Barley for fishing: How to cook and How to put barley on a fish hook


14 min read

Barley for fishing is a versatile grain that has a variety of uses for fishing bait.

While it may not be as well-known as some other baits, such as worms or minnows, barley can be an effective and economical choice for catching a wide range of fish species.

In this article, we'll explore how to cook barley and how to put it on a fish hook, as well as some other considerations when using it as bait.

Barley for Fishing: How to Cook and How to Put Barley on a Fish Hook

Maggots, corn, worms, and pearl barley are the most common baits among anglers. If the first three are usually purchased ready-made, then the majority did not work out with the finished fishing barley.

And a pot with a thermos is still the assistant of fishermen who prefer these grains to any other attachment.

What factors influence the bite on pearl barley fishing?

Since it is still better to cook barley for fishing by steaming or boiling, let's look at the basic recipes and recommendations for its preparation.

To prepare the right nozzle, you need a lot of experience. There may be several anglers on the shore with their barley grains, and their bite will be different. This is understandable: half of the lovers of this nozzle prefer softer grains, the other half prefer grains of medium hardness and add to this the use of flavorings and other components during cooking.

This is where the final catch comes in. Finding a bait that satisfies both the angler and his potential prey may require testing more than one recipe and more than one fishing without a bite.

[caption id="attachment_1921" align="aligncenter" width="300"]What factors influence the bite on pearl barley fishing? What factors influence the bite on pearl barley fishing?[/caption]

Yes, a lot depends on the softness of the grains and the process of boiling or steaming. And if today the bite on pearl barley was, to put it mildly, “not very good”, then this does not mean that the fish in the pond ignore such a nozzle. As practice shows,a very diverse fish is caught with “pleasure” on these grains.

Its very first connoisseurs are roach, crucian carp and bream.

Carp, large bream, rudd, and ide are also not averse to feasting on it if they find themselves at the feeding site. Fishing with this bait starts at the end of May and continues until September. It happens that in the midst of the heat, the fish generally refuses maggot and worm and takes it exclusively for pearl barley.

As for baiting, pearl barley is very popular for fishing on the feeder. The low price and ability to attract a variety of fish have made it one of the main ingredients to add to groundbait.

I have already dwelled in detail on how to prepare bait with your own hands. And they found out that the addition of barley porridge, peas, and millet gives only a positive effect. Such large fractions hold the fish in place and attract large individuals.

How to cook barley

There are several methods for cooking barley, and the best one for you will depend on your personal preference and the type of barley you're using.

Here are a few options to consider:

  1. Boiling: This is the most common method for cooking barley, and it's relatively simple. To boil barley, start by rinsing it in a fine mesh strainer to remove any dirt or debris. Then, add the barley to a pot of boiling water (the ratio of water to barley is typically 2:1) and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook the barley for 30-45 minutes, or until it is tender but still has a bit of chew.
  2. Steaming: Steaming is another option for cooking barley, and it can be a good choice if you're looking to retain more of the grain's nutrients. To steam barley, add it to a steamer basket or colander and place it over a pot of boiling water. Cover the pot and steam the barley for 30-45 minutes, or until it is tender.
  3. Pressure cooking: If you have a pressure cooker, this can be a quick and efficient way to cook barley. To pressure cook barley, rinse it and add it to the pressure cooker with the appropriate amount of water (the ratio is typically 1:2). Follow the manufacturer's instructions for cooking times and release methods, and be sure to allow the pressure to release naturally before opening the cooker.
  • Take a glass of pearl barley and pour six glasses of water.
  • Add sugar and salt.
  • Cook for twenty minutes and add a glass of millet.
  • Cook over low heat, stirring constantly until the water has completely evaporated from the surface (30-40 minutes).
  • Turn off the fire, and add honey, vegetable oil, etc., if desired. and let it persist.

[caption id="attachment_1922" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Carp Carp[/caption]

Recipe for catching bream.

The second recipe is more designed for bream fishing, it works especially well after the first cold snap. The bream actively feeds in the autumn, including at night.

  • We take two-three presses of peas and add six to eight glasses of water.
  • Cook until the peas start to boil. It turns out something like soup.
  • Add a couple of barley there and cook over low heat for another 30-50 minutes. After that, we insist on warmth.
  • We add this mixture to the feeder, and the grains themselves can be hung on a hook.

[caption id="attachment_1923" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Bream Bream[/caption]

When fishing, we first feed with a dry mixture of feeder bait, and then we begin to add these cooked cereals to it. We bring the proportion to 50 to 50 percent.

It is impossible to ram the porridge into the feeder!

Porridge adheres very well to crumbly ingredients and to the walls of the feeder. Even during the course, we simply fill the feeder, but do not press it!

How to cook barley for fishing as a nozzle

With a nozzle, it’s a little more difficult, not in terms of cooking, but in terms of choosing the right recipe.

