Split pea soup is a hearty, delicious fall soup, and it’s very economical to make. This recipe is easy to make, so cook a pot full and feed your family this healthy weeknight dinner.
The split pea is an amazing little legume, as you don’t have to do much to it for it to taste really good. Every time I make Split Pea Soup, I feel as though I’ve “cheated”. The reward is always double the effort, and it’s dirt cheap. A package of split peas is about $1.50, feeding the four of us for at least two meals!
I don’t use a special recipe to make this soup. In fact, I’ve always just slightly adjusted the recipe on the back of the package of split peas, adding some chopped celery, a little garlic, or some more carrots each time. I’ve made it on the stove-top and in the slow-cooker, and each time it comes out just delicious!
Around the holidays, our local stores are always almost out of split peas. Why? Because they use them for the floats for the Rose Parade. It took me a few years of living in Pasadena to realize that I needed to stock up on split peas well before the parade, if I was planning to make split pea soup during the holidays!
Making split pea soup is a great way to use up your holiday ham bone, too!
But if you don’t have a ham bone, you can use smoked ham hocks, or skip the pork all together and make a completely vegetarian version!
Split Pea Soup
- 1 16 ounce package green split peas
- 2 quarts water or vegetable broth
- 1 large onion diced
- a couple of large carrots peeled and diced
- 1 clove of garlic crushed
- 1 bay leaf
- Ham hock optional
- Big sprig of fresh thyme
- Kosher salt and pepper to taste
- In a large pot, sauté vegetables in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil, then add split peas.
- Add water or stock to cover vegetables by about 2 or 3 inches (about 2 quarts).
- Add vegetables, bay leaves, and thyme sprig and ham hock, if desired.
- Reduce heat and simmer on low until peas are soft, about 45 minutes to an hour.
- Remove the bay leaf and thyme sprigs and ham hock.
- Use an immersion blender or regular blender and puree soup.
- If using a ham bone, dice any ham and return back to soup.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper
- For slow-cooker, add all ingredients to slow-cooker and set to low for 6-8 hours. No need to sauté onions.
Cooking tips for making split pea soup:
* Tip: When I’m peeling vegetables I like to keep two bowls near me. I can put all my waste into one and my finished veg in the second. This eliminates going back and forth to trash can and makes clean up a lot easier.