Delicious Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup Recipe with Ham

Welcome to my kitchen! Today, I am excited to share with you one of my all-time favorite soup recipes – Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham. This hearty and flavorful soup is the perfect comfort food for chilly nights or lazy weekends.

As a chef, I love experimenting with different ingredients and techniques to create delicious dishes that everyone can enjoy. And, this recipe is no exception. Made with tender ham steak, creamy navy beans, and a blend of aromatic herbs and spices, this soup is packed with flavor and nutrition.

Whether you are a seasoned cook or a beginner in the kitchen, this recipe is easy to make and requires only a few simple ingredients. So, gather your family and friends around the table and let’s enjoy a bowl of warm and comforting Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Rudy's Navy Bean Soup With Ham
Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup With Ham

Are you looking for a hearty and satisfying soup that is easy to make and low in calories? Look no further than Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe! This soup is packed with protein-rich navy beans and savory ham, making it a perfect meal for a chilly day.

But what sets this soup apart from others is the combination of flavors and ingredients. The sweet onions and fresh garlic cloves are sautéed in extra virgin olive oil, creating a rich and flavorful base for the soup. The addition of fresh thyme and parsley add a fresh and earthy note to the soup, while white pepper adds a subtle hint of heat. And for an extra kick, a few drops of liquid smoke are added to give the soup a smoky flavor that is reminiscent of a campfire.

But the star of the show is the ham steak and ham bone. The ham adds a salty and savory flavor to the soup, while the ham bone adds depth and richness to the broth. And because the soup is made with chicken broth and chicken bouillon, it has a light and delicate flavor that doesn’t overpower the other ingredients.

Not only is this soup delicious, but it is also low in calories, making it a great choice for anyone watching their weight. And because it is made with simple ingredients that you likely have on hand, it is easy to make and budget-friendly.

Overall, Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe is a must-try for anyone looking for a comforting and satisfying meal. It is easy to make, packed with flavor, and perfect for a chilly day.

Ingredient List

 A comforting bowl of Rudy's Navy Bean Soup with Ham to warm you up on a chilly day.
A comforting bowl of Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham to warm you up on a chilly day.

Here are the ingredients you will need to make Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe:

  • 1 lb dried navy beans
  • 1 ham steak, diced
  • 1 ham bone
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 2 tsp chicken bouillon
  • 1 cup sweet onions, diced
  • 4 fresh garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
  • *1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 1 tbsp liquid smoke
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Note: If you don’t have a ham bone, you can use 1 cup of diced baked ham instead. You can also use canned beans such as Northern or Cannellini beans if you prefer.

Make sure to have all the ingredients ready before starting the recipe, it will make the cooking process smoother. Don’t forget to rinse the beans thoroughly under water and discard any debris or broken beans.

The Recipe How-To

 The perfect balance of creamy and chunky textures in every spoonful.
The perfect balance of creamy and chunky textures in every spoonful.

Now that you have all the ingredients ready, let’s dive into the recipe. Here is how to make Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe:

Step 1: Preparing the Beans

Start by rinsing the navy beans in cold water and pick any dirt or debris. Then, soak the beans overnight in cold water. This will help to soften the beans and reduce the cooking time.

Step 2: Saute the Vegetables

Heat extra virgin olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add diced sweet onions and minced garlic cloves and cook them until they turn translucent, about 5 minutes.

Step 3: Add the Ham

Dice the ham steak into small pieces and add them to the pot. Stir everything together and cook for a few more minutes until the ham is slightly browned.

Step 4: Add the Beans and Liquid

Drain the soaked navy beans and add them to the pot along with chicken broth, chicken bouillon, and water. Then, add a ham bone to the pot for extra flavor.

Step 5: Seasonings

Add fresh thyme, a bay leaf, and a pinch of white pepper to the pot. Stir everything together and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pot, and let it simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

Step 6: Finishing Touches

After an hour, remove the ham bone and bay leaf from the pot. Use an immersion blender to blend the soup to your desired consistency. Alternatively, you can remove a portion of the soup and blend it in a blender before adding it back to the pot. Add a tablespoon of liquid smoke to the pot for a smoky flavor.

