Soup for Supper – Red Wine Barley Lentil Soup

Yesterday was a cold, damp day and this soup hit the spot. As promised, this recipe is the homemade version of Wine Barrel Gourmet line. These soup recipes are vegetarian (although lots of people tell me they add sausage or cooked chicken to this particular soup) and have a lot less salt than any soup you can find at the grocery store. Adding lots of herbs and aromatic veggies like celery, onion, and red bell pepper give this soup it’s flavor. Lentils are filling and a little goes a long way, plus this particular recipe is a GREAT source of fiber – about 11 grams per cup. The recipe follows, but first the background info.

Last summer we stopped producing our Wine Barrel Gourmet Red Wine soup mixes. Since then I have been fielding numerous calls and responding to emails and letters from disappointed customers. The The requests have been so prolific that I promised to post the recipes so everyone can re-create our soups at home. (Note – this isn’t the exact soup mix recipe, since the mixes used several dried ingredients that aren’t easily available to home cooks – but it’s close. Update: Wine Barrel Gourmet was purchased recently. Its soups and other products should be available again soon.)

Red Wine Barley Lentil Soup – makes 6-8 servings

In a large pot saute the following in 2 Tbsp olive oil until soft but not browned:

  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 large onion or shallot, minced
  • 1 stalk celery, diced


5 cups water
1 cup rinsed green or brown lentils
1/3 cup pearled barley
1 – 14 oz. can diced tomatoes
1/2 large red bell pepper, chopped
1 large carrot, diced
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp dried basil
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp ajwain seed
2 tsp muscovado or brown sugar

Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until lentils and barley are tender, about 30 – 40 minutes, adding more water if necessary. Stir in:

  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1 cup frozen peas

Heat for 5 more minutes before serving.

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About the Author

Renee Pottle, an author and heart-healthy educator, loves to explore and write about the Mediterranean Diet. She blogs at and

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