[caption id="attachment_1924" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Bream Bream[/caption]

As you know, every angler has his own opinion about what and how to do, and this opinion is often not even subject to discussion. Therefore, you can find a lot of recipes about the proper preparation of pearl barley on the Internet and in magazines. I tried to single out a few really working ones from them and give the angler himself the opportunity to choose the method of “improving” the bait. To do this, consider a few conflicting recommendations from different pros.

Need slime or not

When this porridge is cooked for a long time or when steamed, starch is released, which gives it a “snotty” look. Fish, as you know, is not as esthete as a person, so they do not disdain such components. Moreover, having an excellent sense of smell, it captures well any attractive smell, including this mucus.

[caption id="attachment_1925" align="aligncenter" width="300"]How to cook barley for fishing as a nozzle How to cook barley for fishing as a nozzle [/caption]

Many do not do this for the bait either. It has been noticed that a newly planted grain on a hook is more attractive to fish than one that has already been recast several times.

Other anglers still advise rinsing the grits after cooking and laying them on a newspaper to dry, and only then put them in a jar for transportation. In this case, the grains are clean and whole.

Soft or hard grains are better for catching

With weak biting, it is better to use softer grains. When eating small things - tougher. The main thing is that the bait should hold well on the hook and be attractive to fish. And her tastes are changeable, but with experience comes an understanding of what the fish wants in a particular reservoir.

To salt or not to salt

This question applies in general to all homemade nozzles.

As practice shows, a little salt in porridge has never interfered.

Salt is a flavor enhancer. The question is in a reasonable amount. A small pinch per approximately liter jar of ready-made porridge will be enough. Although many do not use salt and are satisfied with the catches.

How much to store

There is an opinion that they catch well on slightly sour pearl barley. I myself noticed such an addiction to fish, but regarding sour corn for fishing. Barley is better to use fresh. You can store it in the refrigerator, but for no more than two or three days. After this period, it is worth adding it as bait, and for the nozzle, boil or infuse a new one.

What to cook

Water is the standard. You can add milk. It is even better to insist hemp seeds in water for several hours, then boil them in the same water for 10 minutes and add barley grains.

How to brew barley thermos

You can do this and that, the main thing is to choose the optimal cooking time for your pan, stove, and thermos. The process of brewing in a thermos is simpler and requires less attention, but does not always give the opportunity to obtain the optimal "soft-firmness".

[caption id="attachment_1926" align="aligncenter" width="300"]How to brew barley thermos How to brew barley thermos[/caption]

The time of cooking or infusion of pearl barley depends primarily on the pearl barley itself. When buying, pay attention to its color. Fresh grains, which will cook faster, have a light gray color, while aged barley looks darker.

If you want to reduce the cooking time, then any cereal can be soaked in water before cooking (several hours). Barley grains can generally be kept in the refrigerator for 2-3 days in water, periodically changing the water. And after this time, the grains will become soft and will be suitable for planting in their raw form. This is a long process, so consider faster recipes.

What to add to pearl barley, recipes

All additives can be divided into "before" and "after". It is better to remember that properly prepared pearl barley is good in itself and does not require additional odors. But as they say: there is no limit to perfection, therefore:

Before boiling or brewing in a thermos, you can add

  • Sugar, salt;
  • I harvest crushed sunflower seeds, add them to the cereal, and boil or brew. The grains acquire an attractive aroma. Stir after cooking.
  • Vegetable oil. Can be added at the end of cooking. It is better to use unrefined, and even better fresh, not for frying;
  • Hemp seeds. You can boil them first, and then add barley, but you can also pour 50-100 grams of hemp into the water with "pearls", they will have time to boil;
  • Crushed caramel (strawberries, raspberries);
  • Honey. Dissolve in water before cooking. If we brew in a thermos, then shake before insisting;
  • Garlic. You can take a couple of cloves or grated powder. It is added to the pan during the cooking process or in a thermos before pouring. Works great for crucian carp, but not everywhere;
  • Food coloring (bright yellow or bright red).

[caption id="attachment_1929" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Before boiling or brewing in a thermos, you can add Before boiling or brewing in a thermos, you can add[/caption]

After brewing, there are many ways to add flavor and aroma to the bait.

  • Feeder dry bait or breadcrumbs. One of the most common methods for improving the attractiveness of pearl barley. Grind breadcrumbs or bait with grains. It is better to do this on the fishing itself or shortly before it. Since the crumbs take moisture and dry the barley. Cracker crumbs transfer their smell and adhere well to the grains. In the water, they fly off the nozzle and additionally lure fish.
  • 1-2 teaspoons of honey;
  • unrefined sunflower oil;
  • A pinch of ground cinnamon;
  • Vanilla sugar;
  • Anise;
  • Corvallis;
  • Raspberry or strawberry syrup. We mix the nozzle in it. Works great for crucian and carp;
  • Concentrators for fishing, select depending on the fish and the time of year. You need to be especially careful with them and first test on a small number of nozzles.

