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Vegetarian Split Pea Soup

Thick rich vegetarian split pea soup loaded with vegetables – slow cooked in a crock pot all day (or on the stove) – makes a satisfying meal. Comfort food!

Vegetarian Pea Soup

Vegetarian split pea soup is satisfying, filling and healthy. I serve it as a main weeknight meal from time to time along with some crusty bread and butter. Yum!

My slow cooker is over 30 years old, so I cook the soup on high for 6+ hours.  Typically, it should take about 4-5 hours on high and 8-10 hours on low.  The longer you cook the soup, the thicker the soup and softer the vegetables. I prefer very little “bite” left in the peas. My husband is the opposite. I compromise.

I’ve included both a slow cooker method and stove top method in the recipe.  Root vegetables take a very long time to cook in a slow cooker/crock pot so it’s important to cut them in very small pieces, especially of you like them mostly blended right into the soup. Tip: To save on effort, I throw about three quarters of the vegetables into a processor and pulse them until roughly chopped. I dice the remaining ones which are still recognizable when the soup is done.  This, of course, is not necessary if you plan to puree or partially puree the soup.  For the stove top method, you can choose to have a bigger dice or chop on the vegetables as they will get soft regardless.

Tailor To Your Taste

  • Use chicken broth instead of vegetable broth
  • Add a ham bone for a smokey flavour and bulkier meal
  • Leave the soup chunky, puree the soup or do half and half
  • Add other seasonings like cumin, curry, dill, sage
  • Serve with crusty bread, cornbread or home made croutons


  • Use a processor to pulse the vegetables to a fine dice.
  • Use minced garlic from a jar or in frozen cube form instead of fresh garlic.

Make Ahead Vegetarian Split Pea Soup

  • The soup can be stored in the fridge once cooked for several days in an airtight container.
  • Pea soup can also be cooled and then frozen in a sealed container or bags for up to 6 months.
Vegetarian Pea Soup
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Vegetarian Split Pea Soup Recipe

Thick rich vegetarian split pea soup loaded with vegetables - slow cooked in a crock pot all day (or on the stove) - makes a satisfying meal. Comfort food!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time5 hrs
Total Time5 hrs 10 mins
Course: Main Dish, Soup
Cuisine: American, Vegetarian
Servings: 6
Author: Cheryl


  • 2 cups green split peas (or yellow or mix of the two)
  • 3 large carrots, peeled
  • 3 -4 celery ribs, scrubbed
  • 1 medium to large sweet onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (or more to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried)
  • 7 cups vegetable broth (I use one box plus 3 cups water)
  • OPTIONAL: teaspoon cumin or curry and/or several stems of fresh dill


  • PREPARE VEGETABLES: Two options... you can dice carrots, celery and onion finely into 1/4 inch pieces - and mince the garlic - OR you can cut vegetables in big chunks and pulse them in the processor (this is a big shortcut so my preference!). I do leave a few chunks of the carrots and celery to dice in order to have some vegetables that hold their shape in the finished soup. If you plan to blend the soup into a puree, however, forget this step.
  • COOK THE SOUP - SLOW COOKER METHOD: Place peas at the bottom, add all other ingredients. Loosen peas at the bottom a bit so they don't stick. Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or low for 8-10 hours. Don't peak until the end - you lose about 30 minutes of cook time every time you open the lid! Gauge the cook time based on how soft and thick you like the soup. Longer cooking means thicker soup and softer vegetables. Adjust seasonings. Note that soup will thicken as it stands around or sits in the fridge. Add a bit of water is soup is too thick (or when reheating the next day).
  • COOK THE SOUP - STOVE TOP METHOD: Put all ingredients into a large pot. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 1 1/2-2 hours, until vegetables are soft. If too watery, continue to cook for 15-20 minutes with lid off or partially covering the pot. Adjust seasonings.
  • SERVE: If you like chunkier soup, serve as is. If you prefer creamier soup, blend in processor (in batches) or with a hand-held electric stick blender. Alternatively, do half and half - blend half the soup and add the other half of chunkier soup.


Make Ahead
  • The soup can be stored in the fridge once cooked for several days in an airtight container.
  • Pea soup can also be cooled and then frozen in a sealed container or bags for up to 6 months.


Nutrition Facts
Vegetarian Split Pea Soup Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 272 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 1715mg75%
Potassium 821mg23%
Carbohydrates 51g17%
Fiber 18g75%
Sugar 12g13%
Protein 17g34%
Vitamin A 5842IU117%
Vitamin C 8mg10%
Calcium 65mg7%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?We'd love you to rate it above under 'rate this recipe' or in the comment section below. Thanks!

This recipe is adapted from an old family recipe (from who knows where) and recipes from What’s Cooking America and 80twenty.

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