Split pea soup is a hearty, nourishing, and creamy meal perfect for feeding your whole family as it’s flavorful, satiating, and packed with veggies.

It’s an easy one-pot dinner that you can make with protein-rich dried split peas and a few other simple ingredients.

This soup comes together in approximately 45 minutes; it’s incredibly tasty, nutritious, and easy to make.

Split peas soup with baguette

Dietary Note: this recipe is suitable for a vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free diet.

Split pea soup has been a thing since Greek and Roman times, as split peas have been cultivated in the Mediterranean regions since 500 BC.

We are the biggest fans of this beautiful legume because it’s one of the cheapest and healthiest sources of protein, it takes little time to cook, especially compared to other legumes, and it tastes delicious.

100 grams (3.5 ounces) of dried split peas have 22 grams of protein and cost less than 40 cents. That’s a bargain! Plus, they are packed with fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

Also, they are incredibly versatile, and the best thing about them is that they don’t require soaking; you can cook them right away and let them simmer on the stovetop for about 30 minutes.

Split peas soup with hand and baguette

Ingredients & Substitutions

Split pea soup ingredients

Quantities are in the recipe box at the bottom of the page.

Split peas

There are two main varieties of dried split peas: yellow and green split peas.

For this soup, we use green split peas. You can also make it with yellow ones.

Carrot, Onion, Celery

We add carrot, onion, and celery to make a tasty flavor base to boost the soup’s flavor.

You can use white or yellow onions or substitute leeks for onions.

Garlic

We use fresh garlic, crushed, minced, or grated. We haven’t tried using garlic powder.

Olive oil

Olive oil or, even better, extra virgin olive oil is for gently frying the vegetables and making the flavor base. It’s essential to make the soup flavorful, so we recommend not skipping this step.

Herbs

Split peas are an excellent flavor match with bay leaves, thyme, oregano, rosemary, and sage.

We use dried thyme, oregano, and bay leaves in our recipe, but you can pick your favorite combination of herbs.

Cumin

Cumin adds a fragrant aroma to the split pea soup, giving it a Mediterranean spin. You’ll need a teaspoon of ground cumin.

You can substitute smoked paprika for cumin to give it a smokey flavor.

Potatoes

Potatoes make the soup even heartier and more fulfilling. They also make the recipe creamier and more delicate.

The soup is delicious with and without potatoes, so you can choose whether to add them.

You can use Yukon Gold or Russet potatoes for this recipe.

Spinach

Spinach is optional. However, we love adding it in at the end, shortly before serving the soup. You can add fresh or frozen spinach.

Spinach adds color and texture, and we love the taste combined with the spit peas.

You can substitute kale for spinach.

Vegetable broth

That’s the primary liquid in our split pea soup. You can, of course, use chicken broth; however, we like to keep this recipe vegetarian so that the whole family can enjoy it.

Salt and pepper

We use sea salt and black pepper.

Our split pea soup recipe is made without ham bone, ham hock, sour cream, and dairy, so it’s suitable for most diets.

Split peas soup with baguette

How to make split pea soup

US cups + grams measurements in the recipe box at the bottom of the page.

Warm up the olive oil in a large soup pot or large Dutch oven. We use an enameled Dutch oven for our soups.

Add coarsely chopped carrots, celery, and onion and fry them on medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring often.

vegetable base for pea soup

Then add grated garlic and ground cumin, and fry for one more minute or until you smell their aroma.

garlic and cumin in the flavor base

Add vegetable broth, green split peas, thyme, oregano, bay leaves, salt, and black pepper.

Stir, then cover with a lid and bring to a boil on high heat, then crack the top open, and let simmer on medium-low heat until the split peas are tender.

It will take between 30 and 45 minutes. Stir occasionally.

split peas and vegetable broth in a pot

If you want to add in the potatoes, do so 10 minutes after the soup starts to simmer.

Peel and cut the potatoes into bite-size chunks before adding them in.

Stir occasionally to prevent the split pea soup from sticking to the pot. Add more broth or water if necessary.

Potatoes and vegetables in a pot

When the split peas are tender, blend 2 to 3 cups of the soup with an immersion blender.

While this step is optional, we recommend it to make the soup extra creamy.

blender and split pea soup

Give it a final stir, taste, and adjust for salt and texture, adding more broth or water if you want a thinner soup.

Serve this delicious split pea soup in a bowl with fresh thyme, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, and warm crusty bread or croutons.

Split peas soup with oil and spoon

Variations

Split pea soup with spinach

Add fresh or frozen spinach right after blending the soup. You might need to add some water if the soup gets too thick.

Let simmer for 5 more minutes so the spinach wilts; then serve with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and warm crusty bread.

Split peas soup with spinach and hand

Serving Suggestions

Serve with bread or croutons:

Questions

Do split peas need to be soaked before cooking?

No, split peas don’t need to be soaked before cooking. You can simmer or boil them right away. They’ll take 30 to 45 minutes to cook.

What is the best way to thicken split pea soup?

The best way to thicken split pea soup is to blend some with an immersion blender so that some of the split peas turn into a puree that will make your soup creamy and delicious.

Is split pea soup high in fiber?

Yes. Split pea soup is high in healthy fiber and protein to help you stay nourished and satiated.

Storage & Make Ahead

Make Ahead: split pea soup is an excellent recipe to make ahead and for meal prep, as it keeps well for days, and its flavor gets even better as the ingredients meld in the fridge.

Refrigerator: let the soup cool down completely, then store it in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 to 4 days.

Freezer: you can freeze split pea soup for up to 3 months in a freezer-friendly container. Let the soup cool down completely before you put it in the freezer. Then, thaw it in the microwave, fridge, or pot as you warm it up.

