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Great Northern White Bean and Ham Soup With Southern Corn Bread

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I enjoy cooking and baking, and I share some of my family's favorite holiday recipes.

Great northern white bean and ham soup with Southern corn bread

Great northern white bean and ham soup with Southern corn bread

Great Northern White Bean and Ham Soup

We love great northern white beans. I always had them as a kid with corn bread. This is one of our go-to recipes when we have leftover ham.

Some information on dry northern beans:

  • Store dry beans in a cool, dry place off the floor. Once I open the beans, I store them in a glass jar; it keeps the bugs away.
  • Store cooked beans in a covered container in the refrigerator. Use within 2 days.
  • Before cooking dry beans, be sure to check the beans. Go through them for small rocks or bad-looking beans that are discolored. Once sorted, rinse them in cold water.

Some people soak beans overnight. The beans will triple in size when soaked and cooked, so make sure you have a big enough pot. I always use a Dutch oven for my beans. I don't soak the beans; the purpose of soaking is to cut down the time for cooking. I always cook beans for hours to get all the flavor into them. Don't overcook them, however, because then they will turn to mush.

Fast Soaking Method

  • Pour boiling water over beans and soak for 1 hour.

Overnight Soaking Method

  1. Place the beans in a large pot.
  2. Cover with water at least 3 inches above beans.
  3. In the morning, drain off the soaking water.
  4. Add fresh water to the pot.
Preparing the soup

Preparing the soup

Cook Time

Prep timeReady inYields

3 hours

3 hours

12 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. great northern dry beans
  • 1 (2-lb.) box chicken broth
  • 1 cup chopped onions
  • 1 cup finely chopped carrots
  • 1 Tbsp. parsley flakes
  • 1 leftover ham or ham bone
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 6 cups water

Instructions

  1. Rinse beans. Place in the Dutch oven. Add all ingredients bring to boil and turn down burner to low, cover and cook for about 2 1/2 to 3 hours.
  2. Be sure to check beans to make sure they are not burning, stir. Add more water if need be. Near end of cooking time check the beans to make sure they are not over cooked and turning to mush.
  3. In this recipe you put as much ham as you want in it.
Southern corn bread

Southern corn bread

Southern Cornbread Recipe

We always have cornbread with our bean soup. I make it in my cast-iron skillet. I make the Southern version. I don't like the Northern stuff or Johnny Cake.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup of yellow or white cornmeal (whichever you prefer)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup melted butter

Instructions

  1. Place all ingredients into mixing bowl, and beat until smooth.
  2. Pour in a skillet or a 9x9x2-inch pan.
  3. Baked at 425° for 20 to 25 minutes.
Soup and corn bread make a winning combination

Soup and corn bread make a winning combination

© 2013 moonlake

Comments

Tracy Lynn Conway from Virginia, USA on February 03, 2016:

I am going to have to try this one. I am always looking for tasty ways to use beans and haven't found much aside from the typical rice and beans or chili kind of recipe. This one could very well be a hit with my family and I am a sucker for any meal that goes well with cornbread. I love that you included information regarding the cooking and storing of beans.

moonlake (author) from America on July 30, 2015:

Blond Logic, if you can get navy beans those will work too. They are smaller, but the taste is the same. Thanks so much for stopping.

moonlake (author) from America on July 30, 2015:

peachpurple. I use the recipe above for corn bread and have never had problems with it sinking. Thanks so much for stopping by.

moonlake (author) from America on July 30, 2015:

Paul Kuehn Thank you for stopping by and for the vote, sharing and Facebook. Great northern beans are something I use to make often in the winter. They are so good.

Mary Wickison from Brazil on July 30, 2015:

My mother used to make this, I love it. Although I haven't seen this type of bean where I live in Brazil, I can use a different type. This comfort food brings back good memories. I think I'll make some this weekend.

Thanks.

peachy from Home Sweet Home on July 30, 2015:

how did you get such a soft fluffy corn bread? Mine always sink

Paul Richard Kuehn from Udorn City, Thailand on July 30, 2015:

Thanks for sharing a great recipe. Great Northern Bean soup and corn bread is really something I have missed since living in Thailand. Your pictures are great. Voted up and sharing with followers and on Facebook.

moonlake (author) from America on July 01, 2015:

Lady E, thank you for stopping by. I appreciate it.

