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Ham and White Bean Chowder Thumbnail

Ham and White Bean Chowder

  • Author: Kate
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 20
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 - 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American


Ham, white beans, and vegetables are sauteed in butter, then simmered in water to form a broth. Cream added at the end provides richness and a silky broth. This is the perfect use for leftover ham, and is ready in 30 minutes or less!



  • 3 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 lb. cooked ham
  • 1 onion
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 stalks of celery
  • 12 tsp. salt (see note 1)
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cans cannellini beans or any type of canned white beans
  • 1 cup half & half, light cream, or whipping cream (see note 2)


1. Chop onion, carrots, celery and ham into roughly 1/2 inch pieces. (If your ham is already sliced, just cut it up into squares of your preferred size; since the ham is already cooked the exact size isn’t important.)

2. Heat the butter in a stock pot on medium high heat. Add in the vegetables and ham, plus the salt (see note 1), pepper, and dried thyme. 

3. Saute, stirring frequently, until the ham and vegetables start to give off some liquid and the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. (If you have an electric kettle: half way through the cooking time, start heating 2 cups of water in the kettle.)

4. Add 2 cups of water to the pot, either already boiling (see step 3 above), or very hot from the tap. Add the 2 cans of beans, undrained, to the pot.

5. Turn the heat up to high until the soup begins to boil. (Can cover the pot if you want to speed up the boiling process; uncover the pot again once the soup is boiling.) Turn the heat down to medium or medium low to maintain a simmer.

6. Simmer for 10 minutes or until the carrots are tender. Turn the heat off and add about 1 cup of half & half or cream (you can eyeball this amount rather than measure if you want), stir to combine.


  1. The amount of salt needed will vary based on how salty your ham is. If your ham is very salty, add only 1 tsp. of salt instead of 2. You can always taste the soup at the end and add in more if needed. If your soup turns out too salty, add in a splash more cream.
  2. Using half & half will yield a lighter soup broth and whipping cream will be rich and super creamy; light cream will be in-between. (I prefer using the light cream!)

Keywords: soup, chowder, white beans, ham, 30 minute, 1 pot meal