Slow Cooker (Crock Pot) Oxtail Barley Soup

"This is a soup my mother fixed often when I was a child. It's not easy to find oxtails but the search is definitely worth it. I had a friend once who bought a side of beef and was going to throw away the tail. I snatched them out of her hand and hugging them to my chest, ran home and made oxtail soup. I brought her a bowl and after much hesitation she tried it. That was the last time she gave me these choice bones."
photo by CoolMonday photo by CoolMonday
photo by CoolMonday
photo by CoolMonday photo by CoolMonday
Ready In:
9hrs 30mins
3 1/2 quarts




  • Saute celery and onions till tender.
  • In slow cooker, add water, oxtail, potatoes, carrots, peppercorns, bay leaves, celery, onion, and salt. If using regular barley, add at this time too.
  • Cover and simmer for 8- 10 hours, until meat is tender, potatoes and carrots are cooked, and barley is tender.
  • When meat is tender, take meat off bones and return to broth.
  • Bring broth to boil and add quick-cooking barley and tomatoes.
  • Cover and cook for 15 minutes or until barley is tender.
  • Note: Beef shanks, neck or other bones with meat remaining on them may be used in place of oxtail.

Questions & Replies

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  1. cawm4611
    wow! Great taste. The only change I made was to coat oxtails in flour and brown them on all sides before putting them in the crockpot. A definite keeper!
  2. snugglebug14305
    I found the recipe needed some spicing up so I added 1step beef flavoring, onion powder & garlic powder, regular black pepper, basil, & parsley.
  3. MrsDoty
    My DH & I loved this recipe! It's hands down, the easiest Oxtail Soup I'ev ever made. I made two small amendments: 1) I browned the oxtails in the oven under a high broiler for 3 minutes per side for some extra flavor. 2)I doubled the amound of carrots and cut them into 1" slices on the bias. We'll be making this again. Thanks for posting!
  4. plmezzano1127
    I have to say this is the easiest and best oxtail soup I have ever made. The only thing that I changed was I used regular barley and put it in, in the beginning as the tomatos too. I also used a 32 oz box of beef broth as part of the water. Cooked it 10 hours in crockpot and when I got home from work it smelled delish. My family was already eating it. Very very good. Did not need to brown the oxtails but mom never did when when I was growing up so I am use to it. Paula Deen has a great recipe for braised oxtails made in the oven. I love oxtails, glad to see people like them also.
  5. Omegachowz
    I absolutely adore this recipe!!! I have been looking longingly at the oxtails in my supermarket, remembering the soup my friend's mother used to make for me upon request. I finally have a recipe, so I can actually buy them now!!! I do recommend refrigerating the soup, skimming the hardened fat off, then reheating...But SO YUMMY!!!



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