This Ham and Potato Soup is simple and quick to put together with easy-to-find ingredients. Make with leftover ham or any kind of chopped ham.
So, we made a traditional Easter dinner a few weeks ago. For two adults and one toddler who really only wants to eat blueberries and goldfish crackers. Needless to say, we had a lot of ham left.
I had hoped to get this soup made, photographed and published in time for you to make it with your leftover ham, too. Alas, that wasn’t meant to be, and I hope you’ll understand. You know how life is right now.
The great news is that we loved this soup so much that we’ll be making it year’ round, even when we don’t necessarily have leftover ham. In fact, I’m already planning on buying a ham steak on a future grocery order so that we can make this soup again!
So even though I didn’t get this published quite as quickly as I had hoped, I hope you’ll find this recipe valuable. Add a ham steak to your grocery list, or pin this recipe for after Christmas or next Easter.
How to make Ham and Potato Soup:
Jeff actually developed this recipe for us! Don’t worry, he wrote down detailed notes and ingredient amounts. And of course, I did the taste testing and I gave it a (completely unbiased) A+. It was so rich, flavorful and filling!
Even though the star of the show is the ham, you’ll actually start this recipe by frying up some bacon. Whoever decided that “bacon makes everything better” was talking about this soup.
After the bacon starts to crisp, you’ll add onion, potatoes, a can of diced tomatoes with green chilies (Rotel brand is most commonly known), chicken broth, and the leftover ham bone if you happen to have one. If not, no big deal, just skip it!
Once those ingredients simmer until the potatoes start to soften, you’ll add chopped ham and corn. Then, you’ll thicken the soup with a slurry (more on that below) and stir in some cheese!
Lemon juice is added at the final moment to brighten the soup and add acidity, which balances out the rich flavors of the bacon and ham.
What you’ll need for this ham bone soup:
- diced tomatoes and green chilies (Rotel)
- chicken broth
- salt and pepper
- ham bone (optional)
- diced ham
- cheddar cheese
- chives, for garnish (optional)
How do you thicken ham potato soup?
This soup is thickened with a slurry technique. A slurry is a mixture of starch (like flour, cornstarch or arrowroot) and liquid, and it is used to thicken soups and sauces. Slurry is typically made with flour and water, but can also be made with flour and broth, or flour and milk.
In this recipe, we’ve used flour and milk. There are also options below for a gluten free version using cornstarch and milk.
The reason the starch is combined with the liquid first (versus adding the starch directly to the soup) is that if you added the starch directly to the hot soup, the starch granules wouldn’t disperse as easily, and your soup would get very clumpy. Mixing the starch with liquid before adding it to your soup allows it to be easily stirred into the soup and dispersed.
An important thing to remember when using a slurry is that for the starch to reach it’s thickening potential, the soup MUST be brought to a simmer (just before a boil, if not a slight boil) after the slurry is added. If you add the slurry and don’t bring your soup to a simmer, the slurry won’t thicken the soup at all.
What to eat with ham and potato soup:
This soup is kind of a meal in itself, but if you’d like to serve it with a salad, I’d recommend a simple green salad dressed with citrus salad dressing or creamy lemon feta dressing. An heirloom tomato and beet salad or cucumber and avocado salad would also be yummy.
If you’d like a little sandwich to go alongside your soup, allow me to suggest a prosciutto and pear sandwich.
How long is this soup good for in the fridge?
If you’re starting this soup using leftover ham, I recommend eating or freezing the soup within 3 days. If you’re making the soup with a freshly opened ham steak, I recommending eating or freezing within 5 days.
Can ham soup be frozen?
Yep, this soup can be frozen! The texture of the soup may change a little bit when it’s reheated (the potatoes may become even softer), but if that won’t bother you, I say go for it.
- 4 slices bacon, chopped
- 1/2 large onion, chopped
- 4 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 can (10 ounces) diced tomatoes & green chilies (Rotel)
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Ham bone (optional)
- 12 ounces frozen corn
- 2 cups chopped ham
- 1-1/2 cups whole milk
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (see Home Chef tip for gluten free option)
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1/2 cup shredded Sharp cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup chopped chives
- Add bacon to large pot and cook over medium-high heat 3 to 4 minutes or until slightly browned, stirring occasionally.
- Add onion and cook 5 minutes or until softened, stirring occasionally.
- Add potatoes, Rotel, broth and salt and pepper and heat to boiling over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and add ham bone, if using. Cook 8 minutes or until potatoes begin to soften, stirring occasionally.
- Carefully remove and discard ham bone, if using.
- Stir in corn and chopped ham and continue cooking over medium-low 5 more minutes or until potatoes are tender.
- In small bowl, whisk together milk and flour. Slowly stir milk mixture into soup. Heat soup to boiling over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cook 2 to 3 minutes or until soup has thickened.
- Remove soup from heat and stir in lemon juice and cheese.
- Serve soup garnished with chives.
Home Chef Tip: To make a gluten free soup, use cornstarch instead of flour to thicken the soup. Instead of 2 tablespoons flour, use just 1 tablespoon cornstarch. Proceed with the directions in the same way (whisking the milk and cornstarch together).
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 489Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 78mgSodium: 1852mgCarbohydrates: 56gFiber: 6gSugar: 15gProtein: 29g
More recipes that use ham:
- Ham and Egg Homemade Frozen Breakfast Burritos – keep these in the freezer for weekday breakfasts!
- Ham and Mozzarella Sticks – kids and adults will love these.
- Monte Cristo Party Bites – tiny little sandwiches for big fun at a party.
- One Pot Ham & Penne Skillet from Julie’s Eats & Treats
- Ham Casserole with Broccoli and Rice from The Cozy Cook