Even though it is summer at the moment, we can still have the odd chilly day. On stormy days when the skies are filled with black clouds, the wind is blowing, and it is raining cats and dogs, we can find ourselves longing for something that will warm our hearts and hands. This 15 Bean Soup fits the bill perfectly for just such a time. It takes just minutes to prepare and cooks easily and effortlessly in your slow cooker. Your kitchen stays nice and cool, and yet you end up with a lovely warm soup that your family is sure to love!
This is the perfect recipe for the larger family, or for when you want to feed a crowd. Even if you are a smaller family, you will really enjoy the ease and comfort of this hearty, healthy, and delicious soup. It can easily be broken down into smaller containers when done and frozen, ready to pull out and reheat at a later time!
WHAT DO YOU NEED TO MAKE 15 BEAN SOUP
You will be happy to know that this delicious and simple recipe requires very few ingredients. If you have a well-stocked store cupboard, you can easily be enjoying this tasty soup by the end of today. One of the best things about using a slow cooker/crockpot to cook this recipe is that there is no need to soak the beans ahead of time.
|1 package of 15 bean soup mix, with the flavour packet|
|8 cups of chicken broth|
|1 leftover hambone with meat, or 1 pound of diced cooked ham|
|1 large onion, peeled and chopped|
|1 clove garlic, peeled and minced|
|1 tsp chili powder|
|1 (15 oz) can of diced tomatoes, drained|
|The juice of one lemon|
|Hot sauce to taste|
HINTS AND TIPS TO MAKE THE BEST 15 BEAN SOUP
If you follow my hints and tips there is no reason why your 15 Bean Soup cannot be the tastiest ever!
- Read through the recipe several times before beginning to familiarise yourself with any ingredients and equipment, or techniques needed to make the recipe.
- Assemble any ingredient you need before beginning. This simple action is like a checklist and can help to prevent you from leaving anything integral to the recipe out. I always do this.
- Rinse your bean mixture well, drain, and then check through it for any debris. There are often small stones and dry pieces of plant material in the bags of bean mixture. One thing you do not want to happen is for someone to bit down onto a small stone and break a tooth.
- Do not add the acidic ingredients until close to the end of cooking when the beans have softened. If you add the tomatoes and lemon juice too soon this can greatly hamper the softening of your beans.
- If you need to soak your beans, reduce the liquid required in the recipe by 1 cup.
- Although I use chicken stock (or vegetable) for this soup do add the flavour packet which should come with your soup. This is especially nice if you do not have a ham bone to use as it will add a nice layer of smokiness to the end product.
- Lemon juice adds another level of freshness and helps to enhance the flavour of your soup broth. I use fresh, but in a pinch you can use bottled. I recommend using fresh however if you have it.
- You can often buy a ham bone or a ham hock from your local butcher to use if you do not have one of your own. Failing that, it is completely acceptable to use chopped cooked ham. Your soup will still be delicious.
- This is a thick and hearty soup. My husband loves his soups this way! If you find your soup is too thick, feel free to add an additional cup of broth or stock to thin it out a bit.
- If you think your soup is too thin, a handy trick which you can use to thicken it is to remove a cup of the beans from the soup once they have softened. Puree them, using a blender or immersion blender, and then stir them back into the soup for the last half hour or so of cooking. This also adds a lush creaminess to the finished soup. You can also mash them with a fork. My mother always did this, even when she was making baked beans.
HOW TO MAKE 15 BEAN SOUP
Rinse the soup mix in cold water and pick through it, discarding any unwanted debris. (sticks, small stones, etc.) Set the seasoning packet aside for later.
Place the bean mix, onions, garlic, ham bone (or diced ham), chicken broth, and chili powder in a 6-quart crock pot.
Cover and cook on high for 5 hours, until the beans are tender. (Alternately you can cook it on low for 7 to 8 hours.)
If you have used a ham bone, remove it from the crock pot. Chop any meat that has been left on the bone, discarding the bone. Return the chopped meat to the crock pot.
Stir in the diced tomatoes, seasoning packet from the bean mix, and the lemon juice. Add hot sauce to taste. Cover and cook for an additional half an hour.
Serve hot, ladled into heated bowls.
This is a beautiful soup and while it does make a lot of soup, it does freeze beautifully. I divide it into single-serving plastic containers with lids and freeze it that way. I use flat containers that stack and store easily in my freezer. My husband will often want some soup for his lunch or supper, and I may not feel like it.
How much tastier it is to already have some single-sized servings of soup in the freezer ready to pull out and thaw. I use the thaw program on my microwave to thaw it out. The smaller containers thaw out quicker than larger ones. It also reheats easily in the microwave as well. Simply transfer it to a larger sized covered container and cook for several minutes, stirring it every 30 seconds or so until you have heated it to the temperature you desire!
WHAT TO SERVE WITH 15 BEAN SOUP
My husband really loves crusty bread or rolls with his soup. Spread with softened butter it goes perfectly on the side. I like crackers myself, but that is the Canadian Maritimer in me. I often crumble a couple of saltines on top and then butter a few to enjoy on the side. If you are really wanting to create a special homey touch, why not bake a pan of your favourite cornbread to go along with it or cornbread muffins! A salad on the side is another great addition to what is already a delicious and welcome meal!
This truly is the perfect hearty lunch or light supper for those chilly days when you might be wanting something warming, comforting and delicious! Your family and friends are sure to enjoy this simple and tasty soup, and you will love the ease at which you can prepare it. Enjoy!
- 1 package of 15 bean soup mix, with the flavour packet
- 8 cups of chicken broth
- 1 leftover hambone with meat, or 1 pound of diced cooked ham
- 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1 (15 oz) can of diced tomatoes, drained
- The juice of one lemon
- Hot sauce to taste
- Rinse the soup mix in cold water and pick through it, discarding any unwanted debris. (sticks, small stones, etc.) Set the seasoning packet aside for later.
- Place the bean mix, onions, garlic, ham bone (or diced ham), chicken broth, and chili powder in a 6-quart crock pot.
- Cover and cook on high for 5 hours, until the beans are tender. (Alternately you can cook it on low for 7 to 8 hours.)
- If you have used a ham bone, remove it from the crock pot. Chop any meat that has been left on the bone, discarding the bone. Return the chopped meat to the crock pot.
- Stir in the diced tomatoes, seasoning packet from the bean mix and lemon juice. Add hot sauce to taste. Cover and cook for an additional half an hour.
- Serve hot, ladled into heated bowls along with some crusty bread on the side.
Marie Rayner is a retired Chef, freelance writer, recipe developer, food blogger, and Cookbook author. She makes her home in Chester, UK, where she lives with her husband, Todd, and their much beloved English Cocker, Mitzie. Her motto is “Life is far too short to eat bad food,” and her goal is to share delicious and easy recipes which anyone can enjoy and cook in the comfort of their own home.