Basic Ham and Bean Soup

585 Reviews 22 Pics
  • Prep

    30 m
  • Cook

    2 h 30 m
  • Ready In

    3 h
J. A. McConville
Recipe by  J. A. McConville

“Hearty ham and bean soup. Easy to make and a great way to use a leftover ham bone. This soup also has lots of mixed vegetables.”

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Adjust Servings

Original recipe yields 8 to 10 servings



  1. Rinse the beans, sorting out any broken or discolored ones. In a large pot over high heat, bring the water to a boil. Add the salt and the beans and remove from heat. Let beans sit in the hot water for at least 60 minutes.
  2. After the 60 minutes of soaking, return the pot to high heat and place the ham bone, carrots, celery, onion, garlic, mustard and bay leaves in the pot. Stir well, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 60 more minutes.
  3. Remove ham bone and discard. Stir in the chopped ham and simmer for 30 more minutes. Season with ground white pepper to taste.

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Reviews (585)

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Evelyn in KC

Evelyn in KC

Mmm ... good. My husband made this for dinner tonight, changing only the quantity of water. (He used less 'cause he doesn't like soupy beans.) Oh, and he didn't know we had ham, so he only used the ham hocks. Still, this was deee-lish. I actually had seconds, which I hardly ever do. Oh, and you have to cook them longer than 2 1/2 hours. Just test them every half hour or so after that, and throw the ham in when they're about done. BTW, if you cook dried beans to death and they are still gritty or mealy, it's because they're too old; even dried beans don't last forever. They have a moisture content that lessens with age. No recipe can make old beans taste good.



This soup turned out terrifically, but that's because I read all of the other reviews before making it, and attempted to fix the problems other people had noted: (1) to get tender beans, I soaked the dry beans overnight, discarded the water, and made the soup with fresh water, simmering for 2 hours--the beans were nice and tender; (2) to make the soup less watery, I used 6 1/2 cups water instead of 8--the soup turned out thick and hearty; (3) to avoid saltiness, I didn't add any salt, and used turkey ham instead of the traditional stuff, eliminating the ham hock as well (this may not have affected the saltiness, but it sure cut down on fat and calories). It's an easy recipe to experiment with--have fun and enjoy!



Yep... this is pretty good (it's how I make mine). But, why stop with Northern beans? I use every kind of bean and dried pea I can get my hands on. And I never take the time to soak my dried beans. I "de-gas" them by just covering them with water, adding about a tablespoon of baking soda, and bringing them to a rolling boil - about 3 times. After each boil, drain and run clean water over them to remove the husks. Then add the rest of your ingredients and cook away! You'll find the other beans/peas give your soup a much more "full" flavor. And the "de-gassing" ... well... de-gasses them! LOL Try it - I think you'll like it.

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Amount Per Serving (9 total)

  • Calories
  • 257 cal
  • 13%
  • Fat
  • 8 g
  • 12%
  • Carbs
  • 29 g
  • 9%
  • Protein
  • 18.1 g
  • 36%
  • Cholesterol
  • 30 mg
  • 10%
  • Sodium
  • 771 mg
  • 31%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet



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The Best Bean and Ham Soup


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Southwestern Style Fifteen Bean Soup