Split Pea Soup with Ham Bone

Split pea soup gets its smokiness from a ham bone and a dash of smoked paprika. The split peas break down as they cook, picking up flavor and delivering a creamy texture to this rich and warming soup.

a recipe photo of the Split Pea Soup with Ham Bone
Photo: Photographer: Victor Protasio, Food Stylist: Emily Nabors Hall
Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
1 hr 45 mins


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

  • 1 (13 ounce) smoked ham hock

  • 1 cup sliced carrots

  • 1 cup sliced celery

  • 1 cup chopped leek, rinsed

  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic

  • 2 ½ teaspoons chopped fresh sage

  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves

  • 1 pound dried green or yellow split peas

  • 9 cups water, plus more as desired

  • ½ teaspoon ground pepper

  • ¼ teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice


  1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add ham hock, flattest-side down; cook, turning once until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Add carrots, celery and leek to the pot; cook, stirring often, until softened and bright, about 4 minutes. Add garlic, sage and thyme; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Return the reserved ham hock and any accumulated juices to the pot. Stir in split peas, water, pepper and salt.

  2. Bring to a boil over high heat; boil, undisturbed, for 6 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low to maintain a simmer. Simmer, uncovered and undisturbed, for 20 minutes. Cover and continue simmering, undisturbed, until the peas are tender and the ham starts to pull away from the bone, 40 to 55 minutes.

  3. Meanwhile, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Stir in paprika; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 10 seconds.

  4. Remove the soup from the heat. Transfer the ham hock to a cutting board; ​​let stand until cool enough to handle, 5 to 10 minutes. Cut the meat into about 1/4-inch pieces, discarding bone, fat and skin. Stir the ham into the soup, along with lemon juice. Add additional water, as needed, to reach desired consistency. Ladle the soup into 6 bowls and drizzle with the paprika oil.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

363 Calories
7g Fat
54g Carbs
21g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Serving Size 1 cup soup & 3/4 teaspoon paprika oil
Calories 363
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 54g 20%
Dietary Fiber 21g 75%
Total Sugars 8g
Protein 21g 42%
Total Fat 7g 9%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 8mg 3%
Vitamin A 4210IU 84%
Vitamin C 9mg 10%
Vitamin D 4IU 1%
Vitamin E 1mg 9%
Folate 230mcg 58%
Vitamin K 26mcg 22%
Sodium 238mg 10%
Calcium 68mg 5%
Iron 4mg 22%
Magnesium 53mg 13%
Potassium 820mg 17%
Zinc 3mg 27%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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