Hearty Bean Soup Recipe
Hearty Bean Soup Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Hearty Bean Soup Recipe

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5 9 12
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This soup is convenient to simmer all day in a slow cooker and your family will love it.—Alice Schnoor, Arion, Iowa
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 10 min. Cook: 6 hours 10 min.
MAKES:10 servings
Test Kitchen Approved
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 10 min. Cook: 6 hours 10 min.
MAKES: 10 servings


  • 3 cups chopped parsnips
  • 2 cups chopped carrots
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1-1/2 cups dried great northern beans
  • 5 cups water
  • 1-1/2 pounds smoked ham hocks
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce


  1. In a 5-qt. slow cooker, place parsnips, carrots and onion. Top with beans. Add water, ham, garlic, salt, pepper and hot pepper sauce. Cover and cook on high for 6-7 hours or until beans are tender.
  2. Remove meat and bones when cool enough to handle. Cut meat into bite-size pieces and return to slow cooker; heat through. Yield: 10 servings (2-1/2 quarts).
Originally published as Hearty Bean Soup in Taste of Home December/January 1997, p17

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Reviewed Jun. 10, 2015

"Hearty indeed! I always make this a late fall or winter offering. I typically only put in 2 Cups of parsnips (3 large), and instead of 5 cups of water, I use 4 cups of water and 1-10 ounce can of chicken broth for added flavor. For any soup that uses ham hocks, I always sneak in a couple more--my son is crazy about them! I think using a ham bone, as suggested by other reviewers, might be a very good option, if the hocks are not available. You might also wait until right before serving to put in the salt--the hocks will automatically add salt to the soup."

Reviewed Dec. 3, 2014

"FANTASTIC!!! We didn't have parsnips so I added chopped celery. Also, I added a packet of vegetable soup mix and a bay leaf inspired from Navy Bean Vegetable Soup recipe from this site, added a meaty ham bone instead of the ham hock. I've always soaked my beans overnight before making bean soup so I was skeptical about cooking them in the slow cooker from a dried bean. Not to worry, this was one of the best pots of bean soup I've ever made. So much flavor, and pretty to look at as well! So nice to come home from work to this simmering pot of deliciousness. Thank you, Alice and Taste of Home!"

Reviewed Sep. 18, 2012

"I have made this recipe severals times and it has become a family favorite! It is so easy and simple. I have substituted celery & more carrots for the parsnips. I use a ham bone instead of the hocks and it turns out great. This is one recipre that I will use over and over. It's one I can put together, set the timer on the crock pot & have a hot meal after a day of work or play."

Reviewed Feb. 15, 2012

"I used diced potatoes instead of parsnips because I didn't have those on hand and I used a ham bone. I added more pepper than the recipe called for, but this soup was a hit. My hubby who I would have never guessed to like bean soup ate this up! He even took some to work the next day for his buddies. Always a good sign!"

Reviewed Jan. 1, 2012

"Delish! This is the way I remember bean soup to be. Hardy. Thanks for sharing the recipe, it really was fantastic."

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