Christmas Barley Porridge: 6 best recipes

Display delicious recipes step by step for Christmas barley porridge. We have selected 6 of the best recipes for you.

Christmas Barley Porridge is a dish that is eaten on Christmas Eve, either in observance of Lent or as a traditional Christmas Eve meal. Lent ends at nightfall on 24 December, and Christmas Barley Porridge may be served either as a Lenten meal at lunch or as one of the courses at Christmas Eve dinner.

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Barley Porridge is a traditional old Czech dish based on hail and mushrooms. The recipe for Christmas Barley Porridge dates back to pagan times, when it was the food of the poor and hail was used to replace meat.

How did Barley Porridge become a Christian food?

With the advent of Christianity, mushrooms were fortunately not lost as one of the symbols of paganism and continued to be eaten. It was even the duty of the subjects to hand over a certain amount of mushrooms to the nobility and the ruler.

Mushroom picking continued to spread afterwards, even at a time when the common people fled from the warriors into the forest, where they were forced to eat what the forest provided.

In times of peace, the mushroom returned to the Christmas table as a meatless dish that gradually spread throughout Bohemia.

Mushroom Barley Porridge is a simple, inexpensive and tasty dish that is prepared as part of the Christmas menu – in recent years, especially in southern Bohemia.

The main ingredients of Barley Porridge are groats, mushrooms and pork fat. The dish is seasoned with garlic, marjoram, salt, pepper and caraway seeds.

Remind yourself of the old Czech tradition and don’t forget to include Barley Porridge on your Christmas Eve table this year.

Mushroom Christmas Barley Porridge

According to one legend, the name mushroom Barley Porridge was named after a vegetarian named James who made history by preparing this dish. However, apparently this dish is named after the mushroom that is added to it. It is called the tubular crab, which is popularly known as Barley Porridge or Kubíček. In German it is called Totentrompete – the trumpet of the dead. The tube mushroom is a dark, almost black, funnel-shaped mushroom with curved edges. It grows from August to November in deciduous forests.

Mushroom Barley Porridge, or also black Barley Porridge, is a simple dish of boiled grits and a large quantity of cooked or steamed mushrooms. Marjoram, garlic, salt and cumin are used for seasoning. All the ingredients are combined with lard and baked. The black colour of the Barley Porridge is obtained from a dark, fox-like mushroom called the tubular mushroom. However, you can also use other mushrooms according to your taste or what you have available.

Soak the croup and mushrooms in cold water before processing. Rinse the grits thoroughly to remove dirt and cloudiness and soak for 30 minutes to an hour. The grits will swell and soften better.

How to prepare dried mushrooms for baking:

  • Scald the dried mushrooms with hot water or boil briefly.
  • Soak the dried mushrooms in cold water for a few hours (preferably overnight) and allow them to swell thoroughly so that their consistency resembles fresh mushrooms as much as possible.
  • You can then boil the mushrooms for a while.


  • 200 g of barley groats – the choice of groats is up to you – larger sized groats are easier to cook and are more crumbly. Smaller groats are tastier and hold together well.
  • 200 ml of any broth
  • 75 g dried mushrooms – preferably porcini
  • 1 onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tablespoon lard
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon marjoram
  • salt
  • pepper
  • cumin – crushed or ground
  • piece of butter

You can add bacon, cracklings or chunks of cooked or roasted meat to the base, depending on your taste.

The Barley Porridge should be creamy on the inside and have a golden crust on the outside.


  • Bring the croup in a pot without a lid to a very gentle boil. You will be able to see if the groats start to cook more than you need. If you boil the grits vigorously, they will harden rather than reach the desired soft consistency. Depending on how big the groats are, they will soften in 20 to 40 minutes at a gentle boil. If you let the grits cook longer, they will absorb more liquid and gain volume, but will not soften any more.
  • You can add flavour to the grits by cooking them in stock with a knob of butter or celery.
  • If the mushrooms and gnocchi are soft enough, drain them and fry them in the lard with finely chopped onions. Put enough lard in the pan or casserole so that the onions float in it and do not stick to the bottom of the pan. The hob should be set on medium power. Once the onions are golden, add the drained grits and finely chopped or sliced mushrooms and allow to heat briefly. Add the marjoram, cumin, crushed garlic, pepper and salt.
  • Pour in a little stock, roasting juices or water in which the mushrooms have been soaked and add a knob of butter. Stirring continuously, let the liquid evaporate, then let it thicken and repeat the process several times.
  • Brush the surface of the Barley Porridge with fat and place it in an uncovered baking dish in a preheated oven at about 200 °C to form a golden crust. If you do not want a crispy crust on the Barley Porridge, stir the mixture several times during baking.

Traditional Christmas Barley Porridge


  • 500 g of torn or broken heaps
  • 50 g dried mushrooms
  • 300 g of lard
  • 1 l of water
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 100 g onions
  • 30 g butter
  • 1 teaspoon marjoram
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • pinch of pepper


  • Soak the dried mushrooms, boil the groats with boiling water, rinse and cook until tender with a piece of lard.
  • Fry the peeled, finely chopped onion in part of the lard.
  • Add the mushrooms and onions to the hail and season with grated garlic, marjoram and salt.
  • Place the mixture in a baking dish greased with lard and bake at 180°C for about 30 minutes.
  • After baking, cover with butter slices and serve.

Old Czech Christmas Barley Porridge

The recipe for the Old Czech Christmas Barley Porridge is said to originate from South Bohemia – you may also know it as the South Bohemian Christmas Barley Porridge. In eastern Bohemia, cracklings were also added to the Barley Porridge.


  • 400 g large groats
  • 700 g fresh mushrooms or 70 g dried mushrooms
  • 100 g lard
  • 2 large onions
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • handful of marjoram
  • salt
  • pepper
  • cumin


  • Rinse the groats and leave them to soak overnight, as well as the dried mushrooms.
  • Boil the grits in salted water for about 20 minutes until soft, drain and leave to drain. Drain the mushrooms and squeeze out the water.
  • Fry the onion until golden brown, add the mushrooms and cumin and sauté. Stir in the grated garlic, salt, pepper and marjoram.
  • Mix everything together and place in a greased baking dish and bake for about 20 minutes.

Croup christmas Barley Porridge


  • 500 g semolina
  • 300 g lard
  • 100 g onion
  • 50 g dried mushrooms
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • marjoram
  • salt
  • pepper


  • Boil the groats with boiling water, rinse and cook until tender with a piece of lard.
  • Soak the mushrooms and fry the finely chopped onion.
  • When the grits have softened, mix them with the mushrooms and fried onions, season with marjoram, salt, pepper and grated garlic, stir and place in a baking dish.
  • Bake for about 30 minutes at 180°C. Before serving, cover with slices of butter.

The real Christmas Barley Porridge


  • 300 g medium groats
  • 50 g dried mushrooms
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 onions
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 130 ml whole milk
  • 700 ml of water
  • 2 tablespoons lard
  • 2 teaspoons marjoram
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • pinch of crushed cumin


  • Soak the mushrooms in 100 ml of water.
  • Fry the finely chopped onion in the lard until golden brown.
  • Cook the rinsed groats until soft in 600 ml of water with a little lard and a pinch of salt.
  • Add the mushrooms to the fried onions with the water, cumin and remaining salt and sauté until the mushrooms are soft.
  • Strain the cooked groats and mix with the stewed mushrooms, marjoram and garlic.
  • Place in a greased baking dish, cover with eggs beaten in milk and bake in a preheated oven for about half an hour.

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