10 Leftover Ham Bone Recipes to Make After Any Holiday

updated Mar 18, 2024
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A bowl of ham and bean soup sits on the kitchen counter.
Credit: Jesse Szewczyk

If you’re buying a big bone-in ham for the holidays this year, consider this your friendly reminder that you’ll be left with a tasty ingredient after all the meat’s been picked off: The ham bone. So, whatever you do, don’t toss it in the compost bin or trash. Ham bones are packed with so much rich, smoky flavor. Don’t have time to put the ham bone to use right away? No problem, just freeze the bone, as you would any other meat bones and food scraps.

We’ve been

asked a few times

comforting soups made in the
slow cooker to smoky greens and gumbo, here are 10 ham bone recipes to try.
1 / 10
Ham and Bean Soup

All you need is a couple cans of beans, some broth, basic vegetables, and of course the leftover ham and ham bone to pull together a pot of this comforting soup.

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2 / 10
Ham and Potato Soup

Turn leftover ham and ham bone into a cozy bowl of creamy, comforting goodness.

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3 / 10
Split Pea Soup

The ham bone will impart a smoky aroma that's a natural fit with this classic hearty soup.

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4 / 10
Classic Navy Bean Soup

Add this old-time classic to your go-to soups. If you’d like to make your soup creamier, mash some of the beans with a potato masher or fork against the inside of the pot.

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5 / 10
Cabbage Soup

Veggie-packed cabbage soup is kissed with tomatoes and mixed with white beans for a little oomph. This comforting soup manages to be both wonderfully hearty, yet fresh at the same time. Add a leftover ham bone to give it a flavor boost.

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6 / 10
Gumbo Z’Herbes (Greens Gumbo)

The star of this hearty gumbo are the greens! Chock full of peak winter greens, this dish represents warmth, community, and love.

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7 / 10
Collard Greens

Collard greens are a staple on Southern tables, but regardless of where you live, this is one green you should be serving too. Learn how to make traditional braised collard greens flavored with a smoky ham bone.

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8 / 10
Easy Slow Cooker Bean Soup

A ham bone lends a ton of rich flavor to this hearty slow cooker soup, so you can skip the broth and use water instead.

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9 / 10
Cuban Black Bean Soup

This soup does not disappoint. It has the depth of flavor that hearty black beans develop as they cook, slowly — not to mention the richness from a ham bone that slowly falls apart in the pot.

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10 / 10
Slow Cooker Ham Bone Soup

This slow-cooker soup ekes out every last bit of flavor from the leftover ham bone.

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