This Ham and Bean Soup recipe is one of the easiest I’ve made and doesn’t require hours of prep like most others do.
One of my favorite things about Easter is the delicious leftovers that fill my fridge the next day… and the next day… and the next day. We all know that feeling when we open our fridge and it’s filled with useful leftover Easter ham but we just can’t eat another sandwich.
What’s worse is when, after having to cook a complicated and time consuming Easter meal, we have to create more meals that use the leftovers but feel just as time consuming. It’s like a holiday punishment, but I have the perfect solution for you!
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My Easter Leftover Ham and Bean Soup is the ideal leftover solution because there’s no exact science – you can adjust the ingredients as you like and it’s quick and easy comfort food. I love this soup recipe because it looks and tastes like I spent all day cooking it when it only took me 20 minutes to prepare AND cook!
Leftover Easter Ham And Bean Soup
Dice your leftover ham; use as little or as much as you want. The more you use, the heartier and more flavorful it will be. I used about 2 cups of diced ham to give it a nice balance. If you don’t have leftover ham and you’re just making this as a dinner solution on the fly, just buy precooked ham steaks and dice them.
Roughly dice one medium onion (we LOVE onions, so use two small onions, but again, this is a liberal recipe so decide what you like!). Add them to a dutch over or large pot with a tablespoon of olive oil. You want to sweat the onions, not brown or caramelize them.
If you have leftover vegetables, such as celery, carrots, or greens like spinach, chop them up and add them to the pan, as well. Just before the onions start to turn translucent – about 10 minutes on medium-low heat – add the diced ham.
A Super Quick Ham & Bean Soup Recipe
The secret to this recipe as a quick solution is the beans I use. Traditionally, ham and bean soup insists that you soak dry beans overnight. This is fine, and sometimes produces a more flavorful soup but honestly, I don’t notice a difference and I want a dinner that’s quick. I use a 48 oz. jar of Great Northern beans.
Pour the whole jar into the pan with the onions and ham. Add 1 ½ tablespoons of dried parsley, ¼ teaspoon of cayenne pepper and ¼ cup of packed brown sugar. I also like to add ½ teaspoon of garlic salt. Stir to mix, then add 16 oz. of chicken stock. You can add more if you like it soupier. I actually added a whole 32 oz. box of chicken stock and let it simmer for a bit.
- 2-4 cups of leftover ham, diced
- 1 medium onion or 2 small onions, diced
- 1 Tblsp olive oil
- Optional: leftover vegetables like celery, carrots, or spinach, chopped
- 48 oz. jar of Great Northern beans
- 1 ½ tablespoons of dried parsley
- ¼ teaspoon of Cayenne pepper
- ¼ cup of packed brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon of garlic salt
- 16 oz. - 32 oz. chicken stock
- Dice your leftover ham
- Roughly dice onion and add to a dutch over or large pot with a tablespoon of olive oil. Sweat the onions, but do not brown or caramelize them.
- If you have leftover vegetables, such as celery, carrots, or greens like spinach, chop them up and add them to the pan, as well.
- Just before the onions start to turn translucent - about 10 minutes on medium-low heat - add the diced ham.
- Pour the whole jar of beans into the pan with the onions and ham.
- Add parsley, Cayenne pepper and brown sugar. Add ½ teaspoon of garlic salt.
- Stir to mix, then add chicken stock.
- Simmer until ready to eat.