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4.88 from 16 votes

Slow Cooker Ham and Bean Soup

Make your slow cooker do all the work with this recipe for thick, rich, and flavorful Ham and Bean Soup. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time4 hrs
Total Time4 hrs 10 mins
Total Cost: $6.56 recipe / $0.82 serving
Servings: 8
Author: Beth - Budget Bytes


  • 1 med yellow onion $0.50
  • 3 stalks celery $0.46
  • 4 med carrots $0.49
  • 4 cloves garlic $0.23
  • 2 med smoked ham hocks $1.99
  • 1 lb. dry 16 bean mix $2.19
  • 2 whole bay leaves $0.10
  • 1 tsp dried thyme $0.05
  • 1 tsp dried oregano $0.05
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp chicken base or bouillon $0.45
  • to taste salt and pepper $0.05


  • The night before, rise the beans, pick through and remove any stones or debris. Place in a large container, cover with 2x the amount of water and refrigerate over night.
  • Dice the onion, carrot, and celery. Mince the garlic. Place all four in the bottom of the slow cooker. Nestle two ham hocks down into the vegetables.
  • Pour the soaking water off of the beans and rinse again. Pour the drained beans into the slow cooker on top of the vegetables and ham hocks. Add the seasoning (2 bay leaves, 1 tsp thyme, 1 tsp oregano, 1.5 Tbsp chicken base and a few cranks of black pepper). Add 6 cups of water, give everything a light stir to distribute the seasoning a bit but don’t disturb the vegetables or ham hocks.
  • Secure the lid on top of the slow cooker and cook on high for 4-6 hours or until the beans are soft and have absorbed most of the water.
  • Stir the soup and remove the ham hocks. Pick any meat off of the ham hocks and return it to the soup. Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning to your liking (salt, pepper, hot sauce, Tony Chachere’s, smoked paprika? Anything you want). Serve hot with any garnishes you like (sour cream, cheese, green onions, crusty bread… get creative!)