Minestrone Barley Soup with Spinach Citrus Salad

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Minestrone Barley Soup with Spinach Citrus Salad
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Soup and Salad make a great light lunch or dinner. This veggie minestrone soup is a healthy, flavorful meal in itself and it is made even more appealing with this spinach, cucumber and citrus salad topped with nuts!

Yields: Serves 4-6


For the Vegetable Barley Soup:

1/2 onion, diced

1-2 cloves garlic, crushed or pressed

2 ribs celery, diced

2 carrots, diced

1/2 cup green beans, chopped to 1” lengths

1/2 cup peas

1/2 cup corn

2 T oil or water

8 cups water or vegetable stock

1 cup barley, uncooked

1 T tomato paste

1 28 oz can diced or crushed tomatoes

1 15 oz can of beans (aduki, white or red)

1 tsp Italian spice mix (or 1-2 T if using water instead of vegi stock)

2 bay leaves

Sea salt or tamari to taste

4-6 additional cups of water or vegetable stock

For the Spinach Citrus Salad:

1 5 oz bag or large bunch of spinach

2 Clementine oranges, tangerines or tangelo’s, peeled and separated

6 inches cucumber, sliced

1/4 cup purple onion, chopped fine or 1 green onion

1/4 cup slivered almonds or walnut pieces

2-3 Brazil nuts, chopped fine

2-3 T raspberry vinaigrette


For the Soup:

Chop onion, garlic, celery, carrots, and green beans. In a large stock pot or pan, sauté the onions and garlic in the oil until onions are soft. Add all ingredients to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for an hour, stirring occasionally. Add additional water/vegetable stock if soup is too thick. Remove bay leaves and serve.

For the Salad:

Combine spinach, orange slices, cucumber, onion and nuts. Toss. Drizzle with vinaigrette and serve immediately.

Additional Tips

Soup variations:

Any type of bean would work for this soup -- navy, red, Lima, etc.

With about 20 minutes left to cook add 1/4 to 1/2 cup of pasta such as elbows, small shells, bow ties, ditalini.

Leftover soup can be frozen for several weeks.

Recipe by
Karna Knapp