Neighborhood Bean Soup Recipe
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Neighborhood Bean Soup Recipe

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Even though I'm single, I make multiple servings of everything. Actually, this tendency has helped me to get to know my neighbors. A few of them always volunteer to be my guinea pigs whenever I try out a new recipe or two. —Cheryl Trowbridge, Windsor, Ontario
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. + standing Cook: 2-1/4 hours
MAKES:10 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. + standing Cook: 2-1/4 hours
MAKES: 10 servings


  • 2 cups dried great northern beans
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 meaty ham bone or 2 smoked ham hocks
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons chicken bouillon granules
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon rubbed sage
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried savory
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 3 medium carrots, chopped
  • 3 celery ribs, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil

Nutritional Facts

1 cup: 203 calories, 5g fat (1g saturated fat), 11mg cholesterol, 1001mg sodium, 29g carbohydrate (6g sugars, 9g fiber), 13g protein.


  1. Sort beans and rinse with cold water. Place beans in a Dutch oven; add water to cover by 2 in. Bring to a boil; boil for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat; cover and let soak for 1-4 hours or until beans are softened.
  2. Drain and rinse beans, discarding liquid. Return beans to pan; add broth, 3 cups water, ham bone, bouillon and seasonings; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1-1/2 hours.
  3. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute the onions, carrots and celery in oil until tender; add to soup. Cover and simmer 45-60 minutes longer or until beans are tender.
  4. Remove ham bone; cool slightly. Remove meat from bone and cut into chunks; return to soup. Discard bone. Skim fat from soup. Yield: 10 servings (2-3/4 quarts).
Originally published as Neighborhood Bean Soup in Country Woman January/February 1998, p29

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Leihoku User ID: 5897138 259361
Reviewed Jan. 7, 2017

"This is a great recipe. I made it today. I did not use ham hocks, I had some leftover ham that i cut up and added to the soup. It is delicious!!"

darjur User ID: 6351486 259316
Reviewed Jan. 6, 2017

"Absolutely the best soup I`ve ever made."

missteddybear User ID: 8940173 258738
Reviewed Dec. 27, 2016

"bardot1900, you may want to omit the chicken boulion. maybe add no-salt chicken stock instead."

schamberlain User ID: 8299832 252320
Reviewed Aug. 7, 2016

"Amazing flavor. I did not saute veggies first, everything was perfect."

MY REVIEW User ID: 3616304 246918
Reviewed Apr. 11, 2016

"This is the best ham and bean soup I've come across. I look forward to having the ham bone and a little leftover ham from the spiral cut ham I serve on holidays!"

603linda User ID: 819056 243983
Reviewed Feb. 17, 2016

"This is a great recipe. I add one peeled GRATED apple during last twenty minutes of cooking and one Tbls of white vinegar. Don't be afraid to try this because it makes a good recipe great."

bardot1900 User ID: 6619963 243721
Reviewed Feb. 12, 2016

"This was so salty it was almost uneatabled!"

cmdaiber User ID: 3144864 243490
Reviewed Feb. 8, 2016 Edited Feb. 21, 2016

"I would say I followed the recipe as it says. I did not use a ham bone though. I bought Hickory Smoked Ham Steak (16 oz.) and cut it in cubes. Absolutely loved this soup. The herbs were a perfect amount. This is a keeper and will be making it again! I am a member or Weight Watchers and I just weighed all my ingredients out and with the very specific ham I used my calorie count came out to 94 calories cup. The recipe does not tell you what to use for ham quantity. My ham is right around 1 pound is only 50 calories per 3 ounces. Using the new point system I have 2 points per 8 ounces of soup and 5 per 2 cups. You need to do your own math with your own ingredients though. For those that say too salty, maybe use reduced sodium broth. I only use Swanson chicken broth and it is reduced sodium. It is not too salty. I do everything as the recipe says. I use 3 bouillon cubes, not 2. Can't wait to share this with my friend that is also in Weight Watchers."

debfar User ID: 4771051 221830
Reviewed Mar. 2, 2015

"This is a great bean soup. I used a smoked ham and it really brought out the flavor. I will definitely make this again."

MY REVIEW User ID: 6630032 216379
Reviewed Dec. 30, 2014

"This is hands down the best bean soup recipe I have ever made/tasted. I made a few changes. I discarded the bone and the ham attached to it and added fresh leftover ham at the end. I used a potato masher and mashed beans and vegetables slightly then added instant mashed potatoes to thicken it a bit. Served this soup with shredded cheddar and a bit of sour cream on top. Delicious! Also very good with chopped raw onion on the top. I have printed out this recipe for all my friends."

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