Chicken, Artichoke, and Barley Skillet

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This recipe turned out so well and checks off numerous boxes on my fall food requirements list. There are a lot of star flavors in this dish but the sleeper hit is barley. Barley doesn’t get enough attention or love. Primarily, you are literally eating little doughy clouds. Second, barley provides the same type of fiber as oatmeal– a good for your body soluble fiber called β-glucan.

I normally don’t enjoy bacon in recipes because it is overwhelming but it works here and doesn’t overshadow the other flavors. This dish is super satisfying on a cold night. I hope you dig in!


Chicken, Artichoke, and Barley Skillet


  • 1 cup pearled barley, uncooked
  • 4 slices of bacon
  • 1 large onion
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 can artichoke hearts in water
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup pesto
  • 3 large handfuls of spinach
  • salt and pepper
  • Parmesan cheese for garnish, optional


Cook barley according to package instructions (I made mine in the rice cooker).

Chop bacon into think slices. In a deep skillet, fry bacon until crispy. Remove from pan. Chop onion and sauté in bacon drippings. Cut chicken thighs into 1-inch chunks. Once onion is translucent, add chicken thighs. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for 8 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Add chopped garlic.

Drain artichoke hearts, reserving 1/4 of the liquid. Roughly chop hearts and add them with the liquid to skillet. Add chicken broth and bring to a simmer. Stir in pesto. Add cooked barley and spinach and toss together until spinach is wilted. Top with parmesan cheese, if desired.

Makes 4 servings.

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