Slow Cooker Potato Ham Chowder

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Creamy potato soup with soft chunks of buttery potatoes and salty sweet ham is perfect with a salad on the side or just some crusty bread. This recipe is so over-the-top simple, it’s hardly a recipe.

Slow Cooker Potato Ham Chowder recipe by Barefeet In The Kitchen

However, awesome ways to use our leftovers make my heart go pitter-pat, so I’m sharing this soup with you today. I spent less than 5 minutes working on this meal and when we were ready to eat all I needed to do was scoop and serve. That is my favorite kind of easy dinner!

I was staring into the refrigerator over the weekend and I really didn’t feel like warming up another plate of leftovers. (This is what tends to happen when you accidentally wind up with triple the amount of ham and potatoes as your family could possible eat!)

I saw the container (okay, technically, it was pretty much a vat) of potatoes and a big package of ham and decided to see if I could improvise with what we had and come up with a new Baked Potato Soup.

Unlike a few other recent recipe attempts, this improvised soup turned out fabulously and there was hardly a bite leftover!

Slow Cooker Mashed Potato and Ham Chowder recipe made with just three ingredients!

Slow cookers or crockpots are an appliance of which I have more than one. If you are an avid slow cooker user like I am, you might understand the need for more than one. So, let’s talk about my favorites:

First up is this 6-quart slow cooker that has a locking lid. These crockpots are fantastic for transporting foods. Mine has gone everywhere from church potlucks to barbecues, game nights to Thanksgiving dinner. However, fair warning, these slow cookers run crazy hot. Low is closer to a boil than a simmer, the warm setting actually simmers. So trust me when I say HIGH is high.

My everyday slow cooker is this 8-quart Crockpot. It’s my go-to appliance for cooking large roasts and big batches of chili. Fun fact: did you know that a full 4-quart cooker, actually cooks more slowly than a half-full 8-quart cooker?

For just cooking a few pounds of chicken to shred for enchiladas or other smaller recipes, this 3-quart version is perfect.

Thanksgiving has become a breeze since I have mastered how to hold all of the side dishes using these medium-sized round slow cookers.

If you aren’t a fan of the idea of keeping more than one slow cooker in the house, these CrockPockets are a game-changer when it comes to preparing and holding multiple dishes at the same time. They slide into a standard 6-quart crockpot, dividing it into two sections that are perfect for serving different side dishes or keeping taco fillings warm for parties.

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Slow Cooker Potato Ham Chowder

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Servings: 8 servings

Ingredients 

  • 8 cups leftover smashed or roughly mashed potatoes
  • 3 cups cooked ham chopped small
  • 2-4 cups milk
  • kosher salt to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Combine the potatoes and ham in the crock-pot. Pour enough milk into the crock-pot to almost cover them. Stir or smash with a heavy spoon to combine. Cover with lid and cook on LOW for 4 hours or HIGH for 2 hours. Stir and lightly smash any large chunks of potato. Season generously with salt and pepper, taste and adjust as needed. Cover again and cook for 1-3 more hours on LOW. Add more milk as desired to thin the soup to your desired thickness. Serve with crusty bread for dipping. Enjoy!

Notes

Generous seasoning is crucial in simple recipes like this one. How much salt you need will be dependent on both how salty your ham is and how salted the potatoes are. Start with about a teaspoon and continue stirring, salting, and tasting the soup until it tastes perfect. I added almost 2 teaspoons of salt to our soup.
Tried this recipe?Mention @barefeetkitchen or tag #barefeetkitchen!

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Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, I’m Mary. I’m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

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    • Mary says

      I'm fairly certain that I used red potatoes for the soup. However, in my experience, most potatoes will become "gluey" if over-cooked. Keep an eye on the soup and make sure you aren't cooking it for too long. Enjoy!

    • Mary says

      I'm so sorry to hear that it didn't work out for you, Robinz. It is possible that your mashed potatoes may have simply had more liquid in them. It's hard to guess without actually being in your kitchen.

  1. Anonymous says

    Im confused,the picture shows chunks of potatoes but yet it calls for smashed. am I wrong. Ed

    • Mary says

      Sure. You could add the hambone after smashing the potatoes and let it cook along with the rest of the ingredients. Remove it before servings. Enjoy!