- Food: Split Pea Soup
- Writer: Nicolas Wilson
- Content-Type: Food Blog
Yellow split peas provide plant-based protein, cashews bring richness, and smoked paprika and fresh corn add a sweet, smoky taste to this hearty soup.
I didn’t believe split peas were worth getting excited about until I had this yellow split pea soup from Gena Hamshaw’s cookbook Power Plates.
I’d only ever tried them as a kid in traditional split pea soup. You know, the kind that’s made with chicken stock and a ham hock, which isn’t my cup of tea.
This dish takes the best aspects of the traditional soup – smokey taste, and loads of plant-based protein – and twists them into something completely different. It’s vegan, sweet and savory, creamy, warm, and just amazing.
If you’ve never cooked with yellow or green split peas before, they’re similar to lentils in appearance. Unlike most dry beans, they don’t need to be soaked before cooking, and they soften and tenderize in less than an hour on the stove.
They make this soup rich and creamy without using actual cream, and they also provide a lot of plant-based protein, as I indicated before. This soup is rich and warming, but in a light, feel-good way, thanks to the split peas.
Ingredients for Yellow Split Pea Soup
This yellow split pea soup reminds me of a plant-based version of corn chowder. Here’s what you’ll find inside:
- Yellow split peas: They give protein and creaminess to the soup, but there’s another reason to appreciate these dried peas! They are a wonderful match for the shape of the corn kernels in this picture. It’s fun to eat since you never know if your spoon is full of corn or yellow peas as you eat it.
- Onion, garlic, and celery all contribute a delicious, aromatic flavor to the dish.
- Yukon gold potato: It adds a creamy smoothness to the dish.
- Corn kernels: They lend a delightful sweetness to the soup and make it extremely creamy. This soup is best made in the early fall when I have plenty of fresh corn on hand, but frozen corn could also be used.
- Cashew cream: It adds richness and perfects the creamy texture.
When you have smoked paprika, there’s no need for a ham bone. It imparts a smokey, strong flavor.
- Apple cider vinegar balances out the sweetness of the maize and adds a sharp, acidic finish to the soup.
Sauté the aromatics, then add the potato, split peas, stock, corn, paprika, and salt, and cook for 45 minutes, or until the peas are cooked. Half of the soup should be pureed and returned to the pot, along with the cashew cream and apple cider vinegar. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve immediately! The complete recipe can be seen below.
Suggestions for Serving Yellow Split Pea Soup
This soup is robust enough to be a meal on its own, thanks to the protein-packed split peas and thick cashew cream.
I like to serve it with a hunk of nice crusty bread like this quick no-knead bread, which I top with crispy coconut bacon, chives, and fresh parsley.
It’s also good as a side dish with avocado toast or a robust salad like my kale, broccoli, or Caesar salad.
Any leftovers can be kept in the fridge for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 6 months. My finest freezer meal tips and recipes may be found in this post!
Yellow Split Pea Soup
|Time to Prepare: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hr
Total Time: 1 hr 10 mins
This vegan version of corn chowder is made using yellow split peas. It’s sweet and smokey, warm and creamy, and completely delectable.
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 2 stalks of celery, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 cups vegetable broth
- 1 cup yellow split peas
- 1 medium Yukon gold potato, peeled and chopped
- Kernels from 4 ears of corn, about 2 1⁄2 cups
- 3 ⁄4 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon sea salt, more to taste
- 3 ⁄4 cup Cashew Cream, recipe below
- 1 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
Cashew Cream (makes extra)
- 3 ⁄4 cup raw cashews, soaked for 2 hours, if not using a Vitamix
- 2 ⁄3 cup of water
- 1 ⁄4 teaspoon salt
- extra fresh corn kernels
- chopped parsley
- red pepper flakes
- coconut bacon
- olive oil, for drizzling
- To make the cashew cream, combine all of the ingredients in a mixing bowl. In a blender, combine the cashews, water, and salt and blend until completely smooth. Set aside 3/4 cup.
- In a big pot over medium heat, heat the oil. Cook, stirring periodically, for 5 to 7 minutes, until the onion is soft and translucent, adding the onion and celery last. Cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute after adding the garlic.
- Bring the stock, split peas, potato, corn, paprika, and salt to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook for 45 minutes, stirring periodically, until the split peas are cooked.
- To partially purée the soup, use an immersion blender, or puree roughly half of it in a conventional blender and return it to the saucepan. Combine the Cashew Cream and apple cider vinegar in a mixing bowl. Season to taste and adjust seasonings as needed. (At this point, I added up to 1 teaspoon of extra sea salt.) Serve with any desired toppings while still hot.