You might think these ham hock recipes are all full of Southern charm, but did you know we Northerners know our way around a hock too? Let me show you!
If you’re in the mood for comforting soul food, these are the recipes you’ll need.
After all, ham hocks make many things taste better, including green beans, collard greens, and potato soup.
Basically, if you’re making savory soul food, ham hocks are a must-have.
However, you don’t just have to add hocks to other things. They also taste amazing on their own, as you’ll see with these incredible ham hock recipes.
How to Cook Ham Hocks
1. Pinto Beans With Ham Hocks
Pintos are another one of those things people think of as a “Southern” staple. But they aren’t – or at least, they aren’t only a Southern staple.
I’m pretty sure everyone’s gramma knows how to fix a classic bowl of pinto beans. It doesn’t matter where they’re from originally.
That’s why this soupy bowl of beans and ham hock is so heartwarming. Just smelling them cooking on the stove will feel like going home.
This recipe is entirely worth it for the nostalgia factor alone. Fortunately, the beans also taste incredible.
They’re filling, salty, smoky, and delicious, and the ham hock is a huge part of that.
Try this recipe; then try pintos without ham hock. I promise you that you’ll notice the difference.
2. Ham and White Bean Soup
Ham and white bean soup is another classic recipe that’ll transport you back to your childhood.
It’s a wonderful, belly-warming soup that’s perfect for winter.
The beans and other veggies provide plenty of fresh flavors, while the ham hocks add a salty heartiness that’s incredibly filling.
Add in some Italian seasoning, garlic, and Tabasco for flavor, and you’re set. It shouldn’t take you more than 10 minutes of prep work.
3. Braised Ham Hocks
It doesn’t take much to make tender, succulent braised ham hocks. In fact, all you’ll need is about five minutes of prep time and just three ingredients.
Whip them up with nothing more than the hocks, oil, and vegetable broth, and they’ll be super juicy with a ton of natural flavor.
Pair them with a light salad or other greens for a hearty, healthy meal.
4. German Ham Hock
Germany also has its own traditional ham hock recipe. It combines allspice, black pepper, red pepper flakes, bay leaves, and mustard seeds.
The recipe leaves the hocks smoky, spiced, and perfectly seasoned. It also keeps them good and juicy, so you don’t need to worry about dry, tough meat.
Typically, German chefs serve this with boiled potatoes and sauerkraut. But you can pair them with anything you like.
5. 15-Bean Soup With Smoked Ham Hocks
People often make 15-bean soup with bacon. But did you know you’ll get the same meaty, salty flavor at a fraction of the cost with ham hocks?
Full of garlic, thyme, onions, and other herbs and veggies, it’s a great soup for fall.
It’s a fantastic “stick to your ribs” dish that smells as good as it tastes. Plus, it’s thick and full of things that are good for you.
It’s hard to argue with that.
6. Braised Collard Greens With Ham Hocks
Are you constantly looking for new ways to get your kids to eat greens? If so, this ham hock recipe will be your new best friend.
These collard greens might not look all that appetizing (to a kid, at least).
But if you can get them to take that first bite, the taste will have them reaching for more.
The ham hock completely changes the flavor of the greens, adding a delightful smoky saltiness that cuts down on their bitterness.
Plus, you’ll add onions and garlic – those always make things taste better.
So, if you want the most tender and flavorful collard greens imaginable, use this recipe.
7. Ham and Potato Soup
Chunky, creamy potato soup is always a treat. It tastes even better when you add ham hock to it.
This thick soup is earthy, herby, savory, and absolutely scrumptious.
You’ll thicken it with whipping cream and add salt and pepper to taste.
Go easy on the salt, though, as the ham hock adds quite a bit of saltiness.
8. Ham Hock in Beer, Honey, and Mustard
I promise you’ve never had a ham hock that tastes this good!
As much as I enjoy the two recipes above – and I do! – this one is easily my favorite.
The beer, honey, and mustard combine to give the meat the best taste. It’s sweet, smoky, savory, and a tiny bit tangy.
And that doesn’t even include all the herbs you’ll use!
You’ll also load it up with garlic, thyme, cloves, allspice, bay leaves, and more!
Honestly, the ingredients list for this ham hock is insane! It looks like you’re preparing a Thanksgiving turkey!
Thanks to all these ingredients, the skin crisps up nice and golden. The meat on the inside is juicy and fall-off-the-bone tender.
Try it just once, and you’ll want to use this recipe from here on out.
9. Southern Green Beans
We’ve already established that pinto beans taste better with ham hock. Well, green beans do, too.
These vitamin-packed legumes are incredibly tender and have a ton of flavor.
The smoky, salty ham hock infuses every bite, while the garlic and red pepper flakes add another depth of flavor that makes it hard not to love these.
Best of all, they take just five minutes to prepare – the slow cooker will do everything else for you.
No fuss, no muss!
10. Red Beans and Rice With Smoked Ham Hocks
I’ll finish us off with something a bit different. This recipe is perfect for those who want something with some Cajun flair.
Red beans and rice are pretty tasty, no matter how you make them. This recipe, though, ensures that they’re extra flavorful.
Not only will you add smoked sausage and veggies, you’ll also throw in two pounds of smoked ham hocks.
Talk about a delicious meal! It doesn’t get much more appetizing than that.
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