Go Back
+ servings
navy bean soup

My Mom’s Navy Bean Soup

The delicious simplicity of my mom's navy bean soup was lost on me as a child, but I’ve since seen the error of my ways! It’s deliciously savory and goes perfectly with a warm slice of buttered bread.
Course Soup
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 23 minutes
Slow Release: 10 minutes
Total Time 33 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 228kcal
Author Jill Nystul


  • 16 oz bag navy beans
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 3 slices smoked bacon chopped (or 1 ham hock)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 10 cups water or chicken broth


Instant Pot Version

  • Place the chopped bacon pieces in your Instant Pot, then select the “Sauté” function. When the bacon starts getting crispy, add the chopped onions to the pot too.
  • When the bacon is crispy and the onions are soft, add the beans, water and/or stock, and salt and pepper. (The soup turns out just fine using water, but if you like a deeper, more savory flavor, you can swap out some of the water for chicken stock. I’d try about 5 cups of each!) Place the lid on your Instant Pot, select “Manual,” and set the timer for 23 minutes.
  • When the timer goes off, let the Instant Pot release pressure naturally for 10 minutes, then use the Quick Release valve to release the rest of the pressure. If your soup looks a bit thin, here’s an easy fix! Use a ladle to scoop out some of the beans and blend until smooth in your blender. Pour the blended beans back into the soup and mix well.
  • Then it’s soup time! Serve with some fresh parsley, if desired. (If you prefer to make things the old fashioned way, get those directions below!)

Crockpot Version

  • Start by soaking the beans overnight. In the morning, rinse and drain the beans well, then add them to your crockpot.
  • Fill the crockpot 3/4 of the way with water, then add the chopped onion, a ham hock, and salt and pepper. (We subbed out the ham hock for bacon in the Instant Pot version, but the ham hock is pretty crucial for texture in this crockpot version. You should be able to find one at a butcher shop or a specialty grocery store!)
  • Turn your crockpot on low and let the soup cook all day. Then at dinnertime, serve warm and enjoy!


Calories: 228kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 1175mg | Potassium: 963mg | Fiber: 14g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin C: 21.6mg | Calcium: 104mg | Iron: 3.8mg