Pearl Barley with Roasted Squash, Pomegranate, and Pistachios Recipe | Vegetarian Times Skip to main content

Pearl Barley with Roasted Squash, Pomegranate, and Pistachios

Pomegranate seeds add tiny bursts of sweet-tart juiciness when stirred into grain dishes.



Ingredient Line: 
3 Tbs. olive oil, divided
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1 cup pearl barley
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1 ½ lb. butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into ½-inch x 1-inch chunks (4 cups)
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1 small sweet onion, peeled and finely diced (1 cup)
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½ tsp. red pepper flakes
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2 Tbs. finely chopped parsley
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½ cup pomegranate seeds
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⅓ cup roasted pistachios


1. Heat 1 Tbs. oil in medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add barley, and cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until slightly toasted. Pour in 21/4 cups water, and bring to a simmer. Cover, reduce heat to low, and cook 45 to 55 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed and grains are cooked. (If barley is not completely cooked, add a little more water and continue simmering until tender.) Pour barley out onto cooking-spray-coated baking sheet, and let cool to room temperature. Season with salt and pepper, if desired.

2. Preheat oven to 425°F. Line second baking sheet with parchment paper, or coat with cooking spray. Toss squash with 1 Tbs. oil on baking sheet until evenly coated, and season with salt and pepper, if desired. Roast 35 to 40 minutes, or until tender, stirring occasionally.

3. Heat remaining 1 Tbs. oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, and cook 7 to 9 minutes, or until translucent. Add red pepper flakes, and cook 1 minute more. Add barley, and cook 3 to 5 minutes, or until warmed through. Stir in roasted squash and parsley, and cook 2 minutes more. Remove from heat; stir in pomegranate seeds and pistachios. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Nutrition Information: 

6 g
Total Fat: 
11 g
Saturated Fat: 
1 g
42 g
0 mg
9 mg
10 g
5 g
Serves 6

Comments on this Recipe

Pretty tasty salad! I didn't bother with letting the barley come to room temperature; a few minutes after it was done, I stirred it into step 3. I think this would be equally good with dried cherries, cranberries, or golden raisins plumped up with hot water. I'm just not very partial to pomegranate kernels.

I love this recipe, it's been one of my most successful potluck dishes! It tastes much better if you salt the water when cooking the barley.

Delicious!!! Could not stop eating it. Made the barley in the morning in the rice cooker (1:2 with water) then lightly salted while it was cooling. Tapped out a pomegranate then too. So all that was needed at dinner time was to roast the squash. Didn't have shelled pistachios handy so used pumpkin seeds and I think I probably liked them better. I omitted the red pepper and used dried parsley. Next time I will double the recipe. Awesome and so good for you. Even the kids are it.