Elena from London, UK on July 01, 2015:

Lovely Recipe. I love ham. I need to catch up with more of your Recipes, I note you have a lot on your profile. Thanks.

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on January 21, 2015:

Hi I am not certain if I commented on this before..but I am back if so.

This is an all time favorite, go to food we enjoy so much.

My grandson is always asking for MORE cornbread.

Tweeting pinning g+ shared voted up up and YUMMY

Pamela Lipscomb from Charlotte, North Carolina on January 21, 2015:

My Mom used to always make this when she had a ham bone laying around. Especially when it was cold outside. I still have a half a ham in the fridge. Guess what I'm going to make?

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on January 21, 2015:

We have some homemade pinto beans that I made and froze into smaller containers some time ago. I recently thawed one and was thinking of making cornbread with it. I see you like that combination also. Up votes and giving this a share. Hope you are staying warm up there!

Susan Hazelton from Sunny Florida on July 21, 2014:

You have made me hungry. Your beans look so good.

moonlake (author) from America on June 04, 2014:

Thanks for coming by. They are my kind of meal too. I love them. Appreciate you leaving a comment.

Victoria Lynn from Arkansas, USA on May 31, 2014:

Growing up in the South, beans and cornbread are my kind of meal! :-)

moonlake (author) from America on March 24, 2014:

sujaya venkatesh, Thank you..

moonlake (author) from America on March 24, 2014:

Phyllis Doyle, Thank you for stopping by. I appreciate it. I like soup year round too.

moonlake (author) from America on March 24, 2014:

vocalcoach, Thank you for stopping by. We had 14 below here today I may just make that big pot of beans.

sujaya venkatesh on March 24, 2014:

such a delightful sight mo

Phyllis Doyle Burns from High desert of Nevada. on March 24, 2014:

I love bean and ham soup and will surely try this recipe. Thank you so much for sharing this, moonlake. I love soups year round.

Audrey Hunt from Idyllwild Ca. on March 24, 2014:

It doesn't get much better than a nice steamy bowl of Great Northern Bean Soup and homemade corn bread. Great recipe to share with friends and followers. Thank you my friend.

moonlake (author) from America on December 22, 2013:

JayeWisdom, I mean appreciate.

moonlake (author) from America on December 22, 2013:

ladybluewriter, Thank you and thanks so much for stopping by.

moonlake (author) from America on December 22, 2013:

JayeWisdom, Thank so much for coming by. I appreicate it hope you enjoyed your soup.

ladybluewriter from United States on December 22, 2013:

This looks absolutely delicious.

moonlake (author) from America on December 22, 2013:

tillsontitan, Thank you and thanks so much for stopping by have a Merry Christmas.

moonlake (author) from America on December 22, 2013:

Au fait, Thanks for stopping by and for sharing. Johnny cake is what they make here not the old cornbread like I was use to. When I first came here as a new bride everyone had to make fried chicken for me. They fried their chicken and baked it for an hour in the oven. I had never seen fried chicken made that way but I never said a word they were being kind by making it for me. Merry Christmas

Jaye Denman from Deep South, USA on December 21, 2013:

I love bean soup (minus the ham--I can't eat an animal that is intelligent enough to win video games played against a primate, as happened in a scientific research study) and also cornbread. I'm glad your version of cornbread is salty, not sweet, as too many people in the southern USA tend to make it. The combo of soup and cornbread is one of my favorites.

Even though it's unseasonably warm and windy here today (tornado watch as well), I think I'll make some bean soup and cornbread!

Jaye

Mary Craig from New York on December 21, 2013:

Keep 'em comin Moonlake! Nothing beats soup in the winter, especially in the Northeast.

Voted up, useful, and interesting.

