Ham and Bean Soup for Dinner Tonight
Leftover ham after the latest holiday? I had a lot left this year at my house. So it was time for some soup.
My ham was boneless, so it was an easy task to dice a few slices. Aside from the time it tool to soak the beans overnight, this is very quick to assemble. You can use a food chopper, like my favorite Ninja Master Prep Professional, to have the vegetables ready in seconds. Toss all the ingredients to the the pot, and turn the slow cooker to low heat.
Other than stirring it a time or two during the day to see if it needs more liquids, you can ignore it until dinner time. Then serve it with rolls or a salad and you have a filling, tasty dinner that serves 6 to 8.
If you prefer you can use a ham hock. If you do, hold off on the chicken bouillon until the last few hours. I added it for more flavor, but with the hock you may find it’s enough. If you prefer a thicker, more stew-like dish, lessen the water by a cup or two. You can always add more later as needed. One of the nice things about homemade soup is that you can adjust the ingredients and quantities to your liking. More of this, less of that, spicier or milder…It’s a great dish to experiment with.
Want more options? Throw in some spinach leaves before serving. It will wilt quickly and provide even more flavor. Chopped cauliflower is another vegetable I add to almost everything. I would chop it into ½ inch nibbles. It adds body along with nutrients. What would you add?
- ½ bag dried white beans
- ½ bag kidney beans
- 1 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 onion, coarsely chopped
- 2 stalks celery, sliced
- 2 carrots, diced
- 2 to 3 cups diced ham
- 1 can low fat chicken broth
- 3 chicken bouillon cubes
- 6 cups water
- Salt and Pepper
- Green onions or grated cheese for garnish
- Soak the dried beans overnight, then drain and rinse in the morning.
- Mix all ingredients (except garnishes) in slow cooker.
- Salt and pepper can be reserved until end of cooking time as well.
- Cook for 8 to 10 hours on low.
- Taste and season as you prefer.
- When serving sprinkle chopped onion or cheese on each dish.
A Slow Cooker that browns too!
I’ve had my slow cooker for years and it still works like a champ, but the one pictured here is on my wish list for the next one. With most crock pots, if a recipe calls for browning meat first, you need a separate pan. If I am tossing ingredients into the pot in the morning, I don’t usually want to deal with another pan to wash before I leave.
I love that this unit browns too! That will make it much easier. The removable ceramic insert that holds 6 quarts can be used on the stove top. It’s programmable as well, so you can set it to start when you are still asleep or at work. When it’s done it goes to a warm setting.
Personally if you are getting a slow cooker, I suggest you get the larger, oval size as well. While a smaller one might be enough, some items won’t fit as well, plus if you are making soup or stew, wouldn’t you want to make extra for a few more meals? Freezing a few extra containers saves time later. When I want a quick meal, I can thaw it and have home made soup ready in minutes.