Split Pea and Potato Soup (Vegetarian)

Most of the time I am a make-your-own-soup person. Soup is easy and it’s a great option for making a bunch of meals at once so you can eat soup for lunch all week. That being said, the one canned soup I do buy fairly often is Amy’s Split Pea Soup. I really like it, but it’s 50/50 if it will be in stock at the grocery store I usually shop at. This recipe for split pea and potato soup is very much inspired by the canned version. I also was interested in creating a vegetarian split pea soup (that can easily become vegan as well) because I noticed quite a few of the recipes I saw online required a ham hock to make the soup, and even though I do eat meat sometimes, that’s just not an ingredient I even know where to buy. Ha.

Even though this split pea soup is vegetarian it still manages to be very flavorful and filling. It’s thick enough that you really don’t need to add crackers or bread, but soup isn’t soup until I add Saltine crackers. Is that a Midwest thing?

This split pea and potato soup is also very simple—you won’t need a lot of ingredients, and the ones you do need you may already have on hand. It’s just a good basic split pea soup recipe. Sometimes you just want to keep it classic, you know?

This recipe will make four to five servings. I’ve written four on the recipe card below, but if you serve this alongside a salad or half a sandwich (Panera Bread pick-two style, ha) then it could easily be five or maybe even six servings. It’s a hearty soup!

Which brings me to my one note about leftovers. Just like the canned version, this soup is quite thick when cold. When you rewarm it on the stove or in a microwave it will naturally get thinner but don’t be afraid to add a little water, like a tablespoon or two, if you want a more soup-y consistency. I find this really doesn’t affect the flavor much at all.

Happy soup making! xo. Emma

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4.67 from 3 votes

Split Pea and Potato Soup (Vegetarian)

Course Soup
Cuisine American
Keyword soup, split pea soup
Servings 4 servings
Author Emma Chapman


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 potato
  • 2 cups split green peas
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 cups vegetable stock


  1. Finely chop (and peel if necessary) the onion, carrots, and potato. Mince the garlic.

    In a large pot, add the oil and butter and heat over medium high heat. Stir in the onion and carrots. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for 2 minutes until they begin to soften. Then add the potato and garlic. Sprinkle on the cumin and cayenne. Cook another minute. Then add the split peas, bay leaves, and stock.

    Reduce the heat to low and cover the pot. Cook for 1 hour. Check to see if the peas are fully cooked, they should be very soft and beginning to lose their shape somewhat. If they still seem firm, cook for another 10-20 minutes or more.

    Remove from the heat once fully cooked and remove the bay leaves. Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Garnish with cheese, fresh herbs (I had some thyme on hand) and crackers for serving. These are all optional!

Recipe Notes

If you want to make this vegan, simply use vegan butter or two tablespoons of olive oil instead of a mix of olive oil and butter. And skip the cheese at the end or use a vegan cheese.

This soup makes great leftovers but it will become very thick when cold. When you reheat, if the soup doesn't thin out as much as you would like, add a tablespoon or two (per serving) to the final soup. 

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Color Story Desktop.
  • Made this soup yesterday and it is sooooo good. Thanks for the recipe!!

    Regards from Costa Rica

  • Do you have to blend this soup at all? Using either immersion or normal blender?

    • Hi! I would use an immersion blender to make the soup creamier, but it’s optional 🙂

  • 5 stars
    love this soup, split pea soup is one of those recipes that I’ve done a complete flip on since I’ve grown older and appreciate what I used to loathe growing up and even love the sweet potato tweak above from Martha, especially since they’re a favorite of mine, so thank you to you both!

  • Looks so delicious! Might have to make this for my first week back in the office next week

  • My husband and I have tried – and LOVED – a few of your recipes and we are excited to try this one! Yum!

  • I add a little smoked paprika to replace the smoky taste of the ham.

  • Yum! I often put sweet potato instead of white potato in mine. I let the sweet potato, in large chunks, cook in with the other ingredients. Then I remove it toward the end and mash the sweet potato and return to the soup.

  • 4 stars
    One of my favourite kinds of soup. This looks delicious! 🙂 xx

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