Pearl barley and chorizo soup by Jamie Oliver

Friday 25th January, 2019

“Tuning in with the seasons means you can make this beautiful soup all year round and it’ll always taste different – it never gets old! The mixed veg gives it a minestrone vibe, but I’ve gone for a nice bit of chorizo to flavour the base and used hearty barley – instead of pasta – for added bite. Make a big batch and freeze in portions to enjoy another day. You’ll be pleased you did.”

Serves 8

5 mins to prepare and 1 hr 05 mins to cook



  • 2 onions
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 sticks of celery
  • olive oil
  • 150g quality chorizo
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 200g pearl barley
  • 2 x 400g tins of quality peeled plum tomatoes
  • 4 x vegetable stock cubes, made up with 1.8ltr water
  • 500g kale, or other seasonal greens such as Savoy cabbage or cavolo nero
  • extra virgin olive oil



  1. Peel and roughly chop the onions, then scrub, trim and roughly chop the carrots and celery.
  2. Place a large deep, lidded pan over a medium heat with ½ tbsp olive oil.
  3. Roughly chop the chorizo, add to the pan and fry for 2 mins or until golden. Spoon out a quarter and set aside.
  4. Add the chopped veg and bay leaves, then cook for 10 mins, or until softened, stirring occasionally.
  5. Stir in the barley, then scrunch in the tomatoes, along with 1 tin’s worth of water and the stock. Give everything a good stir, bring to the boil, then turn the heat down to low and simmer for 40 mins with the lid ajar, stirring occasionally.
  6. Prep the greens, removing any tough stalks, then finely shred. Add to the pan and simmer for a further 10 mins, or until tender.
  7. Leave the soup chunky, or blitz a third with a stick blender to give it a thicker, smoother texture. Taste and season to perfection with sea salt and black pepper.
  8. Ladle into bowls, scatter over the reserved chorizo and drizzle with good-quality extra virgin olive oil. Delicious with toasted bread for dunking.


Jamie’s tip: “Pearl barley is higher in fibre than white pasta. This recipe also gives you 2 of your 5-a-day. Bonus!”