Turkey Barley Soup

I’m not sure if it is the barley or the turkey that makes me so happy and inspired to make this soup. I am a sucker for anything turkey and always for a hearty stick-to-the-rib soup. This is one of my favourites. The original recipe came from a cookbook that I was involved in writing called, Mosaic. I tweaked it a bit, but the bones we most certainly there!

It is very easy to make and freezes really well. Most butchers will have turkey drumsticks or turkey legs (thigh and drumstick attached) in the freezer. Put the frozen turkey in the fridge overnight to defrost and remember to remove the skin!

And by the way, my dog’s name is Barley 🙂

Mr. Barley, the 106 pound Lab

Turkey Barley Soup

Servings 8 as a main


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 leeks white and light green parts, coarsely chopped
  • ½ pound button mushrooms sliced
  • 2 medium carrots peeled and coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup pearl barley
  • 3 large garlic cloves minced
  • 2 skinless turkey drumsticks or 1 turkey leg (thigh and drumstick intact) sea headnote
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 8 cups no-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp chopped Italian parsley
  • ¼-½ tsp pepper or to taste


  • Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot over med heat. 
  • Add the leeks and sauté until they have softened, 5-7 minutes. 
  • Stir in the mushrooms, carrots, barley, garlic and salt and sauté 1 minute longer.
  • Add the turkey legs, sauté for a minute or two, add the broth, bring to a boil and reduce the heat to low.
  • Cover and simmer for about 1½ hours until the barley is tender but not mushy.
  • Remove the turkey legs.  When cool enough to handle, remove the meat from the bones.  Shred the meat into bite size pieces and return to the pot.  Turn the heat off.
  • Stir in the parsley , add the pepper to taste and enjoy!
  • Freezes well.