• 1 pound dried Great Northern beans or other white beans, rinsed and picked over
  • 8 cups water or use chicken or  vegetable  broth for more flavor
  • 2 cups cooked  ham diced
  • 1  ham bone optional, but adds great flavor if you have it
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 2 carrots peeled and diced
  • 2 celery stalks diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • Fresh parsley chopped for garnish


Soak the Beans:

  • The night before, place the beans in a large bowl and cover with several inches of cold water to soak overnight. If you’re short on time, use the quick soak method: bring the beans and water to a boil for 2 minutes, then remove from heat, cover, and let stand for 1 hour.

Prepare the  Soup Base:

  • Drain and rinse the beans after soaking.
  • In a large pot, add the soaked beans, 8 cups of water or  broth,  ham bone (if using), and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer.

Add  Vegetables and Seasonings:

  • Add the diced  ham, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, thyme, and bay leaf to the pot.
  • Season with a little salt and plenty of black pepper. Keep in mind that the ham may already be quite salty, so adjust your seasoning accordingly.

Simmer the Soup:

  • Cover and simmer for about 1 to 1.5 hours, or until the beans are tender. Stir occasionally, and add more water or  broth if the soup becomes too thick for your liking.

Final Adjustments:

  • Once the beans are tender, remove the  ham bone (if used). If there is any meat left on the bone, shred it and add it back to the  soup.
  • Taste and adjust the seasoning with more salt and pepper if needed.


  • Ladle the  soup into bowls and garnish with chopped fresh parsley.
  • Serve hot, ideally with crusty bread for dipping.

By Admin

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