C E Clark from North Texas on December 21, 2013:

My mother made bean soup with ham or bacon in it (my dad loved it), and cornbread when I was growing up. It was cheap and filling, but she rarely made the two together. We often had 'corn meal mush,' too. We actually had 'johnny cake' more than cornbread. It's a little sweeter and a softer texture. We like the johnny cake with honey on it.

Going to share this again as we're hitting another chilly spell here in North Texas and this is a wonderful meal for weather like we're having.

moonlake (author) from America on December 18, 2013:

It was -5 here this morning. Even though it's good in this cold country my Mom always made it when we lived in El Paso. It's one of those meals that’s cheap and stretches the food budget. With five kids in the family we ate it often. It’s also southern meal so my whole family loves it. People I know here never have it. My husbands family never made it.

Thanks so much for stopping by and for pinning.

C E Clark from North Texas on December 17, 2013:

Even though it has warmed up again down here in Texas (yesterday's high was 67 and to be warmer today) after a horrific ice storm, I hear things aren't so great in some parts of the country getting snow and cold weather as is normal this time of year. This bean soup and corn bread is a wonderful cold, blustery weather, meal. I recommend it to my fellow Yankees (and everyone else too). It really hits the spot after coming in from the cold weather.

Pinning this to 'Awesome Hubpages.'

moonlake (author) from America on November 17, 2013:

Thank you for stopping by. Thanks for vote and sharing.

C E Clark from North Texas on November 15, 2013:

This is the perfect meal for this time of year. Already pinned to my 'Salads, Soups, & Casseroles' board, and now I'm pinning it to 'Awesom Hubpages.'

Also, voted up and useful and sharing again too!

moonlake (author) from America on September 29, 2013:

CraftytotheCore, They are a very cheap meal to make. My family is from the South and we always had norther beans on the table not as a soup but as a side dish. When the pantry was bare they were a soup with cornbread.

CraftytotheCore on September 27, 2013:

This sure does remind me of my grandmother's beans. It looks even better here in a soup! I love making dried beans. They are so inexpensive and easy to make. And so good for us.

moonlake (author) from America on September 13, 2013:

DDE, Thank you I appreciate your comment. It is a good winter meal and winter is on the way here. Thanks so much for stopping by.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on September 13, 2013:

A recipe which I think is perfect for a winter meal, and you always present your recipes in detail and step by step well done on your great recipes.

moonlake (author) from America on July 08, 2013:

Paul Kuehn, Thank you I appreciate the sharings and vote. My mother made this soup often with a big family it went a long ways.

Paul Richard Kuehn from Udorn City, Thailand on July 06, 2013:

moonlake,

When my mother was alive, she used to often make ham and bean soup and bake corn bread. It was so delicious. Thanks for sharing your great recipes. Voted up and sharing with followers. Also sharing on Facebook, Pinning, and Tweeting.

moonlake (author) from America on July 05, 2013:

Jackie Lynnley, Thank you for stopping by I appreciate it. Beans are always good to add to soups I often add them to chicken soups too.

Jackie Lynnley from the beautiful south on July 03, 2013:

Yum this looks good! I just recently started adding beans to soup and it makes soup so good plus more nutritious. This is more of just bean soup and I have to try it! Thank you.

moonlake (author) from America on June 17, 2013:

Au fait, Thank you this is our favorite meal.

C E Clark from North Texas on June 16, 2013:

Going to add this yummy recipe and meal idea to my "Salads, Soups, & Casseroles" board on Pinterest.

moonlake (author) from America on May 28, 2013:

PegCole17, I do the same thing by putting the ham leftovers in the freezer. Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment I appreciate it.

Peg Cole from Northeast of Dallas, Texas on May 27, 2013:

This is one of my favorite types of soup and so economical to make. Your instructions are great and the recipe sounds really good, too. We also make cornbread to serve with soup. Whenever I serve a home cooked ham I usually package up a couple of zip lock containers with the leftovers and stick it in the freezer. That way I always have some to add to my soups. Thanks for the recipe. Delish!

moonlake (author) from America on May 14, 2013:

azrestoexp, Thanks so much for coming by. Glad you liked the hub.

