Shrimp, Barley and Lemon Stew

shrimp and barley stew
Laurel Randolph
  • 35 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 25 mins
  • Yield: serves 4
Ratings

Barley is a grain that often appears in stews, thanks to its sturdy texture and the natural creaminess it lends to broth. It's typically paired with beef for a classic Beef and Barley Stew, but swapping the traditional protein for shrimp offers a lighter, yet still satisfying option. Sweet potato adds some body and texture, and a nice dose of garlic keeps things flavorful. Fresh shrimp, bright green spinach and lemon are added at the last minute so that they don't overcook. It's a brightly flavored dish with plenty of body, making it a soup for all seasons. Serve with a salad and crusty bread to make it a hearty meal.

When buying barley for this recipe, we recommend seeking out the pearled variety. It cooks in less time, preventing the other ingredients from turning to mush, and has a nice, not-too-chewy texture. Score!

What You'll Need

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion (diced)
  • 2 celery ribs (diced)
  • 1 large carrot (diced)
  • 4 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 1 medium sweet potato (peeled and small diced)
  • 1 cup pearl barley
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3/4 pound small (raw shrimp, peeled)
  • 3 cups fresh spinach (packed)
  • 1 lemon (zested and juiced)

How to Make It

  1. Heat a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Once hot, add the oil followed by the onion, celery, carrot and garlic. Sauté for 3 minutes.
  2. Add the sweet potato, barley and chicken broth, and stir. Season with salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover. Cook for about 20 minutes, or until barley is tender.
  3. Add the shrimp, spinach, lemon juice and zest. Bring back to a simmer, cover and turn off the heat.
  1. Let sit for 5 minutes and serve.