Split Pea Soup

Split Pea Soup

Details

This is a traditional split pea soup made with a ham hock.
  • Serves: 6
  • Active Time: 15 mins
  • Total Time: 2 hrs 30 mins
  • Views: 40,272
  • Success: 97%

Steps

Step 1: Making the Soup

• 2 tbsp grapeseed oil
• 1 large onion
• 2 medium carrots
• 2 stalks celery
• 2 garlic cloves
• 4 cups dried, split peas
• 12 cups chicken or vegetable stock
• 1 small ham hock
• 3 whole bay leaves
• 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
• 1/2 tsp ground white pepper

Method

To make the soup, place a heavy-bottomed pot over low heat and add the oil. Finely chop the onion, celery and carrots and transfer each of them to the pot. Cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the crushed garlic and cook for about 30 seconds or so or until fragrant.

Next, add the peas, ham hock, stock, bay leaves, salt and pepper and bring the soup just to a boil. Then turn the heat down to a simmer and cook for 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until the peas start to break down. Stir occasionally.

At about the 2 hour mark, remove the ham hock and let cool for a few minutes. Then remove the fat and bone, and discard. Shred the ham meat into larger pieces and return to the soup.

Taste for seasoning, then serve with your favorite fresh bread and a side salad for a complete meal. Enjoy!

Chef's Notes

This is an very hearty and healthy soup. It takes very little time to put together and is perfect for a rainy day. This recipe does not require soaking the peas overnight but if you do it will decrease the cooking time by almost half. Try serving this with rustic french baguette and a side salad and it’s really all you need for lunch or dinner.

Ham hocks can be purchased at most specialty meat stores; however, you can also use finely-diced bacon to obtain a similar flavor, but it won’t be quite as good. Just be sure to sauté the bacon first and then drain most of the excess fat before adding the vegetables.

The benefit of using ham hock instead of bacon is not just for flavor. Ham bones provide gelatin that contribute body to the final consistency of the soup.

