Total Time
1hr 15mins
Prep 15 mins
Cook 1 hr

From "To Set Before a Queen"--a cookbook written by a former cook for Princess Elizabeth's household (Queen Elizabeth before she was crowned, that is). It's an interesting cookbook, with some good recipes and some interesting anecdotes. She claims that the royal family were all "addicted" to this recipe. She also says that this is the recipe she was given to use at Clarence House. I've tried it and like it quite well myself. Posting here as it's an older cookbook and I don't want to lose the recipe. Since the rinds are used, it's best if you can find organic fruits without oils or waxes or chemicals on the rinds. Failing that, be sure to clean them very well--I soak them in vinegar water, then rinse them under very hot water. I can't recall the amount you get at the end, so I am estimating. Times don't include cooling time.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Place barley in a large saucepan. Pour boiling water over and simmer over low heat, covered, for about 1 hour.
  2. Squeeze juice from fruit, reserving rinds.
  3. Strain water from cooking the barley into a large bowl. Add the rinds of 1 lemon and 3 oranges. Add sugar. Allow to sit until completely cooled.
  4. Strain liquid again to remove rinds. Add juices. Transfer to a jug or bottle and store in refrigerator.


Most Helpful

I am a huge advocate of barley water and think that it is helpful for so many things, particularly for swelling of the feet during pregnancy. My mom drinks it on a regular basis to help her with her arthritis. I have never had it with orange or lemon but am sure that it will be tasty and plan to try it soon. Thank you for sharing this recipe.

Blue Peacock December 06, 2008

I made this years ago but lost the recipe. Thank you because it really is a useful drink and is supposed to clear the skin too.

pearlyvictoria_5006528 November 07, 2011

I felt quite regal sipping this ! I think probably 4 - 6 serves is closer to the mark than 8.I did not add the sugar as my oranges were so sweet and very juicy. I cannot stand waste so luckily found a recipe that called for the cooked barley that remained ! Enjoyed for Holiday Tag.

katew August 18, 2009

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