Wednesday, December 26, 2012

What’s Cookin’? Holiday Ham & Beans!

Whenever there is a holiday that involves a bone-in ham ---Holiday Ham & Beans are sure to follow!

I love my crockpot.  I’ve had a long standing love affair with slow cookery since I received my first crockpot as a wedding gift in 1981.

Nothing frees up a quilter’s mind and time more than throwing together a meal early in the day to have it simmer for hours-- making the house smell wonderful – resulting in a yummy meal ready to serve without stress come dinner time.

This is one of my favorites ---and I had to write things down as I was cooking because I usually cook by pinches and bits off of the top of my head ---not by measuring.

3 cups (or 1 lb) dried beans.  I use a 16 bean mix.
Wash and soak beans overnight as directed.


Rinse beans in cold water. Put them in a large pot and cover with about 3 inches of cold water. Bring almost to a boil (small bubbles appear around the edges of the pot), cover, and remove from heat. Let sit for 1 hour. Drain. The beans will be "soaked" and ready to cook.

Alternately you can soak beans on low in the crockpot over night.  Drain and rinse before continuing.

In the morning:

Place soaked beans and ham bone and any other meat you wish to use in the crock pot and cover with 6 cups of water.  Cook 4 to 6 hours on high. 

food 006

Yummy shredded ham off the bone!

You can tell by the sides of my crockpot that this has been simmering for hours!

When meat falls off bones, strain bones and meat from the crock pot and allow to cool until you can pick through it, removing any fatty bits, cartilage, and bones. Pull apart big pieces of meat into shreds or cut into small chunks.  Add meat back to crock pot with beans. Continue to cook until beans are tender, stirring occasionally.

When beans have reached soft stage and are almost ready to eat add the following:

1 medium onion, chopped.
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup molasses
1/3 cup ketchup
1 tsp dry yellow mustard
salt and pepper to taste.

Cook until flavors have blended and onion is soft.

Serve with a salad and  cornbread hot from the oven --- YUMMY!

*NOTE*  I tend to add more water  because I like mine to be more like a soup vs a thicker side dish as in Boston baked beans.  I also don't salt until the end because the ham has a lot of salt already.

We will be enjoying this until we leave for Dallas on Saturday.  Any leftovers freeze wonderfully!


  1. I love those kind of bean dishes in the winter!

  2. my mother made ham and beans a lot and my husband alwanted me to buy gynormous hams just so we would have the bone to cook with. I always used red beans, sometimes navy beans and didn't make the red sauce, we were plainer folk I guess - but definitely cornbread made in your cast iron skillet good memories.......

  3. Sometime try it without precooking the beans, works fine for me.
    Love that dish unfortunately hubby doesn't. sigh.....
    Thanks for quilt cam, been working on hand stitching borders for the last few cams.

    1. famous last words: freezes wonderfully! so you can make it and take it whenever you feel like it!
      Bon Apetit!

  4. There is a sliced country ham in my refrigerator now waiting to be portioned, vacuum sealed, and frozen. We love to put ham in pinto beans, white beans, green beans...any kind of beans are better when you throw in some ham! Wishing you safe travels!

  5. My pot of ham and beans is almost gone already. We just keep going back to the kitchen for another bowl to go with what we're watching or reading! And yes, my house smells SOOOOO good!

  6. Anonymous7:49 PM EST

    great minds & all that....:>) beans & greens & ham were in the pot at my house today too. It was a cold, rainy day here in Va. and when I got up this morning my mind went to beans, then to scraps! ( leftovers of another kind) :>) What a wonderful day!!! Then I caught you on quiltcam and had your company for awhile as I sewed flying geese into strips,usiong up a good many scraps & *leftover* parts ( of another long-time-ago project)Thank you for your inspiration and all that you so wiollingly share. The leader-ender idea has been very helpful to me.
    Have a wonderful new year!Karen ( in Va.)

  7. We had ham and beans with cornbread for dinner tonight - yummy! Lots more ham to freeze for more dinners.

  8. I have a ham bone to use too ... Saving it for the weekend, and we'll have red means &rice. I'll see you when you're in Dallas ... I've signed up for two of your classes, can't wait!

  9. I through a ginormous ham bone in the freezer 12/16 after we had our extended family Christmas.... Alas, it is too big for even my largest pot!!! I'm going to try to get a butcher to saw it in half for me... Then i'll make a big 'ole pot of pintos one week-end, and on another week-end new Orleans red beans... Yummo!
    Happy travels!

  10. I just checked my cupboard to see if I had beans.........guess what the Browns are having for dinner tomorrow! Thank you!

  11. Terrific recipe. I will give this one a go next time I have ham bone.

    Please be careful when traveling this weekend. Just heard about bad weather in Dallas and flights cancelled. There are some benefits to being five hours ahead!! xx

  12. Sounds Delicious. I put my ham bone in the freezer for now. Will come back here for this recipe when I am ready to use it. Thanks. Have a safe trip!

  13. Oh! Beans from my own garden! Thank you for getting me inspired! Will make it the South American way, with peppers and garlic 8^} More than just delicious!
    Have a nice day, will get back to the geese (not to be eaten).
    Love from Amsterdam,

  14. Sadly, I am allergic to pork. :( but I bet beef would work.


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