Split Pea Soup with Bacon

Split Pea Soup with Bacon is comfort food at it’s finest, with a crunchy, salty twist. A thick and creamy, split pea base is loaded with veggies, seasonings and lots of bacon for a delicious meal that is perfect with a side of grilled cheese.

A large of of Split Pea Soup with bacon.

It’s soup season, my favorite time of the year! I love it when the weather turns colder and we can truly enjoy delicious homemade soups, like Chicken Minestrone SoupHamburger Soup, or Smoky Vegetable Beef Soup. My kids, when asked, will always answer “what’s your favorite food?” with “SOUP!” Well, more specifically they will answer “Mom’s soup” because it’s one of my favorite meals to cook and to eat. Soups are very customizable, and I love just throwing in things I have on hand and calling it a meal. This Split Pea Soup recipe is my new favorite.

SPLIT PEA SOUP WITH BACON

When I was a kid there was a local restaurant called Pea Soup Andersens. Until recently I thought my family just called it that because they are known for pea soup…turns out that IS what they are known for but it’s also the actual name of the restaurant! There was on the way home from Grandma’s house from us and we’d venture there a couple of times a year. They had the best pea soup around, and we’d eat bowl after bowl.

WHAT ARE SPLIT PEAS?

Split peas are field peas that have been harvested, dried and split in half to be used for cooking. They come in sweet green or a mild yellow varieties.

As with lentils, split peas do not need to be soaked overnight and they only take about an hour to cook. You do want to make sure to rinse and take a good look at the peas, sorting through them to pick out any stones that may have been mixed into the bag.

When cooked, split peas become quite soft and have almost a pureed texture. Split peas also have great nutritional benefits as they are low in fat, packed with fiber and protein, and are a good source of several vitamins and minerals.

A large pot of Split Pea Soup Recipe with Bacon.

MAKING THE BEST SPLIT PEA SOUP WITH BACON

There are not a bunch of wild and crazy ingredients in this soup, which helps it to rise to the top of the favorites list. I do like my split pea soup nice and thick, so if you prefer a thinner soup you’ll want to use more broth or thin with water. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 pound bag of split peas
  • 1 pound of bacon
  • Veggies: onions, carrots and celery
  • Garlic
  • Seasonings: Bay leave, dried thyme, salt, pepper and garlic
  • Vegetable broth (recommended) or chicken broth. You could even use water in a pinch.

A ladle full of split pea soup with bacon hovering over the pot.

INSTRUCTIONS:

  • Begin by heating a large soup pot over medium heat. Cut bacon into bite-sized pieces (*PRO TIP – Use kitchen shears for cutting directly into the pot) and cook in the pot until crisp. Reserve half of the bacon for serving with the soup and drain all but about 2-3 tablespoons of the grease.
  • Add onions, carrots and celery to the pot and cook until the vegetables are softened. Stir in the garlic, bay leaves, thyme and split peas. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper, then pour in 8 cups of vegetable broth.
  • Increase the heat and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for ten minutes, skimming any foam that rises to the top, until no more foam appears. Simmer uncovered for 1-1 ½ hours, or until peas are soft for a thicker soup, and covered for a thinner broth. Add more broth as needed while the soup simmers.
  • You can serve the soup as soon as the peas are nice and soft, adding bacon to each bowl. Or for a smoother soup, use and an immersion blender directly in the pot to puree the soup until slightly chunky (almost smooth but with some texture).
  • Ladle into bowls and serve warm, garnished with crumbled bacon and/or homemade croutons.

A bowl of Split Pea Soup Recipe with Bacon.

HOW TO SERVE AND STORE SPLIT PEA SOUP WITH BACON

Split pea soup is a delicious meal on it’s own, rich with flavor from the veggies and bacon. We do love to top our soup with croutons and serve it with some grilled cheese or cheesy garlic bread.

Store in the refrigerator tightly covered for up to three days. Split Pea Soup will thicken as it stands, so you may need to add a bit of broth or water to thin it out. Store tightly covered in the freezer for up to three month for optimal freshness.

Split Pea Soup Recipe with Bacon in a bowl with a gold spoon and sliced bread on the side.

