Cooking with Alison

Delicious Split Pea Soup Recipe (and DIY Meal in a Jar)

In DIY and Crafts, Soups and Salads on December 15, 2013 at am

This is a simple recipe for a delicious split pea soup that you can easily turn into a meal in a jar and a great gift.  (This soup is gluten free and can be made vegetarian, vegan, and dairy free.)  I love giving meals in jars as hostess gifts and housewarming presents.  For people that live in emergency-prone areas, canning meals in jars is essential to being prepared for anything.  Some of the better food preservation methods require equipment such as pressure canners, vacuum packing machines, oxygen absorbers, and freeze dried foods, etc.  You can find more information and meal in a jar recipes here.  You won’t believe the range of meals that you can put in a jar with a shelf life of months to years.


This split pea soup recipe was inspired by The Bean Ladies’ Lickety Split Pea Soup.  In December 2013, I had the opportunity of sampling two of The Bean Ladies’ products at The One of a Kind Show in Toronto, ON.  Their bean soups were delicious, but, in my opinion, very overpriced.  So I recreated their soup recipe for a fraction of the cost.  See my recipe for Curried White Bean and Sweet Potato Soup, which was also inspired by The Bean Ladies (coming soon).

photo (1)

These are the organic bouillon cubes that I used


Split pea soup prior to being pureed and prior to milk or butter being added


Pureed split pea soup with evaporated milk and butter (optional)

Split Pea Soup Recipe (and DIY Meal in a Jar)

This recipe makes 4 to 6 servings.  If you are making a meal in a jar, double the recipe below to fill a 1 liter mason jar.

3/4  cup dried yellow split peas  (Note:  Check for and discard any stones that you might find.)

3/4 cup dried green split peas  (Note:  Check for and discard any stones that you might find.)

1/2 cup dried red lentils  (Note:  Check for and discard any stones that you might find.)

1 1/2 to 2 chicken bouillon cubes  (Note:  I used 1 1/2 x 11 grams organic chicken bouillon cubes by the brand, HarvestsuN.  Alternatively, you could use 2 x 12 gram organic vegetable bouillon cubes if you are making a vegetarian or vegan soup.)

1 tablespoon dried parsley or savory

1/4 teaspoon ground thyme

1/4 teaspoon onion powder  (Note:  If you are not making a meal in a jar, you could substitute this with one medium sized onion, finely diced.)

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

1 cup diced carrots (approximately 3 small carrots)

1 cup chopped celery (Note:  If you omit this, your soup will still be delicious.)

 1 cup chopped cooked (smoked or unsmoked) ham  (optional)

coarse Kosher sea salt

ground black pepper

Optional:  1 cup of milk or evaporated milk and 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter  (Note:  This will make the soup smoother, creamier, and richer.  But personally, I prefer the rustic texture and flavour of the split pea soup made without any milk or butter.)

Instructions for making the soup:

Rinse the split peas and lentils in a colander under cool running water.  Place the split peas and lentils in a large pot along with 6 cups of water.  Add the carrot, celery, and ham (if using).  Then stir in the bouillon cubes, ground thyme, dried parsley, onion powder, and garlic powder.  Cover the pot with its lid and bring the water to a rolling boil over high heat.  Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer until the split peas and lentils are very soft, up to 1 hour.  Alternatively, you could cook the soup in a slow cooker on high for 5 to 6 hours.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

In batches, transfer the soup to a blender and carefully puree the soup until your desired consistency is achieved.  Alternatively, you could see an immersion hand blender.  Personally, I like pureeing the soup until it is smooth but still ever so slightly chunky.  If desired, stir in butter until melted and then stir in milk.  Once the soup has cooled completely, it will freeze well.

Instructions for assembling the meal in a jar:

Sterilize a 1 liter mason jar and lid.  Wipe them completely dry using paper towel.  Then place a funnel into the mouth of the mason jar and pour in the green split peas.  Swirl the mason jar as needed to ensure that the green split peas are evenly distributed in the bottom of your mason jar.  Then add the red lentils.  Once again, ensure that the layer of red lentils is evenly distributed.  Add the yellow split peas in an even layer on top of the red lentils.  Remove the funnel.

Place the bouillon cubes, onion powder, garlic powder, parsley/savoury, and thyme into a mini ziploc bag or cellophane treat bag.  Seal the bag well by using the lock mechanism or by tying it tightly using a piece of twine.  If desired, use your fingers to crush the bouillon cubes into a powder and then shake the bag until all of the contents are mixed together.  Place the bag of dried ingredients into the mason jar and screw the lid on tightly.  Write the instructions for the soup on a gift tag and tie it to the neck of the mason jar using pretty string, ribbon, or twine.  If you are using a 1 litre mason jar, be sure to double the recipe on your gift tag and note that one batch will make 8 to 12 servings that are, luckily, freezer friendly.  Alternatively, you could create your own label and stick it to the front of the jar or to the top of the lid.  If you are making these for food storage, be sure to label the jar with the date it was prepared.

Another option for making a meal in a jar is to cook the soup, allow it to cool (it doesn’t have to be completely cooled off), and then transfer it to a mason jar (using a funnel).  Be sure to leave at least an inch of space between the soup and the lid.  This way the person receiving the soup can reheat it or freeze it.  If you plan to freeze this soup for yourself, freezing the soup in plastic Ziploc freezer bags will save you space in the freezer.  Just make sure that you defrost it in a pot or large bowl, as the freezer bags tend to leak.

  1. That is such a cute gift idea!!

  2. […] a pretty dish, bowl, or gift box. Alternatively, you can assemble meals in glass jars, such as this delicious split pea soup. You can also check out some of BIST’s favourite Chef Janet Craig’s easy recipes, such […]

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