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Slow cooker ham and bean soup in a brown bowl.

Slow Cooker Ham and Bean Soup

This easy recipe for Slow Cooker Ham and Bean Soup is an ultra-comforting and healthy dinner idea. Bonus: There's no need to soak the beans in advance for this slow cooker soup!
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours 20 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 40 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Calories 158kcal



  • In a 3-quart saucepan or Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Sauté carrots, celery, and onion until softened and translucent, about 8 to 10 minutes.
  • Stir in broth, water, beans, ham bone, garlic powder, cumin, paprika, thyme, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil.
  • Pour into slow cooker. Heat on HIGH for 4 to 6 hours or until beans are tender.
  • Remove ham bone and bay leaf. Chop ham from bone and return to slow cooker. Add additional leftover ham, if using, and cover until heated through, about 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.



  1. Chicken broth: Store-bought or homemade chicken broth; either works well.
  2. Navy beans or pinto beans: To soak beans overnight, add 4 quarts water to a large bowl and add 1 pound of rinsed beans. Soak at least 8 hours. To quick-soak beans, add 1 pound of rinsed beans to a large saucepan and cover with 3 inches of water. Bring to a boil. Boil rapidly for 5 minutes, then remove from heat, cover, and let stand for 1 hour. (See "Recipe FAQs" for more bean-soaking tips.) To substitute canned beans, use 3 to 4 cans of navy, pinto, kidney, cannelini, or Great Northern beans, rinsed and drained.
  3. Ham bone and ham hocks: This infuses the broth with so much rich pork flavor. A meatier ham bone will produce a meatier soup.


Calories: 158kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 310mg | Potassium: 672mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1909IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 63mg | Iron: 2mg