Instant Pot,  Meatless Mondays,  Vegan,  Vegetarian,  Whats for Dinner?

Instant Pot Mushroom Barley Risotto

Props to my sister for this one. I didn’t know I needed to make Risotto in the Instant Pot until she told me that it was a game-changer. But because its a pandemic, I’m using the strange things in the back of my cabinets to make dinner. Enter Barley. Barley is one of those ancient grains from Ethiopia and southeast Asia that we’ve been eating for over 10,000 years. It is high in fiber and potassium and other nutrients and it has a low glycaemic index which helps control blood sugar.

I’m sure I bought this bag with high hopes of being healthy and creating amazing meals that were fabulous and irresistible. The reality is that I made 1 thing, and it has sat in the back of my pantry ever since. I recall it taking a while to cook and being unsatisfying. The Instant Pot changes part of this.

Recipe Notes:

This recipe is very forgiving. You need 2 cups of liquid per 1 cup of Barley. So you can scale it up or down as you like. Additionally, you can mix wine, stock, or leftover soup. The first time I made this we had 1 cup of wine, 2 cups of stock, and 1 cup of leftover french onion soup, into the Instant Pot it went and out came a unique spin on this dish.

Be generous with the seasoning. Barley can hold onto a fair bit of moisture and carry heavy spices. You can always add spices, you can never take it away.

Instant Pot Mushroom Barley Risotto

This is a great dinner to use good produce and healthy grains
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4 dinners


  • Instant Pot Ultra


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Medium Onion
  • 8 oz Baby Belle Mushrooms
  • 8 oz Exotic Mushrooms
  • 1 tps Salt or to taste
  • .75 tps pepper or to taste
  • 2 cups Pearl Barley
  • 3 cups Vegetable Stock
  • 1 cup Wine
  • 5 oz Fresh Spinach Optional
  • 1 bunch Fresh Kale Optional
  • Parmesan Optional


  • Using the saute setting, heat olive oil.
  • Dice onions and garlic and saute for 4 minutes.
  • Chop mushrooms to no larger than 1 inch in size and add to Instant Pot. Season with salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning. About 4-5 minutes.
  • Once mushrooms have cooked down, add the Barley. Saute for 2 minutes so barely has a chance to warm. If using kale, add now.
  • Add vegetable stock/wine and mix everything together.
  • Set Instant Pot to Pressure Cook and cook on high for 20 minutes. Release pressure when the timer finishes. Mix spinach in here to wilt.
  • Finish with optional Parmesan before serving.


This can be done on the stove top if you do not have an Instant Pot. It takes about 45 minutes to cook Barley on the stove, keep an eye on it because it will burn the bottom of your pot if you’re not paying attention.
Instead of wine, try left over French Onion Soup!
Check out the tutorial on how to make your own vegetable stock.
Keyword Barley, Instant Pot, InstaPot, Mushroom, Risotta, Vegan, Vegetarian

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