Navy Bean and Ham Soup

Leftover ham from the holidays? My motto is: make soup! I was lucky enough to get a wonderful ham bone from a dinner at my mom’s, so stock and soup were calling my name.

Since I know we’re all busy with the holidays, I’ll keep this short and simple. These are guesstimated amounts, since soup is a wing-it kind of thing for me and I don’t really measure, The key is really ratio – add more of what you like, less (or none) of what you don’t.

To make your ham stock, cover the bone with cold water in a large stockpot. Add onions, garlic, veggies, a few peppercorns. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until liquid is reduced by half, about 2 1/2- 3 hours. Strain our bone and veggies, discard.


Homemade Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe

  • 1 lb dried navy beans, soaked overnight, drained and rinsed
  • 6 cups stock made from ham bone and veggies
  • 3-4 cups diced ham
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or canola oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 4 carrots, sliced
  • 2 celery stalks, sliced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme (I dry my own, so it’s very high quality. By all means use fresh, if you have it)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano (see my note on thyme)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Black pepper, to taste

In a large stockpot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions and stir for a minute or two, then add garlic. Cook for about 3 minutes, until onions are translucent.

Add stock, herbs and spices and bring to a simmer.

Add beans and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, partially cover, and cook until beans begin to become tender, about 1 hour.

Add ham, carrots and celery and simmer for another 30 minutes, or until beans and veggies are tender. Want to customize this? Add veggies of your choice here – chopped tomatoes, potatoes, kale, asparagus, broccoli – whatever you like and have on hand.

Definitely serve with some crusty bread. This soup is delicious, hearty and will warm you up on a cold winter night.


15 thoughts on “Navy Bean and Ham Soup

  1. My French Heaven says:

    I skipped dinner and this makes me so hungry right now. I think I’ll just have to go to bed so I can forget I read this post 😉

    • Awww…thanks Stephane! It’s just a simple soup but it’s SO cold here in the Chicago area, right now and it truly was delicious! (I know you remember how cold it gets here!) Thank you, so much! 🙂

  2. Sounds yummie. A friend dropped dropped a ham bone for me. I make a ham & bean too. It’s my grandma’s recipe with traditional paprika. The cumin you chose would be interesting. -Cheers

  3. Anonymous says:

    The soup is simmering on the stove. I am going out to shovel the 5 inches of snow we got last night. What a treat is waiting for me. Thanks Lola!
    Sue C.

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