This Instant Pot Beef & Barley Stew recipe is a classic stew with super flavorful beef broth that has cooked-all-day flavor in just 30 minutes! It is full of tender beef, vegetables, and perfectly cooked barley. This is a hearty beef and barley soup that will fill you up, which makes it a perfect winter dinner.
Since this Stew is so comforting, filling, and easy it also makes a great dinner to take to a family with a newborn, a new neighbor, a family grieving a loss, or for a meal train.
Secrets to Really Good Beef & Barley Stew
There are a few secrets that will ensure you have a great Beef & Barley Stew that is full of flavor.
Use a really good beef stock that has a lot of flavor. If you have homemade, great, but if not look for a beef stock instead of broth. A stock generally has more flavor.
Cooking in the Instant Pot allows you to get cooked-all-day flavor in just 20 minutes!
Use a quality Beef Base, like Better Than Bouillon Brand (see below. If you are not familiar with beef base, it comes in a jar and can be found in the soup aisle at the grocery store. It comes in a paste form and has super intense beef flavor. It is like the grown up brother of beef bouillon. I always keep beef base and chicken base in my kitchen!
Let the tomato paste sauté a little to caramelize the flavors a little, but make sure you deglaze the bottom of the pot completely before pressure cooking!
Seasoning the soup properly with salt and pepper always enhances flavors perfectly!
Dinner with the Instant Pot
If there is one thing I can say about the Instant Pot is that it can make dinner prep super fast!!! Beef and Barley Stew is something that would normally take about an hour to prep and cook. But, with the pressure cooker it is done in a flash.
I use the Instant Pot Duo Plus 60 6 quart 9-in-1, I also recommend the Instant Pot 6 quart 7-in-1. I like these two pots because of the size, 6 quarts. This is the perfect size for just about any Instant Pot recipe you will come across.
I’m not sure I will ever use all the functions, like sterilize or yogurt. But, If I want them they are there! The functions I use most are the Soup/Broth, Meat/Stew, Sauté, Pressure Cook, and Bean/Chili.
I will definitely use the slow cooker mode too, but right now I’m obsessed with the quicker cooking recipes using the pressure cooking modes!
More Instant Pot Recipes To Love
Some of my other favorite Instant Pot Recipes are this Chicken & Rice Soup, Cajun Rice with Chicken & Sausage, and Turkey Meatballs. Or you can check out ALL my Instant Pot recipes here.
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Instant Pot Beef & Barley Stew Recipe
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 yellow or white onion chopped
- 2 celery stalks, sliced
- 3 plump garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 ½ cups carrots, sliced
- ½ teaspoon each- onion powder & garlic powder
- optional 2 teaspoon fresh chopped rosemary or thyme
- 1 ½ tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 teaspoon beef base
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 32 oz beef broth or stock
- 1 ½ cup water
- 1 ½ lbs beef stew meat cut into 1 inch chunks (can be anywhere from 1-1 ½ lbs)
- 1 cup pearl barley I use Bob’s Red Mill brand
- Add the oil, onions, carrots, celery, and garlic to the Instant Pot on sauté mode. Sauté for 5 minutes.1 yellow or white onion chopped, 2 celery stalks, sliced, 3 plump garlic cloves, chopped, 1 ½ cups carrots, sliced, 1 tablespoon oil
- Add the onion powder, garlic powder, Worcestershire, tomato paste, salt, pepper, and beef base, stir to combine with the veggies.and optional rosemary or thyme½ teaspoon each- onion powder & garlic powder, 1 ½ tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 tablespoon tomato paste, 2 teaspoon beef base, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon black pepper, optional 2 teaspoon fresh chopped rosemary or thyme
- Pour in the beef stock and water and deglaze the bottom of the pot, scraping up any bits stuck to the bottom. This will prevent the burn notice.32 oz beef broth or stock, 1 ½ cup water
- Turn off the sauté mode.
- Add in the stew meat and pearl barley. Make sure all the barley is submerged.PRO TIP: if you have a sensitive pot that gives you the burn notice do not stir at this point, just let the barley sit above the meat, but make sure it is all submerged in liquid or at least touching the liquid.1 ½ lbs beef stew meat, 1 cup pearl barley
- Close the Instant Pot and set to meat/stew mode (or manual/pressure mode), high pressure, for 25 minutes.
- Do a quick release. Give it a good stir and let it cool for about 5-10 minutes.It will thicken as it cools!
If nutrition facts are provided they are calculated as an estimate to the best of our knowledge.
I love this recipe. Have made it many times for my family. It is easy to make and delicious to eat. Bravo!