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Slow cooker split pea soup in a bowl with a spoon.

Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup

  • Author: Sara Nelson
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 4 hours
  • Total Time: 4 hours, 15 minutes
  • Yield: 10 servings 1x
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: American


This Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup is an easy recipe that’s great for anyone, including beginner cooks. Just prep your ingredients, add them to your slow cooker, and that’s it. Cook it on low to simmer all day, or set it to high if you need it ready sooner.


  • 20 ounces or 16 ounces dried split peas
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 11 1/2 cups water (see note below)
  • 2 cups cubed ham (storebought or leftover) or 1 meaty ham bone
  • 3 carrots, peeled then diced
  • 2 celery ribs, diced
  • 1/2 large yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme or 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh thyme

Optional Garnish:

  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


  1. Prepare Soup:

    High Instructions: The night before, soak the peas overnight in water. The next day, drain then rinse under cold water. Combine all soup ingredients excluding parsley in a 6-quart slow cooker. Cover and cook on high for 4-6 hours. If desired, to thicken more, after 4 hours of cooking on high, cook with the lid off for an additional 1 hour.

    Low Instructions: Rinse peas and drain well. Combine all soup ingredients excluding parsley in a 6-quart slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours.

    (If you have extra time, you can continue to cook longer to further soften the ingredients and for the flavors to further develop. It really just comes down to how much time you have. Personally, I cook mine covered on high for 4 hours and then uncovered for about another 1 hour.)

  2. Final Steps, Garnish, and Serve: Discard bay leaf. If you’d like a thicker consistency, carefully blend soup using an immersion blender until desired consistency is reached. Stir in parsley, then carefully taste test and add salt and pepper based on taste preferences.

Recipe Notes:

Water Note: Use 1 cup of water if you add 16 ounces of split peas. If you use 20 ounces of split peas, use 1 1⁄2 cups water. If desired, add more water towards the end of the cooking time to thin the soup out.

Bone-In Ham Note: If using bone-in ham, keep the bone in the soup until the soup has finished cooking. Remove from the soup when removing the bay leaf.

Refrigerator Storage: Let the soup cool to room temperature, then store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Freezer Storage: Freeze it in portions in a freezer-safe container, and it’ll be good for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

Reheating: To reheat, pop it in the microwave, stirring every minute or so until it’s heated through. You can also reheat it in a pot on the stove over medium heat, stirring occasionally. If the soup has become too thick in the fridge, thin it out with a little water or broth.

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