Crock Pot Potato, Barley & Canadian Bacon Soup


Crock Pot Potato, Barley & Canadian Bacon Soup is comforting and hearty — perfect for hunkering down with on a cold night!

Happy Sunday, everyone, hope you had a nice weekend! (Please acknowledge Ben’s pained smile, btw. He LOVES posing, can’t you tell? ;) )

Bahahaha. J/K. We’ve had a good mix of fun and relaxation these past couple of days. Saturday I slept in ’til the unGodly hour of 9am, then got some work done before Ben and I went to lunch at a place his family used to frequent a lot time growing up. It was not quite what he remembered, nor what I expected, but hey, at least they serve fresh, free potato chips with every meal.

These were cut ever-so-slightly thick, fried fresh (oxymoron?) and were a yummy, Saturday afternoon treat!

Afterwards we hopped over to the mall to get some Christmas shopping done amongst the bustling crowds. I snapped pics of the beautiful holiday decor that Von Maur department stores are known for around this time of year, while Ben got a glimpse into his future. ;)

Our final stop of the day was my parent’s house for a visit, where we found my Mom putting up all the Christmas decorations. Cozy!

Ben and I hung out for awhile “helping”, aka eating their food and pointing out empty spots on the tree, before retiring for the evening to the cozy recesses of our couch to watch two movies On Demand – Father of Invention and Son of No One.

I’m faaaairly certain they had both gone straight to DVD, but it was kind of fun to giggle at how bad they were!

All the Christmas decor must have tipped Mother Nature off, because this morning we woke up to a winter wonderland outside! I felt like I was in a movie as I hopped out of bed, pulled back the curtains, and saw the snow gently falling.

At this point it’s too pretty to get mad at, but give me a day or two…!

This afternoon we had a big family lunch back over at my parent’s house. Since Ben and I will be in DC for Christmas this year, this was the last time we could all get together before we left!

Fresh salmon was on the menu!

My Mom bought fresh, wild-caught salmon from the store the other day, which my brother sauteed then topped with my fresh artichoke salsa. A side of roasted asparagus, and baked sweet potato fries rounded out the meal. YUM.

My sister-in-law brought over dairy, egg, and gluten-free cookie bars (my nephew has bad food allergies) for dessert. They were DELICIOUS!

Made with almond flour, coconut butter, and zero dairy, egg, or gluten – we were all amazed at how much they tasted like a standard chocolate chip cookie bar. I’ll let you know if she blogs about it!

I didn’t think I could eat another drop after such a big lunch but, inspired by the cold and snowy day, I’d put a big batch of Crock Pot Potato, Barley, and Canadian Bacon Soup on before we left. Somehow I managed to free up some room in my stomach for a small bowl at dinner time!

This soup takes about 10 minutes of prep work in the form of chopping veggies, but other than that it is a cinch to make. Plus it’s super healthy, too – full of vitamin-rich veggies, and heart-healthy barley!

Simply combine 1 large chopped potato with 1 large chopped carrot in a large crock pot.

Next add 1 chopped rib celery, and 1/2 chopped onion (I usually leave onions large in recipes since Ben and onions don’t play well together!)

Chop up 6oz Canadian Bacon and add that on top.

Followed by 3 cloves minced garlic and 4 cups chicken broth.

1/2 cup barley goes in next (regular, not quick-cooking.)

Followed by some spices: 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme, 1 bay leaf, and salt & pepper.

Cook the soup on low for 5-6 hours, or until the barley is tender, and potatoes are creamy.

Finally, stream in 1 cup fat-free evaporated milk, then cook for 30 more minutes on high with the lid cracked.

Scoop out, and dig in!

Crock Pot Potato, Barley & Canadian Bacon Soup

Serves 6


Crock Pot Potato, Barley & Canadian Bacon Soup is comforting and hearty — perfect for hunkering down with on a cold night!


  • 1 large potato, peeled and diced
  • 1 large carrot, chopped
  • 1 celery rib, chopped
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 6oz Canadian Bacon, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup barley (not quick-cooking)
  • 1/4 teaspoon thyme
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup fat-free evaporated milk


  1. Combine all ingredients except evaporated milk into a crock pot. Cook on low for 5-6 hours, or until barley is cooked and potatoes are creamy. Add evaporated milk then cook for 30 more minutes on high with the lid cracked.


Slightly adapted from Laa Loosh

This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats,


Super hearty, but SO healthy tasting! The Canadian Bacon was really smokey, and made the soup taste a lot more decadent than it actually is.

Served with a sliced Honeycrisp on the side. I forget to get apples at the store last week (Ben and I are apple hoarders) and we’ve been slowly shriveling away without them. Mmmmm, that’s much better!

