Soak beans overnight and discard water.
Place all ingredients except wine vinegar, salt and pepper in a large kettle. Simmer until beans are tender (about 3 hours).
Puree 1 to 2 cups of soup and return to pot. Add wine vinegar and liquid smoke, mix well. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve with hot cornbread and honey.
substituting 1 or 2 cups of ham stock for 1 or 2 cups of water gives this soup an extra depth of flavor
6 reviews biglizqotwf 2011-03-26
this has literally made my decade and a half! i stopped eating beef and pork almost 14 years ago, which meant that i couldn't have my fav meal, bean and bacon with sausage casserole. it's basically breakfast sausage (in the log form, fried up) with 3 cups of rice (cooked) and campbells bean and bacon soup (about 3 ladles full was enough). for years, i couldn't find chicken sausage, and i just found it, then i found this recipe and made it, and did it up like my mommy did when i was a kid. she made it on my bday every year.
since i needed it thicker, because i needed it thick like it was condensed, i cooked it with a potato in a slowcooker. the potato was originally to reduce gas, but it thickened up the soup without changing the flavor.
even without the mommy recipe, it smells awesome cooking it up. and my bf loved it. i'm REALLY happy!
Guest: chixinthestix 2011-01-20
My husband was requesting me to make soup like Campbell's Bean & Bacon. This was perfect! We both loved it. I cooked this in my slow-cooker on low for 10 hours and it turned out wonderful!
Guest: sherckle 2011-01-20
I've tried many bean&bacon recipes because it's my favorite soup. And campbell's has alway's been my favorite, but this is the best recipe I have ever found. Absolutely delicious. It is not hard to make at all, and is very inexpensive. Thank you!!!!
Guest: Janie 2010-10-14
This really does taste like the Campbell's Bean & Bacon soup I remember as a child - but without the additives. My kids really loved it, including my picky teenage son! He also ate it cold the next day with corn chips as a dip. I used organic ingredients & uncured bacon without the chemicals - so this was really a healthy meal!
Guest: foodie 2011-04-07
I was so excited when I found a recipe for Campbell's Bean with Bacon soup that I couldn't wait to make it. This recipe didn't taste anything like it. It calls for so much tomato paste that it is the predominant flavor in this soup. It wasn't bad tasting but it was not what I hoped for.
Guest: ClosetFan 2011-12-15
Like many of the other reviewers, I was looking for a recipe very close to the Campbell's Soup version. This recipe is OK (with one change), but it isn't close enough I'd consider it a substitute. The texture is right, the taste is wrong as far as matching Campbell's. I've tried this recipe twice (with variations) trying to get it closer to the actual soup recipe and I would suggest the following:
1. First time I read this recipe, I was extremely dubious about adding the white wine vinegar at the end, it seemed like too much acid, especially with the tomato paste as well. I was right, it was too much, I couldn't even eat it. Recommend that you omit the vinegar entirely, or if you really like vinegar, add in small amounts and taste in between so you don't go too far.
2. The other reviewer who said there's too much tomato paste was right. Did 4 ounces the first time and it overpowered the other flavors. I tried putting only 3 ounces the second time, and even then, the resultant color was too red, the tomato taste was still too strong. The predominant flavor should be smoky, and the beans, not tomato. I'm considering leaving it out altogether in a future attempt.
3. Way, way too much thyme. I would consider halving it in future, or leaving it out altogether if you're trying to replicate Campbell's. There's no hint of thyme I can discern in Campbell's (I tasted it right out of the can compared to this recipe).
4. Find some way to introduce more smoke flavor into the recipe. I'm not sure how best to do this, adding more liquid smoke didn't do it. I added some ham base (that is used for stock) and that had more of a smoky flavor, and increased the ham flavor, but perhaps I didn't add enough. I might also try adding some smoked ham in future.
This is an OK recipe as long as you omit the vinegar at the end, but if you are looking to replicate Campbell's Soup, it isn't close enough as is. Adjustments are needed.