Curried Vegetable Barley Soup

There is something about a cozy, brothy soup when that fall chill hits the air and the days start to get shorter and shorter. Soup is such a comfort food for me, and this vegetable barley soup is right up there with my top comfort-food soups. An instant winner for weeknight dinner. (I’m a poet and I know it). 

Curried Vegetable Barley Soup

This is a really simple vegetable barley soup recipe with a hit of unique flavor thanks to curry powder. Chickpeas come along for the ride, as they pair perfectly with curry flavors, are a favorite in soups, and add a nice bit of protein. 

And then we’ve got the veggies. Your standard mirepoix: onion, carrots, and celery. Add some garlic for flavor, then potatoes and cabbage for a nice vegetable-packed situation. 

Curried Vegetable Barley Soup

Oh, and barley, of course! The versatile grain found in soups and stews in grandmas’ kitchens everywhere. It’s chewy, satisfying, and perfect in this Curried Vegetable Barley Soup. 

Curried Vegetable Barley Soup

This is a nice, thick soup (perhaps even more of a “stoup,” thanks for the term, Rachael Ray). Normally when I’m developing a soup recipe, I’d add more broth to the equation, but ultimately I found that I really, really love this thick vegetable barley soup with its veggie-and-barley packed situation. If you want a brothier soup, consider adding 2 more cups of broth (and maybe 1/2 a teaspoon additional curry powder). If you’re down with the thickness, try it stoup-ified! You might just love it as much as we do.

Soup + fall = cooooozy. So happy. 

Curried Vegetable Barley Soup

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Yield: Serves 4

Curried Vegetable Barley Soup

Prep: 15 minutes

Cook: 25 minutes

Total: 40 minutes

This veggie-packed soup has a lovely, easy hit of flavor thanks to curry powder. With its chickpeas, veggies, and barley, it makes for a super hearty (and delicious) dinner.


  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, diced (about 1 cup)
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 medium stalk celery, diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 medium clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas (a.k.a. garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup diced red potatoes (1-2 medium potatoes)
  • 2 cups shredded green cabbage (about 1/4 of a head)
  • 1/2 cup barley (uncooked)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt + more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper + more to taste


  1. Set a large soup pot over medium-low heat. When hot, add the olive oil. When that’s hot, add the onion, carrots, and celery. Add a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is soft, 7-8 minutes.
  2. Add garlic and curry powder and cook, stirring constantly, for one more minute.
  3. Stir in the vegetable broth. Add the chickpeas, potatoes, cabbage, barley, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  4. Increase heat to medium high. Once it comes to a boil, reduce heat and keep at a low boil for 10-12 minutes, until the barley is cooked through and the potatoes are tender.
  5. Remove from heat. Taste and add more salt and pepper if desired. Serve.

Your soup’s flavor can vary depending on the type of vegetable broth you use. My favorite lately is a generic brand called Cadia; I’m not sure if it’s carried at many stores. I love this recipe as is with that brand of broth. If you use a different broth and find you want a bit more depth, a squeeze of lemon and a teaspoon of brown sugar can really help round out the curry flavors.

All images and text ©Kare for Kitchen Treaty.

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