Split Pea and Smoked Ham Soup | Renee's Kitchen Adventures

Friday, October 21, 2011

Split Pea and Smoked Ham Soup

You know what?

This was the first time I have ever tasted, let alone made Split Pea Soup...crazy...I know.  Was it the color, the texture, the look of it that turned me off all these years?....or maybe it was the fact that I was a Labor and Delivery nurse for all those years...( if you are familiar with L&D nursing, you will know what I mean) ...IDK.  I like peas just fine, and dried split peas are a great source of protein and fiber.  For years now, my husband has been telling me Split Pea Soup is one if his favorite soups, next to Chicken Noodle that is...and I have just thought that Classic Ham and Bean Soup was close enough to satisfy him.  But for some reason, I have had split pea soup on my mind lately, and I keep coming across recipes for it.

Call it fate...

Call it destiny...

I made the soup.  It smelled wonderful while it simmered and it tasted awesome.  I decided I like split pea soup.  You might too!  (and for the record, even though it does have many of the same ingredients as the Ham and Bean Soup, it has a flavor all it's own.)  One of the nice things about cooking with dried split peas as opposed to dried beans is that there is no "overnight soak."  You can basically use the peas straight from the bag without any prep aside from rinsing them.  They also cook up faster than dried beans.   I came up with my own version of this soup after researching MANY recipes for it in various places. 

Apparently, getting really appetizing shots of Split Pea Soup requires photographic skills and/or a better camera than mine!  lol   It was still quite delicious though!

(* As in the Classic Ham and Bean Soup, I didn't calculate the nutrition information for the ham hock, as I only used it for flavor and then discarded it.  Whatever fat it released, I skimmed off the top of the soup before serving it.  I really don't know if this is the proper way to calculate things such as this, but the pp values for this soup are pretty much inline with most recipes I saw for this type of soup...so that is what I am going with.) 

And without further adieu, I give you my version of Split Pea and Ham Soup....

Split Pea and Smoked Ham Soup
from the kitchen of MKA

Servings - 10   Servings Size - approx 1- 1/2 cups   Points Plus per Serving - 5 points+
Calories - 224.7,   Total Fat - 2.5g,   Carb. - 33.7g,   Protein - 16.7g,   Fiber - 13g

1 pound dried green split peas, rinsed and picked through
1 TBS olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dried marjoram
1 cup chopped celery
3 large carrots (the ones I used were HUGE!), chopped 
2 ( 32 oz.) boxes of fat free, reduced sodium chicken stock
32 oz. water ( I just refill one of the stock boxes)
1 small smoked ham hock ( only used to flavor soup ) 
8 oz. fully cooked, lean, smoked ham, diced
juice of half a lemon
few dashes of hot sauce ( such as tabasco ) 
salt and pepper, to taste
2 TBS. instant mashed potatoes ( optional to thicken, if desired)

1.  In a large 6 quart stock pot or dutch oven, heat 1 TBS olive oil on med-high heat.  Add in onion and saute for about 5 minutes or until onion starts to become translucent.  Add in garlic and stir.  Cook until it becomes fragrant, about another minute or so.  Add in celery, carrots, thyme and marjoram.  Cook for another couple of minutes. 

2.  Add in rinsed peas, ham hock, chicken stock and water.  Stir.  Allow to come to boil, then reduce heat to simmer, loosely covered until peas are near tender, about 1 - 2 hours.  

3.  Remove ham hock and discard.  ( they are cheap and full of flavor, so do use one and don't feel bad about throwing it away )   With immersion blender, blend up half of soup or so to thicken OR use potato masher to manually mash some of the peas and veggies OR take out a few cups of liquid, cool a a little and put in blender, then put back into pot. ( I used the potato masher cause I am lazy...lol )

4.  Add in the diced smoked ham. lemon juice and tabasco.  If the soup is not thick enough for your liking, you can sprinkle in a few TBS of instant mashed potato flakes to thicken.  ( I think I added one )  Test soup for salt and pepper, and add to your taste.  Garnish with fat free greek yogurt and fresh parsley.  ( garnish and mashed potato flakes not included in nutrition information)


It has been so darn rainy around here....we actually hit an all time record high for annual rainfall this week! Comfort foods....the slow cooking kind....have been on the forefront of my mind for sure!   I wasn't sure the boys would go for this "green" food, but they both liked it a lot.  My youngest son even had seconds!  How about you?  How do you feel about "green foods"?  My picky daughter won't eat anything green...but my sons both have no problem with it. 

I have also been cranking out the soups lately, because I don't know if I have ever told you, but I do send food over weekly to my elderly in laws...and I know they like soup. 


  1. What a sweet daughter in law you are to cook for your elderly in laws. They are so luck to have you cooking for them.

    I adore split pea soup! It's on the top of my list for soups. I have never purchased a smoked ham hock but have seen a couple different recipes calling for them lately. I have no idea how to calculate using it and then tossing.

    Have an awesome weekend!

  2. My mom wont eat anything soupy and green either! This is one of my favorite soups! I make a veg version and its cheap, healthy and delicious!!!

  3. Hi Renee, oooh....love pea soup. And my husband is French Canadian, so it reminds him of his childhood. I'm going to give this a go very soon! Have a great Friday

  4. I was a L&D nurse,as well(you have to admit whenyou say pea soup you get the doc's attention). But that didn't keep me from enjoying a bowl of pea soup on a cold winter afternoon.Fills the belly and warms the soul. I like the sound of this recipe and will give it a try

  5. I love split pea soup!

    Thanks for linking up at A Little Nosh this week!

  6. I love the L&D reference...so true! But regardless, split pea is without a doubt a favorite of mine. My dad has always made split pea with our ham bone from Christmas and/or Easter so for me, it's tradition :)

  7. I made this last night.....it is soooo good. Thank you so much!



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