- 1 pound dried great northern beans
- 1 meaty ham bone or 2 smoked ham hocks
- 3 medium onions, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 celery stalks, chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1 cup mashed potatoes or 1/3 cup instant potato flakes
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Parsley or chives for garnish
- Place beans and enough water to cover in a saucepan; bring to a boil and boil for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and soak for 1 hour. Drain and rinse beans. In a large kettle, place beans, ham bone or hocks and 3 qts. water. Bring to boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 2 hours. Skim fat if necessary. Add onions, garlic, celery, parsley, potatoes, salt and pepper; simmer 1 hour longer. Remove meat and bones from the soup. Remove meat from the bones; dice and return to kettle. Heat through. Garnish with parsley or chives. Yield: 8-10 servings (2-1/2 quarts).
Reviews forU.S. Senate Bean Soup
"Perfect for a cold snowy night! Amazingly easy, sure to make your family happy."
"I have been eating this soup for well over 60 years, as this is how my mom made it, and how I make it, with a few changes. The actual Senate version uses navy beans, and for 1 lb of beans, we used 1 large or 2 medium onions and a bit more garlic. It says salt to taste, which varies depending on the saltiness of the ham, but be sure to add enough pepper, at least 1/4 tsp or more (I add at least 1/2 tsp or more), again, depending on the ham and what glaze, if any, was used. If I don't have a ham bone, I use 2 large ham hocks or 3 medium ones. Sometimes I just make ham stock from the bones/hocks and can or freeze that, so I can make this soup quickly using 4 cans of beans (drained/rinsed) and go from there. To make the stock, I just cover the bones with about 4 qts of water, bring to a boil, cover and simmer for about 4 hours. Then I pull off what meat I can, strain the stock, and can or freeze. This stock is also good in pea soup."
"Have been making this very delicious soup for years, only difference I add 2 diced carrots and one diced potato & add 1/3 cup potato flakes in the last hour. (Also can use 1 cup left over mashed potatoes). Freezes well and makes about 3 to 4 quarts."
"We've made this many times, and it goes well with a nice salad and muffins or rolls."
"I use chicken stock for the water, add carrots, and use 5 cans of beans! delicious! have made this so many times!"
"A wonderful bean soup recipe. Made it the other day and will be a family favorite now. Followed the recipe as given, except left out the parsley. Thank you T of H!"
"We have used this recipe for years. It is our New Year's Day tradition...with a pan of cornbread.We use 1 cup each of diced onion, carrots & celery. Sometimes we use diced ham for a less fat content."
"SweetPea here again-to be more specific-I used two 48 oz.jars of Randall Deluxe Great Northern Beans, a 5 quart crockpot, and I did NOT use the potatoes or flakes-adding the 2 cups of chicken broth didn't dilute it much-it was still thick and wonderfully filling-not to mention it makes the house smell wonderful!"