This slow cooker ham and bean soup is made with a mixture of dried beans, vegetables, tomatoes and diced ham, all cooked together for a hearty and flavorful meal. An easy crock pot dinner that’s perfect for a cold night!
I love to use my slow cooker to make soup, chicken tortilla soup and chicken tortellini soup are some of my favorites. This ham and bean soup takes just minutes to put together, then you can come home later in the day to dinner ready and waiting for you!
It’s soup weather, which means we’re having soup at least once a week. My kids love it, it’s easy to make and so many soups are a complete meal in one pot. This slow cooker ham and bean soup is on regular rotation at my house, and it’s also a great way to use up leftover ham.
How do you make ham and bean soup?
This recipe starts with a bag of dried beans. I use a bag of bean soup mix which comes with a bunch of different varieties of beans and peas mixed together. You can also use a bag of white beans if you prefer. The beans go into the crock pot, along with some veggies, diced ham and seasonings. The soup cooks for at least 4 hours on high, or 8 hours on low. At this point, more seasonings get added to the soup, then let it simmer for another 20 minutes before eating. Add a sprinkle of parsley and enjoy!
Do you have to soak beans?
Many recipes call for soaking dried beans in water overnight. This can help your beans cook faster, but we’re using a slow cooker here so we’re not really concerned about speeding up the cooking process. In addition, in order to soak your beans, you need to plan way in advance so that the beans can soak for hours. For this recipe, just give your beans a quick rinse in a colander and pour them into the crock pot.
How do you make bean soup with a ham bone?
I didn’t include a ham bone in this recipe simply because I often don’t have one on hand to make this soup. If you’re looking for a recipe that utilizes a ham bone, check out my delicious ham bone soup!
Tips for ham and bean soup
- This recipe calls for carrots, onion and celery to be cooked in with the beans. The veggies will get quite soft from the extended cooking time. If you prefer firmer vegetables, you can add them in halfway through the cooking time, or cut your vegetables into larger pieces so that they don’t cook as quickly.
- I add a few sprigs of fresh thyme to this soup, the leaves fall off the branches as the soup cooks and then you can just extract the twigs before serving. If you don’t have fresh thyme, dried will also work nicely.
- Ham and bean soup is a great candidate for the freezer, and this recipe makes a large batch, so freeze some for another night! Place your soup into airtight containers or freeze bags, then freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw the soup in the fridge, then warm over low heat on the stove.
- I like to serve my soup with cornbread or baguette for a complete meal.
Ham and bean soup is so hearty and full of great flavors. I love the combination of beans here, all of the different colors and textures make this soup something special. Whether you’re looking to use up leftover ham or simply searching for a family friendly crock pot soup, this recipe is sure to be a hit!
More fabulous soup recipes
Ham and Bean Soup Video
Ham and Bean Soup (Slow Cooker)
- 20 ounce bag dried bean soup mix
- 3/4 cup onion finely diced
- 3 carrots peeled, halved and sliced
- 2 stalks celery sliced
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 cups diced ham
- 8 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 15 ounce can diced tomatoes do not drain
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- Rinse the beans thoroughly; set aside the seasoning packet for later use
- Place the beans, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, thyme, bay leaf, ham and chicken broth in a slow cooker.
- Cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 8 hours, or until beans are done
- Stir in the tomatoes, seasoning packet, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Cover and cook for an additional 20 minutes
- Sprinkle with parsley and serve.
This post was originally published on December 19, 2018 and was updated on September 30, 2019 with new content.