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Recipe for German Barley Soup with Bacon - Graupensuppe Eintopf


Barley Soup - Graupensuppe Eintopf

Barley Soup - Graupensuppe Eintopf

Ralf Hertsch Creative Commons

Barley soup is such a comfort food, especially when served the German way. Barley soup uses the classic "Suppengrün" mixture (mirepoix) of leek, celery root and carrot, plus potatoes and bacon for substance. Truly, this barley soup recipe is a meal in itself.

Serves 4 with baguette or "Bauernbrot."

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Prep Time: 25 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 55 minutes

Yield: Serves 4


  • 1 onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 leek
  • 1 c. chopped celery root or 2 stalks Pascal celery
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 medium potato
  • 4 oz. bacon or "Bauchspeck" (100 g.)
  • 8 c. water or broth (beef or vegetable)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 c. pearled barley
  • 3 sprigs parsley
  • Salt, pepper to taste


Clean and chop all vegetables small. Potato should be cut in 1/2 inch cubes and carrot cubed or cut about 1/8 inch thick.

Cut the bacon into thin strips. If you are using "Bauchspeck," cut it into strips about 1/4 x 1/4 x 1 inch long. Remove any bones from the "Speck."

Heat a 4 quart pan and brown the bacon or "Speck" in it. Remove the bacon from the pan.

Start to brown the onion in the bacon grease, then add the garlic, leek, celery root and carrot. Sauté these vegetables for several minutes, until they start to wilt and pick up some color.

Add the water or broth, the bay leaf, and the barley. Lay the cleaned parsley on top (to be removed at the end of cooking time).

Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. The potatoes will start to fall apart and the barley should be soft and thicken the soup.

Add salt and pepper to taste. Remember, you are started with salty bacon and perhaps broth, so plan accordingly.

Remove parsley and bay leaf.

Serve with crusty bread, such as Swiss Wurzelbrot, Bauernbrot, Fladenbrot or warm baguette from the store.

One full serving of vegetables in each portion.

You may also make this in the slow cooker. Brown the bacon, onion and garlic, then place all the ingredients in a 4 quart slow cooker (should be at least 1/2 full) and cook on high for 4 - 6 hours.

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