The Perfect Crock Pot Ham & Bean Soup
A simple southern comfort soup! This recipe is altered every single time I make it, I am always changing it based on what I have. This time I decided to use carrots, last time I used just fresh spinach! You can literally add anything to this soup veggie wise and it will taste AMAZING!
This time I used lunch meat ham as I didn't have a ham hock or ham steak in the freezer. Because I used the lunch meat ham (which fries really nice) I also added bacon bits for that extra smokey bacon flavor (or your own bacon crumbles.) -- If you make your own bacon, save some of the crease to sauté the onions and ham in! This version is the simplest throw together ever! You can get as fancy as you want or you can keep it super easy! Butter Beans are a MUST!!!!! They make this soup. I also am partial to the green limas!
First chop your onion and sauté with butter (or your left over bacon grease if you made it.) If you are adding spinach you can cook it down after the onions are transluscent (see through.) Once those are sautéed, I cut up an entire package of Hillshire Farm's Black Forest Ham and throw in the pan to fry a bit.
While you are waiting for your ham to brown, you can cut and throw your carrots into the crock pot with the two cartons of chicken broth.
After the ham, onions, and spinach (optional) is ready, you can also throw into the crock pot with 1/2 bag of Oscar Myer Bacon Bites (or your own bacon crumbles.)
Open your beans and strain, I typically don't strain the lima beans or the butter beans if they are seasoned or with sauce. That will add to the flavor and make your broth really "beanie." The great northern beans should be strained.
Now as for measuring I am an eye baller, so you may want to adjust the seasonings as you see fit. I like a nice and hearty broth, with tons of flavor.
2 Tbs of Chicken bullion
1 Tbs Salt
1 Tbs course ground pepper
1/2 Tsp celery seed (or you can opt for adding chopped celery stalks!)
1 Tsp of Italian seasoning
1 Tsp Garlic powder
You can cook this soup fast or slow... however the slower and longer you cook, the more flavorful it gets! This is an excellent re-heat in the crock pot! It also freezes nicely too!
(Like my crock pot? You can get it here!)