Photo of Wild Mushroom-Barley Stuffing by WW

Wild Mushroom-Barley Stuffing

SmartPoints® value per serving
Total Time
53 min
23 min
30 min
We took stuffing in a unique direction with this barley-based recipe. It's brimming with the exciting flavours of smoky bacon, fresh herbs and wild mushrooms.


table salt

2 tsp(s), divided

uncooked pearl barley

1½ cup(s), pearl variety

olive oil

2 tsp(s), divided

uncooked onion(s)

1 medium, chopped

uncooked Canadian bacon

5 slice(s), diced

uncooked carrot(s)

2 small, diced

fresh mushroom(s)

1 pound(s), fresh, assorted wild-varieties, sliced (such as baby bella, oyster and/or shiitake)

minced garlic

2 tsp(s)

fresh thyme

2 tbsp(s), fresh, chopped

fresh sage

2 tbsp(s), chopped

black pepper

¼ pinch, freshly ground

reduced-sodium chicken broth

1 cup(s)

dried parsley

2 tbsp(s), fresh, chopped


  1. Bring 8 cups of water and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt to a boil in a large saucepan; add barley. Cover saucepan, reduce heat and simmer barley until tender, about 30 minutes; drain.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 1 teaspoon of oil in a large nonstick stockpot over medium-high heat; add onion, bacon, and carrots. Cook, stirring often, until onion is lightly browned and almost tender, about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and garlic; cook, stirring often, until all vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes more.
  3. Stir in thyme, sage, pepper remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and remaining 1 teaspoon of oil. Reduce heat to low; stir in broth to achieve desired consistency. Add cooked barley; toss to coat. Remove from heat; transfer to serving bowl and sprinkle with parsley. Yields about 1 cup per serving.


This unusual but delicious stuffing has all the traditional flavours of regular bread stuffing but with much less fat and much more fibre. We used low-in-fat Canadian bacon to replace the sausage found in typical stuffings, but feel free to omit the bacon, and swap vegetable broth for the chicken broth to make a vegetarian version. You can prepare this recipe a day in advance. When ready to serve, coat a shallow 2- to 3-quart casserole dish with cooking spray. Spoon in stuffing, cover dish and bake at 350ºF until heated through, about 30 minutes.

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