Sounds burdensome or inconvenient? Well not at all! Trust me this vegan barleyotto is super-duper easy, even though the result is a powerful explosion of so many different flavors. What actually started as a quick solution for an impromptu dinner turned out to be one of the best recipes I have ever made. 

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Vegan barleyotto

This vegan barleyotto has an extremely satisfying taste of both sourness and sweetness. It comes from the apples, that when mixed with apple vinegar, mustard and honey creates an incredible sweet and creamy flavour-harmony.
I actually made this vegan barleyotto with a health focus in mind – and it is healthy – but never have I tasted a substance so creamy and luscious as this. 


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The creamiest “cheese cream”

The vegan barleyotto’s heavenly creaminess comes from the best vegan cheese sauce in the world! It is of course not really a cheese sauce, but a sauce that has a milky richness, satisfying saltiness and insanely creamy consistency. So it almost feels okay to call it a cheese sauce. It is the easiest in the world to make, you just have to make sure that the base of the sauce, the cashews, are soaked in 2-4 hours. At least if you want to hit that perfect consistency. 

vegan barleyotto

Smokey mushrooms

Smokey things are really doing it for me at the moment. I am a big fan of combining the intense smokey “bacon”-ish flavour with something more sweet and sour. Smokey mushrooms are therefore an absolute perfect campaigning for vegan barleyotto with apples. 


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I have been up early this Sunday, as I am on my way to London. I can’t wait to be back – I have missed that city more than I thought!

May you have a cozy Sunday all.

– Maja 


Vegan barleyotto with apples and smokey mushrooms
Serves 3
  1. 3 cups barley
  2. 1 onion
  3. 4 shallots
  4. 2 red apples
  5. 1/2 l. pure organic apple juice
  6. 1,5 l. vegetable stock
  7. 1 tbs fresh thyme
  8. 1 cup cashews (soaked for 3 hours)
  9. 1/2 cup water
  10. 3 tbs nutritional yeast
  11. 1 tbs mustard
  12. 1 tbs honey
  13. 1 tbs apple cider vinegar
  14. 3 tbs plantbased butter
  15. Salt and pepper
Smokey mushrooms
  1. 1 pack of mushrooms - approximately 15-20 pieces
  2. 1 tbs olive oil
  3. 1 tsp smoked paprika
  4. 2 cloves of garlic
  5. Salt and pepper
  6. 2 tbs vegan butter
Barleyotto with apples and smokey mushrooms
  1. Preheat the oven on 160° and chop the onion and shallots, and shred the apples.
  2. Now sauté the onions in a pot with some olive oil. When browned add barley and shredded apples and stir well for one minutes time.
  3. Add apple juice and bring to boil.
  4. While you wait for the apple juice to absorb, make the mushrooms; wash them, remove the stems and turn them around in a bowl with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place them on a baking trey and give them 20-30 minutes in the oven.
  5. When the apple juice has absorbed, start adding the broth to the barleyotto. Do it little by little on medium-low heat while stirring frequently.
  6. When the mushrooms are finished in the oven then move them to a sauce pan and quickly mix them with minced garlic, smoked paprika and vegan butter on low heat. Set a aide.
  7. Now, take your soaked cashews and blend together with water, nutritional yeast, mustard, vinegar, honey, salt and pepper. Blend until the dressing is completely smooth. Maybe for a couple of minutes.
  8. When all of the broth has been added to the barleyotto, then stir in butter, cashew blend and fresh thyme and cook for another couple of minutes.
  9. Take of heat and serve with smokey mushrooms and perhaps some fresh parsley and cress.
Maja Harder



  • Diana

    This looks and sounds amazing! I’m slowly getting into cooking some vegetarian and vegan options, and this sounds simple enough!

    • Maja Harder

      I am so glad you got inspired Diana. This dish really doesn’t “feel or taste vegan”. It is so creamy and rich, I am sure you’re gonna like it.