare this soup with frozen beef, do not saute the beef. Instead just saute the onions, carrots, and celery if desired, and then add the beef with the remaining ingredients. Adjust the cooking time to 30 minutes.
Store cooled leftover soup in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. You can also freeze the cooled soup for up to 3 months. Keep in mind, you may need to add a splash of stock or water when reheating, as the barley absorbs some of the liquid as it sits.
I am often asked if Barely is gluten-free. Barley contains gluten and therefore, is NOT gluten-free.
Instant Pot Soup Recipes
- Instant Pot Potato Soup
- Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana
- Instant Pot Tomato Soup
- Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup
- Instant Pot Lasagna Soup
If you enjoyed this Beef and Barley soup, I would love for you to take the time to leave a comment and a review.
Instant Pot Beef and Barley Soup
- 1 teaspoon oil
- 1 pound sirloin steak or chuck roast cut into 1 to 2 inch cubes
- 1 small onion minced
- 2 cloves of garlic minced
- 4 carrots peeled and sliced
- 2 stalks of celerey minced
- 4 cups beef stock low sodium
- 16 ounces diced tomatoes or crushed tomatoes
- ½ cup pearl barley rinsed
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 sprig fresh thyme or ½ teaspoon dried thyme leaves
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- Turn pressure cooker to saute function. Once heated, add in oil, beef chunks, carrots, celery, and onion.
- Saute until beef is browned on all sides and the vegetables begin to soften. Add in garlic and saute 1 minute longer. Turn Instant Pot OFF. Add in stock and scrape up the bottom of the pressure cooker to remove any browned bits.
- Add in diced tomatoes, barley, bay, thyme, Worcestershire, salt, and pepper.
- Place lid on Instant Pot and close valve to sealed. Set to cook on high pressure for 20 minutes.
- Allow pressure to release naturally for 15 minutes.
- Remove bay leaves and the sprig of thyme and serve.
This recipe was originally published in 2018 but was updated in 2021 with new pictures. Here is the old picture for reference.