Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with ham, or without, is a hearty, delicious soup that is pure comfort food! Make this family favorite crock pot split pea soup recipe on a cold day, or any time you are craving a bowl of rich, flavorful classic split pea soup.
Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup
I have been making this wonderful Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup recipe for more than 25 years. This is a popular family soup recipe.
This is one of those soups that you can make vegetarian or vegan, or load up on the meat! It's delicious either way.
Slow cookers are wonderful things! Cooking your meal on a low heat inside a crock allows a nice tender result, the split peas break down perfectly.
The even cooking from the thick crock ensures you will get a well cooked meal with less chance of scorching with such a long cook time.
This is a great meal to toss together before you leave for the day. Prepping the veggies the night before saves you time in the morning. You can just add all of the ingredients to the crockpot in the morning and set it to Low.
Do Split Peas Need to be Soaked Before Cooking?
Soaking split peas 8 hours or overnight in water shortens their cooking time. But soaking isn't necessary as split peas cook fairly quickly.
If you do soak them, you will need to reduce the amount of liquid you use in the soup.
How Long Does Crock Pot Split Pea Soup Cook?
It can cook for 8 to 10 hours no problem. Just add about ½ cup extra of chicken broth or water for the longer cook time to ensure it doesn't get too thick.
This crock pot split pea soup recipe is very budget friendly. If you have a leftover meaty ham bone, or some bacon, that will work well for the meat portion. You can also use a ham hock.
A 1-pound bag of split peas costs less than $2 in my neck of the woods, and carrots, onion, celery, and garlic are pretty inexpensive, too.
This Crockpot Split Pea Soup recipe makes about 8 to 10 servings, and with a chunk of buttered crusty bread, you have yourself a nice, economical meal!
For Vegetarian Split Pea Soup
If you want to keep it a vegetarian split pea soup, you can omit the meat, of course, and add a little liquid smoke to get that nice smoky hint of flavor.
Classic Slow Cooker Beef Stew
Slow Cooker Turkey Chili
Slow Cooker Creamy Sausage Gnocchi Soup
Crock Pot Creamy Chicken Wild Rice Soup
Crock Pot Zuppa Toscana
I also have a pressure cooker Split Pea Soup version: Instant Pot Split Pea Soup
Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with ham, or without, is a hearty, delicious soup that is pure comfort food! Make this crock pot split pea soup recipe on a chilly day, or any time you crave a bowl of rich, flavorful split pea soup.
- 1 lb Green Split Peas, rinsed and sorted (unsoaked)
- Meaty Ham Bone (or meat of your choice. See Below)
- 1 Onion, diced
- 3 ribs Celery, diced
- 2 Bay Leaves
- ¼ teaspoon Thyme Leaves, dried (or 3 sprigs fresh)
- 3 Carrots, chopped
- 4 cloves Garlic, pressed or finely minced
- ¼ teaspoon Pepper
- 6 cups Low Sodium Chicken or Vegetable Broth (or water)
- 1 teaspoon Liquid Smoke (Optional) for vegetarian version
- ½ teaspoon Kosher Salt, add last, after cooking, if needed (or ¼ tsp table salt)
- 6 slices Bacon, uncooked, chopped
- 2 small Ham Hocks (Not very meaty, but add a nice smoky flavor and richness)
- 2 - 3 cups Diced Leftover Ham
- 1 Leftover Ham Bone (I like to use this with the diced ham)
After rinsing and sorting the split peas, add them to a 6-quart crock pot.
Add your choice of meat, if using (such as a leftover ham bone, ham hock, etc.)
Add the onion, celery, bay leaves, thyme, carrots, garlic, and pepper.
Pour in the broth and stir (Add liquid smoke, if using, for vegetarian method).
Place the lid on the crock pot.
Cook on Low for 8-9 hours, or until the peas are soft and creamy.
When the cooking time has finished, remove the bay leaves and the ham bone or ham hocks, if you used them.
Stir the soup well, and taste. Add the salt as desired.
Serve hot. The soup will thicken quite a bit when it cools, that is normal. It will thin out again when reheated.
If you want a Vegetarian or Vegan soup, omit the meat, use vegetable broth, and try some liquid smoke to give the soup a nice smoky hint of flavor.
Calories are approximate as this will vary greatly by the type of meat, or no meat, you choose to use.
Resources to Make Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup recipe
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This recipe looks delicious. Can’t wait to try it. If I only have some leftover ham how much liquid smoke should I add. ( I have no ham bone to give it that extra flavor)
I would start with 1 teaspoon. You can add more after it cooks if you want a stronger flavor.
What size (ounces) package of split peas do you use?
One pound (16 oz)
Leftover ham from Easter so made this recipe complete with bone. No added salt as ham provided enough. I also used the liquid smoke. This will be my go to recipe. Great results.
Just found this recipe couple of months ago. Made it the middle of October, and bought ingredients to make it again this weekend. Does that tell you how much I like it?? Awesome recipe. Thanks for sharing.
So glad you liked it!
Do you add your veggie and uncook bacon? At the beginning.
Yes, uncooked and at the beginning.
I love split pea soup and make it when it gets cold (I live in Hawaii so cold is somewhat relative). If your soup is thin you might remove some of the water that forms on top or (what I do) use some corn starch to thicken. Both work well to thicken this and other soups
This is definitely a keeper.... LOVE LOVE LOVE this recipe. Flavor is amazing!
Can potatoes be added as well? When would you add them?
Yes, it depends on how large you cut them and how soft you want them. I would just add them at the start and see how they turn out. I haven't done this personally, but it sounds good.