Chilled Barley Salad Recipe

I served this as a side dish to simple sandwiches for a family gathering and it was a huge hit. Using barley instead of pasta is a great way to get in your whole grains. Barley is also a good source of protein and fiber to fill you up and the mineral manganese. Manganese is essential for normal brain and nerve function. Serve this dish at your summer picnics instead of the traditional pasta salad. It has more nutrition, less fat, and is just a nice change of pace from the “usual” picnic fare. Enjoy!

1 1/2 cups uncooked medium pearl barley
1 small sweet red pepper, chopped
1 cup frozen corn
½ onion, chopped
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 Tablespoons water
juice from 1 lemon
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup olive oil

Cook the barley in a medium saucepan according to package directions. While the barley is cooking, sauté the red pepper, corn, and onion in oil until tender, about 5 minutes.

Thoroughly whisk the vinegar, water, lemon juice, and seasonings.

Toss the barley, sautéed vegetables, dressing, and parmesan cheese in a large bowl and cover. Chill for 2 hours minimum (best if you can chill it overnight).

Makes 10 servings

calories – 200
saturated fat – 1.5 g
sodium – 57 mg
fiber – 5.4 g
protein – 5 g