A Deliciously Tasty Black Eyed Pea Soup Recipe

If you really want to take a soup recipe to the next level and embellish the flavors of soul food, then this tasty black eyed pea soup recipe may be right for you. A staple legume of the South, black eyed peas are often cooked as a side dish, but the way it cooks down into a tender and creamy texture has made it a popular soup option more recently.

History of the Black Eyed Pea

Although it has pea in the name, the black eyed pea is really a bean and should be treated like beans when cooking. While it is expected that this bean has African roots, it came to the Americas through trading and colonization back in the 1500s. While it has been eaten and enjoyed all over the world, the impact it has had on the southern part of the United States, from the Carolinas to Louisiana, gave this bean an identity.

It is full of nutrients that your body needs daily, including manganese, fiber, and folate, which is great for expecting mothers. They are great for digestion, so if you are having issues with your stomach, this soup can help get things moving and improve how you feel.

After these beans are harvested, they can be dried, canned, or frozen, so you can choose which you prefer when cooking. It is important to note that the canned version of these beans will have more salt and preservatives, so if you are managing your sodium, it is best to opt for dried or frozen black eyes peas.

Gather Your Ingredients

Once you decide you want to pursue the delicious black eyes pea soup recipe, you need to first make the decision if you want it to be diet specific. This soup can be made with ham to be fulfilling, or you can opt of out that if you want to keep it a vegetarian dish.

  • One pound of dried black eyed peas or four cans of black eyed peas
  • One tablespoon of olive oil
  • Six cups of chicken or vegetable broth
  • Two cups of chopped greens
  • Optional: ham chunks
  • One large diced carrot
  • One diced onion
  • One sliced celery stalk
  • One tablespoon of minced garlic
  • Two cans of petite diced tomatoes
  • Two bay leaves
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Regarding greens, you want to grab whatever is in season. This can be either collard greens, turnip greens, mustard greens, or sliced cabbage if that’s all you have at the market. You can also opt to use fresh garlic if you don’t have minced garlic. If you cannot get an onion or forget it at the market, a tablespoon of onion powder will also do the trick.

Remember that you do not need all these vegetables if you do not enjoy them. You can also add different veggie options if you like; just keep the black eyed peas the star of the soup.

Preparing Your Black Eyed Peas

If you opt for dried beans, you will want to rehydrate them in water so that they can reduce the cooking time on your soup. It will take a long time for beans to rehydrate in the soup if they are added to their current dry state. Please put them in a bowl of water overnight and cover them so that they absorb the water the night before you start the soup.

Begin Building Your Black Eyed Pea Soup Recipe

Now that you have gone to the market and your black eyes peas are ready to use, it is time to start building your soup and enjoy. Keep in mind that with prep time, this will take about two to three hours before it is finished and ready to serve.

1. Wash and Prep Your Veggies

First things first, it is time to wash the veggies. Your greens need to be thoroughly washed for several minutes underwater with your hands rubbing through them and ensuring that there isn’t any dirt lingering. This is also true for the carrot and celery stems that you plan to use.

Once everything is clean, it is time to start cutting and dicing, making sure your carrots are in small dices, your celery sliced in about a half inch, and your onions chopped nicely. If you choose to go with fresh garlic, you want to slice it up now into thin julienne slices so that it spreads through the soup. Also, chop your greens into slices and make them as close to even as possible.

2. Saute Away

Grab your large soup pot, turn the burner on to medium high heat, and add in the olive oil. You are going to saute the veggies first once the oil gets warm. Start with the garlic and onion first, letting them cook for just a minute before adding the carrot, celery, and greens to the pot. Once they are all in, stir them and let them start cooking down for about five minutes.

3. Bring it All In

Now that the veggies have saluted some, it is time to add the rest of the ingredients to your large soup pot. If you want ham, add it here. Toss in your cans of tomatoes, your black eyed peas, and broth, and stir it. Turn your burner to high heat to get your soup to a rolling boil. Add salt, pepper, and bay leaves once the soup is boiling.

4. It’s Simmer Time

Once the soup hits that rolling boil, go ahead and put the lid on it, turn it to simmer, and turn your timer on for two hours. During that time, feel free to bake some cornbread to serve with your soup or a pot of rice if you have diners who want an additional starch added to their soup.

5. Serve and Store

Once your timer buzzes, stir your soup and check the tender consistency of the soup. First, fish out those bay leaves and toss them in the recycling. Begin ladling your soup into bowls for your guest. For those who want rice, add some rice to the bowl first, then pour the bothy soup right over.

Go ahead and turn the burner off and let your soup cool completely. If you have leftovers of this dish, once it is cool, store it in a container in your fridge for the next four days. This makes a great option for meal prep lunches or dinners where you want the leftovers the next day. The soup will taste better the next day after a night in the fridge.

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