Step 7: Garnish and Serve

Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with chopped parsley. Serve with some freshly baked Hawaiian rolls and enjoy Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe!

Don’t forget to save the leftover ham bone to make slow cooker ham and bean soup or use canned beans like Northern beans or cannellini beans in the place of navy beans.

Substitutions and Variations

 Ham hocks add a smoky flavor and depth to the soup.
Ham hocks add a smoky flavor and depth to the soup.

Don’t worry if you don’t have all the ingredients listed for Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe! Here are some substitutions and variations you can try:

– Ham steak: You can use leftover ham from a baked ham or a slow cooker ham and bean soup recipe. Alternatively, you can substitute ham steak with diced bacon or pancetta for a smoky flavor.

– Navy beans: If you can’t find navy beans, substitute with cannellini beans or northern beans. These beans have a similar texture and mild flavor to navy beans.

– Chicken broth and chicken bouillon: If you’re vegetarian or prefer not to use chicken broth, use vegetable broth instead. You can also substitute chicken bouillon with vegetable bouillon or miso paste.

– Fresh garlic cloves: If you don’t have fresh garlic cloves, use minced garlic from a jar. One teaspoon of minced garlic equals one clove of fresh garlic.

– Sweet onions: Use any type of onion you have on hand, such as yellow onions, red onions, or shallots. They all add a savory and sweet flavor to the soup.

– Extra virgin olive oil: Substitute with any neutral-flavored oil, such as canola oil, vegetable oil, or grapeseed oil.

– Ham bone: If you don’t have a ham bone, don’t worry, the soup will still be delicious. You can add liquid smoke to give the soup a smoky flavor, or use a ham hock or bacon bones for a similar effect.

– White beans: You can use other types of white beans, such as great northern beans, cannellini beans, or white kidney beans.

– Fresh thyme and parsley: If you don’t have fresh herbs, use dried herbs instead. One teaspoon of dried thyme or parsley equals one tablespoon of fresh herbs.

– Low calorie ham bean soup: If you’re watching your calorie intake, use low-sodium chicken broth and omit the ham. You can also add more vegetables, such as carrots, celery, and kale, for a healthy and hearty soup.

– Tuscan sausage and white bean soup: For a variation on Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe, try adding Tuscan sausage and kale to the soup. Brown the sausage in a pan before adding it to the soup, and simmer for 10 minutes before serving.

– Hawaiian roll: Serve the soup with a warm and buttery Hawaiian roll for a sweet and savory pairing.

These substitutions and variations will

Serving and Pairing

 A hearty and filling meal that will satisfy even the biggest appetite.
A hearty and filling meal that will satisfy even the biggest appetite.

Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe is a hearty and satisfying soup that is perfect for a comforting meal. This soup is best served hot straight from the pot with a crusty bread roll on the side. The bread roll is perfect for soaking up the delicious broth and wiping the bowl clean.

If you want to take the meal up a notch, you can serve the soup with a side salad. A simple mixed greens salad with a tangy vinaigrette dressing pairs well with the soup. The fresh greens and zingy dressing provide a refreshing contrast to the rich and savory flavors of the soup.

For a heartier meal, you can serve the soup with brown rice or quinoa. These whole grains provide a healthy dose of fiber and protein that will keep you full for longer. The nutty and chewy texture of the grains also complements the creamy and smooth texture of the soup.

If you’re looking for a more substantial meal, you can pair the soup with a ham and cheese sandwich or a ham and egg breakfast burrito. The salty and smoky flavors of the ham in the sandwich or burrito will complement the ham in the soup and make for a satisfying and filling meal.

To elevate the flavors of the soup, you can garnish it with chopped parsley or a sprinkle of white pepper. These simple garnishes add a burst of fresh and aromatic flavor to the soup that will make it even more delicious.

Overall, Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe is a versatile dish that can be served on its own or paired with a variety of sides and garnishes. Whether you’re looking for a light and refreshing meal or a hearty and filling one, this soup is sure to hit the spot.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Garnish with fresh parsley for a pop of color and added freshness.
Garnish with fresh parsley for a pop of color and added freshness.