A Peppermint Cheesecake sample from The Cheesecake Factory is on tap for dessert. Ben went out shopping on his own this afternoon and came back empty handed, save for this free sample they were handing out at the mall. I’ll take it! :)

Have a great night, everyone!


What was the highlight of your weekend? 

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  1. Haha, I love Ben’s smile in the first photo… The highlight of my weekend was definitely the dumping of snow that we got! I’d say we have at least 10 inches so far!

  2. Chef Amber Shea 12.09.2012

    Ooh, PLEASE find out (and share) the recipe for those chocolate chip cookie bars!!

  3. Everything you ate this weekend looks positively scrumptious, but that soup looks especially SOUPerb! I love hearty soups. I bet the salty bacon just sends it over the top. Yum!

  4. Jennifer 12.09.2012

    What’s the recipe for the cookie bars? Yum!

  5. Amy 12.09.2012

    I agree, the snow is pretty for now:) I will tire of it around January……………..oh well. Sounds like a great homey-wknd!

  6. I like how you keep your barley in a mason jar. That is such a good idea. The last time I bought barley, it spilled the half used box all over my pantry.

    • Iowa Girl Eats 12.09.2012

      That is the exact reason I now keep it (and all my rice) in mason jars! ;)

  7. About to pop some soup in the crock pot myself!

  8. Lauren 12.09.2012

    What a guy! I can’t believe Ben saved that bite for you. Toly would have demolished it before he even left the store. :) Sounds like a lovely weekend lady!

  9. Lauren 12.09.2012

    I was feeling under the weather and stuck in a doctors office waiting room all day today. So i got on my phone to catch up on your blog (side note: i havent missed a post since 2009. I’m not creepy I just really relate to you). :) When I came across your antioxidant juice I knew that was exactly what my body needed today. Wow – loved it! Really enjoyed the collaboration of your water cookbook too. Thanks IGE!

  10. The soup looks good but I’m intrigued by the artichoke salsa – Yummy eats!

  11. Sarita 12.09.2012

    At 7 a.m. I was putting together and cooking SOMEONE’S mini BBQ cheeseburger meat loaves!
    I just ate on for dinner. Froze the others. My house still smells delish!

  12. sarah 12.09.2012

    Love your recipes and blog. Quick question about the evap. milk. What do you do with the left over when only need 1 cup? Can you freeze it? does it last in fridge for a couple of days? Thanks! Always look forward to your posts!

    • Iowa Girl Eats 12.11.2012

      I usually try and plan two recipes that will use it within 3 or 4 days of each other so I don’t waste it. I THINK it would be fine to freeze!

  13. Kelly Haugland 12.09.2012

    Does your sister in law have a blog? We are finding ourselves with some gluten and dairy allergies as welll! Soooooo sad!

  14. Angie 12.09.2012

    The highlight of my weekend was 1. pulling my boys around on their sleds in the backyard and 2. making two of your Fresh Apple Cakes to take to my neighbors with our Christmas cards! YUM!!

  15. Jane 12.09.2012

    May I ask the name and location of the restaurant with the homemade chips, please?

  16. Those potato chips look delicious!

    You are so lucky to have gotten some snow in the Des Moines area….none here for us in southeast Iowa yet :(.

  17. Adrian 12.09.2012

    Funny! We just watched “The Father of Invention” last weekend. Pretty sure were are the only ones who have ever seen it! :) But, I love me some Kevin Spacey, so I had to check it out. It wasn’t terrible, but definitely wasn’t his best movie.

    This soup looks amazing and I will be adding to to my list of things to make over Christmas break!!!

  18. Is that a Dickens Village on the mantle? My BF’s mom has an epic Dickens Village, so much fun.

    I have been craving some kind of potato soup lately, while also keeping on the lookout for crockpot soup recipes! Boom, perfect recipe right here!

  19. Jessica Jann 12.09.2012

    LOVE YOUR BLOG!!! All the pictures, christmas inspired looks, crockpot soup recipes!! LOVEEEE IT!

  20. Angie 12.09.2012

    That soup looks so yummy! The highlight of my weekend was my birthday meal at The Cheesecake Factory: skinny mojito, moroccan chicken, AND a full size piece of peppermint bark cheesecake that I split with my daughter! Delish!

    • jennyv 12.11.2012

      I just had the Moroccan chicken for the first time last month — so good!

  21. jill 12.09.2012

    Love reading your blog, but I have to say of your picture of the holiday decor in the store made me laugh out loud.. Not because of the decor, but because of all the men sitting and I’m assuming waiting for their wives to finish shopping! :)

  22. I know the post is about the soup, but that salmon with artichoke salsa looks amazing. I love the saltiness of matched with salmon. I’m going to have to recreate the combo.

    Highlight of my weekend was antiquing and a southern style brunch with my friend!

