Can You Freeze Barley? – How To Freeze & Thaw Barley?

Can you Freeze Barley: Today we are going in a little deeper into the Mediterranean larder and one of my favorite grains, barley! Barley is high in fiber with a chewy texture. With its tiny pinch of a nutty taste, it is very flavourful when used in salads, soups, or simply just as a side dish.

Be it any recipe barley can be used as a base for tasty dinner bowls. The only issue is it takes an extended time to cook. But, do not worry because you can cook it up in large portions and freeze it to add to your meal whenever you want. Stay till the end of this guide to know if can you freeze barley or not, and how to freeze cooked barley for a perfect recipe every time!

Can You Freeze Barley

Can you Freeze Barley?

Yes, cooked barley can be frozen for about 1 month. Barley, be it pure cooked barley grain or in meals like stews, soups, and casseroles can also be frozen. Uncooked barley can also be frozen for up to 1 year.

How to Freeze Uncooked and Cooked Barley

As a grain (uncooked barley), it can be kept well for a year even without freezing it. All you need to do it to store it in a cool dry place, so you need not freeze it. But, if you are freezing cooked barley then are a few steps that you must follow to keep the barley fresh to add it to your meals.

  • Using your favorite or any procedure cook the barley grains. Since this is not a fast process, it may take more than 90 minutes to completely get cooked.
  • Once the barley is cooked completely, drain the water and let the barley completely cool down to room temperature.
  • Take a few airtight boxes and portion them as per serving of barley in a box. Make sure to cover the box using airtight lids. If you are using freezer bags, then ensure to squeeze out all the air before closing it tightly, to protect the barley.
  • After sealing them tightly, note the date of cooking along with the contents on the top of the box or freezer bags. So, that you do not waste them as you might forget to use them using by the date.
  • Place the box in the freezer and let them freeze until you need them.

How Long Can You Freeze Barley?

You can freeze cooked barley for almost a month. A few sources say that it can be frozen for a bit longer, to almost three months. Whereas to be on the safer safe side, use it within a month.

Uncooked barley can be stored for almost a year. Unlike cooked barley, it need not be frozen in the freeze and can simply be stored in a cool dry place using airtight containers.

Tips to Freeze barley to Maintain its Flavour

Since you have learned to freeze them, I have got a few tips that I suggest following to get the best outcomes when freezing your barley:

  • Similar to rice, barley can also become risky if left out for a long at room temperature. Once it is cooled to room temperature, work fast to put it in the freezer.
  • Making ready-to-go meals and freezing them is a big time-saver during an occupied working week. Rather than freezing just pure barley, freeze barley as full meals to save even time.
  • Refreezing your thawed barley can make it dangerous because of the growth of bacteria. Also, it can change its texture. Rather, freeze them in the needed portions so it is easier to thaw one portion at a time.

How To Defrost Barley?

When eating barley as a side dish or an element of a salad, then defrosting it in the fridge is the right way. Take a single portion out from the freezer and place it in the fridge using a bowl. By doing this you are letting it defrost completely without spoiling it or bacteria to develop.

If you are looking to thaw cooked barley into a cooking dish like soup or a casserole. Then do not worry much about defrosting it. Simply take it from the freezer and put it in the recipe while cooking it.

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Can You Refreeze Barley?

No, I do not recommend refreezing your barley once it has been defrosted thoroughly. If possible, you must eat your defrosted barley within a few hours from when it has been thawed out. This makes sure that you are consuming the barley when it is yet at its finest quality.

How Do You Freeze Barley Dishes?

If you have already cooked barley it can be used instantly in recipes without the need to cook. But, one of the benefits of freezing it is keeping ready-prepared dishes for the week. A few familiar barley dishes that you can freeze:

Barley Soup

This is an amazing soup for the chillier months. It is very warming when added with plenty of barley grains, as it will load you up. Ideal for a wholesome lunch to keep you moving all day until dinner. Just follow the given steps to follow this method:

Make Soup

Cook a big batch of your barley soup and allow the soup to completely cool down to room temperature.


Take freezer-safe boxes with covers that are appropriate for soups. Portion the barley soup into the boxes and put the lid to cover the boxes.


To ensure there is no spillage in the freezer, add a plastic or freezer bag to the boxes.


Mark the box with the date of cooking and contents. Place it in the freezer to let it freeze. Just do not fail to place it upright until it has frozen completely.

Barley Risotto

The barley risotto is a unique alternative to the classic risotto. Rather than making use of rice, make use of barley. Follow the given below incredibly easy steps

Make and Cool Down

Cook your barley risotto and let it cool down to room temperature.

Portion Up

When the risotto has completely cooled down, portion it out in freezer bags. Portion a single one into each bag so that it can be defrosted easily in the future.

Close Them

Close the freezer bags and remove all air from them as possible. As it will help in freezing the barley risotto properly and also will not take up much space in the freezer.

Label and Freeze

Finally, mark the freezer bags with the date of cooking and contents. Then place all the freezer bags in the freezer letting them freeze.

FAQs on Can You Freeze Barley

1. Can pearl barley be frozen?

Yes, pearl barley can be frozen. The only difference between pearl barley and hulled barley is that the former has the bran layer removed. This makes it less nutritious. It can also be frozen in the same manner as hulled barley.

2. Can you freeze malted barley?

Likewise, all types of barley can be frozen, including malted barley. Making use of the exact methods given above. As mentioned, it must be stored in airtight boxes when in the freezer.

3. Can soup with barley be frozen?

Yes! Barley in any soup can be frozen as well. Just store the soup in the freezer using airtight containers or in freezer bags to avoid spillage. And if you like to add barley to your but do not want it to thicken, then cook it individually first.

4. How to know if barley is gone bad?

If your barley has developed a strange odor, taste, or build on the top then it is gone bad. It must be discarded immediately as consumption of it can be dangerous.

5. Is barley gluten-free?

No, it is not gluten-free. If pursuing a gluten-free diet barley must be avoided. Brown rice and Quinoa are better alternatives for barley.

In a Nutshell

Hope the knowledge that we have shared on can you freeze barely had shed some light on you. By following the steps that we have provided for you, you can freeze barley well and use them for a long time.

Since barley absorbs moisture, even when it is cooked, you may discover that the barley absorbs more moisture when added to a dish or when it is reheated. For more Interesting articles like can you freeze roux, can you freeze bircher muesli and many more, check out our website.

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