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Recipe for Pea Soup, Quebec Style With a Twist


split pea soup ingredients

Make your own split pea soup with these basic ingredients.

Photo © Evelyn Reid
Save money and eat a delicious well-balanced meal with my personal recipe for pea soup, a fun and spicy twist on a Quebec foodie tradition usually made with whole peas. It costs about $0.40 a bowl. In other words, $20 is all you'll need to make about 50 bowls of soup.* This exact recipe, however, covers only one batch of nutritious pea soup, which yields about eight hearty-sized servings.

This soup also freezes well so don't be shy to make a few batches.

One last thing. Don't skimp on the ginger**. In fact, add more. It works wonders with those magical fruit issues.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 35 minutes


  • 5 cups dried yellow split peas
  • 15 cups cold water
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 2 cups chopped carrots
  • 10 to 15 teaspoons chicken (or vegetable) soup mix
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin, or to taste
  • 2 to 4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 4 chopped garlic cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey
  • salt and pepper to taste


Rinse the dried yellow split peas until the water comes out clear using a colander. Add cold water and split peas in a stove pot and set stove to high heat, reducing to low heat when water reaches a boil. Allow pot to simmer for about 45 minutes, stirring sporadically to ensure split peas do not stick to the bottom of the pot. Once the split peas are soft, add garlic, onions, carrots, spices, bay leaf and soup mix. Add up to 3 cups of water at this point if the cooked split peas are too thick. Stir every 5 minutes or so. Add salt, pepper (or cayenne) and adjust thickness to taste.


  • Add one cup cubed ham for a heartier soup.
  • Add 3 tablespoons olive or sunflower oil if fat is not a concern.
  • Add one cup cubed potatoes for more bulk along with carrots, onions and spices.
  • Add celery salt instead of salt.
  • Add cayenne pepper for a spicier version of pea soup.

*Here's how I came to this calculation.

**The medical community notes mild to moderate safety concerns surrounding the ingestion of ginger in patients diagnosed with diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart conditions as well as with pregnant and lactating women.

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