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Beef Barley Stew: Easy Instant Pot Dinner

This Instant Pot beef barley stew recipe starts wtih all fresh ingredients.

Quick and Easy Instant Pot Dinner for Busy Weeknights

Looking for a quick and easy weeknight dinner for your family? This beef barley stew is perfect. You can throw it together in minutes with my quick kitchen hacks and the help of your Instant Pot.

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This Instant Pot beef barley stew recipe starts wtih all fresh ingredients.

Beef Barley Stew is a Nutritious Family Favorite

Beef barley stew is a favorite meal in our house. This recipe starts with all fresh ingredients and can easily be adjusted to personal taste or whatever vegetable you have on hand. I don’t always add barley, but barley is not only nutritious, but a great way to stretch a meal while feeding a crowd. At the end of this post, I will add a few tips on how to adjust this recipe to feed a large family.

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Kitchen Hack #1: I have started using baby carrots in my soups, stews, and pot pies. I may be paying a few cents for these baby carrots, but they are sweeter, save a ton of time for me, and we almost always have them in the house because they are a staple snack for our large family.

This Instant Pot beef barley soup is easy to make and sure to become a family favorite.

This beef barley stew recipe starts with simple ingredients: beef, flour, garlic salt, pepper, and a bit of oil.

Coating the beef in flour mixture before adding to Instant Pot makes a huge difference in flavor.

Kitchen Hack #2: Save a TON of money on beef by buying it in bulk and cutting it yourself. There is no reason to buy special “stewing beef” unless it happens to be on sale. Do not be intimidated by this process! This post has a video showing me slicing up a HUGE Chuck roll and getting seven large roasts out of it.

This beef barley soup is the pefect family meal for busy weeknight in large families.

Add just enough oil to cover the bottom of your Instant Pot and turn Instant Pot onto saute.

Combine flour, salt, garlic salt, and pepper. Coat beef in flour mixture.

How to make beef barley soup in your Instant Pot.

Add chopped onion and garlic to hot oil. Brown flour-coated beef in Instant Pot in small batches, enough to brown each side. Remove beef as it is browned. Add more oil if needed.

Meat and veggies can be cooked together in this easy Instant Pot beef barley stew.

Once all the beef is browned, add the beef back to the pot and add in the rest of the vegetables.

Pour in water, add the lid to Instant Pot and cook on high for 35 minutes.

Easy weeknight meal: Instant Pot Beef Barley Stew.

Instant Pot Beef Barley Stew

This beef barley stew goes together in just minutes and is sure to keep your family filled up and happy!

Course Main Course
Keyword Instant Pot
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 8


  • 1 pound stewing beef
  • 1 pound potatoes peeled and chopped or use mini potatoes
  • 1 pound carrots baby, or chopped and peeled regular carrots
  • 1 cup celery chopped
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 cup uncooked barley
  • 2 Tablespoons garlic minced
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1 Tablespoon beef bullion or beef stew starter
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 4 cups water


  1. Add oil to Instant Pot and set to sauté.

  2. Combine flour, pepper, and garlic salt in small bowl.

  3. Dip stewing beef in flour to coat.

    Coat meat in flour mixture.
  4.  Add to Instant Pot and brown on each side, do this will all the meat.

    Sautee beef in Instant Pot to brown outside.
  5. Press cancel on Instant Pot.

  6. Add in the remaining ingredients.

    Meat and veggies can be cooked together in this easy Instant Pot beef barley stew.
  7. Make sure everything is covered with water. Add more than 4 cups if needed.

  8.  Cook on high pressure for 35 minutes.

  9.  Use natural release on Instant Pot.

  10. Serve with homemade biscuits, bread, or crackers.

    Serve with fresh bread or biscuits.

How to Stretch Your Beef Barley Stew to Feed a Large Family

  1. When I am making this for a crowd, I will brown the beef and cook just the beef in my crockpot or Instant Pot and use a larger pot for cooking the actual stew. I own the six-quart Instant Pot, so I can’t always make enough soup or stew in it. My parents bought me this dutch oven for my birthday I love it. It is perfect for making soups and stews.
  2. This is a really easy meal to stretch by adding extra vegetables, water, and barley.
  3. You can also add frozen chopped potatoes or a package of frozen vegetables to save time.


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