The best way to put a bag of dry black beans to use in the crockpot! Make this slow cooker black bean soup with ham, beer, and spices, and enjoy the leftovers all week long.
If you've been waiting for me to make a bean recipe that contains beer, your time is here! Using beer in the cooking liquid for dry beans is a great choice. While sometimes I use beer in my Charro Beans, I usually leave it out, just in case I'm serving kids. Plus, the bacon in that recipe is so smoky and powerful.
This slow cooker black bean soup has beer in the cooking liquid, along with ham, cumin, jalapeño and plenty of garlic. It's an absolute winning flavor combination, and you will love the aroma that fills your house as it slow cooks in your crock pot.
How to Make Slow Cooker Black Bean Soup
This recipe for black bean soup with ham and beer is designed for the crock pot. If you're looking for an instant pot recipe that uses dry black beans, try my instant pot black bean chili instead.
This is truly a set it and forget it style crock pot recipe. There is no need to soak the black beans before cooking in this recipe! You will need to chop the vegetables, however, but you drop them in the crockpot as you chop, so it's so easy!
- Black Beans. You need a 1-pound) bag dried black beans, rinsed and sorted. There is no need to soak the beans before cooking in the crockpot!
- Broth. Four cups of beef broth, preferably a low sodium variety. Because this recipe contains ham (which has a lot of salt), it's really important to use low-salt broth here.
- Beer. Less than one whole beer, you need 1 cup of a lager-style beer (such as Corona).
- Cumin. We need ½ tablespoon (1 ½ teaspoons) of ground cumin for its smokiness.
- Oregano. My first choice is Mexican oregano here, but regular Greek will also work; we need ½ tablespoon (or 1 ½ teaspoons).
- Chipotle. If you want this slow cooker black bean soup recipe to be spicy, use 1 teaspoon of a dried chipotle chili powder. If spice isn't your thing, omit this. Alternatively, you can use 1 canned chipotle in adobo sauce that you mince.
- Ham. This is a great use for leftover ham, because we need 1 pound ham, diced into ½” cubes. You might also like my Crockpot Ham and Beans recipe, too!
- Onion. One large yellow onion, diced finely.
- Jalapeños. If you like things spicy, use 2 whole jalapeños (seeds and ribs included), just be sure to wear gloves when you cut the jalapeños, and do not touch your eyes. To reduce the spice a bit, remove the seeds and ribs before slicing the jalapeños.
- Tomatoes. One 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained.
- Garlic. Yes, we really need 5 cloves garlic, minced. I know that's a lot of garlic, but it brings so much flavor.
- Lime. The acidity that lime brings is the best way to finish the dish. Do not add the lime juice until after the slow coking time is over.
- Garnish: scallions, cilantro and sour cream, to taste.
Place all ingredients, except for the lime juice and garnishes, into a 5 quart (or larger) slow cooker.
Stir to combine. Place the lid on, and cook on low for 7-8 hours, or until beans are the desired softness.
Juice the lime directly into the slow cooker and stir thoroughly.
To serve, ladle into soup bowls and then top with sour cream, cilantro, and scallions, ifdesired.
If you have leftover slow cooker black bean soup, let it cool, and then place in an airtight container. It can stay in th refrigerator for up to 4 days, or in the freezer for up to a month. To thaw, either place in the refrigerator overnight, and then heat on the stove top until warm.
You will need:
- Slow Cooker - Preferably, a 5 quart crock pot or larger.
- Long-Handled Spoon - for stirring the soup together before cooking.
- Ladle - to make it easy to serve.
Crock Pot Black Bean Soup FAQ:
This recipe below has the perfect consistency, however, if you made changes to it, maybe it will have too much liquid in the final result. You can use a hand immersion blender to pure the soup a bit to thicken. Or, you can move it to the stove top and boil it to reduce.
As written, it has a mild kick. If you prefer to have no kick at all, you can substitute pasilla peppers for the jalapeños, and substitute regular chili powder for the chipotle chili powder. If you prefer your soup to be more spicy, you can increase the chipotle chili powder, or add ¼-1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper.
If you prefer to use canned black beans, I recommend using 3 cans of low-sodium black beans, drained and rinsed. Reduce beef broth to 2 cups. Add the beans to the slow cooker with all the other ingredients, as listed in step 1, and then cook on low for just 4 hours before adding the lime juice.
Yes, omit the ham and substitute vegetable broth for the beef broth. Since the ham adds salt to the recipe, add one teaspoon of kosher salt in step one in its place.
If you don't want to use beer in this slow cooker black bean soup, simply replace the same amount with extra beef broth. So, in that case, this recipe would need 5 cups of beef broth instead of 4 cups.
- 1 (1 pound) bag dried black beans, rinsed and sorted 4 cups beef broth
- 1 cup lager-style beer (such as Corona)
- ½ Tablespoon ground cumin
- ½ Tablespoon mexican oregano
- 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
- 1 pound ham, diced into ½” cubes
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 2 jalapeños, seeded and diced
- 1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained 5 cloves garlic, minced
- Juice of 1 lime
Optional, for garnish:
- 3 scallions, sliced
- 1 cup cilantro leaves
- Sour cream
- Place all ingredients, except for the lime juice and garnishes, into a 5 quart (or larger) slow cooker. Stir very well, to combine.
- Place the lid on, and cook on low for 7-8 hours, or until beans are the desired softness.
- Juice the lime directly into the slow cooker and stir.
- To serve, ladle into soup bowls and then top with sour cream, cilantro, and scallions, if desired.
Storage: If you have leftover slow cooker black bean soup, let it cool, and then place in an airtight container. It can stay in th refrigerator for up to 4 days, or in the freezer for up to a month. To thaw, either place in the refrigerator overnight, and then heat on the stove top until warm.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 226Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 37mgSodium: 1045mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 5gSugar: 3gProtein: 20g