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What an amazing soup!! I started it at 10:30 am, combined the beans and liquids around 1 pm and then simmered until dinner at around 6 pm. The day was busy and I couldn’t wait to see if it was done at the timeframe discussed above, and that appeared to be the trick. The beans were so tender and flavorful and since I had half a spiral ham, I added a lot more ham than was suggested… The results were outstanding! What an amazing soup to serve the family! Especially when you have little time to be patient. The next day it was even more extravagant! Awesome and amazing all in one!!
Wonderful John, I’m so glad you liked the soup!
Great soup on a cold, winter night!
I used leftover Thanksgiving ham bone and ham pieces instead of shank. It was sooo delicious and sooo easy to prepare. I slow cooked overnight and everyone couldn’t wait for dinnertime. The smell was killing us softly. What a wonderful smell to wake up to!
Amazing recipe! I’ve made it for my family multiple times, and they love it every time! Thank you:)
Your blog never lets me down! Ever! But these beans are not done… They definitely should be fully cooked before going into the soup. The 40 minute simmer is not enough The broth is also greasy so I’ll be skimming tomorrow…
Hi Mary, thanks for your comment! The beans can vary in their cooking time, depending on how old they are. They definitely need a pre-soak before cooking, otherwise they will take much longer. Beans that are older than a year will take longer to cook as well.
The beans were purchased the day I used them… No way to know age beyond that. They were bagged Goya cannellini beans purchased from Whole Foods. I did the full presoak. I’d say I needed to cook the soup 1.5 hours past the 40 minutes the recipe had them cooking in the soup before the beans softened, which matches the general cooking instructions for cannellini beans after soaking….1.5-2 hours. Lessons learned!!
Same! My beans were new, and I soaked for a little over 2 hours, and they still weren’t done. I had to over cook the soup to get the beans to be edible
A 2-hour soak will help, but for better results, soak longer. And ohhh yes, I have been there–the frustration of old beans that are tough and undermine an entire soup! I try now to get my beans from the bulk section–faster turnouver–and use them within a year.
This is a Wonderful recipe! I’ve made this recipe since I was a child in my Moms kitchen. I’ve made this in my own kitchen since I was 21. My husband and family and friends all love and enjoy this recipe each time I make it! Thank you for sharing this. I add a teaspoon of cumin also. I use this in my Crockpot often. I notice that a lot of recipes for dried beans don’t mention to clean the beans before cooking! I Always “look over the beans a little at a time, and remove any that’s damaged or discolored along with pieces of rocks and dirt that might be with the beans. It’s called “Looking the beans.” Before hand preparation . After looking and sorting through the beans I put them in a colander and run warm water over them and gently rub the beans between my fingers to wash any dirt or impurities from them, then I add them to the crockpot on top of my chunks of ham and veggies and seasonings. Finally I give it all a nice big stir and put the lid on and set the timer and temp. It’s such an easy and delicious meal with some homemade cornbread , a tossed salad, fried potatoes and onions! “JUST DELISH, along with some Chocolate cake & vanilla bean ice cream !SCRUPDILLIUMSCIOUS GOOD”!
Wow! I thought “looking the beans” goes without saying unless you’re a very very inexperienced cook. It’s on every package of beans. That’s like including in the recipe to wash your hands before preparing food! LOL
Neither side of my family cook much with beans aside from those out of a can. So the detailed description of how to clean the beans was actually very informative for me. I’m making this soup today for the first time and I appreciate all the tips that everyone has written!
I thought the recipe was ok. My ham hocks and parsley spoiled so I could not used most of them in the soup. Then it took awhile longer for the beans to get soft. Other than that, it tastes good with salt and pepper. Next time I will used the recipe right away and use half chicken broth in the soup.
Awesome recipe. Good alone, but easy to modify. I put a few packs of chicken bullion from the hispanic section of the store in mine.
This seriously is the best bean and ham soup ever. The Herbes de Provence take it to another level. The recipe is perfect. No need to substitute or change it.