Arizona's Restoration Experts, LLC on May 14, 2013:

My grandmother made this soup and I'd forgotten how good it was. Haven't had it since I was a kid. Will have to try making it and hope it comes out as good as it looks. Nice hub.

moonlake (author) from America on April 26, 2013:

FlourishAnyway, Thank you and thanks for stopping by.

moonlake (author) from America on April 26, 2013:

rajan jolly , Thanks for stopping by and thanks for vote, sharing and pin. It is really good soup and I often make it without any meat in it which is also good.

FlourishAnyway from USA on April 25, 2013:

Does this ever look good!

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on April 25, 2013:

I haven't tried this bean soup and the combination of corn bread and bean soup. Would certainly be interesting to try.

Voted up and interesting and shared and pinned as well. Rated 5 stars.

moonlake (author) from America on April 21, 2013:

Deborah-Diane, Thank you so much for stopping by I appreciate it.

Deborah-Diane from Orange County, California on April 20, 2013:

I have always loved bean soup and cornbread. Thanks for reminding me of how good it is.

moonlake (author) from America on March 23, 2013:

beingwell, Thank you for stopping by. I appreciate it.

beingwell from Bangkok on March 22, 2013:

Voted up. I always enjoy reading recipe hubs. ... Now, I'm craving.

moonlake (author) from America on February 10, 2013:

SallyTX, Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment. I appreciate the vote.

moonlake (author) from America on February 10, 2013:

Au fait, It is so good when it is so cold here. Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment and vote.

moonlake (author) from America on February 10, 2013:

Peggy W, I've never put garlic in my beans but I bet it would be good. Thanks so much for stopping by and for the vote.

Sally Branche from Only In Texas! on February 10, 2013:

Well, these just look like delicious recipes! I do beans and cornbread pretty often, too. I do soak my beans because when you soak them overnight then rinse off the soak water and start with fresh water, the beans ferment a little bit and you rinse off excess starches. All this leads to better nutrition and easier digestion. Reduced cooking time is an added bonus! Voted up and helpful! ;D

C E Clark from North Texas on February 09, 2013:

This sounds like a great meal for a chilly, blustery day. I often put northern beans in the soup I make along with bacon bits. This soup sounds delicious with ham in it and my favorite veggie -- onions. Just the kind of recipe I like -- quick, easy, and delicious! Voted up!

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on February 08, 2013:

Yum! When is dinner? I love using ham bones with some meat left on the bone when making pots of beans such as you do with your great northern beans and also in making soups like split pea and lentil soup. Your recipe sounds great. I would probably add a bit of fresh garlic to it. Also liked your cornbread recipe. It has been a while since I have eaten cornbread. Up, useful and more!

moonlake (author) from America on February 06, 2013:

Derdriu, We serve the corn bread just plain. We always have butter and jelly on the table if anyone wants that but that's it. Thanks for stopping by.

Derdriu on February 06, 2013:

moonlake, Me too, I love great northern beans with ham in a scrumptious soup! Do you serve the corn bread plain?

Respectfully, and with many thanks for sharing, Derdriu

moonlake (author) from America on January 18, 2013:

Prasetio3, It is delicious it's one of our favorite meals. Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment.

prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on January 17, 2013:

Wow...It sound delicious. I'll show this hub to my mom. I hope she want to make it for me. Voted up!

Prasetio

moonlake (author) from America on January 06, 2013:

Diana Lee, I also cook my beans in a crock pot once in a while. I feel like they don't taste the same but that's just me. Thank you so much for stopping by.

moonlake (author) from America on January 06, 2013:

Denise Handlon, Thank you for the vote, share and stars and thanks so much for stopping by.

Diana L Pierce from Potter County, Pa. on January 05, 2013:

Bean soup has always been a favorite at our house. I shall have to try your recipe. We often simmer bean soup all day in a crock pot. Cold weather begs for meals like this. Voted up.

