Accidentally Vegan Pea Soup

I really like pea soup, and I made some again tonight. I’m not averse to putting bacon or ham in the soup, or using meat broth, but I just didn’t tonight.

It was very good pea soup. I’m putting the “recipe” here mostly for my own reference. It’s not too different from what you’d find on the back of the bag of peas, so don’t consider it to be special or worth saving.


16 oz./2 cups of dried split peas
One largeish potato, like a russet, or equiv potato mass, peeled and cubed
Two quarts of water
1/4 cup olive oil
One tbsp ground cumin seeds
Four tbsp ground dill weed
Four or five threads of saffron
One tbsp. coarse ground black pepper
1 bay leaf
Salt to taste, if necessary

Get a deep saucepan.

Dump the olive oil in the bottom of the pan and drop in the bay leaf, the cumin, and the pepper. Heat the olive oil until the bay leaf is browning.

Dump in the water and the peas. Bring to a boil.

Dump in the potato cubes and bring to a boil again.

Reduce heat. Add the dill and the saffron. If you have favorite spices of your own, this is the time to put them in.

Simmer for an hour, stirring occasionally.

Check the soup for consistency and flavor. Adjust flavor with your choice of the herbs above or other herbs you like. Salt to taste.

Simmer for another 30 minutes. Watch and stir frequently so the soup doesn’t get lumpy. Cook until the consistency is thick and the potatoes are mostly dissolved, but it’s not glue or on fire. This varies with your pot and your idea of “simmer” and also with the will of the Gods.

Cool until it isn’t deadly and serve.


You can get away with no salt if you flavor it right. One good idea is to put in some cayenne or other hot chili spice, just enough to make it interesting.

I find that the combination of potatoes and saffron and olive oil produces a “mouth feel” that will make you forget the vegan nature of the soup even if you’re a hamatarian.

So this is a very simple pea soup and again not much different from the back of the package, but I like it so I’m putting it here. Cheers.

6 thoughts on “Accidentally Vegan Pea Soup

  1. Mmm. That sounds really good. I made cabbage-bean soup tonight, myself, which is a family recipe I’ve posted before, I think. Winter — even “winter” in California — is a good time for soups. I’ll be making pea soup soon, though probably with ham shank, and I want to make scotch broth, too, with lamb and barley, mmmm.

    1. A handful of ham bits.
      If you want to get fancy, fry some bits of bacon and drain, then dump them in.
      It’s really not necessary, though!

    2. Isn’t the point of this recipe to have an ethical meal? If one were to “meatify,” as you say, that would defeat the purpose of making “vegan” soup in the first place!

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