Studying the Civil War – Captain Sanderson’s Pork and Navy Bean Soup

Civil war Fare - a fun way to study the civil war #homeschool


For the past 3 weeks, the kids have been studying the civil war.  They are putting a lap book together and will finally create a timeline of events online.  I thought it would be fun to taste some of the food that was popular during the time.  They are not really soup eaters, so I wasn’t sure how well it would go over.  It’s always worth a try.  It’s a simple recipe – can be adapted to larger families, can be easily frozen and thawed – and is super easy to heat up during a busy homeschool day.

Captain Sanderson’s Pork and Navy Bean Soup is pretty clean, and I will add suggestions on how to make it clean in the recipe.  In all honesty, clean or dirty – this soup is hearty and tastes excellent.


Captain Sanderson’s Pork and Navy Bean Soup


1 lb. dried Navy Beans

2 Tbsp. bacon drippings (or 2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil)

1 Leek

3 Sprigs Thyme

1 large yellow onion

2 pork Hocks, shoulder or butt (Get them from a local farm for healthier meat)

1 garlic clove

Himalayan Salt




Parboil beans by boiling 3-4 cups of water.  Place dry beans in boiling water.  When it comes back to a rolling boil, boil for 2 minutes, turn off heat, and allow it to sit covered for 1-2 hours.  Drain and set aside.

Place Pork in a pot and just cover with water.  Boil 1 hour (or 1.5 hours if frozen), cut pork into cubes and set aside.

In a soup pot, place 2 Tbsp. Bacon drippings (or 2 Tbsp. Olive Oil) and heat.  Sautee garlic, leek and Onions for 3 minutes, or until onions become transparent.  Add pork stock (don’t add the pork).

Add Navy beans and Thyme.  Bring to a simmer and allow to simmer for 1 hour.

Add the pork and simmer for an additional 30-45 minutes – or until the Navy beans are tender.

Enjoy by itself or a buttermilk biscuit.


My entire family loved this soup – including the baby!


Who Was Captain Sanderson?


Captain George Sanderson #civilwar #history
He enlisted in service in October 1861.  He was promoted to 1st Lieutenant after gallant service at the Battle of Shiloh in Tennessee, a major battle in the Western Theater.  He served for the union army until 1866 when he was promoted to captain.

He was integral in the creation of the monument erected at the Battle Sight of Little Big Horn – a  battle which was part of the Great Sioux War in 1876 – where the American army was annihilated.


What are your kids studying in history?  Do you like making meals as part of the learning process?



About Lisa

Hey! Thank you so much for stopping by. I'm Lisa - a homeschool mom of 3 (2 boys and 1 girl). I care about the strength of the family in America, and often blog about babies/kids, natural parenting, homeschool, and marriage. Before you leave, please sign up for my monthly newsletter (on the top right). If you do, you will be well rewarded with notification of all giveaways and sales - which will not be announced on the blog. Google+ Profile

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