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Bacon Barley Soup at

When I make bacon, the end pieces are strongly smoked and aren’t nice cooked on their own. So, I decided to use them to make Bacon Barley Soup. Don’t worry if you don’t smoke your own bacon, you could substitute regular bacon or back (Canadian to Americans) bacon.

I started by heating the oil up over medium heat in a large pot. I added the bacon and sauteed until it started to colour. Then I added the onion and sauteed until a nice dark fond (a coating on the bottom of the pan) starts to form. Then I added the garlic and the herbs and sauteed just for a few seconds until the herbs started to give off a nice smell.

Bacon Barley Soup 1

Then I added the chicken stock, soy sauce and Sriracha sauce. I brought the soup to a boil and then reduced the heat to a simmer. I simmered it for an hour.

Then I added the green beans and the pot barley and simmered for another 45 minutes.

Bacon Barley Soup 2

Here is the finished product.

Bacon Barley Soup 3

The Verdict

This turned out great. The smokiness of the bacon adds a wonderful complexity to the soup together with the saltiness and touch of spice from the Sriracha. I will be making this again.

The Old Fat Guy

Bacon Barley Soup

Yield: 7 cups

Bacon Barley Soup


  • 250 ml (1 cup) bacon or back (Canadian) bacon, 1/4 inch dice
  • 250 ml (1 cup) onion, cut in half lengthwise and then sliced.
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 5 ml (1 teaspoon) dried thyme
  • 5 ml (1 teaspoon) dried basil
  • 5 ml (1 teaspoon) dried oregano
  • 5 ml (1 teaspoon) dried savory
  • 1.5 litres (6 cups) chicken stock (low salt is best)
  • 50 ml (1/4 cup) soy sauce
  • 3 ml (1/2 teaspoon) Sriracha sauce
  • 250 ml (1 cup) chopped vegetables of your choice (I used green beans)
  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) pot barley


  1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat.
  2. Sautee the bacon just until it starts to colour. If using regular bacon, drain off excess fat.
  3. Add the onion and sautee until a dark (not black) fond (coating on the bottom of the pan) forms.
  4. Add the garlic and herbs. Sautee for a few seconds until the herbs give a nice fragrance.
  5. Add the chicken stock, soy sauce and Sriracha sauce.
  6. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for an hour.
  7. Add the vegetables and barley. Simmer for 45 minutes.
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8 Responses

  1. This is exactly the kind of recipe I need in my life – a big pot of delicious soup! I love barley and I imagine the bacon makes this so tasty. I do not smoke my own bacon so thanks for the tip for us “non-smokers” 😉 I have a big canister of barley in the pantry and this will be its fate! Thanks for the recipe David!

    1. Seems to me there is a lesson here. Start smoking.

      I love barley in a soup. It just makes it comfort food to me. I hope you like it.

  2. What a wonderful recipe to follow – Winter is coming to Australia and this is just what I need. Love barley and to incorporate this – makes for a well-rounded soup. Haha, makes the kitchen smell like a Professional is cooking. Looking forward to trying more of your recipes

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