Pressure Cooker Split Pea Soup

When we enjoy baked ham I typically turn the bone over to my mom who turns it into tasty split pea soup. I figured I’d return the favor this time around, picked up a package of green split peas and followed the basic recipe on the back of the package. I omitted the “ham-flavor seasoning package” included with the dried peas in favor of actual ham.
[Split Pea Soup]
I added the ham in two phases, some while cooking and the bulk after cooking. The pressure cooker will draw every bit of flavor from the ham; the second addition ensures that some of the ham you eat will actually taste as it should.

Pressure Cooker Split Pea Soup
Servings: 6-8
Prep time: 5 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes


  • 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 3 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2″ pieces
  • 2 stalks celery, cut into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1 onion, peeled and diced
  • 1 lg (or 2 sm) cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb. dried green split peas, rinsed
  • 1 1/2 lbs. cooked ham, cut into 1/2″ pieces, divided
  • 8 cups water or ham stock
  • the bone from a baked ham (optional but so worth it)
  • kosher salt and black pepper

Special equipment:

  • pressure cooker


  1. Heat oil over medium-low heat in the pressure cooker. Add all the fresh veggies, sprinkle with a pinch of salt and stir to coat with oil. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add the garlic, stir into the rest of the veggies and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  3. Add the split peas, 1/2 lb. of ham and the water/stock. Stir once or twice two mix things up. Add the ham bone. Bring to a boil.
  4. Put the lid on the pressure cooker and lock. Bring up to pressure until steam is being released. Lower the heat to maintain pressure; a small hiss of steam should still escape the cooker.
  5. Cook for 20 minutes. Use the quick release to dump the pressure built up in the cooker.
  6. Use tongs to remove the bones from the pot. The bulk of the peas have probably settled on the bottom of the pot. Stir well until your spoon no longer brings up clumps of pea puree. Stir in the remaining ham and allow to sit for 10 minute.
  7. Taste for seasoning and adjust as desired. I like mine with lots of freshly ground black pepper. A bit of olive oil would be nice too.

As an experiment I cooked the ham bone in 16 cups of water on low in my slower cooker for 9 hours while I was at work. It yielded a very weak stock. I used it to make the soup however I’ll probably just use water next time.

This soup will thicken while it sits. When I transferred the leftovers to a container it was basically a blob. Worry not; add a bit of water, reheat and it will be lovely soup again.

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