One of the great things about Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham recipe is that it can be prepared ahead of time and stored for later. In fact, this soup tastes even better the next day after the flavors have had a chance to meld together.

To make ahead, simply follow the recipe instructions and let the soup cool to room temperature. Then, transfer it to an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. When ready to serve, reheat the soup over low heat, stirring occasionally until heated through.

If you have leftovers or want to make a larger batch of soup for future meals, you can also freeze it for up to 3 months. To freeze, let the soup cool to room temperature, then transfer it to a freezer-safe container or plastic bag. Make sure to label the container with the date and name of the soup.

When ready to eat, thaw the soup in the refrigerator overnight, and then reheat it in a saucepan over medium heat until heated through. If the soup is too thick, add a little bit of chicken broth or water to thin it out.

Overall, Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham recipe is a great option for meal prep or for leftovers. It’s easy to store and reheat, making it a convenient and delicious option for busy weeknights or weekend lunches.

Tips for Perfect Results

 This soup is a great way to use up leftover ham from the holidays.
This soup is a great way to use up leftover ham from the holidays.

Now that you’re ready to make Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe, let me share some tips that will help you achieve the perfect results.

1. Soak the navy beans overnight: Soaking beans overnight will help reduce cooking time and make them more digestible. Rinse the beans and discard any debris or discolored beans before soaking them in water.

2. Use a ham bone or ham steak: The ham bone or ham steak will add flavor and richness to the soup. If you don’t have a leftover ham bone, use a ham steak instead.

3. Add liquid smoke: Liquid smoke is a great way to add a smoky flavor to the soup that will remind you of cooking over an open fire. Use it sparingly, as a little bit goes a long way.

4. Use fresh garlic and thyme: Fresh garlic and thyme will add a lot of flavor to the soup. Mince the garlic finely and strip the thyme leaves off the stem before adding them to the soup.

5. Don’t add salt until the end: The ham and chicken broth will add salt to the soup, so it’s best to wait until the end to taste and add salt if necessary.

6. Let the soup simmer: Let the soup simmer for at least an hour to allow the flavors to meld together. If you’re using a ham bone, you can simmer the soup for up to three hours to extract as much flavor as possible.

7. Use an immersion blender: If you prefer a creamier soup, use an immersion blender to puree some of the beans and vegetables before serving.

8. Garnish with parsley and white pepper: Freshly chopped parsley and a sprinkle of white pepper will add color and flavor to the soup. Serve with a slice of crusty bread for a complete meal.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to make a delicious and flavorful navy bean soup with ham that’s perfect for any occasion.


Now that you know everything about Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham Recipe, let’s move on to the FAQ section. Here, I will answer some of the most common questions I get asked about this recipe. So, grab a bowl of soup, sit back, and let’s dive in!

How do you thicken navy bean and ham soup?

When it comes to thickening ham and bean soup, there are a couple of methods that work well. One option is to use either cornstarch or flour. Simply mix 3 tablespoons of all-purpose flour or cornstarch with 1 cup of liquid (water or broth) until it’s smooth. Then, add it to the soup and continue cooking until the soup reaches the desired thickness.

What is navy bean soup made of?

Alright, let’s get to cookin’! First up, we’re gonna need to grab a big ol’ stock pot and toss in some water, beans, tomatoes, ham, onion, celery, Worcestershire sauce, minced garlic, bouillon, parsley, garlic powder, and a bay leaf. Once we’ve got all of that in there, we’re gonna crank up the heat and bring it to a boil.

But hold on just a sec, we don’t want this delicious concoction to burn or boil over, so we’re gonna want to reduce the heat and cover it up. Let it simmer nice and slow for a couple of hours, allowing all of those flavors to meld together into one glorious pot of goodness. Trust me, your taste buds are gonna thank you for the wait.

And hey, if you’re feeling extra fancy, you can even give it a stir every now and then to make sure everything is mixing together just right. So go ahead and dust off that wooden spoon and get to stirrin’.

