Do you have a slow cooker? One of the things I love most about Fall is being able to break out my slow cooker again. It’s an awesome thing to be able to come home to dinner made. I’ve particularly made it my mission to create recipes that you just throw it all in and turn it on. Isn’t that what slow cooking is for?? In an effort to try to cut down on food waste, I also love to look and see what I have on hand and create recipes from there and share them with all of you! This Slow Cooker Lentil, Barley, and Kale soup is a healthy, comforting meal as the weather turns colder.
This recipe was a collaboration between my daughter and I. I am a firm believer that If they have a hand in making it, they will eat it! I promise! My passion is getting kids involved in the kitchen, to be involved in what they are eating, and to have fun in the process while making our jobs easier in trying to get them to eat healthier.
I have also been trying to cook more meatless meals. I went for my annual physical this year and my doctor likes to remind me that you really need to pay particular attention to some things once you pass 40. One of these things is that your diet should be 60% plant based (I love that this was even a conversation because many doctors don’t even consider nutrition and food that we eat). Happily, we were pretty much doing this for the most part. But, now we are really conscious of it. It is possible to get protein from foods other than meat. Beans, Lentils and barley are things that we stock in our pantry. Barley is a grain with huge nutritional benefits. It’s low glycemic and is high in both soluble and insoluble fiber. Lentils are easy to cook, low in calories. and high in nutrition. The perfect food
I knew we would be out all day today and wanted to plan ahead to have dinner made. I decided soup and gave her the list of stuff that we had in the house. She picked lentils, kale, and tomatoes. I added some things and here is the end result:
Slow Cooker Lentil, Barley, and Kale Soup
- 2 medium, or 1 large, onion chopped
- bunch of carrots, chopped into 1 inch pieces
- 1 14 ounce can organic diced tomatoes
- 2 32 ounce boxes vegetable broth
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup barley
- 1 cup lentils
- 1 1/2 tablespoons Cumin
- 1 1/2 Teaspoon Tumeric (optional if you don't have it. Been trying to add Tumeric to anything I can lately)
- 1 tablespoon Balsamic vinegar (adds an awesome richness to the soup!)
- 1 Teaspoon sea salt
- 1 Tablespoon fresh ground pepper
- 2 cups chopped Kale ( I used Lacinato Kale because that's what I had. Use whatever you have or can find!)
- Add all ingredients, except for the kale to the slow cooker.
- Cook on low for 6 hours.
- Add kale and cook until it wilts and is incorporated into the soup.
- And thats it!
Looking for some more vegetarian slow cooker ideas? Check out these other recipes!