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Barley and Spinach Risotto

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Adjust Servings:
1.5 l veg stock
25 g olive oil
25 g butter
50 g chopped onion
100 g baby spinach
2 clove garlic – crushed
3 cups barley
2 tbsp sage – freshly chopped
2 tsp lemon rind – finely grated

Nutritional information

478.86 g
63.78 g
53.23 g
300 mg
54 mg

Barley and Spinach Risotto

  • Veg
    • 50 mins
    • Serves 5
    • Easy



    Barley and spinach risotto are a wonderful and healthy addition to the long list of risotto variants (which is a very long list indeed). Risotto is the signature rice dish of Italy, and just about every region and grandmother has their own version of risotto. This recipe replaces rice with barley in an attempt to make risotto a little bit healthier. But if barley is not your thing, you can easily replace it with your favorite type of rice.

    Health Benefits

    Eating a risotto that utilizes barley instead of rice can definitely seem strange or unreal to people used to a traditional risotto. But there is no reason to be cautious, as barley is one of the healthiest grains you can eat. Its health benefits include:

    • Barley is nutrient dense
    • Barley increases satiety and helping you eat less
    • Barley contains both insoluble and soluble fiber which improves digestion
    • Barley prevents gallstones
    • Barley contains beta-glucans that lower cholesterol
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    How to make Barley and Spinach Risotto


    1. Combine the vegetable stock and 3 cups of cold water in a large saucepan.
    2. Cook for 10 minutes at a medium temperature or until the mixture begins to simmer.
      1. Reduce heat to low to keep hot.
    3. Heat half the oil and butter in a large, heavy-based saucepan, over a medium heat.
      1. Add onion and garlic.
      2. Cook while stirring for 5 minutes or until the onions have softened
      3. Add barley.
      4. Stir to combine.
    4. Reduce temperature to low.
    5. Add 1/2 cup stock mixture to barley mixture.
      1. Cook while stirring until stock has absorbed.
      2. Repeat with remaining stock, adding 1/2 cup at a time, until all the liquid has been fully absorbed and the barley has turned creamy and tender.
    6. Stir lemon rind and spinach into the barley.
      1. Check for seasoning.
    7. Cook for 1 - 2 minutes or until the barley is thoroughly heated through.
    8. Season with salt and pepper.
    9. Serve risotto topped with lemon rind.


    The 'inch' was originally made to measure barley.

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