Ham and White Bean Soup with Variations

For many of us, Easter holiday usually means a ham dinner.  Even though we cannot be with family right now, maintaining tradition is important.  It helps us to feel like things are still somewhat normal.  After the ham has served for sandwiches and leftover meals for a few days, making a thick and hearty soup with the bone is a delicious way to make the most of what is left.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

To begin, cover 2 pounds of Great Northern beans with hot tap water in a large bowl.

Ham Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Cover and soak overnight.

Ham Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

The beans will double in size.

Ham Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Add the ham bone, onion, garlic, to a large stockpot and fill the pot with water to cover the bone.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Drain the beans and add to the stockpot.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Bring to a boil, then turn down to a simmer.  Cook for 2 – 2-1/2 hours, until the beans are tender and the remaining ham is falling off the bone.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Lift the bone and remove the meat.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Shred the meat and discard the bone.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Before adding the meat back to the pot, ladle out at least 3 cups of beans and broth into a blender or food processor. There should be mostly beans, with enough broth to make blending easy.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Puree the beans, making a thick slurry, about the consistency of a thick gravy.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Add the ham and the slurry back to the pot. Add 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper, or to taste.  You could also just add salt and pepper at the table.  The soup can hold on a low simmer for an hour or more if needed.  For extra flavor and a bit of heat, add a shot of sriracha sauce, or other hot sauce.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

When you are ready to serve, garnish with green onions or fresh chopped parsley.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Thick and hearty, this will stick to your ribs.  And it is gluten and dairy free too.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Add a hunk of cornbread if you like.  Yum, perfect for a chilly day.  This recipe makes 6-8 large bowls of soup.  Leftovers freeze well.

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

If you don’t want meat in your soup, you can use chunks of other vegetables to add flavor in place of the meat.  Cut up large chunks of onion, carrots, leeks or celery to add to the broth for the last 30 minute of cooking so they don’t disintegrate.

Download a pdf of the recipe – Ham and White Bean Soup

Do you make soup with your ham bones?

Ham and Bean Soup at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

19 thoughts on “Ham and White Bean Soup with Variations

  1. Sylvia anderson

    Good morning Carole. Yes I do make soup from the ones my family saves for me, because we usually eat Easter Dinner with family, so I hope they get saved this year, as I am down to the last container of pea soup in my freezer. I did not bake a ham, but made my husband’s favorite dinner instead. He absolutely loves baby back ribs, so that’s what we had, along with baked sweet potatoes, a veggie and applesauce. Fortunately I made enough for 2 more meals, now in the freezer.

  2. This is one of our favorites during cold days. We make a big pot and freeze it in meal sized portion for those days we need something fast and hearty. Ham and beans with cornbread is so good!

  3. Sue H

    I love ham & bean soups too … any variation is accepted happily! Don’t you just love having soup in the freezer for when you need a quick, hearty meal??? I usually share with my mother too. May I also add how healthy it is too, making your own soup from bones, including turkey soup and chicken soup.

  4. lois92346

    Thank you so much for sharing this delicious looking recipe. I sure wish I had a big meaty ham bone but since we’re all sheltering in place, I spent Easter Sunday alone. I will definitely download the pdf recipe for future use.

  5. Ruth Jones

    I love to make ham & beans with my ham bones! I usually throw in a bay leaf & a teaspoon of whole peppercorns. The peppercorns get so tender they melt in your mouth for a mild spicy kick! Usually include onion, and often add small dice carrots and/or kale if I have any that needs to be used. I always freeze enough for two bowls full for a lunch later on. Hubs is always pleased when he finds it in the freezer! Your soup looks wonderful Carole…I can almost smell it! 😃

  6. Brenda Ackerman

    Hello Carole, After reading your post and recipe I wanted to make Ham and Beans! Usually, the only time I eat this is when my Dad used to make it and I also have a small bit when Kevin makes some. I was saddened that we do not have any of the items necessary. We may have to make a trip to our local store. Your post just made it all sound so scrumptious. Oh, I have never seen anyone blend up the beans to make the sauce thicker. That is brilliant and may be the reason it really made my taste buds greedy. I love thick and creamy of all sorts. Thank you for sharing and have a fabulous day!

  7. Oh boy, I haven’t cooked with a ham hock in years, a staple in our house when the kids were home. Thank you for that memory! The soup looks delicious!

  8. We just have beans and ham last week; it is perfect for cold days. The only difference is that we don’t blend the beans, but after two or three meals, they really become thick and like soup. I’ve never tried putting green onions on top, will have to do that next time I make it.
    Thanks so much for sharing,

    1. Sandra B

      We are down to our last container of ham and bean soup in the freezer. I soak the beans overnight, then throw them in the crock pot with some celery, onions and carrots….and, of course, the ham. Love smelling it cook all day! I make it several times a year and always put leftovers in the freezer. We are predicted to have cooler weather tomorrow here in Virginia….I think you helped me decide what we are having for dinner tomorrow night!!

  9. thedarlingdogwood

    Looks yummy! I don’t have dried white beans on hand but I might have some canned, and I know I have dried black beans. And Husband has gotten on the sourdough bandwagon so a good soup will be perfect with some homemade bread!

    I make my own stock anytime I cook a turkey or a ham. We freeze in 4-cup increments and use all the time!

  10. Thanks so much for this recipe and you even have a pdf file that I can print out! I am going to make this with my leftovers as soon as I purchase the beans.

  11. Susan Nixon

    Interesting! I’ve never made this kind of soup, though I always have used the ham bone, except the one this year had delicious ham, but a lot of fat on the back, and I didn’t want to use that, so the dog next door had a feast. I like the trick of blending the soup beans to make the soup thick, too.

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