15 Bean Soup with Ham and Sausage Recipe

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Deep South    Dinner    Dried and Canned Bean Recipes    Pork Stew and Soups    Slow Cooker Pork Recipes    Slow Cooker Soup Recipes    Vegetable History    Winter   


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Stove Top Method – Slow Cooker Method


Here is a hearty and delicious 15 Bean Soup with Ham and Sausage recipe that makes great use of leftover ham and the ham bone. My family enjoys this soup after the holidays and on cold winter nights.


Bowl of 15 Bean Soup with ham and sausage



History of Soup Beans:  In the Southern United States and particularly the Appalachian Mountain region, soup beans refer to brown beans (such as pinto beans) that are cooked with pork for flavoring.  Other types of beans can also be used such as white beans, butter beans, and black-eyed peas.

Soup Beans used to be served during the winter months in many rural areas when food was scare and considered a main staple food.  Soup beans are often re-cooked as fried bean cakes, or made into mountain chili the next day. In the winter months, a pot of beans simmered on the stove of every house every day.

Beans are known for causing flatulence or excessive gas.  One old wives’ tale says, “To prevent this, cook a potato in the beans.  The potato absorbs the gas but be careful when you dispose of the potato because you now have a ‘Hillbilly’ hand grenade.”



15 Bean Soup with Ham and Sausage Recipe:

15-Bean Soup with Ham and Sausage Recipe

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: Stovetop: 2 hours - Slow Cooker: 8 hours on low heat

Yield: serves many


1 pound bag of dried 15-Bean Soup Mix with Seasoning Packet*
Vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound cooked ham, chopped
1 ham bone or 2 to 3 ham hocks**
1 pound kielbasa sausage, cut in half and sliced
2 large carrots, washed, peeled, and chopped
1 small zucchini, sliced (optional)
2 (15-ounce) cans diced or stewed tomatoes (with liquid)
1 (32-ounce) container chicken broth or stock***
Salt and pepper to taste

*  I like to use Hurst's Brand 15-Bean Soup Mix.  You can buy the package of 15-Bean Soup in your local grocery store which is packaged with a variety of 15 different kinds of dried beans and a Seasoning Packet.

**  Ham hocks can be found in most local grocery stores (ask the butcher, if you can't find them).

***  Learn how to make homemade Chicken Stock - Basic Chicken Stock.



Dried Bean Preparation:

Bag of 15-beansSet aside the Seasoning Packet that comes with the 15-Bean Soup Mix.

Rinse and drain the dried beans.  Check for any unwanted debris and discard.  Place the beans in a large pot and cover with cold water by approximately 3 inches.

Quick Soak or Power Soak:
 Bring water almost to a boil (small bubbles appear around the edges of the pot) and let simmer 2 minutes.  Remove from heat, cover with lid, and let stand for one (1) hour.  After 1 hour, drain off the water.

Your beans are now ready to use in your favorite recipes.

Chicken Stock

Stove Top Method:

In a large soup pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add some vegetable oil and sautonions and garlic until tender.  Add reserved seasonings, ham, ham bone, sausage, prepared beans, stewed or diced tomatoes with liquid, carrots, and zucchini.  Pour in just enough chicken broth until bean mixture is covered with at least 2 inches of liquid over the top of the soup bean mixture.

Bring the soup mixture just to a boil, stir and reduce heat to medium-low to simmer for 2 to 2 1/2 hours until all the different bean sizes are tender.  While the soup is simmering, stir every once in awhile and add additional water if needed.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Serve soup in individual soup bowls.  Enjoy!

Serves many.

Slow Cooker (Crock Pot) Method:

Preheat the Slow Cooker (Crock Pot). et aside the Seasoning Packet that comes with the 15 bean soup mix.

Add oil to a large frying pan over medium-high heat and sautonions and garlic until tender.

Rinse the beans and add to slow cooker along with reserved Seasonings, onions, garlic, ham, ham bone, sausage, carrots, zucchini, and stewed or diced tomatoes with liquid.  Pour in enough chicken broth until bean mixture is covered with at least 2 inches of liquid over the top of the soup mixture.  Stir and cover with lid.

Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours (until all the beans are tender).

Salt and pepper to taste and serve in individual soup bowls.  Enjoy!

Serves many. 



Sohn, Mark F., Appalachian Home Cooking History, Culture, & Recipes. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky. 2005.
Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soup_beans



Comments and Reviews

One Response to “15 Bean Soup with Ham and Sausage Recipe”

  1. Elizabeth Sharp

    I have made this several times and it is always a family favorite! I use the 15 bean soup with the Cajun seasoning packet…a little heat but so delicious (to tame heat just use less of the seasoning packet). This is hearty and good on cold nights. I cook it in my crock pot. You don’t have to soak the beans…just sort and rinse. Everything goes in slow cooker and it cooks all day. Easy and delicious!


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