Barley cooking recipes for fishing

Before cooking or during cooking, you can add the above components.

[caption id="attachment_1927" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Barley cooking recipes for fishing Barley cooking recipes for fishing[/caption]

The main thing is that the water does not boil away prematurely. Ready porridge should not be overdried and not burnt. And this depends on the proportion of porridge and water, the quality of the grain and the size of the fire.

Recipe 1

  • Take 1 part barley to 5 parts water (cannabis-infused can be used);
  • After boiling, we make a small fire and cook for about an hour, not forgetting to stir, and check for readiness. When the grains are ready, there is practically no water left;
  • Stir the porridge, turn off the heat and leave to infuse in the pan for another hour;
  • Transfer to jars and add flavors of your choice (see list above).

Recipe 2

  • We cook, as in the first case, but after boiling, add a teaspoon of baking soda;
  • After that, stir for a couple of minutes until the foam subsides;
  • Color and grains due to soda acquire a pinkish tint. Barley turns out boiled and soft. Biting on it in some cases will be more active than on the usual one. The only negative is that it is weakly held on the hook, so you need not be late with hooking.

Recipe 3

  • Fast cooking. We add a lot of water: for one glass of barley 1.5 liters of water;
  • We put on a large fire and cook for 30-40 minutes;
  • Do not forget to stir every 2-3 minutes and check for readiness;
  • The finished nozzle is obtained quickly and has increased rigidity.

We insist on pearl barley in a thermos

This method is good because it takes less time and there is no danger of burning.

  • It is better to use a thermos with a wide neck (it will be more convenient to pour out the grains and wash the flask.)
  • Since the grains swell greatly, do not fill them with a full thermos. The third must remain empty. This rule especially applies to thermoses with glass flasks;
  • Before filling the thermos, be sure to warm it with boiling water;
  • After pouring water, the thermos needs to be shaken up and it is better to leave it in a supine position;
  • The more boiling water poured into a thermos, the faster the porridge will cook.

Option 1 (it's the only one)

  • If desired, add the above ingredients;
  • We fall asleep in a heated thermos groat, as much as necessary for fishing, and pour boiling water 3-5 cm above the grains;
  • The nozzle will be ready in 2-3 hours (medium hardness).

You can do this in the morning before going fishing, or you can leave it all night (6-8) hours, and the grains will be more boiled. After readiness, you can add the above-listed ingredients or grind with feeder bait or breadcrumbs.

How to put pearl barley on a fish hook

There are several methods for attaching barley to a fish hook, and the best one for you will depend on your personal preference and the type of fish you're targeting.

Bait threader

A bait threader is a small tool that allows you to easily thread a piece of barley onto a hook. To use a bait threader, simply slide the barley onto the tool and then insert the hook through the loop at the end. This method is quick and easy, and it can be particularly useful for attaching small pieces of barley to small hooks.

Tying it on directly

Another option is to tie the barley onto the hook using a simple knot, such as a knotless knot or a water knot. This method can be a bit more time-consuming than using a bait threader, but it can be effective for attaching larger pieces of barley or for creating a more natural-looking presentation.

Bait bag

A bait bag is a small mesh bag that allows you to easily attach a piece of barley to a hook. To use a bait bag, simply fill the bag with barley, thread the hook through the top, and then close the bag securely. This method can be a good choice for attaching large pieces of barley or for keeping the bait in place on the hook.

[caption id="attachment_1928" align="aligncenter" width="300"]How to put pearl barley on a fish hook How to put pearl barley on a fish hook[/caption]

Depending on the size of the hook, 1-2-3 barley grains are planted. It is better to pierce through the middle, there is a dark strip on the grain, it is the strongest part after cooking. The string is passed through and remains open. The F22 hook from Gamakatsu works well with this bait.

As always, there is no limit to experiments in the "mixes". Barley nozzle can be combined with maggot, bloodworm, worm, and steamed oatmeal. Especially such combinations can justify themselves during a period of weak bite. Remember to keep the nozzle closed so that it does not dry out too much.

Let's remember: a real angler does not hide his secrets, but uses them, so share your recipes and recommendations in the comments. Good luck with the season!


Barley is a versatile and effective bait that can be used to catch a wide range of fish species. By learning how to cook it and attach it to a fish hook, you can add this economical and effective bait to your fishing arsenal.

While using barley as bait does have its challenges and drawbacks, such as the potential for it to dissolve in the water or attract unwanted species, with a little knowledge and experience, you can overcome these challenges and enjoy success on the water.

If you're new to using barley as bait or want to learn more, there are many resources available, including local fishing clubs and online forums. By seeking out additional information and guidance, you can continue to develop your skills and knowledge and enjoy the many benefits of using barley as fishing bait.