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Slow-Cooker Bean, Kale & Barley Soup Recipe

Warm, hearty, and packed with wholesome ingredients, Slow-Cooker Bean, Kale & Barley Soup is a comforting meal that’s perfect for nourishing your body and soul. This soup combines the earthy flavors of beans and barley with the vibrant goodness of kale to create a delightful, one-pot wonder.

Using a slow cooker makes the preparation a breeze and allows the flavors to meld together beautifully. Join us as we embark on creating this delicious and nutritious Bean, Kale & Barley Soup.


  • 1 cup of dried navy beans, soaked overnight and drained
  • 1 cup of dried barley
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 can (14 oz) of diced tomatoes
  • 6 cups of vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon of dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon of dried rosemary
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 4 cups of kale, stems removed and leaves chopped
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • Grated Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)
  • Crusty bread, for serving (optional)

Steps to Make

Step 1

  • Soak the dried navy beans in water overnight, then drain and rinse them.
  • Chop the onion, peel and dice the carrots, dice the celery, and mince the garlic.
  • Remove the stems from the kale leaves and chop the leaves.

Step 2

  • In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
  • Add the finely chopped onion, diced carrots, diced celery, and minced garlic. Sauté until the vegetables become tender and the onion turns translucent, about 5-7 minutes.

Step 3

  • Transfer the sautéed vegetables to your slow cooker.
  • Add the soaked and drained navy beans, dried barley, diced tomatoes (with their juices), vegetable broth, dried thyme, dried rosemary, salt, and black pepper to the slow cooker.
  • Stir everything to combine.

Step 4

  • Cover your slow cooker and set it to low heat.
  • Allow the soup to cook for 6-8 hours or until the navy beans and barley are tender.

Step 5

  • About 30 minutes before serving, stir in the chopped kale.
  • Let the kale wilt and become tender in the hot soup.

Step 6

  • Once the Bean, Kale & Barley Soup is hot and flavorful, it’s ready to serve.
  • Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with grated Parmesan cheese if desired.
  • Serve with crusty bread for a hearty meal.


Slow-Cooker Bean, Kale & Barley Soup is a wholesome and satisfying dish that combines the earthy flavors of beans and barley with the vibrant goodness of kale. It’s a nutritious meal that’s perfect for a cozy evening at home.

Using a slow cooker simplifies the cooking process, allowing you to enjoy a flavorful and nourishing soup without much effort.


Can I use canned beans instead of dried navy beans?

Yes, you can use canned navy beans to save time. Simply drain and rinse them before adding to the soup.

What can I substitute for barley?

If you prefer, you can use farro, quinoa, or brown rice as a barley substitute.

Can I use other types of beans for this soup?

Certainly! You can use cannellini beans, great northern beans, or any other white beans you prefer.

Is it necessary to soak the navy beans overnight?

Soaking the beans overnight helps them cook faster and more evenly. If you’re short on time, you can use the quick soak method by boiling the beans for 2 minutes, then letting them soak for an hour before using.

Can I freeze leftover soup?

Yes, this soup freezes well. Store it in airtight containers for up to 3 months. Thaw and reheat when ready to enjoy.