This Ham and Bean Soup is so hearty and flavorful and the perfect way to use up any leftover ham! It's loaded with veggies, ham, white kidney beans, and so much flavor.
– 1 tablespoon oil – 2 large carrots (peeled and chopped) – 2 ribs celery (sliced) – 1 medium onion (finely diced) – 2 teaspoon freshly minced garlic – 1 teaspoon salt – 1 teaspoon dried thyme – 1 teaspoon dried parsley – ½ teaspoon black pepper – 8 cups water (use 7 cups for a thicker soup) – 1 ham bone, ham hock, or ham shank* (cooked) – 1-2 teaspoons chicken bouillon** – 2 cans white kidney beans (540ml or 19oz each) drained and rinsed – 1-2 cups cooked, chopped ham*** (optional — depending on how much ham you have already)
– Heat a large soup pot or dutch oven (at least 5-6 quarts) on medium-high heat and add the oil. – Add the carrots, celery and onions and cook, stirring often, until the onion has softened, about 3-4 minutes.
– Add the garlic, salt, thyme, parsley and pepper. Cook and stir 1 minute.
– Add the water, ham bone and 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon. Bring to a boil over high heat, then cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer 1 hour (you can simmer even longer if you like, up to 2 hours, but the vegetables will get softer).
– Remove the ham bone and pull the meat off. Shred with two forks. Stir the ham back into the soup along with the white beans and additional ham if using. – Heat through, taste and serve.