Healthy Kale Barley Mushroom Casserole

Pearl barley is the starting point for this healthy casserole recipe. It's loaded with nutrients and fills you up without filling you out.

While the barley cooks, brown the mushrooms in a skillet and season with garlic and fresh thyme.

Sauté the onions and wilt the fresh kale leaves in the same skillet.

Make a roux with butter and flour, then add salt, pepper and fresh nutmeg. This is the starting point for the cheese sauce.

Use vegetable broth and grated gruyere cheese to make the silky sauce for the barley and mushroom casserole.

Add the cooked barley to the cheese sauce and stir well to combine.

Stir in the sautéed mushrooms and wilted kale. Doesn't that look good?!

You could eat it just like this, but for extra texture, we like to bake the mushroom barley casserole with a breadcrumb topping.

It's cheesy and rich, but healthier than you might think because of the ancient grains and nutrient dense kale and mushrooms.

This casserole makes a great vegetarian main course or side dish.