Dishing Up the Dirt

Split Pea & Ham Soup

Why is it that the most “homely” of soups are the ugliest to photograph? I did my best here with this delicious soup but dang, split pea is definitely not photogenic! Regardless, that hasn’t stopped me from sharing this because when it comes down to it, it’s all about the flavor and this soup is a winner. With the holiday weekend just ahead I thought I’d post this super easy and nourishing split pea and ham soup. I’m sure that a lot of you have company coming over or are simply too busy to fuss around in the kitchen much. This recipe is a breeze to prepare and is always a crowed pleaser. We used some smoked ham hocks from our pigs and a few slices of bacon for added flavor. Instead of using traditional carrots I chopped up a sweet potato instead. The result is a comforting soup that continues to get better a couple of days after you make it. I’m sure you can do this in the slow cooker too, I’d just sauté the bacon and veggies first before adding the rest of the ingredients to the crock pot. Let me know if you choose to do it that way!

Happy holiday weekend everyone.

Cheers from Tumbleweed Farm.

Split Pea & Ham Soup

Prep Time: 10 minutes    Cook Time: 2 hours    Serves: 6-8

  • 5 slices of thick cut bacon
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 medium-small sweet potato, cut into 1/4 inch thick chunks (no need to peel)
  • 2 celery sticks, chopped
  • 1 pound dried split peas
  • 4 cups water (plus more to thin if need be)
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 smoked ham hock
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Minced parsley for serving


  1. In a large dutch oven fry the bacon until cooked through and crispy. Drain on paper towels and drain off all, but about 3 tablespoons worth of bacon fat. Add the onion, sweet potato and celery and cook, stirring often until beginning to brown up a bit, about 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium low and simmer, uncovered for about two hours. Stir occasionally every 25 minutes or so. If the soup becomes way too thick add more water.
  2. Remove the soup from the heat and transfer the ham hock to a cutting board to cool for a bit. Discard fat and bones and then chop up the meat into small cubes. Return the meat to the soup and discard the bay leaf.
  3. Just before serving, crumble bacon and sprinkle on top of the soup along with the minced parsley.


*Use this recipe as a guide *Adjust measurements and ingredients as necessary *Cooking times will very from kitchen to kitchen

Leave a Reply

7 thoughts on “Split Pea & Ham Soup

  1. Mariya says:

    That looks amazing!!!

    x Mariya

  2. Phyllis says:

    I have made a few of your recipes and enjoyed them. And made lots of soups in my time (since I am over 70) BUT your Parsnip & Apple Soup was one of the best I have every made. Since I did not have ground coriander, I used dried thyme from my garden, and topped the soup with fresh nutmeg, as well as apple and parsley. Thank you so much. Next on my list is the above soup recipe, Split Pea & Ham. Happy New Year to you and your husband.

  3. Phyllis says:

    I plan to make this soup this coming week and have made many of your recipes. Your Parsnip & Apple Soup was fantastic, thank you. I have been making soups for decades, as I am over 70, but this was the best one. I used dried thyme from my garden and topped the soup with fresh grated nutmeg, as well as apple & parsley. Thank you.

  4. Betty says:

    I’m making this soup in the moment. Just took the ham hock out – peas are well cooked – it tastes absolutely fabulous. Frying the bacon in the pot adds so much good flavor. And sweet potatoes – what a good idea! With 8 cups of liquid, it’s just right – although if you want a thicker soup, I’d decrease by about one cup. Looking forward to dinner tonight! It was lovely to see you at Jamie and John’s house – and Fern and Holley were thrilled with their cookbooks.

  5. Karen says:

    Made this soup today. It is delicious and perfect for these sub-zero temps we’re having. Used a slow cooker since we were heading out for the day and it turned out great. Your cookbook arrived the other day and I read it cover to cover over my relaxing New Years weekend. I can’t wait to cook my way through the 2018 seasons. Cheers from Nebraska!

    1. Andrea says:

      I’m so happy you enjoyed the soup! Thanks for leaving a comment. It’s one of our favorites. And I’m so happy you just received your copy of the book. Keep on dishing it up!! xo

  6. Julie Becker says:

    This soup is amazing! I made it exactly as directed with sweet potatoes and all. My husband of 14 years said it is one best meals I have ever made him, and I have made him a lot!!! Andrea, I have been using your recipes for 2 years now and you never disappoint. Thank you!!

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