This wholesome dish is as delicious as it is easy to make.
One of the secrets to rich flavor in any plant-based slow cooker meal is caramelizing the aromatic vegetables in oil before adding them to the slow cooker. This way, the natural sugars are browned, adding an incredible depth of flavor!
Pro-tip: keeping your baby carrots in a mason jar filled with water keeps them fresher and crunchier, longer!
- 2 Tbsp avocado oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 C low-sodium vegetable broth
- 1 1/2 C baby carrots, chopped
- 1/2 C celery, chopped
- 1 Tbsp fresh rosemary leaves
- 2 Tbsp garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp lemon pepper
- 1/2 C red wine or tomato juice
- 1 C Organic Grains Barley
- Heat avocado oil on a medium saucepan over medium-high heat.
- Add onions, carrot, and celery to the pan. Brown well, but do not burn (about 6 minutes).
- Add the rosemary and garlic (this will keep the garlic from burning) and stir into the vegetable mixture.
- Add wine or tomato juice to the pan.
- Deglaze* the pan and season well with lemon pepper.
- Place the mixture into your slow cooker with the barley and vegetable broth. Cook on low heat for 6-9 hours or on high for 3-4 hours.
- Top with fresh greens and chopped tomatoes, season, and enjoy!
*Deglaze means to scrape off any of the dark-colored vegetable pieces stuck on the bottom of the pan - this is where so much of the great flavor is!