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Split Pea Soup

Traditional French-Canadian Split Pea Soup

  • Author: Isabelle Boucher
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 3 hours
  • Total Time: 3 hours 5 mins
  • Yield: 8 1x


This is my family's recipe for old-fashioned French-Canadian split pea soup (or soupe aux pois, as it's known in Quebec). Made with split peas, smoked pork, vegetables and herbs, it simmers on the stovetop all afternoon long to keep your house (and your belly) warm on cold winter days.


  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and sliced
  • 10 cups water
  • 1 lb dried yellow split peas
  • 1 smoked ham hock (~ 1 lb)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried savoury
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a very large heavy-bottomed pot set over medium-high heat, sweat the onions and carrots in butter for 5-7 minute, or until onions are soft and translucent.
  2. Stir in water, split peas, ham hock, bay leaves, thyme and savoury. Bring the soup to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered, for about 2 1/2 to 3 hours, or until the peas are soft and begin to fall apart into a puree.
  3. Remove the ham hock. Pull the meat away from the bone, and shred or chop into small dice. Set ham aside, and discard the bone. Remove bay leaves and discard these as well.
  4. Taste soup, and adjust seasoning as needed with salt and pepper. For a very smooth soup, use an immersion blender to puree completely, or leave as-is for a chunkier texture. Stir chopped ham back into the soup, and serve immediately.


This recipe can also be made using a leftover ham bone instead of the ham hock, should you happen to have one kicking around after your Easter or Christmas dinner.

  • Category: Main
  • Cuisine: French-Canadian