Chicken and Barley Soup is a winter warmer that you eat and feel like you are wrapped up in a warm winter blanket.  The rich flavour of the chicken combined with the creamy texture of the barley and lentils. Carrots, celery, zucchini, potatoes and onion all come together with warm turmeric, salt, pepper and bay leaf in the chicken broth to create a delicious bowl of goodness.  The addition of lemon boosts the vitamin C in this dish, making it a perfect immune boosting dish for the colder months.  

This recipe will be added to the list of your winter warmers.  It is a slow cook, which means your gut will love the added nutrients and glutamine, your brain will love the less stress and your skin will be glowing from the added collagen. 

It is something the whole family can enjoy and something you can store in the freezer and reheat quickly for lunch or a weeknight dinner. 

When you are making this slow cook, make sure that the chicken has the bones and skin for added nutrients and vitamins.  Once the chicken is cooked the bones and skin can be discarded and the chicken meat can be added to the soup mixture. Garnish with salt, pepper, lemon and parsley, and serve with crusty croutons for added flavour. 



  • 800g water

  • 1 lemon juiced 

  • ½ cup uncooked barley 

  • ½ cup uncooked green lentils*

  • 2 tbsp olive oil 

  • 4 maryland chicken pieces, raw 

  • 1 tsp ground pepper 

  • 2 tsp ground turmeric 

  • 2 dried bay leaves 

  • 1 onion, chopped finely 

  • 2 sticks, large, celery, with the leaves, chopped into pieces 

  • 2 medium zucchini, chopped into pieces 

  • 1 medium, potato, chopping into pieces 

  • 2 medium carrots, chopped into pieces 

  • Salt 

  • Parsley and lemon as a garnish to serve with croutons.


  1. Cut the vegetables into small pieces and set aside. 

  2. In a small pan, brown the finely diced onion with a drizzle of olive oil. 

  3. Wash the chicken with water and half a lemon. Set aside. 

  4. Place the chicken in the middle of the slow cooker pot, season with salt and pepper, then scatter the chopped vegetables, onions, parsley, pearl barley and lentil around the chicken. Season the ingredients with turmeric, salt, pepper, olive oil and lemon juice, then add the bay leaves.  Mix all the ingredients then pour the water into the pot until the chicken is covered. 

  5. Set the slow cooker on medium for 6 hours. 

  6. Once the 6 hours has passed, remove the chicken from the mix and debone and shred the chicken from the bone. Add the chicken meat back into the soup mixture and mix the ingredients. Serve with crusty bread, lemon juice and cracked pepper. 

*If possible, soak the lentils in water for 24 hours for easier digestion and cooking. The other option is to use canned lentils.