Reheat: warm leftovers in the microwave or on the stovetop. If the soup is too thick, add more water to thin it up.

Split peas soup with silver spoon

More Hearty Soup Recipes

More Recipes with Peas

If you like cooking with legumes and peas, find more green and delicious dinner inspiration here:

For more curries, stews, and soups, check out our soups category page.

Split peas soup with spinach

Split Pea Soup

By: Nico Pallotta
5 from 6 votes
Split pea soup is a hearty, nourishing, and creamy meal perfect for feeding your whole family as it's flavorful, satiating, and packed with veggies.
It's an easy one-pot dinner that you can make with protein-rich dried split peas and a few other simple ingredients.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4 – 6 people
Course: Main
Cuisine: American

Equipment

  • Immersion blender or regular blender

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 large carrots
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • teaspoon cumin
  • 6 cups vegetable broth start with 4 cups and add more if necessary
  • 2 cups green split peas dried
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¾ pound potatoes (optional)
  • 5 ounces (5 cups) spinach (optional)

Instructions 

  • Warm up 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil in a large pot, then add 2 large carrots, 1 large onion, and 2 stalks celery (all chopped) and fry them on medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring often.
    vegetable base for pea soup
  • Add 4 cloves garlic (grated) and 1½ teaspoon cumin and fry for one more minute.
    garlic and cumin in the flavor base
  • Add 6 cups vegetable broth, 2 cups green split peas, 1 bay leaf, 1 teaspoon dried oregano, ½ teaspoon dried thyme, 1½ teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon black pepper.
    Stir, cover with a lid, bring to a boil, crack the top open, lower the heat, and simmer on medium-low heat until the split peas are tender.
    It takes about 30 to 45 minutes from when the liquid starts boiling, depending on your split peas. Taste them to check for doneness.
    Add more broth if necessary; stir occasionally.
    split peas and vegetable broth in a pot
  • If you want to add ¾ pound potatoes, do so 10 minutes after you add the split peas. Peel and cut potatoes into bite-size chunks.
    Potatoes and vegetables in a pot
  • Blend 2 to 3 cups of the soup with an immersion blender.
    blender and split pea soup
  • Stir, taste, and adjust for salt and consistency, adding more broth if you want a thinner soup.
    Serve in a bowl with fresh thyme, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, and warm crusty bread.
    Split peas soup with oil and spoon

VARIATION with SPINACH

  • Add 5 ounces (5 cups) spinach right after blending the soup. You might need to add some water if the soup gets too thick.
    Let simmer for 5 more minutes so the spinach wilts.
    Split peas soup with spinach and hand

Video

Creamy Split Pea Soup

Notes

Nutritional information is an estimate for 1 large serving of split pea soup with potatoes and spinach out of 4 servings.
STORAGE & MAKE AHEAD
Make Ahead: split pea soup is an excellent recipe to make ahead and for meal prep, as it keeps well for days, and its flavor gets even better as the ingredients meld in the fridge.
Refrigerator: let the soup cool down completely, then store it in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 to 4 days.
Freezer: you can freeze split pea soup for up to 3 months in a freezer-friendly container. Let the soup cool down completely before you put it in the freezer. Then, thaw it in the microwave, fridge, or pot as you warm it up.
Reheat: warm leftovers in the microwave or on the stovetop. If the soup is too thick, add more water to thin it up.
ALSO ON THIS PAGE

Nutrition

Calories: 372kcal, Carbohydrates: 61g, Protein: 18g, Fat: 8g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 0mg, Potassium: 1331mg, Dietary Fiber: 20g, Sugar: 10g, Vitamin A: 9575IU, Vitamin B6: 1mg, Vitamin C: 35mg, Vitamin E: 2mg, Vitamin K: 204µg, Calcium: 130mg, Folate: 246µg, Iron: 5mg, Manganese: 1mg, Magnesium: 122mg, Zinc: 2mg
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Nico and Louise in the kitchen

Hi! We are Nico & Louise

Welcome to The Plant-Based School, a food blog with easy, tasty, and wholesome recipes.

Our aim is to help you and your family eat more veggies through delicious recipes with simple ingredients.

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Recipe Rating




6 Comments

  1. Hello! Thanks for this deliciously flavored recipe. I enjoyed making it.

    The only issue I had as well as my sister is that the split peas were still very hard and crunchy. She cooked hers for 45 minutes and I cooked mine slightly over an hour. We both had a great flavored soup with peas that were too hard.

    I’m thinking there needs to be an adjustment to the cooking instructions. But, the flavor is amazing.

    1. Hi Amy, thanks for the feedback. I’m so happy you like the flavor!
      Yeah with dry legumes is always a little tricky to find the right cooking time, I’ll adjust that as you mentioned.
      In general, my tip is to taste the split peas to ensure they are tender. If they are not, add more broth and keep cooking them until they are 🙂
      Hope this helps 🙂
      Nico

  2. 5 stars
    Just made this – heavenly! It’s incredible that all your recipes I tried so far, I made exactly as instructed, and I never felt a need to add or skip anything – every recipe was just right and so tasty! Thank you so much for all your work ♥️

    1. Hi Sonia,
      Oh I’m delighted you enjoyed the soup and our recipes, in general. That means a lot to us to hear!
      Thank you very much for taking the time to leave a comment here ❤️

  3. 5 stars
    Another winning recipe from you guys. The thyme went with the split peas really well. I used yellow ones as I didn’t have the green but it was still delicious.Thank you!

    1. Amazing Rachel! I’m so happy you liked the soup, also with yellow split peas. That’s a great tip!
      Have a great weekend when you get there 🙂
      All the best,
      Louise