Barley Rainbow Salad

Great for a hot summer day, this radiant salad is packed with nutrients. With its many different textures, it is very satisfying and will serve 3 to 4 people. Leftovers will keep well in the fridge for the next day.

I really like barley for being very filling and its delicious tender/chewy texture, you can check my previous post of Baked Apple and Avocado Squares for its proven efficacy in reducing cholesterol.

Purple cabbage, also called red cabbage, has a beautiful intense purple color. When possible choose the purple instead of the green cabbage since the purple variety has 4.5 times more antioxidants (compounds that prevent cellular damage) than the green. Its beneficial sulfur compounds help reduce inflammation which is the precursor of many chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer and Alzheimer’s. 

Anthocyanins are pigments responsible for the purple color in the cabbage that also act as powerful antioxidants. Higher anthocyanins consumption has been linked to a lower risk of heart disease and lower blood pressure. Purple cabbage has more than 36 types of anthocyanins!

Originally from the Mediterranean, capers are an unopened flower bud. It has a salty and lemony taste that is a great addition to salads, fish and chicken. They are small in size but carry an intense flavor and are rich in antioxidants. The antioxidants found in capers may reduce inflammation besides and promote healthy blood sugar levels. Carpers are high in sodium, so when using them you should reduce the amount of table salt.

Now, it is time to prepare this colorful and delicious salad.


Barley Rainbow Salad


Prep: 20 mins   |   Cook: 0 mins   |   Total: 20 mins




1 cup of cooked barley (learn how to cook the barley here)

1 cup of carrots grated thin

1 cup shredded purple cabbage

3/4 cup of chopped cucumber

⅓ cup of golden raisins

⅓ cup of chopped walnuts

½ cup of red bell peppers cut into small sticks


¼ cup of olive oil

1 tbsp of lemon juice

1 tsp of mustard

1 tbsp of chopped capers

1½ tbsp of maple syrup

Salt & black pepper to taste



For the dressing add all the ingredients to a jar with lead. Close tightly and shake well until all ingredients are well combined and a smooth dressing is obtained.

In a large plate arrange all the vegetables and grain forming diagonally lines of each variety. Top it with the dressing and sprinkle with the chopped walnuts. Enjoy!

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