This hearty soup is packed with plant-based protein thanks to the yellow split peas, cashews provide richness, and smoked paprika and fresh corn give it a sweet and smoky flavor.
I didn’t think split peas were something to get excited about until I made this yellow split pea soup from Gena Hamshaw’s cookbook Power Plates. I’d only ever tried them in traditional split pea soup when I was a kid. You know, the kind that’s cooked with chicken stock and a ham hock, and that’s just not my thing.
This recipe takes the best characteristics of the traditional soup, such as its smokey flavor and abundance of plant-based protein, and veers completely in a different path. It is completely free of animal products, savory and sweet, creamy and comforting, and absolutely wonderful.
If you have never prepared yellow or green split peas before, you should know that they are extremely similar to lentils. There is no need to soak them before cooking, and they may be brought to a soft and tender state in under an hour on the stove.
This is in contrast to the majority of other dried beans. They achieve the thick and creamy texture of this soup without the use of actual cream, and as I indicated earlier, they also add a significant amount of plant-based protein. This soup is rich and filling thanks to the split peas, but in a light, feel-good way.
Yellow Split Pea Soup Recipe Ingredients
I like to think of this yellow split pea soup as a plant-based riff on corn chowder. Here’s what’s in it:
Aside from the fact that they are a great source of protein and help to give the soup a velvety consistency, yellow split peas are another reason to adore the dried peas in this dish. These are excellent representations of the shape of the maize kernels found here. It is enjoyable to consume since you are never quite sure if the kernels on your spoon are corn or yellow peas.
Yukon gold potato: It contributes to a more velvety and creamy texture.
Corn kernels: Corn kernels are a wonderful addition to this soup because of the extra creaminess and sweetness they provide to the dish. Although though I prefer to prepare this soup in the early fall when I still have plenty of fresh corn on hand, you could also use frozen corn in this recipe.
Cashew cream: It completes the creamy texture and provides the essential richness.
Smoked paprika: Who needs a ham bone when you have smoked paprika? It offers a robust, smokey flavor.
Apple cider vinegar: It reduces the sweetness of the corn and gives the soup a sharp, acidic finish.
When the aromatics have been sautéed, add the potato, split peas, stock, corn, paprika, and salt, and then boil the mixture for about 45 minutes, or until the peas are soft. After pureeing half of the soup, transfer it back to the saucepan. Add the cashew cream and the apple cider vinegar, and stir to combine. Salt and pepper should be added to taste, and the dish should be served hot! Below is a link to the complete recipe.
Yellow Split Pea Soup Serving Suggestions
This soup is substantial enough to stand on its own as a meal due to the protein-rich split peas and the creamy cashew cream that it contains. I like to serve it with a chunk of nice crusty bread like this quick no-knead bread and top it with crispy coconut bacon, chives, and fresh parsley.
You could also serve it as a side dish with avocado toast or a robust salad such as my kale salad, broccoli salad, or Caesar salad. Another option is to use it as a topping for pizza.
You can keep any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to five days, or you can freeze them and use them at a later time. Check out this post for all of my best tips and recipes for making freezer meals!
- 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 water
- 1 ⁄4 teaspoon salt
- extra fresh corn kernels
- chopped parsley
- red pepper flakes
- coconut bacon
- olive oil, for drizzling
- Create the cashew cream. Put the cashews, water, and salt in a blender, and puree the mixture until it is completely smooth. Put aside 3/4 cup.
- A big pot with medium heat should be used to heat the oil. After adding the onion and celery, simmer for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring periodically, until the onion is soft and transparent. After adding the garlic, heat it for one minute while stirring regularly.
- Bring to a boil over high heat while stirring in the broth, split peas, potato, corn, paprika, and salt. Turn the heat down to low, cover the pot, and simmer for about 45 minutes, or until the split peas are totally cooked.
- You can puree a portion of the soup with an immersion blender, or you can puree approximately half of the soup in a conventional blender and then return it to the saucepan. Add the apple cider vinegar and Cashew Cream after stirring. Try it out and make any necessary adjustments to the seasonings. (I increased the amount of sea salt in this recipe by as much as one teaspoon.) With any chosen toppings, serve immediately.