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Crockpot Bean and Ham Soup

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Warm, comforting and brimming with flavor, this Crockpot Bean and Ham Soup is a bowl of nostalgia on a chilly day. This soup recipe is incredibly easy to prepare, and is the perfect solution for utilizing that leftover holiday ham bone. The beauty of this homemade soup recipe is that you can let it simmer in the crockpot all day and return home to a wonderfully cooked, satisfying meal.

Often, after the holidays, we find ourselves with leftover ham bones or ham hocks. Instead of letting them go to waste, repurpose them to create this flavorful, protein-packed bean soup. The ham bone infuses this hearty soup with an incredible depth of flavor, making it a standout dish that’s both economical and delicious.

A bowl of Navy Bean and Ham Soup in a white bowl garnished with minced celery leaves and cracked black pepper.

What You Need to Make Navy Bean and Ham Soup

Let’s Talk Beans

When preparing this simple recipe for Crockpot Bean and Ham Soup, the primary bean of choice is often navy beans due to their creamy texture, and ability to absorb flavors beautifully. Easily, substitute navy beans with:

  • Great Northern Beans: Similar in size and texture to navy beans, with a mild, nutty flavor.
  • Cannellini Beans: Larger than navy beans, creamy texture, slightly nutty taste.
  • White Beans (e.g., White Kidney Beans or Butter Beans): Creamy texture, versatile in soups and stews.
  • Pinto Beans: Earthy flavor, different texture, common in Mexican cuisine.
  • Black Beans: Distinct flavor, hearty texture, suitable for soups.
  • Red Beans: Smaller size, slightly sweeter taste, often used in chili and bean soups.

Do you have to soak the beans prior to cooking?

While many traditional navy bean soup recipes recommend soaking the dried beans overnight to reduce cooking time and aid in digestion, it’s not necessary when using a slow cooker or crockpot. The prolonged cooking time in the crockpot, typically 5 to 6 hours on high heat, is sufficient to soften and cook the beans thoroughly, without the need for soaking.

Ham for Bean Soup

The choice of ham for soup ultimately depends on personal preference and availability, but any of these options will contribute delicious taste to your Crockpot Bean and Ham Soup:

  • Ham Bone: Provides rich flavor with marrow and bits of meat, perfect for imparting a smoky taste to the soup.
  • Ham Hocks: Contain meat, skin, fat, and tendons, adding deep, savory flavors and richness to the soup when slow-cooked.
  • Leftover Ham: Diced or shredded leftover cooked ham can be used, though it might not offer the same depth of flavor as a bone or hocks.
  • Ham Shanks: Similar to ham hocks, these cuts from the lower leg of the pig contain meat, bone, and connective tissue, providing a robust flavor when used in soups.

How to Make Crockpot Bean and Ham Soup

Whipping up this delightful, winter soup recipe is a breeze. Simply toss in the dried navy beans, savory ham bone or hocks, minced veggies, and chicken stock into the crockpot. Allow the soup to slow-cook on high for 5 to 6 hours, or on low for approximately 8 hours.

  1. Begin by rinsing the beans thoroughly, and discarding any damaged or discolored beans.
  2. Place the rinsed beans in the crockpot and add in the ham bone (or ham hocks), minced celery, onion, carrot, chicken stock, water, bay leaves, kosher salt, and black pepper. Give it a good stir to combine all the ingredients.
  3. Set your crockpot to cook on high for 5 to 6 hours.
  4. If possible, monitor the liquid levels a few times while the bean soup is cooking. If needed, add additional stock, or water.
  5. About an hour before it’s done, break apart the ham into smaller pieces within the soup.
  6. As the cooking time nears its end, taste the soup and adjust the seasoning with more salt, if necessary.
  7. Once done, ladle the steaming soup into bowls, garnishing each serving with chopped celery leaves and a sprinkle of cracked black pepper.

How to Serve and Store Navy Bean and Ham Soup

This homemade bean soup pairs beautifully with cornbread, a side of crusty bread or warm dinner rolls. You can also serve it alongside a fresh, crisp salad for a well-rounded meal. The flavors develop beautifully when allowed to sit, making it an excellent option for meal prepping, enjoying leftovers the next day and/or freezing for later.

