Vegetable Stew

My nan used to make this for me when I was little and I loved coming back from school to the smell of stew, especially in the cold, winter months.

Whenever I make this I always think of my lovely nan in her kitchen. It’s such an easy recipe and so full of goodness; you can almost feel it in every drop. The bay leaves really give a wonderful depth of flavour that you can’t get from the stock alone, so be sure not to leave them out.

Vegetable Stew

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Serves: 2-4 Cooking Time: 20 minutes to prep, 1 hour to cook


  • 1 litre of stock made with 2 stock cubes or equivalent (I prefer Knorr Vegetable Stock cubes in this dish)
  • 1 ½ tbsp of vegetable gravy granules (I use Bisto Vegetable Gravy Granules)
  • 2 bay leaves (dried)
  • ¾ tsp of Thyme (dried)
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • ½ tsp salt (I use sea salt)
  • ½ tsp coarse ground black pepper
  • 1.5 yellow onions, roughly chopped (approx. 300g)
  • 3-4 shallots, chopped into quarters (approx. 100g)
  • 6 baby leeks, sliced (approx. 100g)
  • 3 carrots, sliced around 1cm thick (approx. 250g)
  • ½ red pepper, diced (approx. 50g)
  • ¼ green pepper, diced (approx. 25g)
  • 1 cup sweet corn (I also add in the juice)
  • ¼ cup of pearl barley
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into quarters (approx. 300g)
  • 1 cup green peas



Place all of the veg in a large saucepan, except for the peas and potatoes.


Add the stock, pearl barley, and the rest of the dry ingredients (herbs, seasoning, gravy granules), stir and bring to the boil.


Simmer for 30 minutes on a low heat and stir once or twice.


Add the potatoes and peas and bring to the boil, simmering for another 30 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.


Let this cool a little before dishing up, then serve with freshly baked bread.


This serves two people for dinner or four for lunch. I always make double batches (using two separate saucepans) and put one in the fridge to eat a couple of days later. I find that the stew always tastes better after a few days. You can freeze this but do so before you add the potatoes and peas. Once thawed you can pick up from step 4.


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