  23. Melanie 12.09.2012

    What a fun post! This post made me feel nice and cozy! Can’t wait to try the soup – looks absolutely delicious. Love your blog! :)

  24. Lisa 12.10.2012

    Oh, that soup looks good. Even here in Florida, it’s great to be able to curl up with a wonderful bowl of soup.

    And thanks for the snow photos. I might live in FL now, but I’m originally from OH and MD, and sometimes I miss the snow. (But not the shoveling.)

  25. Leah 12.10.2012

    That soup looks incredible. Any way to make it dairy free?

  26. Morgan 12.10.2012

    I could not help but giggle to myself at the picture of “Ben’s future”. I can just imagine my two brothers there at some point too. SOOO funny!

  27. Afton 12.10.2012

    Chips in Ankeny! We don’t go their often, but when we do I get the rotisserie chicken.

  28. My husband hates posing too! Your soup looks delicious and I love that it is made in a crockpot – super easy for cold days and nights!

  29. Teresa K. 12.10.2012

    Case you haven’t noticed, I haven’t even been able to comment lately – miss you! Our fam opened a coffee shop here in upstate NY. Sooo – this weekend, Siobhan Hotaling(pronounced Sha – Von) wsg Erin Powers played Saturday night (if you ever get a chance to see them – go for it!) – any way – if that isn’t enough Siobhan invited a friend up to sing – who it turned out – was Bonnie Piesse – Luke’s aunt from Star Wars (the younger version of the aunt) –

    wow – don’t think we can top that one. :)

    • Iowa Girl Eats 12.11.2012

      Ahhh – that’s so awesome! Congrats on the new family venture, Teresa!!! Good to hear from you!

  30. Stacy 12.10.2012

    The salmon looks amazing. I live outside of DC. There are some amazing restaurants around here.

  31. Julie 12.10.2012

    Best part of the weekend? Watching Christmas movies with my Mom :) Oh, and trying out your pesto marinated chicken breast with pasta and tomato cream sauce. Simply delish!

  32. I want like two, huge bowlfuls of this soup!

  33. Sarah 12.10.2012

    Oo this looks yummy and cozy! I’m really interested in trying your evaporated milk trick!

  34. Patricia 12.10.2012

    I would appreciate it if you took the photo down that you look at the mall. My brother is in that photo My daughter saw this yesterday evening and told him that he was online sitting in a chair. He is very upset about this. There are people who do not wish to be exposed online.

    Beautiful Soup.

  35. I’m dying over the blurred out faces at the mall and the ‘glimpse into his future’ lol Completely hilarious. Oh and bacon in soup is just plain amaaazing. Wishing I had some now!

  36. 1. I love the picutre of the Christmas village 2. the potatoe chips I love love homemade chips like that 3. love canadian bacon in soup 4. and the pictures of the old guys at the mall bahahahahaha 5. my weekend highlight playing outside in the snow with my boys as they pegged me with snowballs!

  37. Trisha 12.10.2012

    Looks like a pretty perfect weekend to me!

  38. Whitney 12.11.2012

    How FUN that you will be in DC! Be sure to grab a look at all the awesome tree’s – White House tree, state trees around it, Capital tree and the beautiful one in the American History Museum. Just wonderful. And Union Station. Simply can’t beat it at Christmas! Hubby and I will be down there a couple days before Christmas getting in our yearly tradition. I’m quite excited!!

  39. Annie 12.12.2012

    I chopped up all the veggies for this recipe last night, then threw them in the Crock Pot this morning before I left for work. I can’t WAIT to get home so I can try this recipe! Mouth is watering just thinking about it…

  40. […] And, with it being winter and all (although, this 50 degree weather is absolutely fabulous and can stay FOREVER!), I’m also looking forward to making this soup I came across on one of my favorite blogs, Iowa Girl Eats for Crock Pot Potato, Barley, and Canadian Bacon Soup. […]

  41. […] Crock Pot Potato, Barley & Canadian Bacon Soup | Iowa Girl Eats I didn't think I could eat another drop after such a big lunch but, inspired by the cold and snowy day, I'd put a big batch of Crock Pot Potato, Barley, and Canadian Bacon Soup on before we left. Somehow I managed to free up . […]

  42. Krissy 12.20.2012

    I could only find quick cooking barley at the store! :( Any suggestions on what I would need to do differently? Thanks! (Love your blog by the way!!)

    • Iowa Girl Eats 12.22.2012

      Hmmm, I might add it in with 2-3 hours left, or cook it separately then add it in at the end. The only thing is the soup might not be as thick!

  43. […] Yesterday turned into an unexpected, but much needed rest day. The first thing I did when I got home was pulled out the ingredients for Crock Pot Potato, Barley & Canadian Bacon Soup. […]

  44. […] Potato, Barley, and Canadian Bacon Soup || I made this a few weeks ago and it was really good!  This one is probably the least filling, so […]

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