Ham and Bean Soup – Crock Pot Recipe

Simple Ham and Bean Soup Crock Pot recipe is a hearty and filling meal!  Start with dried white beans and leftover ham hocks, and slow cook up a delicious white bean soup!

This bowl full of delicious ham and bean soup in a crock pot is ready to be devoured.

Ham and Bean Soup

A rich pot of ham and bean soup on the stove has always been a favorite food memory. Making this homemade soup in the slow cooker makes it easy to manage no matter how busy you are! 

I love simple slow cooker meals that give my family a healthy meal without taking up my whole day to prepare. 

My white bean soup recipe is a delicious combination of basic flavors. 

Using what are common pantry staples, you can easily create a hearty and flavor-packed meal that everyone at the dinner table will love. 

If you love soups as we do, check out my Easy Taco Soup, Keto Chicken Soup, Leftover Turkey Soup, or this delicious Homemade Cream of Mushroom Soup

A ladle full of the ham and bean soup is ready to be dished out and enjoyed.

Shopping Ingredients For Crock Pot Ham and Bean Soup

In addition to the beans, you’ll need the following:

  • Ham hocks – this is cut from the bottom half of the pork leg. You will find these cured and smoked, which adds a lot of flavor to this soup.
  • Dried white beans – cannellini or great northern beans cook up nice and tender in a slow cooker. See below for substitutions if you want to try a different flavor profile.
  • Low-sodium chicken broth – be sure that you use low sodium. Ham hocks have plenty of salt when cured. Add salt to your preference after cooking if needed. Better yet, use your Instant Pot Bone Broth.
  • Vegetables; celery, carrots, onion
  • Seasonings; Garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper to taste if needed.
Here we see the ingredients needed to make this delicious ham and bean soup recipe.

Steps For Slow-Cooked Ham and Bean Soup

The best part about slow cooking is that all you need to do is add the ingredients to a Crock Pot, turn it on and hours later you have a home-cooked meal.

What Beans Do I Use in Ham and Bean Soup in a Crock Pot?

For this recipe, you will use dry beans. I use white cannellini or great northern beans. These are very smooth and delicious bean that pairs beautifully with ham.  

If you wish, you can easily try this same recipe substituting pinto beans or black beans in place of white beans. 

These are also delicious dry beans that make a great rich soup packed with protein and flavor. 

This view shows inside the Crockpot to see the slow cooker ham and beans finished and ready to be served with bread.

What Ham Should I Use in Bean Soup?

I like using smoked ham hocks since they are so readily available at the meat counter in my grocery store. 

They are also very easy to add to the soup but remove them before serving if you prefer just the beans in the final version. 

You can also use leftover ham bone from a holiday ham glaze recipe if that is more convenient.  The flavor comes from the bone marrow and the bits of ham left after being served at a family meal. 

If neither of these is available, you can also achieve this flavor with any country ham or ham steak cut into cubes and added in with the beans. 

I have in the past, even used cubed thick bacon pieces to impart richness to the soup. 

This horizontal shot shows the soup dished out into a bowl with the slow cooker in the background as well as some crusty bread!

What Toppings Go with Ham and Bean Soup Recipe?

This recipe is one that is absolutely perfect straight out of the slow cooker with nothing added.  It is also delicious with a few toppings added.  Below are some of my favorite additions to a bean soup that add flavor, richness, or even texture. 

  • Serve with any of your favorite shredded or sliced cheese.  Cheddar, mozzarella, pepper jack, and provolone are all great additions to this soup. 
  • Diced onions or green onions are ideal on top of the soup. 
  • Extra cubed ham or even crumbled bacon. 
  • Cornbread, tortilla strips, tortilla chips, or crackers are all great for texture and crunch. 
  • A dollop of sour cream or nonfat plain Greek yogurt adds extra creaminess. 
  • Salsa, hot salsa, or verde sauce are all additions that add extra heat. 
Serving this dish of the slow cooker ham and beans recipe with bread is a must!

Can This Slow Cooker Ham and Bean Soup be a Freezer Meal?

Since this recipe uses dry beans that slow cook all day, it is one recipe that can’t fully be meal prepped as a freezer meal. 

You can, however, add all of the vegetables and seasonings into a freezer bag and have it ready to simply dump in with the broth and dry beans when ready. 

If you want to prepare this soup and freeze leftovers for later meals, that is a great idea. 

To do so, you will want to put into freezer soup containers in individual portions.  I usually place 2 cups of soup per container and allow for ½”-1” of space at the top of the container to allow for expansion of the liquid when freezing.  

This is good for 4 months in the freezer before use. Make sure you label and date any freezer meals so you know what is frozen and how long you have to use it. 

More Soup Recipes To Try

Be sure to check out this Crab Chowder soup and this Beef Vegetable Soup recipe.

A ladle full of the ham and bean soup is ready to be dished out and enjoyed.

Ham and Bean Soup Crock Pot

Rich and delicious ham and bean soup slow cooked for six hours. This is a perfect way to use up holiday ham hocks.
4.63 from 37 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: crock pot, ham, ham and beans, slow cooker, white bean soup
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 6 hours
Total Time: 6 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 147kcal
Author: Sandra Shaffer


  • 2 meaty ham hocks about 1 1/2 lbs.
  • 1 pound dried white beans great northern or cannellini
  • 1 quart low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 quart water
  • 4 ribs celery chopped
  • 3 small carrots sliced
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves chopped
  • 12 sprigs thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • In a large slow cooker, combine the ham hocks, beans, broth, celery, carrots, onion, garlic and thyme sprigs. Cover and cook on low until the beans are tender, about 5 – 6 hours on low.
  • Discard the thyme stems. Remove the ham hocks and shred the meaty parts; discard the skin, fat and bones. Return the ham back to the slow cooker and season with salt and pepper.


The original recipe called for all chicken broth for the liquid, but we thought it was too salty, even with using low-sodium. It may vary, depending on the brand you use, so season to taste.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 147kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 12mg | Sodium: 119mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 2g


Please note that the nutritional information provided are guidelines and may vary based on the brand of products used. For your specific nutritional goals use My Fitness Pal or Verywell Fit recipe calculators. All content within this site is not intended as medical diagnosis or treatment and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical expertise.

Adapted from White Bean & Ham Soup.

This recipe was first shared in April 2014. It has since been updated with more content and updated photos, in September 2020.


Simple slow cooked ham and bean soup is ready in no time. In this recipe we use dried beans, which are super economical to use in hearty meals.
Hugs Sandra Signature

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4.63 from 37 votes (37 ratings without comment)

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  1. Just thought you should know this recipe is still showing 3 “heads” of garlic instead of 3 “cloves.”

  2. When my father sold his first business my mom told him that if he didn’t find a new occupation really soon, she would have leaved our house. He was driving her crazy haha! So, he started a new job and they lived happily ever after! Congratulations to your husband for closing successfully a cycle, but I am sure he will be bored really soon and start thinking his next steps. Nothing is more comforting and inviting than a delicious soup like this one!

    1. Haha! Thanks, Katerina! My parents are now both retired and they told me how it really has taken awhile to get used to being in each other’s space! I really can’t imagine my husband retiring for real 😉

  3. This looks like a delicious meal, Sandra! And I have a leftover ham in the freezer from Easter 🙂
    PS. Congrats to your husband!