We use a lot of brown rice, oats, quinoa, and whole wheat flour as our whole grains. But I really like to vary our grains as much as possible. This is my go to barley recipe. It’s a one pot meal, which makes for easier clean up and is made with all whole foods.
This bowl reminds me how much I love being a “volume eater”. Its amazing how much good food you can eat, for the perfect amount of calories to fuel your body, and such big nutrition when its all healthy whole foods.
And even though risottos have the reputation for being time consuming, this took a little over 30 minutes start to finish. Quicker cooking is another plus of soaking your grains overnight. To soak your grains, place 1 cup whole grain in 1 cup warm water and add 1 Tbs something acidic (such as apple cider vinegar or lemon juice) in a glass bowl and let it soak overnight. Drain and rinse the grain before using. Soaking grains essentially makes it more digestible and allows your body to absorb more nutrients. I think most people have heard of soaking beans but grains should be soaked as well.
Barley, Green bean, and Shrimp Risotto
1 tsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 cup barley (soaked overnight)*
1.5 cups homemade or reduced sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup white wine
8 oz mushrooms, cut up into pieces
3 cups cut green beans (or 1 bunch cut asparagus or 1 cup peas)
12 oz shrimp, peeled, tail off
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
salt and pepper
Heat chicken broth in a saucepan. Keep on low during entire cooking process.
Heat olive oil in a pan and cook onion for 5 minutes, until translucent. Add garlic and cook for another minute.
Add barley, white wine, and 1/2 cup chicken broth. Cook until liquid is absorbed, stirring frequently.
Add 1/2 cup more broth, mushrooms, and green beans. Cook, stirring frequently, until liquid is absorbed.
Continue adding broth, 1/2 cup at a time. Add shrimp in with last 1/2 cup broth.
Once all broth is absorbed, add parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.
*If you choose not to soak your barley beforehand, follow recipe the same way but you may need 1/2-1 cup more broth to fully cook barley.
Carbohydrates: 46 g
Dietary Fiber: 12 g
Sugars: 3.6 g
Protein: 33 g