Ham and Bean Soup

This old-fashioned ham and white bean soup is made with navy beans, but it’s delicious with Great Northern beans as well. Serve hot, with fresh cornbread or warm crusty bread.

Serves: 8Hands-on: 20 minutesTotal: 3 hours 20 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 8


  • 1 lb. dried navy beans
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 ham hock or meaty ham bone
  • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1⁄4 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1⁄2 cup chopped celery
  • 2 cups diced ham
  • 1⁄2 tsp. salt
  • 1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce


  • Rinse beans and discard any that are discolored as well as any stones you find. Cover with water in a large pot. Bring to a boil; boil for 2 minutes. Remove from heat, cover, and let stand for 1 hour.
  • Add ham bone or ham hock, onion, pepper, bay leaf, diced carrot, and celery to the pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 1 1⁄2 hours until meat is tender. Add water as necessary.
  • Remove ham bone or ham hock. Trim meat from the bone and chop; return meat to beans. Add diced ham, salt, and tomato sauce. Simmer for about 30 minutes.
  • Remove bay leaf before serving.