Get my newest recipe via email:

Barley Pilaf with Leeks, Walnuts, and Broccoli {vegan}

Delicate ribbons of pale green leeks, plus a measure of toasted walnuts, stirred into toothsome barley, with green broccoli mini trees piled on top–everything about it nurtures the heart and soul. Especially this fall equinox week, as the days get shorter and the nights grow longer, barley pilaf with leeks, walnuts, and broccoli delivers.

Barley Leek and Walnut Pilaf with Broccoli

Barley’s chewy, pasta-like consistency and its nutritional profile does our hearts good, in more ways than one. Walnuts too shine in the vascular health department, and what with the leek and broccoli benefits, we’ve got vegan well being by the spoonful. Grain and goodies = autumn happiness.

Pearled Barley for Barley Leek and Walnut Pilaf with Broccoli

You can always find a jar of pearled barley kernels in our pantry, but I tend to grab the brown rice or quinoa instead. I’m changing that—this dish newly reminds me to take advantage of cooked barley’s appealing texture and nutlike flavor.

By definition, grain cooked in broth, and containing vegetables and other chopped things, means pilaf. Pilaf, quite the elegant word for a simple grain dish, yes?

Leeks ready for Barley Leek and Walnut Pilaf with Broccoli

Fall is peak leek season. As proof, they appeared in our farm share box two weeks in a row. I’m not complaining. Sautéed leeks, unlike onions, keep their vegetable crunch and complement cooked barley especially well—they belong in this pilaf.

Celebrate the turning colors and this harvest season by getting outside into nature. And then come inside and cook something wonderful—like barley pilaf with leeks, walnuts, and broccoli.

Barley Pilaf with Leeks, Walnuts, and Broccoli recipe notes:

  • Barley contains gluten—it’s not a wheat substitute for someone gluten-intolerant.
  • Transform your pilaf leftovers (if there are any) into an easy delicious soup by adding white beans, and curry powder for color and a completely different flavor.

Barley Leek and Walnut Pilaf with Broccoli

More barley dishes:

Barley and Beet Green Salad with Sun-dried Tomato Vinaigrette from Letty’s Kitchen

Barley Risotto with Kale and Butternut Squash from Mountain Mama Cooks

Lentil and Barley Greek-Style Salad with Tomatoes, Feta, and Capers From Kalyn’s Kitchen

Asparagus Omelette with Barley by Naturally Ella

Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Cranberries with Barley from Cookie and Kate

Thanks for reading. Get the latest recipe posts by email—subscribe here. Or follow my blog with Bloglovin.

Are you following me on Facebook? Love you for that! And help me—I am completely addicted to Instagram.

This post contains Amazon affiliate links. If you purchase a product via my link, it doesn’t cost you anything and I earn a tiny commission, which helps defray the costs of Letty’s Kitchen blog. Thank you for supporting Letty’s Kitchen.

0 from 0 votes
Barley Leek and Walnut Pilaf with Broccoli
Barley Pilaf with Leeks, Walnuts, and Broccoli
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
1 hr
I’m crazy about this pilaf and how divinely the barley, leek and walnut textures balance each other. Serve as a side dish with your favorite beans for plenty of vegetarian protein. A green salad fills out the meal.
  • 2 ½ cups vegetable stock
  • 1 cup pearl barley , rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 leeks , halved lengthwise and thinly sliced crosswise into half-moons
  • 1 cup chopped toasted walnuts
  • ¼ teaspoon Real Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ head of broccoli
  1. Bring the vegetable stock to boil in a saucepan. Stir in the barley. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer on very low heat until the barley is tender and the liquid is absorbed. Let stand about 5 minutes before adding the leeks and walnuts.
  2. While the barley cooks, heat the first 2 tablespoons of oil in a skillet over medium flame until shimmering. Add the leeks and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and a generous grind of black pepper.
  3. Gently stir the leeks and walnuts into the cooked barley. Keep warm while you prepare the broccoli.
  4. Cut the broccoli florets from the thick stalk, leaving about an inch of stalk attached to the florets. Save the rest of the stalks for another purpose, perhaps a stir-fry. Cut the florets through the base of the head with a small knife, pulling the florets apart. Cut the larger florets in half down the middle.
  5. Heat the remaining olive oil in the skillet. Add the broccoli florets and sauté a minute or so. Add a few tablespoons of water, cover, and cook several minutes, until the broccoli is just tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve on top of the pilaf.


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.