MORE SOUP RECIPES TO TRY:

icon
If you’ve made this recipe, please come back and leave us a star rating or a comment below. Or, tag us on social media @yellowblissroad or #yellowblissroad for a chance to be featured.
A bowl of Split Pea Soup

Split Pea Soup with Bacon

Creamy, delicious split pea soup with savory, salty bacon. Way better than canned!
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings
Calories 602kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound bacon
  • 1 small onion diced (about ¾ cup)
  • 1 stalk of celery diced
  • 1 large carrot peeled and diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 pound dried green split peas rinsed and picked over
  • 4 bay leaves
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 8-12 cups vegetable broth or chicken broth or water

Instructions
 

  • Heat a large soup pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Cut bacon into bite-sized pieces and cook in the pot until crisp. Reserve half of the bacon for serving later with the soup and drain all but about 2-3 tablespoons of the grease. 
  • Add onions, carrots and celery to the pot and cook, stirring often, until vegetables are soft and onions translucent. Stir in garlic, bay leaves, thyme and split peas and stir for 1 minute. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper, then pour in 8 cups of vegetable broth. 
  • Increase heat and bring soup to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, skimming any foam that rises to the top, until no more foam appears. Simmer uncovered for 1-1 ½ hours, or until peas are soft. Add more broth as needed while the soup simmers. 
  • Turn off heat. Stir soup to mix well from the bottom up. 
  • *OPTIONAL STEP: Using an immersion blender directly in the pot, puree the soup until slightly chunky (almost smooth but with some texture). Alternatively, puree in batches in a food processor or blender. Reheat soup in the pot and continue with the next step. 
  • Ladle into bowls and serve warm, garnished with reserved crumbled bacon and/or homemade croutons.

Notes

The bacon can be optional and the soup will be delicious either with or without it.

Nutrition

Calories: 602kcalCarbohydrates: 54gProtein: 28gFat: 31gSaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 50mgSodium: 1774mgPotassium: 951mgFiber: 20gSugar: 10gVitamin A: 2506IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 55mgIron: 4mg
Keyword split pea soup

Split Pea Soup recipe with bacon, collage.

Kristin Maxwell

Kristin Maxwell is the creator and main recipe developer, writer, and photographer of Yellow Bliss Road. A self-taught cook and self-appointed foodie, she specializes in easy, flavorful and approachable recipes for any home cook.

Free Email Series
5 Secrets to Dinnertime Sanity
Free email series with tested, tasted & terrific dinner recipes!

You Might Also Like

Leave a Comment

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Comments

  1. Since I made the comment last night, my husband went out to the specialty meat store in San Diego and got their thick bacon for this soup, 9 slices of bacon was a pound so that is definately soup -bacon! He smoked it this time in apple and cherry woods (cold smoked so I still need to cook it. So much for survival cooking this sounds epicurean to me. He bought thos carrots that are white, red, yellow and anything but orange. I am not sure how the color will look in my soup. Luckily I have always kept a supply of split peas on hand. He says the celery in the back yard is ready too.

  2. I like this recipe as written, it is similar to what I make but I use water, not broth and more celery , onion and I add carrots for the pop of color and sweetness. We smoke our (store bought) thick bacon in the backyard smokers usually with apple or alder so we don’t need much for a lot of flavor. I will try the 4 bay leaves instead of the 2 I was taught to do. I am so glad you brought up Pea Soup Andersons, We hit the one in Buelleton, California on our honeymoon and I bet that was the first time my husband had pea soup he liked. I loved that they served a variety of bread with the rather plain soup, but the condiments really made it special.. We have also been to the Pea Soup Andersons in Carlsbad California , before they shut down. Good memories.

  3. The cook time at the top of this recipe is inaccurate. I definitely chose to use this recipe because the cook time was so short, and then when I got to the end of step 3 I felt like I had no choice but to proceed with an hour and a half cook time when I thought the cook time was 30 minutes. Please edit so others don’t have the same experience.

    1. I am so sorry, you’re right, there was a mistake and the hour spot was removed. My apologies. I hope you enjoyed the soup, though, once it was finished.

  4. We were craving the Pea and Bacon soup we had at a pub in Dublin, Ireland and came across you’re recipe. Made this tonight for dinner tonight and it was great!! Only changes I made was that I omitted onion (because I forgot to buy them) and I only used 4 cups of broth and it was still wonderful! We puréed the soup in a blender until completely smooth and served it was a rosemary Parmesan skillet bread – delicious! Will be saving this recipe to make again!