Ham bone split pea soup recipe is full of split peas and an assortment of delicious carrots, peas and celery. They are the perfect combo in this hearty, comforting and traditional soup. A truly savory soup will satisfy and fill you up. This is a great dinner option for leftover ham or a ham bone to give it a full flavorful broth, or both!
Why This Recipe Works
When it comes to holidays and food, I am ALL about scoring ham bones and turkey bones and chicken bones when the feast is over. This year I made a succulent ham in the slow cooker for Thanksgiving and I was freakishly excited to get home and start making something delicious with the remains.
I hate to brag but I kinda-sorta nailed it big time on the first try. I didn’t even know I liked Ham Bone Split Pea Soup! And it has suddenly risen to the top of my Favorite Comfort Foods list, in one fell swoop.
Ham bone – Optional; delivers great flavor if you have one recently prepared.
Ham – Diced up leftover ham will work great in this soup.
Leeks, yellow onions, carrots, celery – Use what is on hand but these are a good blend.
Dried split peas – A change up from regular sweet garden peas, these help thicken the soup wonderfully.
Croutons – Great as a topping as you serve your soup.
Enjoy This Web Story Preview of the Recipe
On the fence about trying this recipe? Let me break it down how easy it is to make split pea soup with or without a ham bone!
How To Make Ham Bone Split Pea Soup Recipe
Using your dutch oven to make a hearty soup is a no-brainer with just a couple steps!
In a Dutch oven or heavy saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add carrots, onions, leeks, celery, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook until veggies are soft and fragrant, about 5 minutes.
Add the ham bone (if using), split peas, bay leaves, chicken stock (or chicken broth), cups of water and ham. Set to medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce to medium-low and simmer uncovered for 1 hour (stirring occasionally), or until peas are soft and broken.
Remove the ham bone and pick ham remnants from it and add to the pan. Remove and discard the bay leaf. Serve immediately and top with croutons, if desired.
**Smoked ham hocks can be used in place of a ham bone for delivering equally delicious flavor in your soup.
How Easy Is It To Make This Soup
There are a couple different routes you can go with this soup. You can let all of the ingredients (see recipe card below for full recipe!) simmer with a ham bone OR you can skip it and just add chopped ham to the simmering soup.
Both ways are delicious, but if you do have a ham bone please, please use it. It adds an extra POW of flavor that is unparalleled. When the soup is done, strip any remaining meat from the bone and add it to the soup. Discard the bone.
How To Add Flavor To Soup
Check out these tips to learn how to add flavor to your next batch of soup!
What To Serve With Soup
Soup is an easy, comforting meal to prepare for dinner any time of the year. But what do you serve alongside it? Click over for 33 delicious ideas about what to serve with soup.
What Soup To Make Using a Ham Bone
Aside from this Ham Bone Split Pea Soup, I have another favorite ham bone soup! This Crockpot Leftover Ham Bone Soup is very similar to this Ham Bone Split Pea Soup recipe, minus the split peas. It is packed with veggies, ham and most importantly FLAVOR.
How To Freeze Soup
If you enjoy this and I think you will, then make an extra batch so you can freeze it! It’ll be good for 2-3 months and perfect to pull out for dinner some cool night.
Do Split Peas Need To Be Soaked Before Cooking
Split peas dissolve pretty quickly in the ham broth, so it is not necessary to soak them before cooking. If you wish to shorten cooking time to 30-40 minutes (as opposed to 1 hour), soaking will help. Otherwise, just rinse and dump! They are so great at thickening up a soup and giving it a great texture, you’ll love each bite.
Split Peas vs Sweet Peas
Split peas and sweet peas are from the same plant, just processed differently. The split pea is peeled and dried. Peas have great benefits to adding to your soups and one-pan meals. Full of rich minerals, split peas are also rich in Vitamin K and Magnesium, great for heart and bone health. They also are high in fiber.
Please tell me I’m not the only one who gets excited about cooking with ham bones and the like!
FAQs About Split Peas
Split peas and lentils are both in the legume family but they are not the same food. Split peas are grown specifically for the purpose of growing in the field and drying. Lentils are grown in a pod of a small annual plant.
Split peas are grown in a field. These are different than the common sweet green peas you grow typically in your garden.
Split peas are good for you. They offer plant based protein and nutrients like fiber, folate and iron.
Yes, split peas can grow sprouts. They are edible and are tasty. Once the tail is at least 1 cm they are delicious but it’s recommended you remove the transparent hull first.
Properly stored, split peas can stay good for 2-3 years.
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Ham Bone Split Pea Soup Recipe
- 3 tbsp butter
- 1 yellow onion chopped
- 3 medium carrots peeled and chopped
- 2 small leeks sliced, white and light green parts only
- 3 stalks celery sliced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1 ham bone optional
- 16 oz dried split peas rinsed
- 2 bay leaves
- 6 cups chicken broth or stock
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups chopped cooked ham
- Croutons for topping, optional
- In a Dutch oven or heavy saucepan, heat the butter over medium heat. Add onion, carrots, leeks, celery, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook until veggies are soft and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add the ham bone (if using), split peas, bay leaves, chicken broth (or stock), water and ham. Set to medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce to medium-low and simmer uncovered for 1 hour (stirring occasionally), or until peas are soft and broken.
- Remove the ham bone and pick ham remnants from it and add to pan. Remove and discard the bay leaves. Serve immediately and top with croutons, if desired.