Multi-bean soup with grains makes a delicious, filling and healthy lunch or dinner. It is perfect for fall and winter, but I also love making this in the summer using my Instant Pot. It has everything I love in a meal! It is cheap, easy to make, and healthy. The picky kid loves it, and if using the Instant Pot it is super-fast. It is versatile, and I never have to make a special trip to the grocery store to make it, since all of the ingredients are always on stock in my pantry and freezer!
Have a full dinner for 6 for under $10!
We usually make a big batch of this for dinner and have the leftovers for lunch over the next two days. By making one big meal, it saves time and dirty dishes plus it is one of those meals that tastes even better as leftovers. A garden salad and some garlic bread along with a glass of home-brewed iced tea go great with it.
We usually have lots of leftover ham around the holidays, so we chop it into 1.5 cup portions, put into Ziploc baggies and freeze for later use in this recipe. If you have extra veggies from your garden, you can throw some of those in, too!
The main ingredient is Bob’s Red Mill “Whole Grains & Beans Soup Mix.”
It has small red beans, pinto beans, lentils, whole oat groats, brown rice, triticale berries, rye berries, hard red wheat, pearl barley, Kamut® Khorasan wheat, buckwheat groats and sesame seeds. It comes in a 1 lb. bag and in most grocery stores, it is usually located next to the bulk beans and grains or you can find on Amazon. We special order a big bag from a food distributor, since we have access to that. If you like this recipe and want to add it to your regular meal plan, definitely consider locating a source for a bigger bag. (Update: We can’t even get this special order anymore, so I’m not sure Bob’s Red Mill carries a larger bag now) It will save you a good chunk of money!
The beauty of this bean mix is that you can add just about anything you like to make your soup. The following recipe is what works best for us.
Best Hearty Mixed Bean Soup
Multi-bean soup with grains makes a delicious, filling and healthy lunch or dinner. It is perfect for fall and winter, and it's cheap, easy to make, and healthy! My picky kid loves it, and if using the instant pot you can make it in a fraction of the time!
- 2 ¼ C. Bob’s Red Mill “Whole Grains & Beans Soup Mix rinsed with a sieve
- 5.5 C. Hot water
- 2 TBSP Thrive chicken bouillon
- 1 Medium Onion diced
- 2 Cloves Garlic
- 1 14.5 Ounce Can Diced tomatoes with liquid
- 1 ½ C. Leftover Ham diced
- 1 TBSP Olive oil
- 1 Pinch Salt
- 1 Pinch Pepper
Instant Pot Instructions
Even though it isn't mandatory, quick soaking your grains and beans mix will result in a softer texture that is easier on your stomach. I like to rinse, add to a regular pot and cover with 3-4 inches of water. Bring to a boil, turn off and cover. Let sit for 1-3.5 hours. Drain and rinse well before adding to your soup.
Using the sauté function on your Instant Pot, heat up 2 TBSP of olive oil and sauté onions with a pinch of salt and pepper until tender. Add minced garlic and cook another minute. Add undrained diced tomatoes. Add your 5.5 cups of hot water, ham and chicken bouillon and stir. Add Bob’s Red Mill grains mix that has been soaked and drained to your Instant Pot. (Note: If you didn't pre soak your mix, you will need to add more water. I would add an extra 1/2 - 1 1/2 cup more.)
Give it one last stir, wipe any crumbs or drips off of the top rim of the pot and seal up your Instant Pot. On the bean soup setting, pressure cook it on high pressure for 42 minutes and then do a slow release of the pressure by letting it depressurize on its own keeping it on the "keep warm" function. I like to wait at least 20-30 minutes on the slow release before dishing up.
Slow Cooker Instructions
There will be a difference in water requirements for the slow cooker. You can either reduce the beans to 2 cups, or add extra water as needed. Add all ingredients to the cooker at once (except for the tomatoes with juice), adding a few pinches of salt and pepper. (You can sauté your onions and garlic in olive oil before adding to the cooker if you prefer.) Stir and cook on high for 6 hours or until done. I like to add the tomatoes during the last 45 minutes to ensure the beans cook all the way. Keep an eye on it, and if it needs more water due to evaporation, you can add more. I personally don’t defrost my ham when adding it, since it isn't very much frozen food being added.
Note: Since some slow cookers are much slower than others, it might be wise to start early with your first attempt and document how long it took to cook until done so you can adjust this recipe as needed.
Disclaimer: Jaimie is not the great and powerful Wizard of Oz, a lawyer, a doctor, a veterinarian, or a CPA. Nothing your read in my blog is a substitute for professional advice and doing your own good research. Remember that just because someone has credentials doesn’t guarantee their advice is golden or perfect. Put your smart hat on and do your due diligence. Good luck!
Oh, my gosh! This was so good! I used my own spice blend, a ton of leftover frozen ham and a hambone, and only four cups of water. After a 40 minute natural pressure release, I added celery and carrots, then did 3 minutes on manual and a quick pressure release. Perfection! Thanks for posting.
Jaimie Pendergrass says
I’m so glad you liked it, Corrie! It’s so versatile. Great idea on waiting to add the carrots and celery. What a perfect time saver to be able to chop the veggies while the soup is doing the majority of the cooking!
This was very yummy. I used the basic recipe and made it work with what I had one hand. I substituted ground sausage for the ham. I was also out of diced tomatoes so I put in two 8 oz tomato sauce cans and then chopped two tomatoes to add to the soup. I also seasoned it with a Mc Cormick seasoning contained Pink Himalayan Salt, Black Pepper, Garlic.
I’m so happy you liked it, Sherri! You cook like I do… lol! I love using substitutions to use up what I have on hand. Thank you for sharing your version and showing just how versatile this soup recipe can be. 🥰
Thanks for the recipe. I’m still learning how to use the instapot and your specific directions helped. I added some caribou jalapeno cheddar sausage. Perfect cold weather soup.
You are welcome, Erin! The sausage addition sounds perfect!
Made this in my Power Cooker on the stew setting. I did quick soak the beans as recommended. I added a couple of chopped carrots as well. It came out great. Thanks for an easy and delicious recipe.
That’s great, Peg! I love to add carrots to mine, too. I’m glad you had success with the recipe. 🙂