Refrigeration:

  • Ensure the soup cools to room temperature before storing.
  • Use airtight containers or resealable bags for storing.
  • Consume within 3 to 4 days.

Freezing:

  • Cool the soup completely before transferring to freezer-safe containers.
  • Soup can be frozen for 2 to 3 months.
  • Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

More Slow Cooker Soup to Love

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A bowl of Navy Bean and Ham Soup in a white bowl garnished with minced celery leaves and cracked black pepper.

Crockpot Bean and Ham Soup


Description

Warm, comforting and brimming with flavor, this Crockpot Bean and Ham Soup is a bowl of nostalgia on a chilly day. This soup recipe is incredibly easy to prepare, and is the perfect solution for utilizing that leftover holiday ham bone.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 4 cups dried navy beans, rinsed
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 ham bone or two ham hocks
  • 2 celery stalks with leaves, minced
  • 1/2 white or yellow onion, minced
  • 1 carrot, minced
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • chopped celery leaves, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Begin by rinsing the beans thoroughly and discarding any beans that are damaged, or discolored.
  2. Place the rinsed beans in the crockpot. Add in the ham bone (or ham hocks), minced celery, onion, carrot, chicken stock, water, bay leaves, kosher salt, and black pepper. Give it a good stir to combine all the ingredients.
  3. Set your crockpot to cook on high for 5 to 6 hours.
  4. If possible, monitor the liquid levels a few times. If needed, add additional stock, or water. 
  5. About an hour before the bean soup is done, remove the ham bone and break apart the meat into smaller pieces. Add the meat back to the soup.
  6. As the cooking time nears its end, taste the soup and adjust the seasoning with more salt, if necessary.
  7. Once done, ladle the steaming soup into bowls, garnishing each serving with chopped celery leaves and a sprinkle of cracked black pepper.
@charlottefashionplate

Crockpot Navy Bean and Ham Soup Recipe! This crockpot soup recipe is incredibly easy to prepare, and is the perfect solution for utilizing that leftover holiday ham bone. The beauty of this homemade soup recipe is that you can let it simmer in the crockpot all day and return home to a wonderfully cooked, satisfying meal. #crockpotrecipes #crockpotmeals #crockpotdinner #crockpotsoup #souprecipe #souptok #beansoup #hambone

♬ Belonging – Muted

Notes

  • Rinse and inspect the dried beans, thoroughly before adding them to the crockpot.
  • Soaking the beans overnight is optional.
  • If you prefer a chunkier cut on the vegetables, feel free to dice.
  • Vegetable stock or all water can be used in replacement of the chicken stock.
  • Ensure there is enough liquid to cover the beans by at least an inch.
  • If possible, monitor the liquid levels a few times. If needed, add additional stock, or water.
  • If leaving the soup to cook while at work, add extra stock or water, just in case.
  • Taste the soup towards the end and adjust for salt, if needed (the ham is salty).
  • Break apart the ham into smaller pieces during the final hour of cooking. Remove the ham bone.
  • Check the liquid levels at least twice while the soup is cooking. Add more stock or water, as needed.
  • Alternatively, cook this bean and ham soup on low for about 8 hours. 
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 hours
  • Category: Soup, Dinner
  • Method: Easy
  • Cuisine: American

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WELCOME! My name is Melissa Latin aka. Charlotte Fashion Plate. Happy to meet you! I am more than just recipes. I love fashion and style too! Most importantly, I love my Family (my Hubby and my Fur Babies). My Husband (aka my “Kitchen Bitch”) means the world to me. He’s pretty damn cool too. Not only is he one of the nicest guys you will ever meet, he also has had a lengthy career in professional hockey. Not only winning two Stanley Cups with the Pittsburgh Penguins in the early ’90’s, but most recently winning the Calder Cup with the Charlotte Checkers, amongst many other accolades. If you live in Charlotte and play hockey, or have a family member who plays, be sure to contact him!

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