Cook and crumble the ground beef in a skillet on the stovetop. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Drain any fat. Add the meat to the slow cooker.
Place the beans in a colander, sort out any debris and discard. Rinse the beans and add them to the slow cooker. No presoaking is necessary. Do not use the ham flavor packet in this recipe, you can save it for another recipe if desired.
Add the onion, chicken broth and bay leaf. WAIT TO ADD THE SALSA AND TACO SEASONING, for too much salt and acidity can prevent the beans from softening.
Place the lid on the slow cooker. Cook on HIGH for 7 hours.
When the cooking time is up, remove the bay leaf. Add the salsa and taco seasoning. Stir.
Serve with desired toppings and enjoy!
Can I use ground turkey or chicken breasts instead of ground beef?Yes, either will work great. You can add the chicken breasts in raw at the beginning of the cooking time, then shred them when you add the salsa and taco seasoning.Does this freeze well?
Yes, 15 bean soup freezes great.
Add to plastic containers or freezer ziplock bags.
Freeze for up to 3 months.
How can I make this spicy?Use hot salsa and hot taco seasoning. You can also put in 1-2 chopped jalapenos.