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Close up side shot of two bowls of ham and bean soup
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5 from 3 votes

Ham and Bean Soup

Smoky and rich this homemade, comforting ham and bean soup recipe comes together quickly on the stovetop.
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Keyword ham and bean soup, hearty soup
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 10 cups
Calories 164kcal
Author Blair


  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cans white beans, drained and rinsed (about 5 ¼ cups total) (use navy beans, Great Northern beans, or cannellini beans, for instance)
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 ½ lb. smoked ham hock
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • Optional: chopped fresh parsley or thyme, for garnish


  • In a large soup pot or Dutch oven, melt butter over medium-high heat.
  • Add carrots, celery, onion, and garlic. Stir until vegetables are crisp-tender (about 5 minutes).
  • Stir in chicken broth, beans, thyme, ham hock, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 1 hour.
  • Discard bay leaf and thyme sprigs.
  • Remove ham hock; pull meat off the bone and discard fat. Cut ham into bite-sized pieces and stir into the pot. Garnish with parsley or thyme, just before serving.


  • I used chicken broth, but vegetable broth will also work well.
  • Ham hocks can be quite salty, so I recommend low-sodium chicken broth and seasoning with herbs (but very little additional salt, as necessary).
  • Season the soup with any of your favorite herbs -- try rosemary, basil or chives in addition to the parsley or thyme!
  • Leftover roast chicken would also work well in this soup. Stir it into the soup, just like you would the ham.
  • Puree or mash some of the beans (and veggies) to thicken the soup. You can use a potato masher or an immersion blender.


Serving: 1cup | Calories: 164kcal | Carbohydrates: 22.3g | Protein: 12.4g | Fat: 3.9g | Saturated Fat: 1.7g | Cholesterol: 15.1mg | Sodium: 826.5mg | Fiber: 7.8g | Sugar: 3.6g