There’s no better comfort dish than this slow cooker bean and bacon soup. The rich flavor of bacon combines with the savory flavors of vegetables and northern beans to make a hearty soup. Great all year round, but best on those cold, winter nights.
If I’m being honest, I don’t often have time for fancier dinners that take a long time to whip up. Don’t get me wrong, they have their place and I would love to make more of them, but it’s not feasible. For this sake, I’m always coming up with easy dinners I can make on the fly, or searching for them, that is. Slow cooker meals and instant pot meals have been at the top of my list constantly.
My go-to dinners are recipes like Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs or Instant Pot Meatball Sliders. The family loves them and they’re super filling. However, I recently whipped up this slow cooker bean and bacon soup that turned out to be a huge win! It’s a toss and go recipe that’s about impossible to mess up.
How Do You Make Bean Soup from Scratch?
- Make the bacon – Saute the bacon over the stove.
- Add ingredients to pot – Add the oil, carrots, celery, and onions to the slow cooker. Add the rest of the ingredients on top.
- Cook – Cover the crockpot and cook on high for 5-6 hours.
- Serve – Ladle soup into bowls, garnish, and enjoy!
Tips For The Perfect Slow Cooker Bacon and Bean Soup
- Topping suggestions – For a delicious finish to a bowl of this soup, you can add a topping or two…maybe three. Some tasty topping options could be cheese, green onions, greens, sour cream, avocado, crumbled bacon, etc.
- Add other beans – You can mix up the style of beans you add to the pot. A white bean has always been the classic choice for this bean soup recipe. However, you can try other beans such as kidney beans, pinto beans, etc. All taste delicious with this recipe!
- Add ham – If you want to skip the sauteing, you can always nix the bacon and add pre-cooked ham chunks to the pot instead. You can also add both the bacon and ham for an extra helping of protein and flavor.
- Great for meal prepping – This crockpot bean and bacon soup freezes and saves well. This makes it great for making ahead of time for dinner. It’s one of my favorite go-to meals for meal prepping.
- Make it over the stove – You can use canned beans and make this over the stove instead. Simply follow all the steps as they are, simply switch to canned beans and don’t use the slow cooker. You’ll want to only simmer this for an hour over the stove instead of 5-6 hours, like you would in the crockpot.
Can You Put Raw Bacon in Soup?
Well, you can definitely add raw bacon to soup because the simmering or boiling of the soup will cook the bacon to a safe temperature. However, the texture and flavor of the bacon is lacking when cooked in this manner. For that reason, most people fry their bacon before adding it to soup recipes or other dinner recipes like this Loaded Cauliflower Bake.
How Do You Thicken Bean Soup?
Most of the time, if you let the bean soup simmer, uncovered, it will dissipate some of the excess liquid. This, in turn, will allow the soup to thicken. You can also try a little xanthan gum, a teaspoon at a time, and let it simmer a touch longer until thickened. A cornstarch slurry added to the soup would help thicken it as well.
- Fridge – Store in a sealed container for up to 5 days.
- Freezer – Freeze in an airtight container for up to 2 months.
- Reheating – Reheat in the microwave or in the oven. The air fryer would work as well, but it would need to be in an oven-safe dish or over the stove in a soup pot.
Slow Cooker Bean and Bacon Soup
- Slow Cooker
- 8 ounces bacon chopped in small pieces
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup onions diced
- 2 cups celery diced
- 4 garlic cloves finely minced
- 2 cups carrots sliced
- 64 ounces chicken stock
- 2 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp thyme
- 1/4 tsp cumin
- 1 lb Dried Great Northern Beans
- salt and pepper to taste
- Saute bacon on the stovetop until crispy. Set aside. Add olive oil, onions, celery, and carrots to the slow cooker.
- Add the bacon, chicken stock, garlic powder, Worcestershire sauce, thyme, cumin, salt, pepper, and beans. Put the lid on the slow cooker
- Cook for 5-6 hours on high or until the beans and vegetables are soft. Garnish bowls of soup with your choice of toppings. Suggestions: cheese, greens, green onions, sour cream, avocado, more bacon.