Once the two hours are up, we’re gonna want to remove that bay leaf and get ready to serve up some serious comfort food. Whether it’s a chilly winter night or you just need a big ol’ bowl of something to warm your soul, this bean and ham soup is the perfect dish for any occasion.

What kind of beans do you put in ham and beans?

For this recipe, we will need one pound of dried white or navy beans, which is roughly equivalent to two cups. To start, we will heat up two tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot. Then, we will add in one and a half cups of roughly diced carrots, one cup of diced celery, and three-quarters of a cup of diced onion. We will season the vegetables with two teaspoons of salt and one teaspoon of ground black pepper. Finally, we will add in a ham bone or hock to give the dish its signature flavor.

Do you have to soak navy beans for soup?

Many people believe that soaking dried beans overnight is a necessary step before cooking them. However, this is not entirely true. While soaking beans can significantly reduce their cooking time, it is not the only method available. In this article, we will explore alternative ways to prepare dried beans without soaking them overnight.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup with Ham recipe is an excellent choice for anyone looking for a warm and hearty soup that is easy to make and packed with flavor. This recipe is not only delicious but also healthy, as it is low in calories and high in protein and fiber. With simple ingredients like navy beans, ham steak, chicken broth, and fresh garlic cloves, this soup is easy to make and can be customized with different variations and substitutions. Whether you’re looking for a quick meal or a comforting soup to warm you up on a cold day, this recipe is the perfect choice. So, go ahead and give it a try, and you won’t be disappointed!

Rudy’s Navy Bean Soup With Ham Recipe

Hearty and economical – about $0.50 per serving. We started with the recipe on the back of the Goya Navy Beans can as a starting point, and made adjustments to suit our taste. A smoked ham steak is much easier to work with than hocks, and provides a lot of inexpensive protein. Grilling the ham steak (optional) gives Rudy, my "squid" husband, something to do while I’m chopping the vegetables. Be sure to use fresh garlic – the cloves should be firm and smell sweet, not too pungent.

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup baby carrots, small chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups sweet onions, small diced (Vidalia, Maya Sweet, etc.)
  • 6 fresh garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 (15 1/2 ounce) cans navy beans, rinsed
  • 4 cups chicken broth or 4 cups chicken bouillon, low sodium
  • 1 lb ham steak, smoked
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper (or more, to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon parsley, dried
  1. Heat a large soup pot on medium heat. Once the pot is hot, add olive oil. The pot should not be so hot that the oil smokes. Add chopped carrots and saute for a few minutes until slightly softened. Add diced onions, stir occasionally.
  2. If desired, while the vegetables saute in the pot, the ham steak may be grilled for 3-4 minutes on each side. This is not necessary, as the steak is already fully cooked, but grilling seems to improve the flavor and texture of the meat.
  3. When the onions are translucent, add the garlic and allow it to soften for a minute or two but don’t let the garlic burn. Trim and dice the ham, removing as much of the fat as possible. Add the remaining ingredients to the pot and stir.
  4. Using a ladle, carefully remove about half of the soup mixture to a blender. With the lid firmly covering the blender, and with one hand on top of the blender to keep it secure, puree the soup mixture. Return the puree to the soup pot.
  5. Increase heat to medium high until soup gently boils, then reduce heat to simmer. Allow soup to simmer for about 20 minutes, uncovered, and stir occasionally. Do not add salt or other seasoning until after the soup has simmered. Much of the salt from the ham will simmer out and flavor the soup, so it is not necessary to add salt.
  6. Taste and adjust seasonings before serving. For a thicker soup, continue to simmer an additional 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally. For a thinner soup, add a few ounces of water or chicken broth.
  7. To "stretch" this recipe and get an additional 1-2 servings, simply add one additional can of Navy beans and about 4-6 more ounces chicken broth (or water) at the appropriate step. Adjust seasoning to taste.
< 60 Mins, Beans, Ham, Healthy, Inexpensive, Low Cholesterol, Meat, Pork, Small Appliance, Weeknight

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