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How to Cook Ham Hocks

Best way of how to cook ham hocks is here! Use your Crockpot with beans for a soup and it becomes a hearty one pot meal. Don’t waste these, they have tons of smoked flavor!

How to cook Ham Hocks

This is how to cook ham hocks the best to get them tender and the meat to fall off the bone. Adds a ton of smoked flavor to any dish. Fork tender in a soup with beans is great, we will show you how to do that. Just one of our easy Crockpot recipes that are cheap and you’ll love. (affiliate links present)

How to Cook with a Ham Hock

We made slow cooker ham and beans last year using dry beans, but that takes a long time. If you are in a hurry try this version. To make this done even quicker, you could even use leftover ham.

Let’s talk about this part of the pig: These come from the bottom of the pig’s leg (rear ankles). They need to simmer for a LONG time in order for the small bits of meat to fall off the bone. Even though there isn’t a lot of protein on each one, what does come off has TONS of flavor. You literally need no seasonings added into this dish to be great.

How to Cook Ham Shanks

I have used both of these and the cook time is the same. Only difference between the two is shanks will have more meat on them.

ham hocks recipe

What are Ham Hocks Used for?

You can use them to enhance the flavor of your dish, usually soup and add a bit of meat to it too. Mostly it works the best to add a smoky flavor to your meal. Here are a few we’ve made, or you could consider making with these. The only methods worth using would be a slow cooker, Instant Pot or Ninja Foodi.

  1. Instant Pot lentil soup with ham
  2. Our Instant Pot black eyed peas and ham
  3. Crockpot ham and potato soup
  4. Pressure cooker barley soup
  5. You could throw 1-2 into our homemade Instant Pot split pea soup

Crockpot Pinto Beans with Ham Hock

And then we made this one the other night. I found this package of smoked ham hocks that were under ten bucks, thought some Northern beans would work well with fresh produce. Carrots and celery are great choices in Crockpot or any of our Ninja Foodi soup recipes.

ham and beans slow cooker

Instant Pot Ham Hocks and Beans

  • If you want to use dry beans from the start, try Instant Pot ham and beans You could use canned for a faster cook, hocks or diced up leftover pieces by using the recipe link above.
  • Since my husband was home that night I deleted the carrots here because he is a hard NO carrot lover. You could go beyond that though, the selections need to be of the firmer variety though. Fresh green beans would work, sliced onions of any kind of course are always fine, even quartered petite potatoes would work.

    This is what we added this time that worked great:

    • Put ham hocks with flat sides facing down into your slow cooker. Pour cans of beans (of your choice) on top with all other ingredients. (don’t even bother draining them)
    • Close lid and seal shut. Cook on low for 6 hours. Before serving take ham hocks out of pot and put on a cutting board.
    • Remove and discard bones, use a sharp knife to dice meat into bite size pieces and put back into the pot.

    Note: Do NOT add any salt into this at all. There is a ton already in the meat that will remain in there and seeps out into the broth when it cooks. Best is to use low sodium broth too.

    diced ham hocks

    At the end or 30 minutes before serving lift your cuts of pork out of your soup or stew and on to a cutting board. Use a sharp knife to slice meat off and discard bones, connective tissue, collagen and fat. These are typically sold in pairs or 4 like this one was.

    Using 2 vs. 4 is up to you, just depends on how much meat you want in your dish. If making something like Instant Pot baked beans I might just use one or two since I’d want the sweeter sauce to really shine. In a larger pots of beans or collard greens I would add 3-4 since those are rather bland and need all the help they can get.

    If you were just wanting to make them tender, but brown and crispy on the outside I would skip the other ingredients. Add enough broth to submerge the thickest half to 3/4 of the way up. Use the same timing below and then you’d want to set your oven to broil for a few minutes. Add cuts of meat to baking sheet until browned.

    Slow Cooker Ham Hocks and Beans

    Yes bacon or pancetta can add a ton of flavor to just about any meal but this pork product brings more of an intensity to your favorite comfort food. It is a really CHEAP way to add a bunch of flavor with little to no work on your part. Give our recipe below a whirl and then try a few more linked above too.

    Have other easy soup recipes you love but need a little oomph, try adding one on your next go around to see what you think.

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    How to Cook Ham Hocks

    Best way of how to cook ham hocks is here! Use your Crockpot with beans for a soup and it becomes a hearty one pot meal. Don't waste these, they have tons of smoked flavor!
    Course Entree, Soup
    Cuisine American
    Keyword beans, crockpot, ham hock, leftover ham, northern bean, slow cooker, soup, white bean
    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 6 hours
    Servings 6
    Calories 507kcal
    Author The Typical Mom

    Equipment

    Ingredients

    • 2-4 ham hocks
    • 1/2 onion sliced
    • 2 cans white beans about 30 oz. total
    • 32 oz chicken broth low sodium because ham hocks if smoked will add a lot of sodium themselves, can add 1/2 broth and 1/2 water alternatively
    • 2 carrots peeled and sliced into dials, optional
    • 2 stalks celery sliced

    Instructions

    • Place ham hocks with flat sides facing down into your slow cooker. Pour cans of white beans on top with all other ingredients.
    • Close lid and seal shut. Cook on low for 6 hours. Before serving take ham hocks out of pot and put on a cutting board.
    • Remove and discard bones, use a sharp knife to dice meat into bite size pieces and put back into the pot.
    • Stir and serve.

    Video

    Nutrition Facts
    How to Cook Ham Hocks
    Amount Per Serving (1 oz)
    Calories 507 Calories from Fat 243
    % Daily Value*
    Fat 27g42%
    Saturated Fat 10g63%
    Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
    Monounsaturated Fat 12g
    Cholesterol 124mg41%
    Sodium 856mg37%
    Potassium 1083mg31%
    Carbohydrates 24g8%
    Fiber 6g25%
    Sugar 2g2%
    Protein 41g82%
    Vitamin A 3400IU68%
    Vitamin C 12mg15%
    Calcium 116mg12%
    Iron 5mg28%
    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
    slow cooker ham hock recipe

    Recipe Rating




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