This vegetarian pearl barley risotto recipe is perfect for Spring! Filled with seasonal vegetables, including asparagus, spring greens and peas, and then flavored with a little white wine, parmesan and chives, this risotto recipe is full of flavor! Pearl barley risotto is a great alternative to traditional risotto that is wonderfully light while being highly nutritious.
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Ever since I made my Winter Vegetable Soup with Barley and Parmesan in January I’ve been thinking of ways I can incorporate more pearl barley recipes into my life. This wonderfully nutty and nutritious little grain is full of flavour and nutritious good stuff; it’s worth trying to eat it a little more regularly.
Pearl barley is a fantastic source of fiber and protein. This means the body digests it slowly and keeps you feeling fuller for longer! Plus its nutty flavour and slightly chewy texture make it a welcome change from the typical rice and quinoa grains we so often see in our meals these days.
On top of all of that SPRING IS OFFICIALLY HERE! And with it comes an abundance of fresh green veggies to celebrate the warmth and sunshine. To me, nothing screams Spring like asparagus. In this risotto recipe, the asparagus is added towards the end of cooking, giving it an al dente texture and retaining its delicate
How to make Pearl Barley Risotto
Time needed: 40 minutes.
Heat a knob of butter in a pot and saute the sliced leeks for around 5 minutes, until softened.
Add in the pearl barley and white wine. Cook for around 5 minutes, until the liquid has reduced and the alcohol has cooked down.
Add the vegetable stock to the pot and simmer for 35-40 minutes until the barley is tender and the liquid has reduced until thick and creamy.
To the pot add the asparagus, peas and spring greens. Cook for 3-4 minutes until tender. Then stir in the parmesan cheese, chopped chives and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy!
Pearl Barley Risotto with Spring Vegetables FAQ
Pearl barley contains gluten, therefore it is not appropriate for people with coeliac disease.
Allow the pearl barley risotto to cool to room temperature for no longer than two hours. Transfer the risotto to an air-tight Tupperware container and store in the fridge for 3-4 days.
Transfer the pearl barley risotto to a saucepan or casserole pot with a few tablespoons of water. Heat on
Alternatively, you could reheat the pearl barley risotto using a microwave. Microwave for approximately 3 minutes, stirring halfway through, until the risotto is piping hot. Cooking time will vary depending on the power of your microwave.
Once the risotto has cooled to room temperature, transfer it to a freezer-safe container, where it can be stored for up to three months.
To defrost, transfer the container from the freezer to the fridge and leave it to thaw – this can take up to 24 hours. Alternatively, you can use the defrost setting on your microwave.
If you like this recipe you might also like…
- Winter Vegetable Soup with Barley and Parmesan
- Herb and Lemon Risotto with Roasted Tomatoes
- Charred Spring Onion Tart with Ricotta and Cheddar
- Pea and Salmon Fishcakes
- Farro Risotto with Corn and Tomatoes from The Kitchn
Pearl Barley Risotto with Spring Vegetables
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This simple pearl barley risotto is full of fresh Spring vegetables and flavours! It is easy to throw together and doesn’t require a lot of elbow grease, plus is lighter than the rice version – what’s not to love!
- A knob of butter or 2 tablespoons of oil
- 1 large leek, sliced
- 200 grams (1 cup) pearl barley, dried
- 125 milliliters (1/2 cup) white wine
- 1.25 liters (5 cups) vegetable stock
- 100 grams asparagus, cut into quarters
- 150 grams peas, fresh or frozen
- 100 grams spring greens
- 20 grams (1/2 cup) parmesan cheese, grated
- 3 tablespoons chives, chopped
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- Salt & pepper to taste
- In a casserole pot heat the butter or oil over a medium heat. Saute the sliced leeks for 5 minutes until they have softened.
- Add the pearl barley to the pot and stir to combine. Pour in the white wine and cook for around 5 minutes, until the liquid has reduced and the alcohol has cooked out.
- Add the vegetable stock to the pot. Stir everything to combine and leave to simmer for 35-40 minutes, stirring occasionally until the pearl barley is tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed. If the mixture begins to dry out, add a little water. The final consistency should creamy and a little loose. If the mixture is too wet, cook for a few more minutes until more of the liquid has evaporated.
- Stir the asparagus, peas and spring greens into the risotto and cook for 3-4 minutes until the asparagus is just tender.
- Add the parmesan, lemon juice and chives. Stir to combine then taste. Add salt and pepper as required. Serve in bowls with grated parmesan and a sprinkle of chopped chives. Enjoy!
Keywords: Risotto, Pearl Barley Risotto, Pearl Barley Recipe, Barley Risotto, Spring Vegetable Risotto, Asparagus Risotto