41 Comments

  • Denise P
    Denise P
    hello. my question, sometimes i buy the large bone sold at honey bake ham, can this be used or will it overpower the soup as they request a small ham bone. thanks.
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    Hi Denise A honey baked ham bone will work just fine. The soup may be a tiny bit sweeter, rather than smoky...but that's okay. Sometimes I just use leftover ham (from a baked ham) if that's all that I have when the mood strikes me to make this soup. Just make sure the bone fits in the pot you are using before you get started. Good Luck! Let us know how it turns out for you.
  • Denise P
    Denise P
    I enjoyed this receipe, used the honey baked ham but rinsed the ham bone well to extract any sweetness. love the soup
  • Lori G
    Lori G
    In the text recipe it does not say when to put in the ham hock. It seems fairly obvious, but it should probably be written in the text. Soup was delicious.
  • Thor L
    Thor L
    Off topic somewhat, I do plan on making this, perhaps this weekend, however, I just wanted to request more soup recipes ;-) Wonderful site, thanks so much. Kind regards, -mobythor
  • Donald D
    Donald D
    Using Rouxbe's chicken stock, this soup turned a cool fall evening warm cozy. I did make a mistake with the ingredients, in that I used fresh hocks, not 'ham' hocks, but compensated by adding a hot Portuguese dry smoked sausage I had in the fridge, which made up for the missing 'smoked ham' flavor. Accompanied by a baguette, it made for a simple, yet delicious meal.
  • Naouar E
    Naouar E
    ...That I see for the first time. And believe me: I've seen all of them. How come this one's not on the list of the video recipes"?
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    This soup is under the section called "recipes". When I type in soup, pea, split pea or even bean, it does come up for me. Is this what you mean by "how come this one's not on the list of the video recipes"? This is the perfect soup for this time of year!
  • Naouar E
    Naouar E
    That's strange. I could have sworn that I couldn't find this in the recipe section. Lucky for me I didn't. Sorry Dawn, my mistake!
  • Edward J
    Edward J
    Hi I am looking to add some cabbage to this soup. Being that cabbage has a lot of water do you think it would dilute the flavor of the soup? Thanks
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    I don't think that a bit of cabbage will dilute the soup...it may just change the flavor a bit. It will add some nice texture though. Cheers!
  • Liran  S
    Liran S
    This looks so good with the ham. But unfortunately, ham isn't kosher. What can I use to subsitute the ham hock? Thanks!
  • Terry R
    Terry R
    How about pastrami! It is a shoulder cut and kosher. It is smoked like ham and has a good amount of fat like ham. It should give a similar flavor and taste. I hope this helps and best regards from North Carolina.
  • Johnny J
    Johnny J
    don"t you think it look like almost mash potato i cant barely see any stock in that soup?
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    The consistency of many split pea soups is quite thick. Ultimately, the final consistency of most soups, especially thicker soups such as this one, is up to the cook. If you like a pea soup that is thinner, simply add a bit more stock or water. Cheers!
  • Rebecca B
    Rebecca B
    I use a smoked ham hock stock for cooking beans and collard greens for summertime BBQ's. The flavor is so wonderful. For some reason, I never thought about using it in my split pea soup. I really like the finely chopped vegetables in this soup. It provides flavor without compromising the smooth texture of the soup.
  • Rebecca B
    Rebecca B
    Is there any particular reason that you used grapeseed oil (rather than olive for this recipe? The temperature seemed low enough that the oil smoke point would not be much of a factor. I do have grapeseed oil on hand (it was an impulse purchase), but I don't really understand why this oil may be preferable to other more common pantry items. In general, I would love more information about choosing oils, and also which oils may be reasonable substitutes -- especially for accommodating guests with cholesterol concerns (i.e.: is it ok to use a high heat safflower oil and maybe a butter flavoring rather than Ghee for a curry?). I did see the smoke point guide in tips and tricks. Are there other areas on this website with additional information to address these issues? Thank you
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    Ah yes the world of oils is rather endless. In fact, there are some books that are entirely dedicated to the subject. However, in the end a lot comes down to personal preference. For example, if you want to use a more neutral tasting oil rather than buttery ghee when making curry, then that is up to you. I use ghee as I like the layer of flavor it adds. If you search "oil", "grapeseed" or "olive oil" and then go to the "dicussion tab" you will find quite a few rather lengthy discussions on this subject. Cheers!
  • Rod R
    Rod R
    This is a great recipe, absolutely delicious. Can I make this the day before? or freeze any leftovers (I doubt there will be any)? Thanks!
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    Indeed, this soup can be made ahead. In fact, it even get better. And yes, it can be frozen. See the attached video for how to reheat it. Cheers!
  • Andrew L
    Andrew L
    I made this last night, I could not sleep, and took some to work with me today. The perfect dish for a lousy cold and snowy day in Minnesota. It took two hours to drive in today, normally 35 minutes but having this for lunch perked me up. I used some ham I had frozen from Christmas. Lunch for the week has been decided upon...
  • Jonathan P
    Jonathan P
    Probably should include a step to remove bay leaves with the hock.
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    Good point Jonathan; however, recipes generally do not indicate to remove bay leaves. It is assumed that they will not be eaten. Cheers!
  • Michelle M
    Michelle M
    I made this last week with the leftover ham from christmas....It was delicious. My husband had some great lunches for work . Thanks alot.
  • Rhoda W
    Rhoda W
    If I'm using left over ham and want more flavor, I fry black pepper bacon, crumble and set aside. Then use 3T of the grease to cook the vegetables. Finish the soup with the crumbles. Sooo good. I've been caught sopping up the last morsel in the cooking pot.
  • Maria D
    Maria D
    Hi, do you cover cooking with a pressure cooker? thanks
  • Ken R Rouxbe Staff
    Ken R
    Hi Maria- You can cook this dish in a pressure cooker, but the timing will need to be adjusted. Rouxbe does not have any courses or lessons specific to using a pressure cooker - but they work great for soups like this. Cheers!
  • Debbie D
    Debbie D
    Hi there. Should I cover the soup while it simmers for the 2 - 2.5 hours? I'm worried that over that time too much of the liquid will evaporate.
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    You can partially cover the pot, if you like, but it's not absolutely necessary. The main thing is to keep an eye on the soup and add more liquid as needed. Enjoy!
  • Debbie D
    Debbie D
    Thanks for the quick reply Dawn. I've got the soup on the stove right now and it looks great. I'm sure we'll enjoy!
  • Yuseph K
    Yuseph K
    Hello, I would like to do a variation of this recipe this week but would like some advice first. 1) Does it have to be smoked ham hock or does regular ham hock work? Or is it always smoked and I just asked a redundant question haha? 2) I was thinking of braising the ham hock in the oven to go a little faster. Half way through, add the mirepoix and pulses. Do you think this would work? I kind of want to keep the consistency of the pulses and vegetables. This seems great for a crummy winter day. Best
  • Ken R Rouxbe Staff
    Ken R
    Hi Yuseph- Ham hock IS smoked, so that's redundant... ;). Adding the mirepoix part way through is a good idea. Give the ham hock a head start for an hour (give or take) so it's very tender. Have fun. ~Ken
  • Yuseph K
    Yuseph K
    This worked out really nicely. The only problem is that I used lentils instead of split peas. For the pot I was using it was too much. I decided that a more mash texture would have been better so I just blitzed them in a food processor. Now the only problem is that I have too much for two people. Any opinion on freezing this dish?
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    Yes, this recipe can be frozen. Cheers!
  • Kervin
    Kervin
    what's an alternative for people who do not eat pork? will smoked turkey do
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    I make this often with no meat at all. I sometimes add a touch of liquid smoke, but it's delicious even without it.
  • Kervin
    Kervin
    Thank you. Like a tablespoon?
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    Depending on the liquid smoked used and your personal preference, you may want to use a bit less (or more). I would start with no more then about a teaspoon and then work your way up from there. You are really just looking for a nice hint of smoke. Cheers, Dawn
  • Kervin
    Kervin
    Merci madam.
  • Jonathan O
    Jonathan O
    Hello, I just picked up a pork hock from the market. Is that suitable for this recipe or does it need to a smoked ham hock? If so what are my options with the pork hock? Thanks
  • Eric W Rouxbe Staff
    Eric W
    The more frequent choice is the smoked ham hock, but either one can be used. From the unsmoked version, you'll still get pork flavor and umami taste, both of which will add to the overall fullness of the soup. If you want to smoke the pork hock, you could put it on a grill, light up some wood or charcoal, and place the hock on the grill with the heat source off-set. Or, you can do this on the stove top (if you don't mind a little smoky aroma in the house...) by adding a piece of hot charcoal to a lidded pot, along with the hock. Let it sit for 15 or so minutes.

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