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Turkey and Barley Vegetable Soup 

This soup is comforting and delicious and is a great option for those who have trouble swallowing. It is also high in protein, which is important for healing, and a good source of fiber, which helps promote healthy bowel movements. To save time, make barley ahead of time or swap it out for quinoa which has a shorter cooking time.

Prep time: 45 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

Serves: 8


1 lb. ground turkey

1 Tbsp olive oil

¾ cup pearled barley, uncooked

3½ cups water

1 onion, diced

2 celery stalks, diced

1 zucchini, finely diced

1 yellow squash, finely diced

1 14 oz can petite diced tomatoes

1 14 oz can French cut green beans, drained

4 cups low sodium chicken broth

2 cups water

1 tsp oregano

1 tsp salt

½ tsp pepper

3 Tbsp fresh parsley

Parmesan (optional)


1. Add barley, 1½ cups water, and pinch of salt in large pot. Bring to a boil, then simmer and cover for 45 minutes until water is absorbed.
2. While barley is cooking, brown ground turkey in a medium skillet. Drain and set aside.
3. Heat olive oil into large stockpot. Add onions, celery, zucchini, and squash. Sauté for 5 minutes until onion is translucent.
4. Add tomatoes, green beans, remaining water, broth, oregano, salt, and pepper.
5. Simmer for 20-30 minutes to soften vegetables.
6. Add turkey and barley to soup. Heat through.
7. Top with optional parmesan cheese.


Per serving: 260 calories, 10 grams fat, 2.5 grams saturated fat, 60 mg cholesterol, 640 mg sodium, 24 grams carbohydrate, 6 grams dietary fiber, 21 grams protein