Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham

So you cook a Sunday ham, and are left with the bone. That night the temperature plummets (yet again), your kids get sick, and your husband is about to leave on business for a few days. Then, you realize there is no other alternative than to make split pea soup and plenty of it to last into the week.

That was my thought process last Monday. This soup saved dinner, and a few lunches, while we were housebound, nursing fevers and the sniffles. It came together quickly – a literal dump and stir of ingredients in the slow-cooker – and simmered all day while we snuggled under quilts and read books.

While my boys may have been initially put off by the colour, their spoons were scraping the bottom of their bowls before long. Split pea soup just feels right this time of the year, especially when paired with skillet cornbread.

Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham | Simple Bites #soup #slowcooker

Did you know? Don’t salt the soup for two reasons: it will toughen your split peas and the ham bone imparts enough salt on its own. If you have an excessively salty ham bone, add one chopped and peeled potato to the soup. It will absorb the excess salt.

Dried peas have a reputation for going stale and stubbornly refusing to soften. As a general rule, if they haven’t begun to break down in the first 20 minutes on the stove (or the first couple of hours in the slow cooker), toss them and begin again.

Don’t be tempted to use that old bag you’ve been storing in the back of the pantry since Y2K. Make this recipe with a new batch and all will be well.

Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham

I like my split pea soup to be strapping and stocky, full of tender morsels of ham and diced carrot, not a thin puréed thing. This soup was robust and full of flavour, thanks to that ham bone. The recipe is adapted from the fabulous cookbook 365 Slow Cooker Suppers by Stephanie O’Dea.

Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham

4.6 from 5 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Soups & Stews
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 15 minutes
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 294kcal
Author: Adapted from '365 Slow Cooker Suppers' by Stephanie O'Dea.


  • 1 ham bone
  • 1 cup diced ham
  • 1 medium onion peeled and chopped
  • 1 pound green split peas rinsed (about 2 heaping cups)
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 cups chicken broth or vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground savoury
  • 1/2 cup diced carrots
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper


  • In a 6-quart slow cooker, place the ham bone and the chopped ham. Add the onion, split peas, water, and broth.
  • Measure in the mustard, savoury, carrots and pepper.
  • Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or high for 5. Peas should be soft.
  • Remove the ham bone and taste the soup. Season with salt if desired.
  • Serve as is or puree for a smoother soup.


Calories: 294kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 850mg | Potassium: 893mg | Fiber: 19g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 115IU | Vitamin C: 13.7mg | Calcium: 60mg | Iron: 3.8mg


Are you craving soup?

About Aimee

Cooking has always been Aimée's preferred recreational activity, creative outlet, and source of relaxation. After nearly ten years in the professional cooking industry, she went from restaurant to RSS by trading her tongs and clogs for cookie cutters and a laptop, serving as editor here at Simple Bites. Her first book, Brown Eggs and Jam Jars - Family Recipes from the Kitchen of Simple Bites, was published in February 2015.

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  1. Kelly @ Kelly Bakes says

    I love the addition of dijon! Split pea soup is my ultimate comfort food soup. It hugs your insides, but is somehow still light and won’t put you into a food coma like New England clam chowder (no disrespect to New England or our chowder, which I love…just not all the time!). This soup is perfect for this silly polar vortex we’ve been stuck in lately!

  2. Wow, so we don’t even have to pre-soak the split peas? This is much better/easier than what I was trying to do with the whole dried peas! Thank you 🙂

  3. In my house, we want our pea soup to be thick and hearty enough for the spoon to stand in. Your’s looks great! The addition of a little mustard sounds interesting and I am definitely going to try that.

  4. Sweet! Love the soup, and love your pantry also! Peas are an unrecognized “superfood!” High in fiber, antioxidants, and phytonutrients, low in glycemic index, environmentally friendly–the list goes on!

  5. I haven’t made split pea soup yet this winter, this was the perfect reminder to do so! I love how simple and hearty this soup is.

  6. I have a recipe very similar to this… and it includes a potato in there on purpose for added heartiness (and, apparently, salt absorption). One of my favorites!

  7. Valentines Day 2014 says

    4 stars
    Yummy… A must try soup for winter. Can we use anything other than ham? I actually dont like it. Please suggest 🙂

    • 5 stars
      I’m not a fan of ham, either. I was thinking about making this soup including the potato but without the ham and ham bone, and then tossing in some cooked and crumbled bacon at the end. 🙂

  8. I love traditional split pea soup

  9. Aimée,
    Great Minds Think Alike! I’m sorry you’ve had a house of sniffles, though, but I’ve got ham & bean soup in my slow cooker right now. I use a combination of beans and soaked them overnight, then simmered with the ham bone for a few hours first thing this morning.
    Then I turned off the stove and took my son to get his braces off 😉
    After I returned (he went to school to show off his smile, at least as much as a teen boy can) I chopped the meat and moved everything over to the slow cooker (bare bone included). I added the rest of my recipe and even remembered to turn on the slow cooker. When we get back from my daughter’s sewing class tonight I’ll fish out the bone and we’ll have a hearty soup.
    I just wish there was a magic way to have cornbread waiting when we walk in the door.


  10. Split pea soup and a slow cooker … yes yes! I must try for busy weeknights!

  11. Split pea soup is one of my favorites! This recipe looks perfect, so excited to try it!

  12. i made this today and the flavor is out of this world. I followed your recipe but mine is oh, so thin… I think I could actually DOUBLE the peas before it would get a bit thicker. It’s more of a hearty broth. Anyone else have this happen?

    • 5 stars
      I made it today but mine was very thin. Is 8 cups of liquid too much? Should I double up on the peas? I like my soup thicker. The taste was wonderful so I want to make it again but thicker.

  13. 5 stars
    I’ve made this soup more times than I can count… as I like to have easy things to grab for lunch or a quick dinner… I will say I did not find the 8 hours to be nearly enough time for the peas to soften. Usually I leave it on for 12 hours on low if I don’t presoak the peas (and I’m using new bags of peas, not Y2K ones, lol)… followed by an hour or so on high, until the peas flatten and crack. I’ve also made different variations of adding kale which is yummy and an easy way to use up leftover greens.

    I’ve had it both pureed and kept brothy, and both are fantastic. Super easy, inexpensive, flavorful, and fast to prepare. Thank you for the great recipe!

  14. 4 stars
    Unfortunately, I found this recipe AFTER putting together a different one in the crock pot. That one called for salt, which I almost omitted, but in the end put in about a half a teaspoon (it called for a full teaspoon). I am freaking out now! I hope it turns out! I almost added brown mustard, but then didn’t, as the ham itself had mustard in the original recipe. It called for no water and six cups of broth, which I would probably stay with as it will I make for a thicker broth and I probably wouldn’t change, but I sure wish I would have come across this recipe first! I have pinned this for next time, but fingers crossed that the little bit of salt I threw in doesn’t ruin the soup. I honestly can’t remember if I had ever added it in the past, but then I have never really followed a recipe for this before, and so probably not. I do not know what savoury is; my spices called for were thyme and parsley. Your soup looks so thick and delicious; if I weren’t cooking overnight and it’s not nearing 11:00 p.m. I would be tempted to save the ham bone, run to the store for more peas and broth and start over with your recipe. It looks delicious (as delicious as split pea soup can look, that is!)

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