Mushroom & Bacon Barley Casserole
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
  • 4 cups low-sodium beef broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 8 slices nitrate-free bacon, chopped
  • ½ onion, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp fresh thyme, minced
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 lb cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 2 cups uncooked pearl barley
  • ⅓ cup Madeira wine or dry cooking wine of choice
  • 4 oz Gruyère cheese, shredded (about 1 cup), divided
  • ½ cup (about 9) oil-packed sun-dried tomato halves, drained and chopped
  • 2 tsp low-sodium soy sauce
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 1 (10 oz) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained, and squeezed dry
  • Cooking spray
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 F.
  2. Bring stock and 3 cups water to a simmer in a large saucepan. Keep mixture very warm (not boiling), over low heat.
  3. Meanwhile, cook bacon in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat until crisp. Remove bacon from pan, reserving 1 tablespoon drippings in pan; set bacon aside.
  4. Return Dutch oven with reserved bacon grease to medium-high heat. Add onion, thyme, and garlic; sauté 3 minutes or until tender. Add mushrooms and salt; cook 10 minutes or until browned, stirring occasionally.
  5. Stir in barley; cook 1 minute, stirring frequently. Add Madeira; cook 2-3 minute or until liquid is absorbed. Reduce heat to medium. Stir in 2 cups broth mixture; cook until the liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring frequently. Add remaining broth mixture, 1 cup at a time, stirring frequently until each portion of broth mixture is absorbed before adding the next (about 30 minutes total).
  6. Stir in 2 ounces of the Gruyère, tomatoes, soy sauce, pepper, spinach, and reserved bacon. Transfer barley mixture to an extra larger ceramic baking dish coated with cooking spray; sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Serve hot.
Recipe from Cooking Light
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1½ cups Calories: 455 Fat: 11.8 Carbohydrates: 65.3 Sugar: 4.0 Sodium: 618 Fiber: 13.3 Protein: 20.5 Cholesterol: 23
Recipe by Prevention RD at