Ham & Bean Soup

One of the thriftiest meals on the planet has to be Bean Soup. Toss in some leftover ham, and you have bonus protein and flavor. Some have even called similar mixtures “Depression Soup”, to commemorate how many families during the Great Depression stretched pennies over several meals.

This particular recipe is a favorite, especially of my husband’s. It was given to me by a friend of mine many years ago. I try to always have a bag or two of dried beans in the cabinet, and this recipe is a tasty way to use them! You do need to plan a day ahead for this meal.
Ham and Bean Soup
2 cups of dried beans, any variety (I use 15 bean, but you can use anything)

ANOTHER DELICIOUS IDEA >>  Lemon Rosemary Olive Oil Cake
8 cups of cold water
1/2 tsp baking soda
First, you’ll need to add the beans to a large stock pot and cover them with the water. Stir in the baking soda. This will need to soak overnight.
The next day, completely drain off the soaking water and rinse the beans well. Return beans to the pan and add:
8 cups of water
1 lb. leftover ham (or smoked sausage, ham hocks, whatever you have on hand)
1 large onion, chopped
1 14.5-oz can of peeled tomatoes (I use diced)
Bring this to a FULL boil. Turn heat down to medium for a high simmer, 2-3 hours, or until beans are tender.
Add in:
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp basil

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1 1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 – 1/2 tsp pepper
Simmer for another 30 minutes. Enjoy!
These feeds our family of 6 comfortably. :)
What did you do that was thrifty this week?

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  1. Lynda says

    I love been soup and can't wait for cooler weather to make it! My husband won't eat it when it's so hot in the summer, but it's a favorite dish! Yours looks great!

  2. Tami says

    MMM! Your bean soup looks delicious. My Mom used to cook brown beans and then make homemade thick noodles to go in the soup. It was so good. I don't get to eat beans like this any longer because I don't bother cooking a bag of beans just for me. You're lucky that you're kids will eat them.

    All week long I have been thinking that it's Thursday, today. When I see your Thrifty Thursday post, I had to check to make sure what day it really was. I swear, I'm losing it!

  3. biz319 says

    Love ham and bean soup! I was lucky when my nephews girlfried worked at a Heavenly Ham – I got ham bones whenever I wanted!

  4. Debbie says

    Bean soup is so hearty and total comfort food. I like having this when the weather is a bit cooler. So good with some crusty bread too!

  5. Katrina says

    Looks good and so simple with a little planning (that hardest part for me! ;) What does the baking soda in the soaking water do? I've never heard of doing that. Just wondering.
    The soup looks great!

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