Friday, April 14, 2017

Canning Ham and Bean and Vegetable Soup

When I can soups I keep the recipe as simple as possible.  If I keep the ingredients basic, I can add others when it is served, giving me more options.

Last evening I did the prep work on the ingredients for this soup.  This recipe calls for the following per pint jar, layered in no particular order:

1/3 cup of dry white beans that have been sorted and washed
1/4 cup diced onion
1/4 cup diced carrots
1/4 cup diced celery
1/4 cup diced ham
2 teaspoon beef bouillon powder
water to fill jar

The jars are processed in a pressure canner for 75 minutes at 10 lbs. pressure for my altitude.  The beans will cook through and expand while processing.  The recipe can be doubled for quarts that are processed for 90 minutes.  I ran through a canner load of 16 pints.

Some instructions for similar soups call for more beans.  I am reluctant to use more because the beans fully expand in the canner.  Too many beans in the jar will push the lids off when they expand, leaving a nasty mess in the canner and the loss of your jars of soup.

Some serve the soup as is with just the addition of salt and pepper.  Others add a variety of spices and seasonings to taste.  Some like the addition of tomatoes or tomato powder for a different flavor.  There are all sorts of possibilities.

This soup along with a chicken vegetable variety are my "go to" soups.  I make sure I have lots of both canned and on the shelves so that I can use both in a variety of ways.  They are nice to have when you want a quick lunch or supper.  Add a salad or cornbread or maybe a slice of homemade bread and you have a really quick and easy meal.  And as you know, I am all about quick, easy meals now that I am cooking for just one.

More Soup

I still had vegetables and ham left after canning the ham, bean and vegetable soup.  I also had some potatoes that needed to be used up.  So I peeled and diced the potatoes.  Each pint jar got 2/3 cup of potatoes and 1/3 cup each ham, carrots and celery.  I added 1 teaspoon of chicken bouillon powder for flavor and water to cover.  I ran this through the pressure canner at 10 lbs. pressure for 75 minutes.  I got 16 pints of ham, potato and vegetable soup.
I sort of made this soup up as I went along so I'm not exactly sure what to do with it.  I expect it can be eaten as is or maybe thickened for a chowder type soup.  No matter how it is consumed, it is still 16 more meals on the shelf.  And that's the goal - fill the shelves.


  1. thanks for info on canning dry beans.

    1. You are welcome. I know about canning dry beans because I put too many in jars and it took a long time to clean out the inside of my pressure canner. :)

  2. Sounds like an awesome and productive day.
    Questions: Headspace on the jars? And, can you use any kind of washed/sorted bean?
    Happy Easter my friend.

    1. SJ...It was a good day. Not doing any more tonight as I have another full day tomorrow. Even sneaked in a short nap. :)

      The headspace on the jars is 1 inch. And I know of no reason not to use other kinds of beans as long as you stick to the 1/3 cup measurement. I was thinking about using kidney beans or red beans for a change of pace.

      Here is me wishing you a blessed Easter, my friend.

  3. DH cans dry beans all the time...he likes to use them in chili and by canning them it helps to get rid of most of the gas. He adds a half cup of beans in a quart jar, spices, maybe a chuck of meat (2 inch square chunk of ham) and 4 packets of Taco Bell hot sauce, fill with hot water to the bottom of the rim (so 1" head space) and into the canner for 90 minutes. He does it in pint jars too, using a 1/4 cup of beans.
    It works well. I've taken some and made a bean dip out of the canned beans...just mashed them up good and popped them into the fridge to chill. He does like it spicy, but usually it isn't too hot for me. I think running them through the canner takes some of the bite out of the heat.
    It does get hot when he puts a chunk of hot pepper in with the beans or when we do tomatoes and are trying to use up the
    Anaheim's or the Pablono's. Then stuff gets spicy/heat.
    We have done all sorts of beans this way. White, kidney, pintos, black, navy. He has mixed them up 1/4 of black with 1/4 cup of white, etc.
    I did the same thing without all the spices/meat for chick peas as I like them over salads.

    Have a Blessed Easter :)

    1. Suz...What a great way to use canned dry beans. I hadn't thought of canning them with all the seasonings and spices. I am not a huge fan of spicy foods, but for those who are, that method would be a good addition to the food storage. I keep a supply of canned dry beans without the spices and then season them according to what I use them for. It is nice to have pre-cooked beans for those times I want them for a dish but don't have the time or inclination to go through the long process of soaking and cooking them. Having them available already seasoned is a really good idea. Thanks for your comment. Perhaps it will inspire some to give your method a try.

      Wishing you and yours a Happy Easter.