Excellent! Thank you for sharing yet another great recipe. I made a slight change in that I used half chicken broth, half water.
I just thought that it was very bland and fatty. I used smoked ham hocks and there was a lot of fat at the top of the soup and most of the meat was fatty skin. The flavor was kind of bland and the tabasco added little flavor than vinegar.
Hi Alison, I recommend using ham shanks for the recipe because they are meatier. If you use hocks, you may want to add additional ham to the soup.
You need to cool your broth so you can skim the fat from the surface any time you cook with pork or your soup will get greasy. If you do that and use shanks it should come out better.
Made this early in Jan, did about 1.3x on the vegetables, and it was FANTASTIC. Loved it.Planning to make it again later this week. This time I just have leftover ham and not a hock so I’ll follow your recommendation to another person to use chicken stock. But I’m also wondering if I should add a little more flavor given the lack of a hock… so I’m considering adding about 1/2 of a chopped jalapeno to the onions. Thoughts?
Hi, Ron! The hock would add meatiness and body to the broth, so adding jalapeno won’t be quite the same. This said, I think some spicy jalapeno flavor would be a fun variation on the flavors in this recipe. If you try it, let us know how it turns out!
Ok, here’s how it turned out. Reminder, I only had about a pound of ham and no shank and I wanted to use a crockpot.
So following some threads below, I soaked beans for about 6 hours, and finished the whole thing in a crockpot on low in another 4-5 hours. Instead of Step 2, I substituted 32 oz of chicken stock. And I added 1/2 of a diced Jalapeno to the onion to open it up a little. The results were great. I’m not sure it’s quite as good as having a ham hock and making your own broth, but it was great and the small amount of Jalapeno just added another element to it.
I have a pot of this on the stove bubbling away today, just waiting for dinner to arrive. It smells delicious! I mashed part of the beans to give it a creamier texture. Thanks for sharing all your wonderful recipes — everything I’ve tried so far has been great.
Just made this in the slow cooker, on low 8 hours. I like it thicker and creamier so mixed 1/4 cup warmed milk with 2 tsp cornstarch, which I added at end. Mashed the soup a bit with potato masher to get consistency I like. Stirred and put on high for 15 minutes to thicken. Used leftover sausage instead of ham and 3 tins cannelloni beans rinsed. Would consider adding spinach, red pepper or small pasta next time and a little more hot spice.
Lol so essentially a completely different recipe. Sounds good though!
Can you make this in a slow cooker?
Hi, Nancy! Yes, I think this recipe would work quite well in the slow cooker. I’d just throw everything into the pot at once and cook for 6 to 8 hours on low, or until the meat and the beans are both tender. Let us know how it turns out!
Much tastier than my old family recipe. The Italian seasoning did it! As a time saver I actually used drained canned white beans but didn’t add them until the last 30 min so they didn’t get mushy. Still very good ! My kitchen smells amazing. Warming up some hearty crusty artisan bread to go with it. Time for dinner
The broth makes this soup, but you MUST soak your beans overnight first!
I got a boneless ham this year. Can I just put chopped ham in?
Hi Debbie, in this recipe we are making ham stock from the ham hocks or ham shanks. So you do need either hocks or shanks for this recipe. Otherwise, you could just use 32 ounces of chicken stock and add a bunch of chopped ham in. Won’t be the same, but it will still be a good soup.
I have a large ham shank on a bone that I will be cooking for Christmas Eve dinner. Will I be able to use it for this soup the next day?
Hi, Heather! Sure, you can do that! Since your ham bone might not have much meat on it, you might want to throw in some leftover ham toward the end of cooking for some extra meatiness in your soup. Enjoy!
This is the best bean soup I’ve ever had. I cheated in that I just threw everything into the insta- pot. I used Italian seasoning. All I can say is Wow! Splendid. So easy and so good!This is the third time I’ve made it, outstanding every time!