Denise Handlon from North Carolina on January 05, 2013:

Yum! I love the photos and now that the temps have dropped again, its the perfect soup to make. Thanks for sharing. Rated up/U/I and will share. (Rated 5 stars, too).

moonlake (author) from America on January 04, 2013:

The Dirt Farmer, I'm glad hope you will enjoy the soup.

moonlake (author) from America on January 04, 2013:

aviannovice, A good winter soup all our kids like this bean soup. It does warm the innards. Thanks for stopping by.

moonlake (author) from America on January 04, 2013:

europewalker, Your welcome and thank you for stopping by.

Jill Spencer from United States on January 04, 2013:

Cooking your bean recipe now, moonlake. It sure does smell good!

Deb Hirt from Stillwater, OK on January 04, 2013:

These are great recipes that will warm your innards if out in the cold. This will suit me after AI come in from visiting Boomer Lake!

europewalker on January 04, 2013:

A comforting meal for a cold rainy day like the one today here in TX. Thanks for sharing your must try recipes.

moonlake (author) from America on January 03, 2013:

AliciaC, My family in the south either put great northern or black eyed peas on the table with all dinners as a side dish. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

moonlake (author) from America on January 03, 2013:

ktrapp, Crispy edges on corn bread are the best. It is a good meal for winter. Thanks so much for stopping by.

moonlake (author) from America on January 03, 2013:

tillsontitan, There is always left over ham in our house during the holidays and we always use some of it up in a pot of beans. Thanks so much for stopping by and for the vote.

moonlake (author) from America on January 03, 2013:

kashmir56, Thank you it's always cold here so we have lots of soup. Thanks for stopping by and for the vote.

moonlake (author) from America on January 03, 2013:

shiningirisheyes, Thank you I hope you will enjoy it. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

moonlake (author) from America on January 03, 2013:

The Dirt Farmer, Thanks for stopping by it is delicious.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on January 03, 2013:

This looks like a nutritious and tasty recipe, moonlake. I like great northern beans, but I've never eaten them in a soup. I usually buy canned beans, but I'll try cooking them from scratch soon and make a soup. Thanks for the recipes.

Kristin Trapp from Illinois on January 03, 2013:

This looks like the perfect meal for a cool winter night. I always like soups and stews and this looks like a good recipe to try. I really like cornbread made in a skillet with nice crispy edges too - sounds like a great combination.

moonlake (author) from America on January 03, 2013:

Om Paramapoonya, Thank you for stopping by. The ham does give it so much good flavor.

Mary Craig from New York on January 03, 2013:

Anyone who's had ham lately is checking this one out for sure! It's a great way to get the last drop out of that great ham. Of course we all know there's nothing healthier than beans.

Voted up, useful, and interesting.

Thomas Silvia from Massachusetts on January 03, 2013:

This is such a great recipe and meal and i could use that soup here today because it is cold here today. Well done !

Vote up and more !!!

Shining Irish Eyes from Upstate, New York on January 03, 2013:

Thanks for the corn bread recipe as it is one of my favorites. I am printing out your recipe for northern bean soup because my family just loves it.

Jill Spencer from United States on January 03, 2013:

What cozy meal you've devised! Looks delicious.

Om Paramapoonya on January 03, 2013:

Yummy! This soup sounds like a must-try. I like that you make it with ham; the flavor must be very rich. Plus, I love corn bread. In fact, I just had two corn bread muffins yesterday!

moonlake (author) from America on January 03, 2013:

KoffeeKlatch Gals, Thanks for stopping by. The chicken broth just gives a little more flavor. Thanks for the vote.

Susan Hazelton from Sunny Florida on January 02, 2013:

Moonlake, I love great northern beans. I've never used chicken broth in them but I'm going to give it a try. Your cornbread looks great. There's nothing like dried beans and cornbread. Up, useful, and interesting.

moonlake (author) from America on January 02, 2013:

vespawoolf, Thanks for stopping by. I have made this dish with navy beans too, a little smaller but the taste is about the same.

Vespa Woolf from Peru, South America on January 02, 2013:

This puts me in the mood for beans! We also used to eat this dish when I was a kid. We don't have Great Northern beans here in Peru, but we do have canary beans which have a similar appearance and texture. I have beans in the pantry--better get them soaking! : ) Thanks so much, moonlake.